Taking Better Photos of My Dogs

Our photos are not our stories, but they are invaluable tools in telling our stories. Better photos help us tell better stories.

I don’t make specific New Year’s resolutions, but each January I like to check in on my continuing resolution to be a better photographer.

In January of 2012 I was armed with a simple point-and-shoot camera. My entire knowledge of photography was summed up in the camera name. I knew how to point the camera and I knew how to press the shutter

I almost exclusively left the camera in “auto” mode. So my growth as a photographer was limited to understanding better framing and better lighting

In 2013 I bought a new camera and passed along my old one to Eko. The above shot was taken with me new camera as I fiddled with settings I didn’t understand

2013 was a “one step backward, two steps forward” year as I tried to get the hang of aperture, shutter speed and ISO settings. I’ve never taken so many horrible photos and I’ve never learned so much

This photo is from Jan. 2014 and I think exemplifies the progress from the previous year. Not only did I have a much better understanding of my camera, I also began to edit my photos in Adobe Lightroom

My low-light photos transitioned from dark/blurry messes to sharper/better exposed shots 

In January 2015, I once again upgraded my camera. This time with a much better understanding of what I was doing. Lots of trips to the beach helped me refine my action photography skills

I spent more time last year studying focal lenses and shooting techniques in order to stretch my knowledge and improve my photos

And here’s a shot from January 2016. It’s far from perfect, but between the photo and the editing, I think it captures the sum of my growth

In 2016 the plan is the same, keep stretching to get better!

Luckily I have a couple willing assistants to help me with the cause

Photography can be seriously daunting, but by taking small steps I’ve managed to go from a total neophyte to a practiced-amateur. All while spending quality time with my dogs. Not a bad deal!

If your looking to take better photos of your dogs, regardless of camera or skill level, I highly recommend you check out this quick guide. It’s a great starting resource.

I still have a long way to go on my journey to take better photos. But I have received a lot of help along the way so I am always eager to pay it forward.

If you have any questions about the basics of (dog) photography just let me know in the comments. Also, if you have any good resources for dog photography please share those as well. I’m always looking to learn more. Thanks!

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