Dog Portrait Photography Mission

Photography is a great passion of mine and being able to share my adventures through photography is what I love doing. I don't do this to earn a living, I do it because I enjoy photography.

There are a lot of dog photographers out there that do well and earn a lot of money from doing it. I am certainly not trying to imitate them or anyone else for that matter. You might not like my photos, but that is fine as everyone has an opinion as do I when I view photos.

Dog portrait photography can be quite challenging in many ways. Firstly you have a subject that is quite unpredictable. They can all of a sudden move position which can spoil a photo certainly if you have a slow shutter speed. Dogs don't listen to you and even if they did they don't understand what you want them to do. You therefore have to work with the dog and use your creative skills to get the portraits. Things can be a little easier if you are in the studio, but when you are out in the field with all the distractions a dog has it can be very challenging indeed.

This is photo of my miniature Poodle, Micky. He found something in the field to chew on and posed like this for a moment looking straight into the camera. There is some slight blurriness in the image on his nose, as this shows the unpredictability of photographing a dog.

Manual Mode

I use manual mode quite a lot of the time, but in some cases manual mode can slow you down and therefore you will miss the shot. The thing with photography is DON NOT MISS THE SHOT! or else what is the point in taking your camera?

Using shutter priority would make sense when photographing a subject such as a dog, certainly when out in the field. This means that you can control how fast the shutter is and the camera will look after the other exposure elements. Shutter speed is very important as, this will determine if you will get motion blur or not. Motion blur is created when your shutter speed is too slow and your subject moves, as in the image above. By having the camera in shutter priority, you can keep the shutter speed very fast at 1/200 of a second for example. This will freeze the action and also you don't need to be bogged down with having a tripod. Not having a tripod will allow you to get low to the ground to get some awesome shots.


ISO is not that bad these days, certainly with the Full Frame cameras, you can have a high ISO number and still get some sharp images. This is why for dog portrait photography out in the field, Shutter Priority mode makes the most sense, because the camera will look after the ISO and Aperture itself and you can be comfortable if the camera decides you need to up the ISO in order to get the correct exposure.


Here is a photograph of my Miniature Poodle running fast in the field. I had the camera in shutter priority with a very fast shutter speed to freeze the action.

You can see that Micky is frozen in mid air, with no motion blur.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog on Dog Portrait Photography. I am no means an expert, but I try my best and I love taking pictures which is what it is all about.

Keep an eye out for more blogs over the next few weeks!

Mark Stinchon

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