Archive for Jan 2015

When I received a call from Sadie about taking photos of her mom's most loved two dogs as a surprise birthday gift from her family, Sadie was full of questions and concerns.  The dogs are a handful.  They don't like other people or dogs.  They won't like you using any extra lighting.  They don't like men (uhoh- my husband Scott assists me with outdoor sessions). No one had been able to nice pictures of the dogs....and more!  While I can certainly not guarantee anything, I could provide enough reassurance that I can handle dogs like Koda and Greta (go slow and have fun!),  that I would be able to put Mom at ease (laugh a lot), that even the most jumpy dogs do surprisingly well with my lighting, and that I would  do my homework and scout the location ahead of time so that we could go as efficiently as

I scout all non-home locations before sessions.  This allows me to know what the sun is doing when, what kind of lighting I need and then plan the timing of the session to be most productive.  No one wants to sit around while the photographer is trying to figure out where to go next!  And the session I had planned that would be at this location included two dogs that would need to be photographed as efficiently as possible so that they would not get over excited. So I snagged my A-number one model and cutie-potootie Piper and her mom and headed up to the Benicia Waterfront.  We found the perfect locations for action shots, the coolest old building which would do perfectly for posed images of the dogs and their family and the best spots for the most lovely bay views.   Here are a few images from the scouting

As a surprise for her Mom, Cassandra set up a session for Pinky - her Mom's beautiful Puppy.  Pinky was perfect - she posed, she ran, she chased balls and best of all; her portraits made her Mom very happy!  I am often asked how I get action photos of pups. One very effective way is to have the owner throw a ball right at me!  As you can see, this was a little close for comfort but take a look at the great action shots we captured!   These images were captured on a 70-200 Nikon lens at 2.8 aperture, 1/1600 shutter speed and ISO 200 on a Nikon D3s.  I use continuous auto focus with single point focusing.  I also use back button focusing to separate the activities of depressing the shutter from the action of focusing.  My thumb manages focus and my index finger manages capture. I