Dog photography

Enjoying a neck rub from her owner

As a dog photographer and dog trainer specializing in behavior I have to say that I'm a fairly brutal critic. I really love seeing how other photographers capture the canine species but I have a sharp eye for expression.  It boggles my mind when I see an image that clearly shows fear, anxiety, anxiousness and the photographer is stating that the photo holds a happy face.  There is much more to a happy face than a smile shaped mouth, you must take into account the eyes and the rest of the body.

Clearly a Labrador telescope

Not all great photos need a happy face, far from it.  Sometimes an amazing photo doesn't even have a face in it.  It could be looking away, just a fraction of a face or missing completely.  As you all know I am not one for posed shots, the "smile and look at the camera" type.  I like candid photos, the ones that hold the greatest amount of emotion.

A welcome hug from Mom


Elsa enjoying an evening snooze

They don't come much sweeter

A handsome, intense Catahoula listening slightly to the goings on behind him.


Acquisition concern

Calm maturity

Dogs can offer us amazing photo ops just being dogs.  I love the entire gamut that they offer when I'm shooting, from intense, excited, happy, sleepy, mellow etc.  All happy, it isn't too often that I like a photo where I see a negative emotion on a dog unless the photo holds a great deal of information.  If a photo tells an emotional story and a negative emotion is fitting then it can be amazing, but not simply a negative emotion on a face.  This could leave us feeling like the dogs was just unhappy with the shoot.

A very aggressive male communicating to Elsa who owns the ball.  She's high tailin it out of there.

Deer like Xolo's listening to their Mom

Capturing a moment is amazing, but unfortunately they don't always happen during a shoot.  A special moment can be a very simple one if it means a great deal to the owner.  An old dog lying in their favorite chair, sunning themselves or simply sleeping.  Its all about emotion held within a photo.

 But there are still times when a dogs face is so cute that no expression is just fine because the dog is just so darn cute.