National Pet Month: How To Turn Your Pet Into A Social Media Star
To celebrate National Pet Month this April, Clare Moreton, photo expert at CEWE, shares her camera tips so your pet's photos can go from camera roll cute to blue tick-worthy!
With the majority of the UK spending more time inside, now is the perfect time to learn how to capture your pet's personality with your camera and have fun online sharing adorable photos. With the help of office dog Lola, you can learn the best tips for creating eye-catching photos of your pet.
However, before we begin, it's important to ensure your pet is actually comfortable in front of the camera and isn't showing any signs of distress. The best photos are the ones that show your pet being natural and comfortable, so bear this in mind and keep photo sessions short and sweet!
Show off your pet's personality
First things first, there’s more to being a pet influencer than just being cute. Creating a brand for your pet is vital and a lot of that comes down to great photography that tells your pet’s story and showcases their personality.
Your pet is special to you for a reason, but capturing that essence and personality on camera isn’t always easy. To help, consider your settings and props for your photos that will show off your pet’s unique personality. If your pet likes to spend their days lounging around, a photoshoot indoors surrounded by their favourite cushions and blankets is a great way of showcasing their sleepy nature. Likewise, if your pet loves the being outdoors and enjoys their long walks, getting out in the garden to capture your pet is a great way to show off their personality.
You should also consider what could make your pet stand out from the crowd. Do they have a serious expression that makes them look almost human-like or any funny habits they tend to do? If so, make sure you focus on these in your pictures. Brightly-coloured bandanas and beautiful leads and collars are also bound to make your pet stand out, browse our vast collection of Insta-worthy pet apparel and find accessories that best suits your pet's character!
Choose the right background
It’s not just humans that benefit from a beautiful backdrop – when taking pictures of your pets it’s important to consider all the elements of your shot. Consider the story you’re telling with your photo and look at your pet’s features, choosing a background that tells this story and shows off their best bits.
Making use of various props and features you have within your home that your pet gravitates too will make the photos stand out. Position them with their favourite toy or sitting in their dedicated spot on the sofa to show off the parts of their personality that make them unique.
Focus on the eyes
They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul - and that is also true with animals, who can convey so much emotion in just one look. Capture that emotion in your images by focusing on their eyes. Don’t rely on your camera’s automatic settings for this – most phones and cameras will let you manually select a focus point on your photo.
Pay attention to the rule of thirds, as this will draw the viewers eye towards your pet’s. You can do this by cropping the image to get your animal’s eyes in either the upper or lower quadrant of the photo, to create a stunning photo that tugs on your follower's heartstrings.
Make the most of natural lighting
When it comes to pet photography, natural light is always best. Not only will using the flash cause red-eye on your pet's photos but it can be dangerous and could scare them, which you definitely don’t want to do.
Try taking your shots during the day in your garden or in a room with a large window that has lots of natural light. This will help capture your pet more naturally and also help them feel more at ease, as well as producing stunning photos that are perfect for your Instagram feed.
Get up-close and personal
Animals, especially if they’re small, can get a bit lost when shot against big backdrops, so getting up close and personal when photographing your pet is vital. Use treats to keep them engaged and speak to your pet to keep them calm when taking photos of them up close or get someone to help direct your pet to look at the camera by standing next to you with a toy or treat. Patience is key here – you might have to wait a while and spend some time to get the perfect shot, but it will pay off in the end.
Even if your pet doesn't quite make it as a pet influencer, having a beautiful collection of good-quality pictures of your pet is always a positive and will be a nice memory to look back on in the future. Sweet and funny pictures of pets never fail to put a smile on a person's face, so if you manage to make a few people happy with your pictures - you've definitely succeeded!