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animal photography

Okay, does anyone take staged photos of your animals? The United Poultry concerns has calanders they make every year of birds to generate interest and compassion for the animals. So the key is to have quality shots that capture the animals cuteness. Its also essential that the animals are treated with dignity and enjoy the experience. That being said,  I wanted to share these pics and I want to see how you set your *staged* photos up. Also, because taking photos of animals and children can be so hard, share a tip if you can, about how to do it.

Here are some photos of my hens that I had. I set up a high table, actually it was an ironing board, in the bathroom and used the shower curtain as a back drop. I put the props in and then turned out the lights. Hens are more relaxed in the dark than in the light because its kinda like their nesting box. Then one by one, I set the hens in their place and pet gently them while they settled into it. Its relaxing to them so they were mellow. Then Id put the next one in and so on. Once they were comfortable I turned on the lights and the hens didn't feel like moving too much. So I quickly snapped a few photos. I also did not have the treats in the room while we worked because it was too distracting for them. Instead i worked in one or two brief sessions (no more than 20-30 mins at a time) and rewarded afterwards. In all, the preparation for the shoot should take longer than the shoot its self. Have everything ready so the animal doesn't have to wait while you get it together. Depending on what kinda of camera you use, you should even test the lighting and setting before you bring them in so you wont have to mess with the camera. Also in some of the shoots I just let the hens explore the scene and that made for some cute, natural pics.

So, maybe these tips will help you with your pets picture...I really need some tips on taking photos of dogs. In the past I have tried to make on-line listings of foster dogs to try to find hoems for them, but its darn hard! I know you are supposed to get down to their eye level but i cant manage to keep my dogs from bowling me over when i get down. So i hope someone has ideas about that. Also about how to get them looking at the camera, as they always seem to get distracted.

Additionally, I would appreciate any critiques of these pictures. More than anything, I am glad I have pictures to remember my hens by. (they were kidnapped from me) Although I do have many other (non-staged) photos of them. I actually sent these ones off AFTER they were gone so it was nice to have them. I also think that my hens seemed to love life and I imagine that if they could understand it...they would want to help fight cruelty in the capacity they were able. I feel like sharing these photos with folks at the united poultry concerns would be a nice tribute- if you will....here they are

a few more

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It's great that you have these photos, now that you're separated.

I have a cat; hence, no staged shots.  Unless it's him staging passive resistance.

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I also do not have any experience with staged photos. I don't think my li'l sister Silks (pup) would have taken any of that! I do have some fabulous pictures of her..just from carrying a camera around and snapping shots.
The top picture is the closest I've come to "staged"..she hated it! It was back in TX to give to our vet.
The bottom is my favorite picture of her.  :)>>>

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This is a project I'm doing with my neighbor and her cats. (actually the cat on the second pic is my cat hehe!) Anywho, an animal is more predictable when it is doing activities more natural to it. Setting a stage is really hard. My advise, lots of film and/or memory in your camera and some auto focus skills. When you see a moment, just take it, take it 10 times if you have to. It's better to take a lot of pics and get one great one than missing the best opportunity. Also, think about what motivates the animal. If I put a towl or rug on a tile floor, my dog is guaranteed to sit there. If I flick a toy around, I know what to do to get my cat to wait patiently for it or just flat out go crazy after it. Most important motivatior for most pets is food. For chickens, maybe put their fav treat near something you want them to have their heads near, or a heating pad if they will snuggle on it? All else fails, have someone get in the picture with them, maybe Santa Clause or whatever the scene calls for.  ;)b

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These are some fairly useful tutorials on pet photography.

http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/9-pet-photography-tips/
http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/how-to-photograph-pets/

Also I've attached a link to a free Canon tutorial on 'Animals & Nature' -  http://www.box.net/shared/o47xct38kc

This is my only attempt at catching my Inca on my compact. I can't shoot people nor animals :) I do love the look on Inca's face though.

http://vegweb.com/gallery/albums/userpics/73812/normal_Inca___Me.jpg

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A Mac with Photoshop of course is a valuable tool!  The program is very easy to use and the possibilities of what you can do are endless.

If I were taking pictures of chickens, I'd take them and the props outside to "their area".  That way they would be more inclined to naturally pose with/by them.  Plus, outdoor lighting is usually best for animals, namely to avoid the dreaded "blue/green" animal eyeball reflection effect from flash!

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I like to go out into the woods and take pictures of animals I see there.  Not staged,  but I get lucky sometimes.  I love to take pictures of animals.

Here is one I took just this past weekend while I was geocaching.  It came out pretty good.  I think these two broad banded water snakes were mating, not sure.  They didn't move at all.  They are non-venomous, FYI.  As you can see, one of the snakes is about ready to shed it's skin.

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thedharmablues,

I love your picture by the way, it is so cute! 

How did you get that picture in the post like you did?

Oh, I think I know, let me try something and see if it works,

http://img.geocaching.com/cache/log/ec7e6d8b-30cd-4c21-97e9-415d1851cf8a.jpg

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Ooooh, it worked!!!

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Allychristine,

There is an icon above the smilies on the reply screen.  It is on the second row of icons, the forth one over, when you scroll over it with your mouse it says "insert images".  When you do that this, brackets appear with the word img inside.  In between the brackets you insert the address of the webpage where your image is.  To use this you have to have your image on the web somewhere, you can use vegwebs gallery and put your pictures there if you want. 

Hope that helps

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Thanks.

Hehe, you didn't even give me the chance to reply and you went and figured it out :)

I am trying to count the snakes in that photo. I think there are two but I am not 100% certain.

thedharmablues,

I love your picture by the way, it is so cute! 

How did you get that picture in the post like you did?

Oh, I think I know, let me try something and see if it works,

http://img.geocaching.com/cache/log/ec7e6d8b-30cd-4c21-97e9-415d1851cf8a.jpg

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I took this picture of my Aunt's pug, Lotus, last night. She is in her natural state...on her throne...  ;) (except her tongue is usually slightly hanging out b/c she doesn't have any front teeth)

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These are some fairly useful tutorials on pet photography.

http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/9-pet-photography-tips/
http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/how-to-photograph-pets/

Also I've attached a link to a free Canon tutorial on 'Animals & Nature' -  http://www.box.net/shared/o47xct38kc

This is my only attempt at catching my Inca on my compact. I can't shoot people nor animals :) I do love the look on Inca's face though.

http://vegweb.com/gallery/albums/userpics/73812/normal_Inca___Me.jpg

I love the look on your face too!  ;D  Great shot!!!! 

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I took this picture of my Aunt's pug, Lotus, last night. She is in her natural state...on her throne...  ;) (except her tongue is usually slightly hanging out b/c she doesn't have any front teeth)

Where'd you find that picture of me!?!??!  :-D

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Aww your hens are so cute VHZ!!  I'm so sorry they got stolen  >:( (I wasn't around for that)  I try a million times to take nice pictures of my cats....but it always fails!  I have a slow camera that focuses in and out AFTER I push the "takephoto" button, before it actually takes the photo....maybe that's why.

here's my kitty showing off his goodies lol

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