Sunday, September 29, 2013

Photography of Dogs, "A Subject of Love"

Poppy at Canon Beach shows of her personality.

It all started when I was a small boy, my family had a dog that loved me. She was a mutt half collie and something else, not sure what but she was a mothering soul. To me she was a big dog but that was because I was small, I was a child and she watched over me. I love dogs. I have always had dogs in my life. They are wonderful creatures that are loyal loving partners in our lives.

Poppy was shot on location in available light.
When I think of how to capture an image of a dog, I think of my inner child and how I loved my first dog. I try to make a connection with the dog as I frame the shot in my camera. I am talking to the dog as if we were in a conversation trying to make a connection. If I calm myself, the dog senses it and calms down. This helps to bring out the personality of the dog.

Here are some of the images I shot of dogs in the past year or two. I hope you like them.

Poppy was always happy to be at the beach, so it became clear that her best portraits would be at a location where she could show how much she loved the experience.

Buttons is looking at her master. Her focus is clear and loving.

Labor-doodle with indoor lighting but outdoor feel.
Suckling babies

The Doodle is a blend of Poodle with a Lab or another bread here is buttons a glamorous girl with a new litter of pups. Such a fluffy group of pups I fell in love instantly. Wouldn't you? These images were taken at Michelle's Doodles a local Washington breeder of fine loving doodles.

 This little guy is my new pet his name is Hugo although he does not know it yet. I am so excited that he will be a part of my family.

"French Bullies"

Highly individual bullies have strong wills and clear personalities.

Clearly intelligent

Focused on the camera

A sweet disposition.

Holding a toy to pose the shot.
  Bullies are independent by nature they have strong wills and want to do things their way or not at all. They are always testing to see if they can be the Alpha dog.

Sweet partings "please don't go".

It is often a good idea to have some help when photographing pets, owners can help with positioning, having a favorite toy available or treats will help to control the situation and get the pet to behave in a way that will bring out their personality. Remember you are not just trying to get a likeness but to reveal the deeper hart of the animal. Finely if all else fails take the dog for a walk, change the environment, tire them out a bit or come back at another time. I am most interested in getting the shot that the family lives with for the life of the animal. Get the shot to remember. These bullies are from Umpqua Valley Kennels in Oregon.
If you would like me to photograph your pet, send me an email to discuss fees and other details.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Seeking Exposure for your artwork.

A long time ago, my mentor told me to ignore what is going on outside of your studio. Do not become distracted from the deeper thought and commitment necessary to create at a level that can make you seriously competitive. Because if you want to be at the top of your game you must, keep focused while working and improving. He said to make your artwork deep and so good it cannot be denied. Do this and you will be found, the world will find you!
This process is true, acknowledgement belongs to the deserved ones whose work separates them from the pack of otherwise “good artists”. We are all good artists here, only a very few become great. What is it that gives your work a special hook or vision? What is your skill level? Setting ego aside, look at what you create and ask yourself if it is truly the very best, you can do. Will it separate you from the pack of other good artists?
We live a creative life and have done so all our life; to us this is what is important. We are painters. We are sculptors. We make images that fulfill our spirit and vision of the world. We are true artists in every sense of the word. There is no one else we need to convince of this. It is at this point in our life there is nothing to prove to anyone. Our success is not determined by external fame or fortune but by the joy, we find in living this life. Time will tell if what we have done will last.
Now with all this said there is also a need to share what we as artists make with others. We want them to see what we have been doing. We want them to see our vision. We would like to sell a piece of work occasionally so we can validate our process. Doing this is unavoidable to the artist. Without this, we are living in a vacuum.
Therefore, the dilemma arises of how to share our work. Devoting time to this process takes us away from the studio. So luckily, with the creation of the Internet, we live in a time that now circumvents many traditional time consuming approaches. Posting your work on a web page takes less time then seeking a gallery that may reject you or is less costly then hiring someone to promote you. Nevertheless, which one do you use? There are so many ways to expose your work? This magazine is a good start. However, you need more.
There is a new website now developed and going active soon it is called and it is being designed to promote artist, museums and galleries all over the world. It is also an educational resource that will help art enthusiasts to understand, learn and even purchase artwork, plan travel trips around art and sell museum tickets and guided tours when traveling. This site will give artists their own portfolio page and the ability to dialogue about your work and that of others. I am excited about this new web venue and hope that you will be to.The way forward in today's art world is on the web as well as in person.