Whether it is to keep on our phones and show off to our friends or to send to www.canvaspetpictures.com to be blown up on canvas bigger than life, anyone who owns a pet knows we all want to take great pictures of them.   Unfortunately, it’s not necessarily that easy.  Try as we will, we don’t always get the results we would hope for.  Here are seven easy steps to make sure we get snap shots worthy of printing and framing on canvas in a size we can enjoy.

1) Get down to their level – While it may cost you a dirty knee or two, it is important to get down to the pets eye level.  Think about it for a minute.  When you take a picture of a person, you don’t get on a ladder and shoot down.  Think of how unflattering that would be.  The same is true for photographing your pet.  If you want them to look good, you need to get down to their “eye level.”  Also, when photographing a pet with eyes to the side of its head, such as a pet rabbit, take the image at a slight angle. 

2) Use natural light – Whenever possible, shoot in natural outdoor light.  Avoid using a flash.  The best light can be found early in the day or late in the afternoon.  Avoid mid-day when the light is too harsh.  Some indoor pets will need to be shot indoors.  In that case, again, avoid using a flash and instead shoot near a window or other opening where you can utilize the natural light available.

3) Use a zoom lens – As any portrait photographer will tell you, it is much more flattering to shoot further back with a zoom lens.  No different when creating a suitable for framing portrait of your favorite pet.  Drop back and zoom in.

4) Clean up the background – The pet should be the entire focus of the shot.  A messy background will take away from the only important part of the image, your pet. 

5) Get a helper – Pets can be tricky to shoot.  They don’t take direction like humans do (at least some humans anyway).  We all k now the expression “it's as difficult as herding cats.”  If you have a helper on hand to help position the little guys and keep them happy and content, you can concentrate on taking the shot, getting the correct composition, focus, etc.  A helper will make a world of difference in the final photo.

6) Get Fun expressions – This is where a helper can again be a great help.  In order to keep the photos interesting, have the helper try doing things to get the pets attention and get that inquisitive look we all want.  A noise they are not used to hearing will often get the look we desire in a picture worth framing.  Something as simple as keys jingling or a fun cell phone ringtone should do the trick. 

7) Be patient, be quick and most of all, have fun – Go into the photo shoot knowing that it requires patience, but also requires you to be quick.  Most pets will become fidgety very quickly, so get ready to go before you bring the “star” onto the set.  Most of all is be patient and HAVE SOME FUN.