Low Key Pet Portrait Photography

Posted by on Nov 6, 2015 in News
Low Key Pet Portrait Photography

Low Key Pet Portrait Photography

 A Great Dalmatian Portrait

If you don’t already know this I have a beautiful dalmatian dog and yes we do take lots of photos of her but normally as most of us do with our smart phones then stick it on Instagram. So yeah, she was just lying by my feet and I thought I’ve never really tried to take a great photograph of her. I had a bit of think of the best way to photographer her, should I do it outside or indoors? Yes I went for indoors, next I had to decide High Key or Low Key? The answer came quite quickly to me. The simplest and easiest way won as I couldn’t be bothered to set up the white backdrop and the Bowen’s studio lights, lazy I know but you can get some awesome photographs with an off camera speedlite and that is what I did. You must remember when photographing dogs or most pets that you need something that they love… A favourite toy or some nice treats are essential to get them to do as you ask. My little beauty loves treats and she will do anything for that treat.

Here’s what I did:

I put my Canon 430 Ex II Speedlite onto a stand with a 30cm softbox. I kept the stand low so it was just above her head level. I always use manual mode and shoot in RAW my camera settings varied from f8 – f11, ISO was set to 100 and my shutter speed was set from 200th sec to 250th sec.

Now, let me explain that these photographs were taken in daylight, in the morning, in my living room with no backdrop. How? I hear you say… Well if use the above setting with no flash on your camera and you will see that you will get nothing but black (that’s your backdrop). Once you add the flash into the equation, it will highlight onto your subject.  You can use more lights and studio lights, it’s entirely up to you but I like to use just the one. Shooting at 200th sec or 250th sec gives you the freedom of not using a tripod which lets you get up closer and  in better positions for a better composition. Obviously, some light will bleed through and this is when we move to post production. For me , I use Lightroom and Photoshop. With some these photographs I added a bit of warmth from the white balance, I did keep should I do them in just black and white but she has beautiful brown eyes. If you get a great shot then all you are using Lightroom and Photoshop for is levels and sharpness and cropping. Give it a go you can have some fun and get some awesome photographs…

I hope you like my low key pet portraits of my favourite dog.. 🙂

Don’t forget

If you would like me to photograph your best friend be it a cat, dog or even a horse then please feel free to say hello via my contact page

Low Key Pet Portrait Photography Low Key Pet Portrait Photography Low Key Pet Portrait Photography Low Key Pet Portrait Photography


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