Traveling with your pet is a fun and unique experience. You’ll be able to share new memories with your favorite cat or dog which can make your bond stronger. You’ll also have the chance to know your pet better and improve how you communicate with each other. After all, a pet and owner relationship also demands effort and patience to work, right? Aside from sharing these experiences together, capturing traveling pet portraits can also serve as a reminder of the good times you’ve had with your pet. Everything that happened during your travels will remain a fresh memory – all thanks to the traveling pet portraits you took! But taking traveling pet portraits can become a challenge especially if you don’t have any idea how to do it.
Unlike humans, pets are complicated models. One minute they might seem interested in what you’re doing but the next thing you know it, they’re already nowhere to be found – and you don’t even know what you did for them to act that way! Taking a traveling pet portrait that you can keep forever might be a tedious chore, but it can be done. Here’s how:
1 – Look what the pros are doing
You’re not the only person who’s thinking about taking traveling pet photos. In fact, there are many pet owners and professional photographers who did the same in the past. There are even businesses who specialize in taking pet portraits. If you’re clueless on how to take traveling pet photos, use their end products as your points to benchmark. Scout for photographers who take traveling pet photos and take note of their techniques. Look for their websites and galleries online.
On the other hand, if you want your traveling pet portraits to have variety, consider having the photo recreated into a painting. Businesses like Colour Pet Studio, offer this kind of service.
2 – Use natural light
Natural light is one of the primary ingredients for an excellent photo. With the right technique, natural light can help the model stand out from the photo while highlighting the background. When you’re about to take traveling portraits, make sure that there’s always natural light. Take the portrait when you’re outdoors or when you’re in a room with a large window. As much as possible, avoid using the flash as this can cause red-eye and can also scare your pet.
3 – Keep the eyes sharp
The maxim that states “The eyes are the window to the soul” still counts when you’re taking traveling pet portraits. Your pet’s eyes can be very expressive so try your best to focus on these areas. Once you’ve done this successfully, anyone who looks at your pet’s portraits can easily be drawn in your pet’s eyes, adding emotion and depth to the portrait.
4 – Go to them
When you’re taking portraits of human beings, you can easily instruct the model what to do. But when you’re using your pet as your model, it’s never the same thing. Fortunately, you can still take good traveling portraits if you go to your pet instead of having them go to you. Follow them around if you have to. It’s crucial that you stay on their level as well. If your pet is a smaller or bigger breed, adjust to their height so you’ll be able to see the world in their view. This might require you to lie on your belly or sit on the floor.
5 – Surprise them
Regardless of the time you spend training your pets, there’ll be instances when they’ll become so stubborn, and they can’t hold still. They can be easily distracted with just about anything. The solution? Surprise them. Start by letting them play on their own or with their favorite toys and when you’re ready to take the shot, have someone call them. The sound will surprise your pet and catch their attention, but you’ll only have a few seconds to capture it. Act fast and be on your toes if you want to take a traveling portrait where your pet looks alert.
6 – Highlight your pet’s character
You’ve been living with your pet for years, so you’re the best person who knows him. If you don’t have any direction when taking pet traveling photos, highlighting your pet’s character can be an excellent start. For example, if you have a lazy cat who’s fond of lying on their belly regardless of the time of the day, show this in your portrait. If your dog loves to wear a hat when he’s outdoors, show other people this side of your pet. Your pet’s character can also become the reason why these portraits will be entertaining to look at!
7 – Reward your model
If you’re planning to take traveling pet portraits for the first time, you might have several visions on how the photos should look like. You might want to showcase your pet’s breed in a tourist spot or show how playful he is with the locals. Every time your pet follows your plan, like when he’s sitting in the right location or poses in the right way, reward him. You can do this by giving his favorite treat or playing with him for a couple of minutes. Rewarding your model (aka your pet) with his favorite things can motivate him to do better throughout the entire shoot.
8 – Be patient
Don’t expect that you’ll be able to get the perfect traveling pet portraits in the first ten clicks of your camera. This process will require your hard work and most importantly, your patience. If your pet doesn’t cooperate with your instructions, don’t get frustrated. The stress you’re feeling can be felt by your pet and can cause them to be stressed too. Be relaxed during the shoot so your pet can also feel the same way. Be patient and believe that you’ll eventually get a decent traveling pet portrait.
9 – Don’t be afraid to experiment
There’s a lot of tips from the internet on how you can take traveling pet portraits. And while these tips can help you, don’t think that these can be your be all and end all solution to take traveling pet portraits. Keep in mind that everyone is unique – strategies which might have worked for others might not work for you. Don’t be afraid to experiment during this feat. Go ahead and try out different angles and compositions. Doing this will help you determine which technique works and doesn’t work for you and your pet.
It’s Worth The Challenge
Many pet owners don’t solely look at their pets as mere “pets” who keep their house safe while they’re away or guard their belongings against thieves. Today, it’s common to see pet owners who would treat their pets as their family and friends, to the point where they would spoil their pets and actually feel good while they’re doing it. Some pet owners even share their problems with their pets! If you see yourself as this kind of a pet owner, you should be willing to accept the challenge of taking traveling pet portraits. Not only will these pictures become your souvenir but you can also use these to show people the fun times you had with your pet. Sure, taking a traveling pet photo might be tough, but if it’s for your pet, it’s always worth it, right?
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