Like most of you, I am slightly obsessed with photographing my own dogs. In fact, my terrier Harriet is my muse and guinea pig to try out new photography techniques and locations. Here's a list of my favorite basic poses with photos of Harriet to help illustrate the final look.
Arguably one of the easiest poses for your dog! Ask your dog to sit while holding a super yummy treat to get their attention.
TIP: Take a moment to look at the area on the ground around your dog. Remove any distracting items or physically move your dog to an area that will provide a more interesting backdrop for your dog. Leaves, grass, pebbles work well!
Dog On A Log
Got a wiggly pooch? This trick works well for keeping them still for a few minutes to snap a photo. Perch them on the edge of something (safety first of course!) like a log or bench. Have an extra set of hands nearby to help administer treats while you take the photo.
ALTERNATE: If your dog is nervous and anxious about perching, you can try encouraging them to put just their front paws up on the log instead.
Incorporate the environment into your dog photos to give a sense of place and story. Many times, the choice of location will add to the beauty and character of your dog.
TIP: Shooting from further back and using a zoom lens will help compress the scene.
Find Some Color
Finding a mural or colorful wall makes for a beautiful portrait! To create a smooth, blury background of color, move your subject further away from the wall. If the wall has an interesting texture, use it! Move your subject closer.
TIP: Look for background colors that compliment your dog's colors to add interest.
Try out different viewpoints to mix things up. Try getting down super low, this has the added benefit of minimizing distractions too.
TIP: Frame your subject with something that contrasts your dog's coloring.