Halloween-dog-costume-sunflower.jpg

7 Simple Tips to Get the Best Halloween Pet Photos

By Samantha Johnson on Oct. 19, 2016

Halloween-dog-costume-sunflower.jpg

So you’ve invested a lot of time in choosing your pet’s Halloween costume and now it’s time to take him out and let the world appreciate how creative you are and how adorable your pet is. But wait—shouldn’t you grab a picture or two while the costume still looks perfect? Not only will this allow you to share his costume with all of his friends and family “fans” on social media, it’ll also make for a great memory to look back on in years to come. It might even be worthy of making a wall print!

There’s only one problem—taking pet photos can be tricky at any time, and trying to portray a Halloween “theme” at the same time makes it even more challenging. To give you the best tips for making your Halloween pet photos a success, I interviewed professional pet photographer Daniel Johnson. Here’s what he had to say!

1. Photograph Early

Costumes of any kind—and pet costumes, especially—have a way of losing their luster rapidly. Odds are that your pet will look best soon after she’s been dressed, with the costume becoming more disorganized as time progresses. A good plan it to stop and grab the shots you want before you move on with the remainder of your planned Halloween activities. If you wait too long, you might encounter costume tears, stains or other damage that will be visible in your photographs.

2. Find a Good Background

You want your pet’s costume to stand out clearly in the photo. If there is a lot of visual clutter in the background of your photo—porch railings, parked cars, dog toys—your pet and his costume can become “lost” in the photo and it will hard for the viewer to determine exactly what they’re looking at. This can be especially true for highly detailed costumes. Instead, find a simple, non-distracting place to take your pet’s photo. This could be a clean yard of green grass, or maybe a plain fence or wall.

3. Use Seasonal Props (Sometimes)

Ideally, you’ll use a clean background for your photo, but sometimes a few basic Halloween- or fall-themed props can help give your photo a bit of seasonal punch. Consider natural items like pumpkins, leaves and flowers that can add a bit of color to the photo without competing for the viewer’s attention. If you can color-coordinate the props to mesh well with your pet’s costume, that’s even better!

Halloween-dog-costume-jester.jpg

4. Pick Your Perspective

When taking the picture, avoid standing above your pet and looking down at him—this is a common mistake and often makes for unappealing pet images. Instead, get down low—to your pet’s eye level—so that you’re looking straight at her face and not down on her. You may be surprised at how much this simple step will improve your photos.

5. Borrow a Helper

We’ll let you in on a secret: Using a helper is one of the most important—and easiest!—ways to increase the quality of your pet photos. An assistant can help arrange your pet and keep him in the right position while you stay in the correct place for taking pictures. If you don’t have a helper, you might find yourself getting up over and over to re-position your pet, only to have him move again at the very moment you pick up the camera. Assistants can also help get your pet’s attention with interesting noises or squeaky toys.

6. Work Outdoors

If at all possible, take your pet’s Halloween photos outdoors during the day. The increased light of an outdoor location can help keep the photos from being blurry or grainy. If you do need to take the pictures indoors, then use the light from a window to illuminate your pet and avoid using your camera’s flash, as the small flashes on most cameras aren’t very flattering for pet images.

7. Don’t Get Too Close

If you bring your camera in too close to your pet, you’ll probably cause some unflattering distortion (think: big nose, small body). Instead, plan on backing away several feet, and then zoom in your camera’s lens so that your pet fills the picture. You’ll avoid the distortion, and your photos will immediately take on a more professional look.

Have you snapped a great Halloween photo of your pet? Share in the comments! We'd love to see! Share your photos on Instagram and tag us @petco or enter our Halloween Instagram Contest!
Shop our Halloween Bootique online for you pet's costume.
Learn how to keep your pet safe this Halloween.

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1 Comments
Comments
by Aly Tremper
‎10-28-2016 10:16 AM

Samantha Johnson wrote:

 

So you’ve invested a lot of time in choosing your pet’s Halloween costume and now it’s time to take him out and let the world appreciate how creative you are and how adorable your pet is. But wait—shouldn’t you grab a picture or two while the costume still looks perfect? Not only will this allow you to share his costume with all of his friends and family “fans” on social media, it’ll also make for a great memory to look back on in years to come. It might even be worthy of making a wall print!

There’s only one problem—taking pet photos can be tricky at any time, and trying to portray a Halloween “theme” at the same time makes it even more challenging. To give you the best tips for making your Halloween pet photos a success, I interviewed professional pet photographer Daniel Johnson. Here’s what he had to say!

1. Photograph Early

Costumes of any kind—and pet costumes, especially—have a way of losing their luster rapidly. Odds are that your pet will look best soon after she’s been dressed, with the costume becoming more disorganized as time progresses. A good plan it to stop and grab the shots you want before you move on with the remainder of your planned Halloween activities. If you wait too long, you might encounter costume tears, stains or other damage that will be visible in your photographs.

2. Find a Good Background

You want your pet’s costume to stand out clearly in the photo. If there is a lot of visual clutter in the background of your photo—porch railings, parked cars, dog toys—your pet and his costume can become “lost” in the photo and it will hard for the viewer to determine exactly what they’re looking at. This can be especially true for highly detailed costumes. Instead, find a simple, non-distracting place to take your pet’s photo. This could be a clean yard of green grass, or maybe a plain fence or wall.

3. Use Seasonal Props (Sometimes)

Ideally, you’ll use a clean background for your photo, but sometimes a few basic Halloween- or fall-themed props can help give your photo a bit of seasonal punch. Consider natural items like pumpkins, leaves and flowers that can add a bit of color to the photo without competing for the viewer’s attention. If you can color-coordinate the props to mesh well with your pet’s costume, that’s even better!

 

4. Pick Your Perspective

When taking the picture, avoid standing above your pet and looking down at him—this is a common mistake and often makes for unappealing pet images. Instead, get down low—to your pet’s eye level—so that you’re looking straight at her face and not down on her. You may be surprised at how much this simple step will improve your photos.

5. Borrow a Helper

We’ll let you in on a secret: Using a helper is one of the most important—and easiest!—ways to increase the quality of your pet photos. An assistant can help arrange your pet and keep him in the right position while you stay in the correct place for taking pictures. If you don’t have a helper, you might find yourself getting up over and over to re-position your pet, only to have him move again at the very moment you pick up the camera. Assistants can also help get your pet’s attention with interesting noises or squeaky toys.

6. Work Outdoors

If at all possible, take your pet’s Halloween photos outdoors during the day. The increased light of an outdoor location can help keep the photos from being blurry or grainy. If you do need to take the pictures indoors, then use the light from a window to illuminate your pet and avoid using your camera’s flash, as the small flashes on most cameras aren’t very flattering for pet images.

7. Don’t Get Too Close

If you bring your camera in too close to your pet, you’ll probably cause some unflattering distortion (think: big nose, small body). Instead, plan on backing away several feet, and then zoom in your camera’s lens so that your pet fills the picture. You’ll avoid the distortion, and your photos will immediately take on a more professional look.

Have you snapped a great Halloween photo of your pet? Share in the comments! We'd love to see! Share your photos on Instagram and tag us @petco or enter our Halloween Instagram Contest!
Shop our Halloween Bootique online for you pet's costume.
Learn how to keep your pet safe this Halloween.





Samantha Johnson wrote:

 

So you’ve invested a lot of time in choosing your pet’s Halloween costume and now it’s time to take him out and let the world appreciate how creative you are and how adorable your pet is. But wait—shouldn’t you grab a picture or two while the costume still looks perfect? Not only will this allow you to share his costume with all of his friends and family “fans” on social media, it’ll also make for a great memory to look back on in years to come. It might even be worthy of making a wall print!

There’s only one problem—taking pet photos can be tricky at any time, and trying to portray a Halloween “theme” at the same time makes it even more challenging. To give you the best tips for making your Halloween pet photos a success, I interviewed professional pet photographer Daniel Johnson. Here’s what he had to say!

1. Photograph Early

Costumes of any kind—and pet costumes, especially—have a way of losing their luster rapidly. Odds are that your pet will look best soon after she’s been dressed, with the costume becoming more disorganized as time progresses. A good plan it to stop and grab the shots you want before you move on with the remainder of your planned Halloween activities. If you wait too long, you might encounter costume tears, stains or other damage that will be visible in your photographs.

2. Find a Good Background

You want your pet’s costume to stand out clearly in the photo. If there is a lot of visual clutter in the background of your photo—porch railings, parked cars, dog toys—your pet and his costume can become “lost” in the photo and it will hard for the viewer to determine exactly what they’re looking at. This can be especially true for highly detailed costumes. Instead, find a simple, non-distracting place to take your pet’s photo. This could be a clean yard of green grass, or maybe a plain fence or wall.

3. Use Seasonal Props (Sometimes)

Ideally, you’ll use a clean background for your photo, but sometimes a few basic Halloween- or fall-themed props can help give your photo a bit of seasonal punch. Consider natural items like pumpkins, leaves and flowers that can add a bit of color to the photo without competing for the viewer’s attention. If you can color-coordinate the props to mesh well with your pet’s costume, that’s even better!

 

4. Pick Your Perspective

When taking the picture, avoid standing above your pet and looking down at him—this is a common mistake and often makes for unappealing pet images. Instead, get down low—to your pet’s eye level—so that you’re looking straight at her face and not down on her. You may be surprised at how much this simple step will improve your photos.

5. Borrow a Helper

We’ll let you in on a secret: Using a helper is one of the most important—and easiest!—ways to increase the quality of your pet photos. An assistant can help arrange your pet and keep him in the right position while you stay in the correct place for taking pictures. If you don’t have a helper, you might find yourself getting up over and over to re-position your pet, only to have him move again at the very moment you pick up the camera. Assistants can also help get your pet’s attention with interesting noises or squeaky toys.

6. Work Outdoors

If at all possible, take your pet’s Halloween photos outdoors during the day. The increased light of an outdoor location can help keep the photos from being blurry or grainy. If you do need to take the pictures indoors, then use the light from a window to illuminate your pet and avoid using your camera’s flash, as the small flashes on most cameras aren’t very flattering for pet images.

7. Don’t Get Too Close

If you bring your camera in too close to your pet, you’ll probably cause some unflattering distortion (think: big nose, small body). Instead, plan on backing away several feet, and then zoom in your camera’s lens so that your pet fills the picture. You’ll avoid the distortion, and your photos will immediately take on a more professional look.

Have you snapped a great Halloween photo of your pet? Share in the comments! We'd love to see! Share your photos on Instagram and tag us @petco or enter our Halloween Instagram Contest!
Shop our Halloween Bootique online for you pet's costume.
Learn how to keep your pet safe this Halloween.




Posted on Oct. 28, 2016
About the Author
  • Samantha writes about the happy things in life—pets, home, family, food, and gardening—and thinks Mondays are the most wonderful day of the week. She is the author of ten books and shares her home with Peaches, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi; Toppy, a Holland Lop rabbit; and Maureen O'Hare-a, a Mini Rex rabbit.
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