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Feature Article: November 2002

How to Take Great Pictures of the Family Pet
Reprinted with permission from the New York Institute of Photography.

© NYI Student Judy L.Smith

With holiday time approaching, now is the time when the family photographer tends to get out the camera to snap those memorable family photos, but don't overlook your dog or cat or parakeet or turtle -- they're members of your family too! These tips from the New York Institute of Photography(NYI), America's oldest and largest photography school, will show you how you can capture your pet on film.


Just like other members of your family, the pet in your life may need to be cajoled to stand still long enough for you to push the shutter button. The easiest way to do this is to use the time-honored tradition of treats. Who wouldn't do just about anything for something yummy? In fact, if you want two animals to "cuddle," try rubbing some food behind the ear of one of them - then be prepared to shoot fast!

One of the most important elements for good pet photography is to try to capture the personality of your animal on film. This can be accomplished by taking photographs of your pet in action - doing the kinds of things they like to do - be that sneaking a peek at tempting people food or enjoying a good roll in the mud, or even sleeping in your favorite chair. Remember to get down (or up) to their level for an interesting angle - a bird's eye view after all is called that for a reason - and be prepared to shoot fast since you never know what may happen.

Get the two-legged members of your family involved too. Kids and pets are a natural picture opportunity and a whole lot of fun to watch in action also. The trick here is to try to get the attention of both the child and the animal so that they are looking in the same direction.

For more photo tips, check out the New York Institute of Photography's Seven Tips on How to Take Great Photos of your four-legged or fuzzy family members.

© NYI Student Larysa Y. Petlina



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Christmas Photos of Your Pooch

If you want a photo of your best friend with Santa Claus, many places, like pet stores, SPCAs and Humane Societies offer this service. Sometimes your local shopping mall might even sponsor such an event. Many photo opportunities with Santa begin as early as November. So if you are interested in a holiday pet photo, start looking around now.


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