When sessions are held in a studio the photographer has control over everything from backgrounds, to lighting, to the posing of his subject. There is some amazing stuff that can be done in a studio. When pet photographers are doing an on-location shoot or an outdoor session they have control over . . . well, very little if none of that.
There are questions that every photographer asks themselves before clicking the shutter. They might start with something like: What do I want my viewer to feel when they see this image and how could I evoke that feeling? From there they might ask: Would this image be best zoomed in on one thing or zoomed out including the surrounding elements? Do I want to include the bright lighting that is coming from behind or would the image have more emotion silhouetted?
When getting ready to click the shutter on my camera, one of the first things I look at is the background. I can't say to a dog, "Ok, could you please turn slightly to the left so I can get those concrete blocks out of the background?" No, but there are some things I can do to help make the image a better one. I can move myself and my camera so that the blocks are no longer in view (and hope the animal doesn't come to investigate why I'm moving), or I can adjust my camera settings so that the background takes on a more painterly effect making the blocks less noticeable (again, working quickly as not to lose the attention of my subject).
Here is an example for this week's
Project 52: Questions
• In the first image there is a lot of clutter in the background that I was not able to crop out of the scene when I crouched down closer to my subject's level. (And . . . Hermes is about to jump out of his skin in anticipation of the treat that was in my hand. sheesh)
• In the second image I moved 2 steps up onto the stairs that were behind me to change the angle of the shot (and to be a little further from Hermes so that he might stay put.) It's better, but it's a little busy with that carpet. We can see it's a dog, but the carpet is fighting for attention.
• To take care of all that busy-ness I adjusted my camera settings so that the viewer is drawn straight to Hermes' face. (Just look at those adorable eyes.)
I encourage you to try different angles when taking pictures of your own, especially when taking them with your phone. Just tip your phone a little up or down or even side to side. I think you might surprise yourself. :O)
This week you can follow the project ring and see the thought process of other photographers when trying to get the perfect shot. Head over to Boston pet photographer, Blue Amrich Studio to start the round. Be sure to click on the link at the end of each blog post to continue back around the circle.
Enjoy your weekend!