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Dog photography session at Baker Beach with the Golden Gate Bridge

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Dog photography session at Baker Beach with the Golden Gate Bridge

I can’t thank you enough for all you have done for Oliver and me, and I don’t think words can share how amazing this experience has been! Again, THANK YOU! You are an absolute godsend and I am so lucky to have had the chance to work with you.
— Marie A.

This week I met with Marie and her right hand Oliver. Oliver is a 11 year old Border Collie mix that was rescued when he was a puppy. Marie was fostering him when he was a puppy and after a while, their connection was so strong and so special that Marie adopted him. Oliver was her first dog (now she owns 2 more which trains at her Dog Training Center in San Jose) and as a first dog, he was also her first love. They´ve share so many things in life that now that Oliver is a senior dog, she wanted to capture him in all his splendor before it´s too late.

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During my consultation with Marie (a very important step towards designing the perfect photo session) she told me that they love to go on walks at the beach. Although Oliver doesn´t like to be in the water (despite the benefits of it, specially for his arthritis), we decided that Baker Beach would be the perfect place for the dog photography session. She had the idea of him with the Golden Gate Bridge behind Oliver and I was very excited about the idea. I love the Golden Gate Bridge! 

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For the way Marie talked about Oliver, almost with watery eyes, I saw how special was this for her. Growing up with a dog it´s a life changing experience and thinking a life without him was unimaginable for her. Her story with Oliver was very moving and I wanted to give them the most special session possible. So I decided to do the session during the sunset. For photographers, there´s what we call "the magic hour" which are those 3 minutes just right after the sun sets. The light in the sky is as beautiful as fleeting. As fleeting as that instant connection you make with somebody.

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Despite some physical limitations for Oliver (he gets very stiff after some running) he did very well. He even got wet paws for me! :)

Here are my favorite photos from that day.  

When Marie saw the photos, she was so happy that she couldn´t hold some tears of joy (I have to admit that I also let a tear go...). These are her words:

"I can't thank you enough for all you have done for Oliver and me, and I don't think words can share how amazing this experience has been! Again, THANK YOU! You are an absolute godsend and I am so lucky to have had the chance to work with you".


If you have a senior dog and you are thinking to capture him or her, contact me today and share what you have in mind. I´d love to work with you! 


Session selected as my favorite one of 2014! See the rest here.

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Lifestyle Dog Photographer Santa Monica: Rescued Pomeranian

This weekend I had an amazing photo shoot with the cutest black pomeranian I've ever met. I'm talking about a little ball of fluffy hair with a hair cut like the Lion King. He is tiny, but don't let his size fool you. His personality is as big as Simba's! 

 Black Pomeranian posing on top of a stool, Los Angeles.

Black Pomeranian posing on top of a stool, Los Angeles.

I was commissioned to do a Fine Art Session (my signature session), which includes very artistic dog portraits (which are meant to capture the beauty and elegance of your pet) and lifestyle images (which are meant to capture your dog's personality). Learn more about the difference here.

 Beautiful and elegant portrait of Toni. Indoor photo shoot with natural light. 

Beautiful and elegant portrait of Toni. Indoor photo shoot with natural light. 

 Little story-telling with photography. Pomeranian dog playing hide and seek with the blankets.

Little story-telling with photography. Pomeranian dog playing hide and seek with the blankets.

Normally I do the outdoor session first so the dog can be tired for the indoor session but this time I did it the other way around for the lighting of the house. And thanks God! Because, do you know what happened in the outdoor session? Before I did even have time to pull out my camera, Toni jumped straight into the lake to chase a duck!

 Pomeranian dog swimming in a little lake, Playa Vista.

Pomeranian dog swimming in a little lake, Playa Vista.

The moment was hysterical but his coat was all ruined: wet and full of dirt from the lake (some duck poop included). Of course, that wouldn't have worked for the Fine Art Session. Anyway, I had those shoots already so it was time to have fun!

  I think he also has some   meerkat in his blood!

I think he also has some meerkat in his blood!

Here are some of the best shoots of the day. 


Would you like to have a session like this for your pup? Contact me and let's book your free consultation to discuss your ideas.

 

Related posts: 7 Reasons why you should hire a professional pet photographer
 


Session selected as my favorite one of 2014! See the rest here.



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Dog Photography Session in San Francisco, SOMA

I'm a big lover of mutts, so when I was booked to photograph Cooper, a labrador-boxer mix, I was very thrilled.

We did the entire session at home. When I shoot indoors, I like to use a fix lens with my Nikon D600. Since the apartment wasn't very spacious, I used my Nikkor 32mm 1.4 for the entire session, and it was great.

Cooper is a young pup, but his level of energy was very low and it worked perfectly. He was a great model and posed graciously for me.

Since I work only with natural light, we did most of the session in the bedroom because it had abundant natural light. The bed and the blankets turned out to be the perfect accessory.

 Cooper on the bed. He looks adorable with the blanket covering his head.

Cooper on the bed. He looks adorable with the blanket covering his head.

Since I started Frame Your Pet, I've photographed a few dogs that were older than 17 years of age. Pretty amazing. All those dogs had something in common: they were part of a family that had tons of love to give. Love is the best medicine for a long and healthy life, not only for humans but also for dogs. I believe Cooper will have a long and happy life!

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I love to capture the bond between pets and owners. Cooper's mom didn't want to miss the opportunity to take portraits of some of the things she likes to do with her pup, like cuddling in bed.

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Some people think that having photos of your pet is a little odd, but it all depends on the eye and the approach taken for the photos. 

 I always like to keep the focus of attention on the pet.

I always like to keep the focus of attention on the pet.

For Angela and Cooper, I wanted to create a series of "collages" to illustrate their bond, but do it in a more creative and modern way. So, I got onto the bed and started to take pictures of them together.

 Sunday mornings are perfect to be lazy, but they are even better when you share the moment.

Sunday mornings are perfect to be lazy, but they are even better when you share the moment.

 Cooper seized the moment to take a nap.

Cooper seized the moment to take a nap.

Here are some more photos from that day.

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 Cooper's butt :)

Cooper's butt :)

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 One of my favorites. Angela and Cooper resting on the bed. 

One of my favorites. Angela and Cooper resting on the bed. 

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Being a Labrador with some Boxer in his blood, sometimes Cooper's teeth get stuck in the lips. His mom finds it adorable so I wanted to capture this expression in particular. He looks so goofy!

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Would you like to have a session like this with your pet? I'd be thrilled to be your photographer! Contact me to schedule your free consultation and let's talk about what I can do for you.


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7 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Professional Pet Photographer

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7 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Professional Pet Photographer

It’s convenient to snap pictures of your furry friends with your camera or smartphone when a cute or playful moment presents itself, but those aren’t the photos that you’re going to want to print and frame. For display, you’ll want professional pet photos that are done with taste and grace.


Here are some the reasons that make professional pet photography a worthwhile investment:


1. The puppy stage is very short

We all melt when looking at photos of puppies. It's the sweetest thing ever and we all wish we could have a puppy again. You may have had a puppy once, but you barely remember it because the puppy grows so fast! Who doesn't like to search for puppy photos? The beautiful pictures of little and clumsy animals, sleeping or playing, with great light, keeping all the details and the softness. High end photography is hard to achieve with iPhones and those types of photos don't do justice to your dog at all.

Those playful, cuddly puppies will grow up fast. You’ll want to capture this moment so that you will be able to remember it when your friend becomes an adult and eventually a senior. This is the sweetest and most innocent phase of your pet’s life, and before you realize it, it will be gone. So the sooner you immortalize it in photography, the better.

 Boxer puppy with her mom during his puppy session with Frame Your Pet Photography.

Boxer puppy with her mom during his puppy session with Frame Your Pet Photography.

2. Animals don’t last forever

I wish they did, but they will die some day and then what will you have? 1000 photos in your Dropbox all with bad lighting and resolution enough for an 8x10. Many of my clients are booking what I call Rainbow Sessions. It’s for pets who are nearing the end of life either due to old age or an illness. It’s great to get those photo opportunities in before it’s too late, but why not get a new photo shoot done with them every couple of years, when they’re still strong and healthy, so that when they do pass, you’ll have something to illustrate their whole life.

 Saying goodbye to your companion is never easy. So before it’s too late, this is a wonderful way to capture those last precious moments

Saying goodbye to your companion is never easy. So before it’s too late, this is a wonderful way to capture those last precious moments


3. Your pet is part of your family

We all take professional pictures with our spouses or families. Why not honor your beloved pet with a quality photo shoot as well? Pet photography also has the ability to be more artistic in lighting and backdrops than family portraits. Imagine the action shots, the cute poses and expressions framed perfectly on your wall. Family portraits, when displayed, tend to be no larger than 8x10, but an artistic pet photo can look great at larger proportions.

 Cooper's family gave themselves a gift with beautiful family portraits in their home.

Cooper's family gave themselves a gift with beautiful family portraits in their home.


4. Pet photography done tastefully can become a piece of art

This isn’t stock photos or store-bought décor. This is unique and personalized art. Photos of animals make great pieces of art. But instead of spending thousands of dollars on a photo of a horse or dog you don't know, now you have the chance to have your own custom made piece of art of your cat or dog.

As an artist and photographer, I understand your needs for such art and that's why I created my Fine Art Sessions, which are meant to serve as large gallery mounted prints worthy of display. My photos are elegant, striking images that you will feel proud to have in your home.

 Visit my  Wall Art galler  y  to see more examples on how I can turn your cat, dog or horse photos into a masterpiece.

Visit my Wall Art gallery to see more examples on how I can turn your cat, dog or horse photos into a masterpiece.

 

5. Photography takes skill

You might take some great photos, but they still won’t have the professional touch to them. A career pet photographer has the training, the equipment, the experience, materials, and supplies to produce a gallery-quality portrait. The professional pet photographer will not only provide you with images that you never thought possible, but will shoot thinking about colors and composition. Also, the professional lenses are able to capture the light and details that no point and shoot camera or iPhone can. Plus, a skilled pet photographer will take care of fine tuning the image: removing eye bugs, removing the leash from the photo, removing people in the background, enhancing the fur details, the colors, etc.

To create a more piece of art more than just a quick shoot of the moment, the photo needs that fine tuning that only a professional pet photographer can provide.

BEFORE
This photo was taken with an iPhone.

AFTER
Akame's mom bought a Fine Art Session with Frame Your Pet and this is one of the photos of their session. They actually decided to print and mount this one on 24x36 aluminum piece. 

Related article: Why custom pet photography is expensive

 

6. Memories are priceless

Pet photography is a bit of a luxury, but once you capture those moments with your friend, you’ll have them forever and will have no doubt of their worth. We all return to photos from time to time when we feel nostalgic: photos of when we were kids, when we had that trip to the Grand Canyon with all the family, the Christmas evening when Grandpa was still with us, our wedding day. Photos immortalize that moment in time, that split second that will no longer be with us. Only the photo is the proof that that day existed and we lived it. So memories are not only priceless; they tell the story of our life. And cats and dogs are our life too. They grow up with us, they share every day with us and our kids, so it's very important to have their presence in our lives documented. This is especially true when you don't have children, as many do not. Pets are very much our family, and family in any form is a treasure.

 Shino turned 17 years old and his family decided to celebrate it with a professional pet photography session to capture his personality before it was too late.

Shino turned 17 years old and his family decided to celebrate it with a professional pet photography session to capture his personality before it was too late.


7. If you are a pet business, you need high quality marketing material

The quality of your marketing speaks volumes about the quality of your products or services. Look at any company and you’ll see that their sales increase in direct correlation to their marketing budget. The more you advertise, and the better your advertising is, the more customers will notice you and entrust you with their business. If you want your business to grow and see an increase in customers or client, taking your advertising and display materials to the next level with customized, professional pet photography is going to be key.

 A Spanish Horse Breeder and Horse Club commissioned Frame Your Pet a series of Fine Art equine photography to illustrate their high-end service. The photos are being use for their website and marketing activities such as brochures, printed ad's, posters etc.

A Spanish Horse Breeder and Horse Club commissioned Frame Your Pet a series of Fine Art equine photography to illustrate their high-end service.
The photos are being use for their website and marketing activities such as brochures, printed ad's, posters etc.

CONCLUSION

Of course, you’ll still want to take your own photos when the right moment strikes, but for the purpose of creating art and important keepsakes, only a professional pet photographer can deliver the quality you desire. Take the time to schedule your photo shoot today!

 

Related articles: Tips to choose the right pet photographerHow good dog and equine photography can help boost your business.


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Tips to choose the right pet photographer

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Tips to choose the right pet photographer

 

Becoming a pet owner is a more life-changing event than many people realize when they set out to choose a new addition to their family. Within a short space of time, a new dog or cat takes up a space in your heart that you didn’t know was empty. They are forever a part of your family and not just an animal.

Your pet becomes an integral part of your life; he is there for all of life’s monotonous daily moments. He greets you when you wake up, when you get in from work, and cuddles on your lap before bedtime. He’s also there for life’s milestones; birthday’s, family bbq’s, the birth of children. He is a constant presence, always offering unconditional love and affection.

 Celebrating Maui's 7th birthday.

Celebrating Maui's 7th birthday.

Time passes quickly, and before you know it, your pet has transformed from puppy or kitty to a fully mature dog or cat. He changes as if before your eyes; blink and you could miss it! In the world of smartphones and modern technology, you take frequent snaps of your beloved pet until your phone memory is full to capacity in an attempt to capture him at every phase in his life. Unfortunately, these low resolution images don’t print well, and your pet can not be proudly displayed in frames in your home, as he deserves.

 How many photos of your dog or cat do you have in your smart phone? 

How many photos of your dog or cat do you have in your smart phone? 

The solution to this problem is to hire a professional pet photographer. The pet photography business is gaining lots of attention, so choosing the right one is becoming extremely challenging. A conventional photographer, who photographs anything to everything, may not comprehend the art of taking the best pet portraits.

 

How to choose the right photographer for your beloved pet?

First, you need to look for a specialist. There are many styles of pet photography, such as documentary, traditional, photojournalistic, fine arts, abstract, and studio. The vast amount of options can make the choice seem daunting, but we have some easy to follow guidelines that will make choosing your pet photographer foolproof.

 

1. Generalist vs Specialist

While not all amateur photographers are created equal, the best way to ensure you receive quality work is to hire a seasoned professional with a solid background.

This is the first step toward success choosing the right photographer for you. Generalists are the ones who shoot a bit of everything: newborns, pets, weddings, landscape, etc. Pets do require an experienced photographer to have their pictures taken. The photographer must understand animals and be able to engage them to get the best out of them. Check the photographer’s experience and background and ensure he or she is a professional and has a career that backs up what he or she does with a gallery representation, awards, magazines, and blog features. Every pet is a unique character and being able to be patient with pets is not enough. You need to ensure that the candidate has experience working with animals, and ideally, can provide some references from previous customers.

 

2. Choose the Photography Style: Studio vs Outdoor/Indoor

Studio photography requires that your pet be taken to an unknown environment, which could cause nervousness. Studio photography can be very stressful for the pets. They not only have to stay quiet in the same spot for long periods of time, but the whole setup can be overwhelming when you consider all of the lights and bright flashes.

 Photo courtesy of Keith Stenhouse.

Photo courtesy of Keith Stenhouse.

Outdoor photography, also known as “on location” photography, has great benefits. In the case of a dog, outdoors means exercise and having a great time. Having an incredible pet photographer will make no difference if your pet is stressed or unhappy, so considering how the location will affect them is key. In the case of senior dogs, puppies, or cats, indoor is a good alternative to outdoors. As long as the pet feels comfortable, the pictures will turn out great.

 

To know more about Studio photography vs Outdoor photography, read this post.

 

3. Choose the Photographer’s Style

Although many pet photographers use digital cameras, there are still some more traditional ones using film. Do you prefer film or digital? Do you want black and white or color? Each one comes with pros and cons, and depends on your personal preference. It’s important to spend some time checking the photographer’s portfolio to see if his/her style is what you are looking for.

 

4. Know The Process

If possible, schedule a pre-session consultation with your top two photographers. Discuss your project, what you are looking for, how the session works, and your expectations, and use the time to clarify any questions you may have. The consultation will help you get to know each other and you’ll get a better feeling of which pet photographer will be right for you.

 

5. The Investment

Figure out your budget and compare what each photographer includes in the price, but don’t let this be the deciding factor. Price is often a synonym for quality, not only in terms of products but also in customer service. Do you want a shoot-n-burn photographer or somebody who can prepare a tailored session for you and your pet? Do you want to buy a few 8x10 prints or do you want gallery-quality art pieces? You will pay once, but a few years from now, you won’t remember how much it cost you, only how wonderful and unique your pet was.

 Framed Fine Art photo of a Greyhound. Perfect to decorate your home or office.

Framed Fine Art photo of a Greyhound. Perfect to decorate your home or office.

Although choosing the right pet photographer can be a time consuming process, it is vital that you invest some time searching for local dog or cat photographers that will be able to capture your pet’s personality in the best way possible.

 

If you are looking for a pet photographer in San Francisco or in the Bay Area, I'd love to work with you. Contact me now to schedule your free session consultation and let's get your project started!


Frame Your Pet’s Mission:

To provide customized services in a professional and personal manner to create timeless high-end pet photography artwork exceeding client satisfaction and expectations.

 

 

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Set & Vincent, the Rescued Long Hair Collies

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Set & Vincent, the Rescued Long Hair Collies

Although I'm now based in San Francisco, my hometown is Barcelona. I don't only have my family and friends there, but also lovely clients who are willing to wait 6 months for me to go home to photograph their pets.

This Christmas I had several sessions booked and now that I'm back and settled, I want to share them with you.


Let me introduce you to Set & Vincent. Set (which means Seven in Catalan), is the 2nd long hair collie this family has had. A few years ago, their first collie passed away at the age of 14 years old. So, when the time arrived, they didn't doubt their decision to get the same breed. They rescued Set from a puppy mill in Girona. After a few months of lots of patience and unconditional love, Set knew that he was home.

 Met Set, the elegant long hair collie from Barcelona.

Met Set, the elegant long hair collie from Barcelona.

A few years later, Vincent joined the family. He is of the same breed and he was also rescued from another puppy mill. 

 This is Vincent, posing for me!

This is Vincent, posing for me!

Vincent's mom chose the location. It's been many years since I left my lovely Catalonia so I'm a bit outdated when it comes to new locations for photo shots. Luckily, she found the perfect one.

Although the day was moody and looked like it was about to rain, the weather turned perfect. The light was gentle, the weather wasn't harsh, and the dogs had a wonderful time running and chasing each other.

After a while, it was time to relax, and for me to become invisible to them so that I could capture the perfect moment.

 Set and Vincent laying with their mom in front of a waterfall.

Set and Vincent laying with their mom in front of a waterfall.

 Vincent striking another pose. I love this one.

Vincent striking another pose. I love this one.

Of course, being outdoors, the dogs couldn't help themselves and had to go back to have some more fun!

 A happy dog!

A happy dog!

 I think Vincent knew the deal. One photo, one treat! He was all over the place!

I think Vincent knew the deal. One photo, one treat! He was all over the place!

 There we go! Vincent again. But I have to admit it... He is a very handsome collie! 

There we go! Vincent again. But I have to admit it... He is a very handsome collie! 

In the meantime, Set was just doing his thing. 

 Set playing with a stick. He doesn't need too much to enjoy himself!

Set playing with a stick. He doesn't need too much to enjoy himself!

 Love, love, love.

Love, love, love.

Although Set was rescued and I know he is a lucky dog, her mom feels very lucky to have him in her life. You can tell the love is there.

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One hour later, it was time to head home.

It was a very nice session and we all had a great time in the forest. 

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Thank you, Montse, Vincent, and Set for letting me be part of such an amazing day.

 

Related post: "Adopting vs Buying, what should you do?"


Click here to book your own session like this!


Session selected as my favorite one of 2014! See the rest here.

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How Good Dog or Equine Photography Can Help Boost Your Pet Business

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How Good Dog or Equine Photography Can Help Boost Your Pet Business

Introduction
 

The pet industry is booming lately as pet ownership is increasing among Americans and people are treating their pets more like children, offering them the best care possible. The pet care industry continued to prosper throughout the recession when many other businesses went bankrupt.

Despite its profitability, there is a lot of competition out there, so how can you make your pet business stand out from the rest? The secret is top quality pet photography. Whether you run a dog walking service, a pooper-scooper service or a dog day care, whether you are a dog trainer, a pet sitter, a pet toy designer or a pet treat manufacturer, the marketing principle is the same: good photos sell.

 This map shows how many dog breeders there are in the United States  (these are only the business that has signed up to be shown in Google Local)

This map shows how many dog breeders there are in the United States (these are only the business that has signed up to be shown in Google Local)

A Needle in the Hay

So many pet businesses pay attention to the quality of the services and products they sell, but they struggle to expand their clientele as they get lost among the masses of similar enterprises that exist. Upon taking a closer look at their marketing strategies, you will probably notice that they all have poor or average photos of animals on their website.

An image creates a first impression of your company, so if you don’t spend the time to post attractive photos on your website, people will have a hard time trusting that you made an effort with anything else. Professional pet photography is a small investment that can really make a difference in your pet business’ future earnings.

 This is a good example of elegant equine photography used in brochures. Thanks to FullofLife for the photo to illustrate this topic.

This is a good example of elegant equine photography used in brochures.
Thanks to FullofLife for the photo to illustrate this topic.

Free Publicity on the Internet

A lot of advertising is now done online, through social media platforms and company websites. Certain companies attract their customers solely by posting photos on Instagram, which proves that a picture really is worth a thousand words. Great pet photography can truly be the key to distinguishing your pet business. A great photo will attract more people to your website, giving you more publicity and higher chances of selling your products or services. Superior pet photography can also help your website look more serious and professional, proving that you are well experienced in your field.

 Snoopy the cat has more than 200,000 followers in his Instagram profile.  Don't underestimate the power of Instagram or other social media platforms like Tumblr.  Instagram has 90 million users that post 40 million photos per day and tap 8,500 likes per second  (source: Instagram).  Tumblr has around 113.5 million posts a day!

Snoopy the cat has more than 200,000 followers in his Instagram profile.

Don't underestimate the power of Instagram or other social media platforms like Tumblr. 
Instagram has 90 million users that post 40 million photos per day and tap 8,500 likes per second (source: Instagram).
Tumblr has around 113.5 million posts a day!

Supply and Demand

Along with increasing pet ownership, there is a growing demand for pet photography. Recent trends show that people online are searching for tons of pet pictures, because they all love to look at photos of cute pets. Even people who have very little in common can connect because of their love for animals.

If you post a few excellent photographs of cute animals on your website, you are sure to develop a widespread following of viewers who want to see more. They will keep returning to your site to see the cute photos, thus increasing your chances of conversion.

Great photographs are not only valuable online or on social media platforms, they can also be used for your offline marketing materials, such as newsletters, brochures, packaging, catalogs, posters, etc. As you know, these advertising and informational materials that you distribute to your potential clients are incredibly important to the success of your business. They need to be tailored by a professional photographer who understands what your goals are. Whether online or off, I can help you create a portfolio of great images that reflect the true spirit of your pet business.

 Photo by Frame Your Pet. This photo is part of a commissioned work for CAVA Horse training center, Spain. 

Photo by Frame Your Pet. This photo is part of a commissioned work for CAVA Horse training center, Spain. 

You will surely notice a return on your investment in no time as more and more people are attracted by your stunning images. The more appealing your photos are, the longer people will stay on your website, or read your printed materials, thus increasing the likelihood that they will feel positively about your business and engage your services.


If you are in the pet business and you are thinking of hiring a specialist contact me today for superior pet photography and watch your pet business grow!

 

Related posts: Tips to choose the right pet photographer.


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Outdoor pet photography vs Indoor pet photography, what's best?

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Outdoor pet photography vs Indoor pet photography, what's best?

Welcome to Frame Your Pet's blog. 

My name is Alicia Rius. I am an artist, a fine arts pet photographer, and an animal lover. I moved to San Francisco one year ago and started my local business here in the Mission District. My style in pet photography is different from the traditional pet portraits you might have seen.

I only work with natural light, whether it be for outdoor pet photography or indoor pet photography. Most of my clients come to me to capture their pet's personality, and there is no better place to do this than in a pet’s natural environment. Although my Fine Art Sessions have the studio look, 95% of them are done indoors and with natural light. For indoor pet photography, the pet is not forced to stay in the same spot or to stay quiet in a certain pose. I follow the dog or cat wherever they go and I wait for the right moment to capture that unique moment. Approaching pet photography from this angle eliminates stress for the pet and results in more natural photographs, which are a truer representation of your pet.

My background as an artist and my skills in post-production allow me to create unique photos that are modern, elegant, and dynamic.

 As you can imagine, this shot was done outdoors. It would have been impossible to have a white horse running in a studio :)

As you can imagine, this shot was done outdoors. It would have been impossible to have a white horse running in a studio :)

To see more of my equestrian photography portfolio, visit this gallery.

 Bonz (the black Bullmastiff in the back howling) & Bosch (the brown Doberman chilling on the shore)

Bonz (the black Bullmastiff in the back howling) & Bosch (the brown Doberman chilling on the shore)

Doing sessions outdoors is great for both animals and their owners. It's a fun experience that allows everyone involved to play around, and this is just as important as capturing great images.

 

I'm often asked which is better, indoor pet photography or outdoor pet photography? Well, as long as the house has an abundance of natural light, then indoors can be just as good as outdoors. It comes down to personal preference and the personality of your pet. Cats, for example, feel more comfortable indoors. Their home is their natural environment and is where they feel calm. Relaxed felines are the ones who will give you the best shoots because they are not stressed out by their surroundings or the photographer’s presence, but instead, feel as if nothing has changed, and they will do what they always do.

 

   Boris is a Siberian cat. Initially he was shy, but after 10 minutes of me being there, he got used to me and my camera and he had no problem going back to his usual routine.

Boris is a Siberian cat. Initially he was shy, but after 10 minutes of me being there, he got used to me and my camera and he had no problem going back to his usual routine.

Check out this gallery to see some more cute kitties playing around.

In most of my dog photography sessions, the sessions are split between outdoor and indoor because the goal is to have enough variety of photos to choose from.

For example, here is another photo from Bonz and Bosch taken inside their home. I didn't need much: just good light and a nice background (well, it always helps to have very well-mannered dogs!)

 Bosch (brown Doberman on the left) and Bonz (black Bullmastiff on the right) during their indoor session. 

Bosch (brown Doberman on the left) and Bonz (black Bullmastiff on the right) during their indoor session. 

In cases where the natural light is not good enough, I adjust my camera settings to achieve the best result. In the picture above, it was late in the afternoon and the light coming in the gallery wasn't bright enough, so I had to increase my ISO to freeze the image (and I used some dog treats too; why lie?)

 

What about the Fine Art Sessions? Are they done outside or inside?

It all depends on the subject. For the horse, it was done in a field next to the breeder’s location in Spain. But in most cases, the Fine Art Sessions are taken inside. This is because in order to get the animal to pose in a certain way, I need him/her to be totally relaxed and distraction free.

 Lluna is a 16 year old white persian cat. At her age, she needs a peaceful setting. 

Lluna is a 16 year old white persian cat. At her age, she needs a peaceful setting. 

Lluna's session approach was a bit different. Since her mom's house lacks an abundance of natural light, she brought the kitty to my hometown in Catalonia. At the beginning, she was a bit uncertain of what was going on, but with patience and a few tasty cat treats, she relaxed.

Although the photos look like studio photos, they are certainly not. I didn't use any studio material like flashes, strobes, or umbrellas. I followed Lluna’s lead and I was fast enough to get these amazing shots of her. Then, the rest is post-production (I mainly use Lightroom 5 and Photoshop CC).

 

In a nutshell, here are some benefits of having a pet photo shoot outdoors:

  • Action shots (running, fetching, jumping, catching a Frisbee, etc.)
  • Variety of shots (action shots, pose shots, portraits, dog interacting with other elements, etc.)
  • Variety of backgrounds (sky, ocean, forest, sand, grass, concrete, graffiti, etc.)
  • More combination of textures and colors
  • Easier to get inspired (just walk around your city and pay attention to all the little details)
  • Dynamic and funny pictures

 

Benefits of an indoor pet photo shoot:

  • More personal environment
  • Convenience
  • Less stressful (in the case of cats or shy pets)
  • Easier to get the Fine Art photos without having to go to a Studio
  • Easier to keep the pet still

 

The conclusion here is: It doesn't matter if it's indoor or outdoor as long as the natural light is good and the surroundings are clean and beautiful. What matters is that your pet can have fun with the session and the photographer is able to be creative with what is available.

If you are thinking of having an indoor or outdoor pet photography session, contact me for a free consultation. We can discuss which options are best for your pet, taking into account his/her age and unique personality. I promise you striking images!

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