When the client comes and sits on your lap, you know it's going to be a good pet portrait session
And Kallie's session was better than good.
It was woofing great.
I take the leash and lead and get to know my canine client. Kallie, although she doesn't look it, is still a pup. When she's full grown, she'll be about 120 pounds (and won't be sitting in my lap). After we fast became friends, I let Kallie's human Jamie take the lead. Because we were at the dog's home, we didn't need her leash which meant less retouching for me (yahoo) and more freedom for her to run and play. Keeping her at a distance where I could photograph her like I wanted to was more challenging than I thought it would be. She was naturally curious, energetic and affectionate.
Scheduling constraints required us to photograph in the mid-day sun and heat so I quickly looked for shady spots. Kallie didn't mind the heat or the sun. Keeping the toddler aged pup where I wanted was like, well keeping a toddler in place - challenging and fun.
Just like a people portrait session, I always try to get different expressions for a dog portrait. Making an unexpected noise or squeak usually surprises the dog to bring in her wet, sloppy tongue for a hot second. Kallie probably has the biggest dog tongue I have ever seen - all the better for sloppy kisses.
Kallie's owner and I had visions of Kallie sitting pretty and proper and posing just like we wanted. That didn't go as expected so we just went with the flow and let the 60 pound pup have some fun.
A young dog's attention span is very short. We took lots of breaks so she could get praise, water and treats. I can't wait to photograph her again when she's full grown!