Featured Pet – Pippa & Jackson
Both are Boxers and rescues. Pippa was rescued when she was 2 years old and had a number of health issues including being underweight, suffering anxiety and arthritis. Anne and Mike spent years giving Pippa treatments and lots of TLC and she is now doing extremely well, especially as she has her best friend Jackson to help.
Jackson was adopted about a year and a half after Pippa in the hope that it would help her anxiety, which it did (except for those pesky thunderstorms). Jackson also had his share of problems with being quite shy and ducking his head when being patted.
Now Pippa is the serious dog and the boss, but she can sometimes be found to play with a Frisbee or having a game of tug-of-war. Jackson on the other hand is the fun lover, he will chase his tail, bounce when excited and sneak into the Mick and Anne’s bed and get in under the covers whenever he can.
“There is nothing we don’t love about them, they have fantastic personalities, we love seeing the results of now having happy healthy dogs and we love that they have fitted into our family so well” – Anne & Mick.
Posted on May 13, 2013Tags: animal photography Melbourne, dog photography, dog portraits, melbourne pet photography, pet photos
The Hooper Family Pet Photography Session
‘I can’t remember, is it ok if we get some family photos with the dogs?’ This was the question that greeted me when I got to the Hooper house on the weekend. ‘Absolutely’ I said and that lead to a quick negotiation with 3-year-old Zoe about putting on a dress – ‘Can you pop on a dress for me?’ ‘No!’, ‘What about your birthday dress’ ‘Yeah!’. With that decision done, the rest of the family donned their finest and finally our two stars – Cavoodles, Jesse and Bella, had their hair fixed and their beautiful ribbons adjusted and the photo session started.
The Hooper family are what photographers (especially those used to dealing with animals) call a dream. The camera loved them all and they did whatever was asked of them, including Jesse and Bella. Zoe and her big brother Zac could be supermodels and I have never met a 3-year-old work the camera so well.
Jesse and Bella, as important members of the family, took centre stage and were gorgeous and a great additions to The Hooper family. Check out a couple of the photos below from the session.
Posted on March 6, 2013Tags: animal photography Melbourne, dog portraits, family dog photography, family dogs, family pet photography, Melbourne dog photography, melbourne pet photography, pet photography
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Creature Focus on Display
Just a quick warning – the following is blatant self-promotion.
Ok now that I have that out of the way let me tell you about some exciting news. A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to be part of an exhibition at Obscura Gallery in St Kilda. This is a group exhibition and each artists will showcase their art under their own theme, mine is (obviously, I guess) Creature Focus. There will be a selection of images including dogs, cats and birds from work I have done as a pet photographer. I am very excited because it shows that these images are fine art and should be regarded as such.
Obscura specialises in fine art photography exhibitions and is a great supporter of photographers. Since opening in 2007, Obscura has showcased many great fine art photographers, including animal photographers such as Sarah Louise Jackson.
Creature Focus will open on Thursday 10th May and all are welcome, it will run for six weeks, so there is plenty of time to check it out. For more information, go to the event on Facebook or feel free to contact me.
Posted on April 17, 2012Tags: bird photography, bird portraits, cat photography, cat portraits, Creature Focus Animal Photography, dog photography, dog portraits, exhibition, fine art pet photography, melbourne pet photography, Obscura Gallery, pet photography exhibition, pet photos
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Getting good images of my pet
When I am out and about, there are a number of tings I hear continuously – one is ‘my dog will never sit still’, which I wrote about a couple of weeks ago – and another is how do you get good images of pets with a dark coat and dark eyes. The problem most people face is that when they take a photo of their pet the eyes can get lost because they are similar in colour to the pets coat. This can happen with pets that have brown coast and brown eyes, or black coats with dark brown eyes and often the images may have been taken inside or in deep shade where there is not much light. t can also sometimes happen when the eyes are set back or their is a bit of hair over the eyes that may put them in some shade.
The easiest way to find your pets eyes is to get a ‘catch-light’ in their eyes, this just means a bit of light reflection that gives their eyes a bit of sparkle and makes them stand out. You can do this indoors with a flash, but the problem is that sometimes you cannot control your flash and you end up with ‘demon’ eyes, where they look like a lion being photographed at night with eyes peering out from the grass lands. The image to the right is taken in the studio with flash heads that are adjustable and set up with light boxes. An on camera flash will not allow the same type of adjustment.
The best way is to take your pet outside or close to a window that has plenty of light, have them facing the light and look at their eyes, and see if they have a bit of light there? If you do this outside, try to do it on a overcast day, as this will allow you to get a more even shot without harsh shadows. If it is a sunny day, try to find some nice light shade.
Many cameras have an automatic setting and this is great for everyday general photographing, however if you are trying to photograph things that are at the extreme end of colour such as something very light or something very dark, it may find it hard to give you a good image, the camera is not as good as your eyes as picking up little details. You can try using your cameras manual setting such as full manual, where you can adjust the shutter speed and aperture or use either aperture or shutter speed priority settings. These setting will allow you to dictate how light or dark you want your image, and the great thing about digital is that you can take a couple of shots to see if it is right and than make adjustments if it isn’t. Most cameras should also let you adjust your ISO, this is a term from film days that related to the speed of your film. A higher ISO, like 800, will give you more light in darker conditions and a smaller ISO of 100, less light. You need to remember that the higher your ISO the more ‘noise’ you will get in your images. Noise is like grain in film, and will be most noticeable if you plan to make enlargements of your images.
I have gotten a bit technical here and given a quick course on your digital camera. If you really want great images, it does pay to get to know your camera and how to make adjustments – in the end you will find you can get some beautiful shots of your dark fur-friend.
Posted on March 14, 2012Tags: animal photography, Creature Focus Animal Photography, dark coats, dark eyes, dog photos, dog portraits, melbourne pet photography, pet photography, photographing dogs with dark eyes, photographing pets, studio photography
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Paws for Charity
Each year, Paws for Charity produces a book, featuring photos or artworks from animal artists around the world. This the fourth book and I am fortunate to be one of 66 artists from around the world to be featured this year, along with one of my favourite images of a husky (see image at right). The great thing about this book (other than it supports an animal charity) is that it features all different types of artistic works, including drawing, paintings and photography, so it is a very unique project.
This year’s book supports S.H.A.I.D. Tree Animal Shelter in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, so all proceeds go to a very good cause. The book has just been sent to Blurb and will be available for sales soon (I’ll let you know).
Creature Focus Animal Photography is a proud member of:
Posted on March 7, 2012Tags: animal charity, animal photography, art book, artists, dog photography, dog portraits, HeARTs Speak, Husky, melbourne pet photography, Paws for Charity, pet photography, S.H.A.I.D. Tree Animal Shelter
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My dog will never sit still
At nearly every pet expo or event I go to the most common thing I hear is: ‘Oh, my dog would never sit still for long enough’. There is much truth to this statement a lot of the time, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t get great pet photos.
Yes, many pet photographers like to get some nice, more traditional images of your dog in a sit or drop position, but we also want to get some action into the shots, because this is often where the real story is. If your dog likes to run and chase birds or balls then we want to capture that too. If you have an energetic dog that just loves the local park or beach, then that is probably the best place to have your photo shoot, because that is where their personality will shine and you will get images you love.
If you ask most pet photographers they will probably tell you that the majority of their furry clients don’t sit still for long periods of time, think of a two-year-old child being asked to sit still or in a certain position for even 5 minutes and you know they just won’t be able to, that is the same with most dogs – too much to see and do. A good photographer will be patient and calm and wait for the great photo to come.
Of course if you have some basic commands such as sit, drop and stay these will also help and you will be able to get some gorgeous portraits to go with your action shots.
So don’t miss out on getting some beautiful images, just be patient.
Posted on February 21, 2012Tags: Creature Focus Animal Photography, dog behaviour, dog photo shoots, dog photography, dog photos, dog portraits, dog shoot, dog training, dogs, melbourne pet photography, Melbourne pet portraits, pet photography, pet photos, pet portraits, pets, training
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Beagle Rescue Victoria and HeARTs Speak
It’s been a while since my last post here at the Creature Focus blog, my apologies I hope this very special blog might make up for it.
On the weekend, I had the wonderful job of photographing two beagle sisters called Abby and Macy. These two sisters are inseparable and if one is taken away the other one will cry for her, they just love each other to bits. Even though they are twins and very close, they have quite different personalities one is a smoocher and would do anything for a belly rub and the other is quite shy, but both are very friendly.
Abby and Macy are currently being cared for by foster parents and are available for adoption through Beagle Rescue Victoria – www.beaglerescuevic.org you can also find their profile at Pet Rescue – www.petrescue.com.au.
As well as the great job of photographing rescued Beagles, I have also been accepted as a member to HeARTs Speak. As noted on their website ‘HeARTs Speak was created to harness the power of art to effect social change, to connect artists with shelters and animal relief organizations, and ultimately, to save and better the lives of animals and people.’ This is a great organisation that supports animal welfare and photographers like myself who support animals in need. Please do have a look at www.heartsspeak.org
Posted on February 13, 2012Tags: Animal Welfare, Beagle Rescue Victoria, Beagles, creature focus, dog photography, dog photos, dog portraits, dogs, HeARTs Speak, melbourne pet photography, pet photography, Pet Rescue, pets
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I recently did a photo shoot for a friend of mine, whose miniature Schnauzer puppy had a heart defect. Little Fletcher only had one of his four hear valves working and so would run out of breath very easily, he also needed to be on medication to ensure he didn’t get overly worked up as we all know puppies can do. This has meant that Fletcher start to life has been quiet and subdue compared to most puppies, that is not to say that he isn’t full of life and very friendly – he most definitely is.
Fortunately Fletcher’s condition is not that uncommon and yesterday he underwent surgery to fix it. I have heard from his Mum that the operation went even better than expected and Fletcher will make a full recovery, this means all his valves are now open and he can run around and play with other dogs and just be a puppy. Needless to say his Mum and all his friends are very happy.
As I mentioned earlier I did a photo shoot of Fletcher for his Mum on Friday – here are a couple of shots.
Posted on August 24, 2010Tags: animal photography, animal photography Melbourne, dog, dog portraits, Fletcher, heart valve, Melbourne dog portraits, melbourne pet photography, pet photography, photo shoot, photography, schnauzer, surgery
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Creature Focus has just launched it’s new look website. Apart from the new design, there are a couple of added features, such as a contact form on the contact us page and a subscribe to our newsletter spot.
I have also updated the studio and on location galleries, so if I photographed your dog in the last six months or so, go and have a look as they may now be featured. I hope to be able to update the galleries fairly regularly to showcase new images as they come.
The other great feature is this blog, which I will update regularly with news and client photos, and if you would like to make any comments please do so as I would love to hear from you and I would be happy to answer any queries. You can also contact me through Twitter and Facebook by following the links on the homepage.
I hope you enjoy the new website and I’ll be in touch soon.
Posted on August 9, 2010Tags: animal photography, blog, cat photos, cat portraits, creature focus, dog photos, dog portraits, gallery, melbourne pet photography, pet photography, photography, website
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