Dog Photos in Alberta Canola fields – How I shot it

Two weeks ago I was invited last minute to attend the Shape Up Agility Summer Camp at the RexPlex dog training and agility centre. Usually I show up to events like this, take a bunch of agility shots, post them on my SmugMug site, then hope to make some sales. I have been increasingly aware of return on investment and my goals for this year are to improve my art while increasing profitability. I decided to approach the event a little differently than in the past so I posted on the Facebook page for the event and offered mini portrait sessions. I was very surprised at the almost immediate response. Within 1 hour  35 people commented they would be interested. I had only been to the location once in the middle of winter so I was a little unsure as to what the location would offer but I am confident I’m my environmental pet portraiture skills.

Saturday morning came and I did my usual packing OCD and ensured I had all of my equipment ready, including my trusty StrobePro battery powered strobe,  octabox, and heavy duty roller stand. I pulled up to the location and I could not have asked for a more perfect Alberta scene. Amazing blue skies with puffy white clouds over top the most amazingly brilliant yellow canola fields in full bloom!! One of my goals for this year is to improve my skills combining off camera flash with daylight and I could not have asked for a better opportunity!

Shape Up Summer Camp-676-2

I wanted the dogs to be above / in the flower parts of the canola which is about 4 feet tall. As I had not been expecting this venue, I did not have a table or platform for the models. I searched around and was able to borrow a table from one of the competitors that put them at just the right height.

I set my shutter at 1/200 to be within my strobe’s sync speed and my f-stop at f/11 to endure decent focus and depth of field. I used my Canon 24-105mm f/4 L at 24 mm to get that nice wide angle effect I was looking for. Lunch break came for the competitors and I had a line of customers waiting for their turn. They were all super patient as I was not prepared for the huge rush!
Shape Up Summer Camp-61 Shape Up Summer Camp-608

I could not be more thrilled with the results!!!!! The final product did need some work in post processing to get the images you see here. I only shoot in RAW so I have as much information as possible to work with in my files. I imported all the images into Lightroom and created a preset to use as a starting point for each image. This preset included a mild sharpen, lens distortion correction, increase in blue saturation, decrease in blue luminance, a shadows adjustment and a moderate dehaze adjustment. Each image was then further adjusted individually.

The first is the RAW image and the second shows the final product:

Shape Up Portraits-145-2

Border Collie in Canola

Shape Up Portraits-145
I was so busy that I decided to rearrange my Sunday so I could go back and offer more people the chance to take advantage of my mini sessions in this amazing location. I was beyond excited to drive up to see this immensely dramatic storm cell moving over the canola field! This provided me a completely different feel for the portraits!!! I had to pack up my gear two different times to save it from rain but the results are worth every second! Shape Up Summer Camp-795-2 Shape Up Summer Camp-646-2

 

I have been lucky enough to have several more shoots with clients wanting this type of shot for their fur babies. Here are some more samples of my Canola series:

Edmonton Pet Photographer Art Display at Local Veterinary Clinic

Crestwood Vet Clinic Uses Local Artist for Art Display

Prestigious Crestwood Veterinary Hospital  has changed all the artwork adorning the walls of the Clinic over to artwork from local artist Darcy Evans Photography. Images of the staff’s personal pets were taken of the course of a couple months in preparation for the huge project. “Darcy has been absolutely fabulous” says Penny one of the managers of the clinic. “Having photographs of our own babies up in the walls is such a morale booster, every day I get to see my fur monsters on the walls at work” says one of the several staff that were part of the project.

Having these images up provides a consistent look and feel throughout the clients experience during their visit to the clinic. I was thrilled to see the final images up and on the walls. Here are some images of the finished project:

Crestwood Display-26 Crestwood Display-25 Crestwood Display-23 Crestwood Display-22 Crestwood Display-20 Crestwood Display-17 Crestwood Display-16 Crestwood Display-15 Crestwood Display-14 Crestwood Display-11 Crestwood Display-9 Crestwood Display-7 Crestwood Display-5 Crestwood Display-4 Crestwood Display-3 Crestwood Display-1

German Pinscher Photo Session at Edmonton Dog Park

German Pinscher Photo Session at Jackie Parker Dog Park

Gwyn and her German Pinscher Mason answered my casting call for a volunteer client to meet me at the dog park to do a dog portrait session. The goal was to have my friend Dave Wilson from Second Sight Studios video the session for a submission to be considered for a huge opportunity to attend a 2 day pet photography seminar in Seattle. I will also be using the video for a behind the scenes commercial for my pet photography services! I could not be more thrilled with the images we got:

2013-04-29_0007 2013-04-29_0006 2013-04-29_0005 2013-04-29_0004 2013-04-29_0003 2013-04-29_0002

Sign up to follow my blog to get updates and to see the final video when it is finished! Here is a few behind the scenes images shot by my good friend Shauna Jackson!
2013-04-29_0009

 

View more of my Dog Park Photography

Edmonton Doggy Daycare Dog Mini Sessions

See Spot Run Doggy Daycare Mini Photo Sessions

We had the pleasure of setting up two full lighting and backdrop scenarios for our mini photo sessions today at See Spot Run Doggy Daycare. The owner Anelli Hilton is truly amazing with canines. If you are looking for a daycare for your dog, I highly recommend them , our Shepherd Samantha attends twice a week and loves it.

2013-04-14_0007 2013-04-14_0006 2013-04-14_0005 2013-04-14_0004

Bodhi | Edmonton Boston Terrier Photography

Bodhi | Edmonton Dog Photography

Gemma brought her fun Boston Terrier Bodhi to the studio today. He is a bundle of energy and COMPLETELY toy focused. He would not take his eyes off his favorite little tennis ball, even for treats! I love shooting dogs that are this focused because it makes for great facial expressions. Here a re a few of the pictures:

Edmonton Boston Terrier #1 _Edmonton Boston Terrier #2 Edmonton Boston Terrier #3 Edmonton Boston Terrier #4 Edmonton Boston Terrier #5 Edmonton Boston Terrier #6 Edmonton Boston Terrier #7


Dobermans, Daschund & Doxie

Daschund photographyA good friend brought her fur monsters into the studio for a studio session. She’s got 3 of her own dogs and is fostering one from the Paws in Need animal rescue. I love animal photography and I’m sure you do too. Please have a look. Doberman & Daschund photography