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Old Jan 26, 2012, 3:19 PM   #1
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Default Playful labs/advice wanted

Hei hei, just wanted to share some shots of black labs. I am a beginner and these are some of the first shots that i took of dogs in action. I would kindly appreciate any advice i could get on shoting dogs in motion and portraits of dogs. I wasnt sure if i should post in here or in the photo critique section but i figured to put dogs among other dogs hehe. I have a very large supply of dog models as i work with dogs, breed them, and run a dog hotel, so i would really like to get good at taking nice pictures of them and maybe even get something worth printing out. These photos are unedited out of the camera (just resized).

Sasha
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Old Jan 26, 2012, 4:32 PM   #2
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I love #3-4 but in both cases, I think the dog on the right could use some sharpening. The eyes on the dog on the left are clear and sharp while the one on the left are a bit fuzzy but still nice photos.
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Old Jan 28, 2012, 5:16 AM   #3
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Thanks. At this point everything i do is experimenting. Im still learning the camera controls so im slow to make changes and its not like the dogs will be still and wait for me hehe.

Any tips on shooting in the snow? like how to get enough light on the subject without overexposing the snow?

Also regarding image stabilization, i know its not needed when shooting moving subjects and using high shutter speeds but does that mean that it should be turned off? does it have any effect on camera operation with high shutter speeds? i am hand holding a camera and even though dogs are moving most of the time, sometimes they stop and pose for me so im not sure if IS should be on or off..

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Old Jan 29, 2012, 9:03 AM   #4
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Black dogs running around in snow. That has to be one of the most difficult scenes. I'd say practice using the dodge/burn tool to control it.
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Old Jan 30, 2012, 2:18 AM   #5
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Thanks for the advice. Its often hard to take outdoor photos here in north europe in the winter. It is very cloudy, misty, and the days are very short. Even if its a sunny day, the sun hangs so low in the sky that everything is filled with shadows from the trees. Im looking forward to spring..
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Old Feb 5, 2012, 4:54 AM   #6
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No 1 and 2 are very good (2 looks like is little bit out of focus, but I like it !)
I feel No 3 and 4 needed faster shutter ! They looks soft on whole picture.
My advice is ... Use Shutter mode when shooting animals when they are playing around, and use shutter speed at least 1/300, or faster
(Check if 1/300 is not enough, go higher values, this value is just example)
And, when you shoot dark dogs, set the exposure correction to +1/3 or +2/3 , this will bring more details from the main object (the dog)
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Old Feb 5, 2012, 9:42 AM   #7
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If there is sunlight then you will want some of that falling on the face of the dog rather than having a backilt subject, otherwise to get corrected exposure you will have to blow out the snow. It is key to expose correctly initially otherwise you will lose too much detail. The last 2 for example are under exposed so will make it really hard to get anything back with them.

What camera/lens are you using?

As for getting both dogs sharp that's personal choice, I often choose a key subject that will be sharp then the other will be soft in the background a little. If they are too close then it just looks like one is out of focus rather than being a plan.

Last thing, try to not crop the feet, shooting in portrait is a good way to give some extra space or shoot wider.
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Old Feb 7, 2012, 12:38 PM   #8
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Hei, thanks for the tips. I have a brand new Canon 60D and a 70-300mm canon OS lens that i use for dogs outside. The first 2 photos were taken with a 60D and the other 2 with my old Nikon d80. As i said, im still learning the camera so its a trial process. Its been freezing cold the last couple of weeks so i didnt even take my camera out but now ill go and take some new photos and post them here so you can see what you think.

Its a good idea to set exposure compensation up for dark dogs although im always afraid that it will blow up the snow background around the dog? Im finding out that a black/dark dog in general is a very tricky subject to photograph. Its not even worth trying if it isnt a bright sunny day.

Should i be using a tripod when shooting running dogs? And should i have the opt. stabilization off as long as i use high shutter speeds?
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Old Feb 7, 2012, 12:45 PM   #9
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No need to worry about the IS and I certainly wouldn't be bothering with the tripod, that will just get in the way and the same as IS it won't help as shutter speed is doing the work of freezing the action (if high enough).

There are times to try panning/slow shutter shots too, again, I wouldn't worry about tripod but would look a possibly using IS if it has a panning option.

With exposure, just concentrate on the subject, if the snow is blown then the snow is blown, in action photography you just can't always control it, however, if you can get a better balance of light things will look better.
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Old Feb 7, 2012, 1:38 PM   #10
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Here are some photos of my chihuahua, again i was having some trouble getting sharp shots of her running. As the manual suggests, i use continous focus with a burst mode for moving subject. What about metering? Should i use the dynamic setting? The first shot is 1/500 f/7.1 and the second is 1/640 f/5.6 (ISO 100 on both), taken in shutter priority with canon 60D.
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