To create a good pastel portrait, I need some good reference material.
I always draw from photographs for portrait work. Imagine trying to get your pet to sit still for 5 minutes let alone the time it takes for a portrait! Unless we’re talking cats, of course, and you’d like a portrait of them sleeping…
If you are unsure whether the images that you have of your pet will be suitable, simply give me a call. Normally I will ask people to post or email the shots and can then let you know if I can use them.
Here are some photography tips that might help:
Not big enough in the frame
Getting the right distance
Get in as close as you can without chopping off important parts of your subject
You’ll want to balance your subject so he fills the frame well. Too small and the shot will be all background
The second of these photos fills the frame well and makes for a great full body shot of the animal. Make sure that you don’t capture too much background so that your subject becomes a tiny dot in one corner.
Close, but not too close
The first of these head shots could be nice if it were in focus and the photographer had pulled back slightly.
The second is a much better image. Its nicely lit, in focus and show enough detail in the coat and the eyes to make a great portrait.
Getting the Focus spot on is key. If the image is blurry, then the artist has to second guess the detail and the result won’t show any character of your pet.
Get down to it
Compare the two images of Amber on the sofa. The first one looks much more interesting because we are down at her level in her world. the second one however is just a cat asleep on the sofa
When you capture the sharp detail its easier to see expressions and capture nuances that make your pet special.
Lastly, make sure that you have the light source in front of the subject . With the light behind, the image again lacks detail. This is a particularly key point when you’re photographing black or white animals or animals where the coat is predominantly one colour.
Look at the difference in the black cat images here.
OK well I hope that’s been useful. Happy snapping!