Leaving Paw Prints on Your Heart, One Image at a Time
The No. 1 rule of being a pet parent is to have your photo gallery filled with your pet’s pictures. If possible, we wouldn’t miss to document any of those fleeting yet beautiful moments of our beloved pets, be it their funny faces, toothy grins, wet noses, hanging tongues, or wagging tails. And let’s give ourselves a pat on back in putting the effort to capture these moments with our smartphones. -by Rohit Agarwal
It does become easy to capture the moment with a smart-phone, but a professional pet photographer will bring in his experience and expertise. Read on to find reasons why you should be getting professional pictures of your pet and get unforgettable pictures to look back and reminisce upon.

1. They are family & all family matters!!
“It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and even how much closer we become with each other because of them.” – John Grogan.
Your pet is a dear part of your family and the moments that you spend together deserve to be immortalized in professional portraits to show your amazing bond. Also when emotional and personal moments are captured they can be relived over and can be etched on your hearts, memory cards, and Instagram.

2. Get smart with smartphone photography
We all have smart-phones and readily take pictures, but have you ever thought of bringing in a twist? Maybe change the perspective, experiment with lighting, various modes and filters to bring in a fresh feel to your photos. Avoid taking pictures against the light source as it may cast darkness. Make sure you take photos in bright light or sunlight, and see how pretty your pet photos turn out to be.

3. Fix the focus
It’s true that a pet parent’s phone gallery would have mostly their pet’s photos. But sadly a lot of them turn out to be hazy or blurry, thanks to the over-enthusiastic pets who cannot stay in one position.
Smart-phones aren’t as advanced as DSLR cameras and that’s why sometimes they cannot focus on your pet which causes the photo to be blurry. To get clearer and sharper pictures through your smart-phone tap on the screen and focus on your pet – and voila! see the magic happening….

4. Have a happy corner at home
The elements included in a picture make such a huge difference. To take aesthetically pleasing photos, have small corners and nooks around your house with décor elements like flowers, plants and planters, stack of books, colorful posters, lamps, or curtains to add that extra drama. You could also add small elements to your balcony and then take everyday pictures of yourself and your pet in these corners. It will look beautiful by avoiding the clutter of the house, now that’s what we call fantastic shot!

5. The Golden Rule of Photography – Rule of Thirds
One of the simplest rules to make your pictures look technically correct and more appealing. Enable the gridlines in your phone camera. It will divide the screen in nine squares. The idea is to align your pet’s face with those grid line intersection points. It might sound complicated, but when you start doing it a couple of times, it’ll be fun and the results would be amazing. So happy clicking!

6. Say ‘Hello’ to shadow play
It’s true that sometimes light is not your best friend. So why not befriend shadows and take stunning photos?? If the light is low you can increase the exposure, play with black and white patterns, and maybe even experiment with silhouettes. You could also create a fun Bokeh image, by placing your phone really close to your pet and blurring the background. The new-age smart-phones have so many features that experimenting with different styles of photos is so much fun.

7. Consistency is the key
If you’re a novice and are wondering how to take pet photos like a pro, then the one thing that’ll help is consistency. Keep on clicking and learning, you have nothing to lose except your phone battery. Recharge the battery and your spirits and start again. Soon you’ll see your pictures will tell a story and will look aligned, technically correct, and amazing.

8. Trick and then treat!
Pets are restless and will not stay in one place for a long time. That’s why you need to be on your toes. Try new tricks for some fun pictures. Turn on the burst mode and click multiple shots. You could also try slow-motion shots of your pet catching a treat or shaking himself dry after a bath. The idea is to get creative and have fun!

9. Relive those heartwarming memories
Our pets in their short lives teach us so many things like staying happy and joyful and living their lives to the fullest without any worry. Thinking how you can capture all these wonderful moments spent with them that give you joy and immortalize those memories when they are not with you? A professional photo shoot with your pet is a great idea.

Such sessions by professional pet photographers ensure that your dog will be remembered for years and years to come and you will be able to grieve peacefully and have closure after your dog has crossed rainbow bridge. Would like to quote the words of Agnes Sligh Turnbull, which read ‘Dogs’ lives are too short. Their only fault, really.” Dogs in their short lives teach us so many things – staying happy and joyful, living their lives to the fullest without any worry.

10. Trust an expert
“The dog is the perfect portrait subject. He doesn’t pose. He isn’t aware of the camera.” – Patrick Demarchelier.
Believe me, when I say that dog photography is one of the most difficult genres of photography, and the most difficult part of pet photography is that pets don’t pose. That is the best part, in fact! When you want them to sit and pose, they will chase butterflies and squirrels, and when you want them to run, they will lie down asking for belly rubs. And in these moments they do something unexpected and give a beautiful moment for an expert to capture.

11. Professional photographers understand your pet
Pet photographers are not just technically good in photography but are quite patient and also understand the psychology of your dog. They invest time and effort in getting to know a bit about your pet to be able to capture their personality in a better way. They also go the distance to get to know your pet which in turn makes him feel comfortable and act more naturally. Professional pet photographers take into account the subtle hints dogs give to make sure they are quick to react and capture the fleeting moment.

12. Framed for life – In the best possible way
Let’s agree that while we have multitude of pictures in our smart-phones, but only a fraction of them are artistically nice and aesthetically appealing to be framed for a wall. A wall art or print poster of a professionally taken image by a pet photographer will add so much beauty to your wall. It will capture the essence of your bond and highlight minute details of your beloved pet to make it a memorable picture. A small smile to your face and it makes you reminisce that moment with your beloved every time you look at it.

13. A pet photographer is an artist
More than just taking a picture by pressing the shutter button, a pet photographer brings multiple elements together to make that one picture memorable for you. He creates a concept and then works on minute details like location, time of the shoot, accessories, and styling of the shot to bring it all together for you and make your beloved look ‘paw’fect.

14. Magical moments in ‘Reel’ and ‘Real life’
Imagine if your pet is a water baby or loved playing in the garden. But do you have any good pictures of him doing things that he loves the most? Hiring a professional pet photographer will give you access to these amazing pictures, which were otherwise nearly impossible for you to capture. Trust a professional’s experience and expertise and see magic unveil in reel and real life.

15. Memories for life with you and your furry friend
Yes, I agree that smart-phones of today are way advanced to let you take pictures of your pet. Add to that some amazing editing tools and your picture is ready to be flaunted on social media. But do you know what’s missing? You being a part of the picture with your pet. Hiring a professional gives you a precious chance of getting into the frame with your pet and get those moments captured.

16. Have fun
Don’t let the technicalities and rules of photography take away the fun. Creating memories with your beloved pet can only happen when both of you have fun. Sometimes breaking and bending the rules can also result in fabulous pictures. Just listen to your heart, play with your pet, and take fun pictures.

“Memory is a way of holding on to the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose” – Unknown

(Rohit Agarwal is a self taught professional pet photographer based in Bengaluru. He has worked with brands like Amazon and Flipkart for almost a decade before listening to his calling to finally chase pets, cuddle them, adore them, and click them. His love for pets and passion for photography gave birth to ‘Stills by Rohit’. He likes to capture real emotions and create stories of pets and their families, which one can look back on and smile. He also works with various animal shelters in Bangalore on adoption or fundraising initiatives through his photography skills.