PREPARING FOR YOUR SESSION

 

  • IMPORTANT. For the weeks approaching your session, work with your dog on sit/stay/down directions. Use positive reinforcement and practice daily in short intervals (10-15 minutes). Teaching your dog needs to be fun, so when the time comes for your dog to use those skills, they are relaxed and confident. To get the best results, your dog needs to have a few basic directions mastered, including sit and stay. Intermediate or advanced training is not necessary. Avoid using any negative training methods, such as shock or E-collars, dominant-based, or punishment focused training, as these can cause anxiety and fear, which may affect their experience in the studio.
  • Bring your dog to the session a little tired and a little hungry. Plan to exercise your dog a few hours before the session. Just enough exercise to alleviate any over-excitement, but not so much that they are worn out for the session. Do this a few hours before the session to avoid excessive panting and drooling during the session. Avoid feeding your dog a full meal before a shoot; otherwise they will be less alert and more in the mood for a nap. If your dog is low energy or senior, exercise prior to the session may not be necessary.
  • OUTSIDE FOOD OR TREATS ARE NOT PERMITTED IN THE STUDIO. I provide treats as part of your portrait experience. Please let me know if your dog has any allergies, dislikes, or diet restrictions.
  • GROOMING: Please be sure your dog is clean and brushed. Dogs shed more the day following a bath, so be sure to bathe them at least two days prior to session, so their coat has time to settle and they can have loose fur brushed out the day before session.
    • If you are having your dog trimmed, we recommend you have that done at least a week before the session in case the cut is too short, or not exactly what you expected. This allows a little time to grow out.
    • Please be sure to trim your dog's nails to avoid any scratches or damage to furniture, props, or flooring.
    • If your dog has fur that grows or hangs over their eyes, you will want to either have it trimmed to allow their eyes to be seen or use a clip. Unless your dog's fur naturally grows in this manner (e.g. Bearded Collie, Havanese, Komondor, Lhasa Apso, etc.). For a portrait to have impact, you want to connect with the subject and that is done through the eyes.
  • I photograph dogs naturally, without collars or accessories. If you would like to have one or two shots with a prop, outfit, or accessory, you may bring one or two items. We do not recommend or encourage clothing or props, as we want to show your dog's natural beauty without the distraction of novelty props. Please note: We do not provide social media files with dogs wearing excessive clothing and/or props, as this does not align with our brand and style.
  • Your tone of voice and body language translate very effectively to your dog and their mood. Never discipline or yell at your dog during a session, this will only increase their anxiety. Even if your dog is not responding, it is important that you avoid giving commands to your dog or otherwise distracting them.
  • In the weeks/months leading up to your session, we also recommend exposing your dog to unique experiences. This is especially important if they do not like car rides, or only go in the car when visiting the vet or groomer. The more exposure they get to novel experiences, the more comfortable they will be in the studio.
  • We understand that some dogs have special needs; anxiety, fear of new things, nervousness/timidity, etc. Please make us aware of any issues your dog may have so that we can be sensitive to those concerns. You may want to schedule a pre-session consultation to discuss your concerns.
  • PLEASE NOTE: Some dogs can be sensitive to the small popping sound made by the studio lights or can become anxious about the camera itself. Most dogs are not bothered by it or get used to it very quickly, but others become stressed and fearful. In some cases, the dog just will not tolerate the studio experience. If your dog becomes stressed or fearful, we will need to end the session. If you are concerned about how your dog will do, please request a no-obligation consultation.

We want you and your dog to enjoy the experience and get wonderful pieces of art for your home!

 

Austin Dog Photographer | Award-Winning Photographer

Dog Photographer | Dog Photography | Austin Dog Photographer | Pet Photography | Pet Photographer | Austin Pet Photographer | Studio Pet Photographer | Studio Dog Photographer | Award-winning Pet Photographer | Award-winning Dog Photographer