Negative Space Pet Photography Project 52: week 39

I love images with a lot of negative space so I'm excited for our pet photography project 52 week 39 challenge. Negative space in a photograph is the space in your photograph that isn't your main subject. When I take photos with negative space, the negative space is usually the sky and there isn't much in the background. Since I live in the land of the trees, taking photos with negative space isn't something I do frequently but when I am on the beach with a dog, I am drawn to taking photos with a lot of negative space.

These first two photos are photos I took when I was in Cannon Beach Oregon in August. I was on the beach one morning just randomly asking people if I could photograph their dog. This dachshund puppy was walking down the beach towards me and I snapped a few photos of her. To date, this is one of my personal favorites and I think that is because of the negative space: the dreamy, hazy background and the contrast of the beautiful coloring on the dog against that background.

I love this photo. I wish I knew her name. 

I love this photo. I wish I knew her name. 

This next photo is another I took in Cannon Beach. I think the square Instagram crop works best on this photo.

This is Ginger. When I arrived in Cannon Beach my first BARKography destination for dog photography, I didn't know what to expect. Capturing this photo gave me a ton of confidence for the rest of my trip. It's the first photo I posted on Instagram of the photos I took in Cannon Beach and the feedback I got on it also helped my confidence. Thank you to anyone who liked it or commented on Instagram. Those likes and comments mean the world to me. This photo got 26 comments which on my tee-tiny Instagram account is a lot.

This is Ginger. When I arrived in Cannon Beach my first BARKography destination for dog photography, I didn't know what to expect. Capturing this photo gave me a ton of confidence for the rest of my trip. It's the first photo I posted on Instagram of the photos I took in Cannon Beach and the feedback I got on it also helped my confidence. Thank you to anyone who liked it or commented on Instagram. Those likes and comments mean the world to me. This photo got 26 comments which on my tee-tiny Instagram account is a lot.

This week I am in Hilton Head SC. Originally I'd planned to schedule BARKography dog photography sessions on the beach but I decided to actually "be on vacation." Well.... actually I am working a lot but I'm doing behind the scenes, back office catch up stuff that I never have the time to do when I am home and I am loving the sense of accomplishment.

We did take our dogs Moose and Willow to the beach Tuesday morning. Imagine crazy Moose on the beach OFF LEASH. :) It's an off leash beach this time of the year so we decided to let Moose have a little fun and see if he'd behave. For the most part, he did... except when a Visla puppy came over to him and he got the zoomies and knocked the puppy over. He met a bulldog too that wanted to play (see below.) The beach was fairly crowded at sunrise on Tuesday and even so, I'd have to say Moose behaved pretty well.  Thank God Don thought to bring a tennis ball. Moose didn't drop it once.

Moose and Willow in Hilton Head

I learned several things on Tuesday. Photographing my clients' dogs on the beach is easier than photographing my own. I think so for a couple of reasons and the biggest is I feel like I have to keep an eye on the dogs when they're mine so watching my own dogs and trying to take good photos is hard. I also give instruction better to people I don't know than to my own husband. That could be a whole blog post on its own I am sure. :o)

Our instructions this week were to take 3 photos: one the way our eye naturally sees it, one with a lot of negative space and one with less. I'm using sweet Willow for these examples. She prefers the tide pools at the beach but there weren't any Tuesday morning. She is 12 and the arthritis in her back legs is really bothering her. She will start acupuncture when we get home. Here she is enjoying herself and doing what she likes to do when she is at the beach.

This is Willow doing her best downward dog pose as she is getting ready to lie down. I've cropped this image to what I feel like is a desirable amount of negative space.

This is Willow doing her best downward dog pose as she is getting ready to lie down. I've cropped this image to what I feel like is a desirable amount of negative space.

This is the next photo I took as my eye saw it. There is more negative space with the sand in the foreground and the sky in the background. I've not cropped this photo at all. I was using a 16-35mm lens so my ability to zoom was limited unless I used my legs.

This is the next photo I took as my eye saw it. There is more negative space with the sand in the foreground and the sky in the background. I've not cropped this photo at all. I was using a 16-35mm lens so my ability to zoom was limited unless I used my legs.

I was in the same spot when I took this photo of Willow as the two above. I've really cropped this photo which isn't something I would typically do but for the sake of this exercise I am. Because of the lens I was using and my distance from Willow, I've had to crop out a lot of this image and the quality of the image has suffered. Here she is shaking off the water from her dip in the ocean.

I was in the same spot when I took this photo of Willow as the two above. I've really cropped this photo which isn't something I would typically do but for the sake of this exercise I am. Because of the lens I was using and my distance from Willow, I've had to crop out a lot of this image and the quality of the image has suffered. Here she is shaking off the water from her dip in the ocean.

This is our 2nd trip to the beach with Moose. Last year at this time we brought him but we were too chicken to let him off leash. He had a good time. Below are more images of him... and that tennis ball of course! The first photo is just as we arrived and hadn't let Moose off leash yet. Then we met a bulldog that wanted to play. I like the 3rd photo as it captures our morning at the beach and my dogs enjoying themselves. The last 3 photos are of Moose and that tennis ball. The last photo...when Moose lies down, you know it's been a good morning and he is worn out! They both had a good snooze when we got back.

The last thing I learned about photographing my own dogs at the beach: I might prefer photographing my client's dogs for this reason: leaving is much easier when they're not my dogs! Upon leaving the beach Tuesday, we showered the dogs off just off the beach then they both got showered off and bathed once we got back to the house. Then the car needed to be cleaned out (which Don did) and then laundry.... All worth it though. We are giving Willow's legs a chance to recover and we're taking the dogs to the beach again Friday morning. :)

This is a blog circle and next up is Pet Love Photography, serving the Greater Cincinnati and the San Francisco Bay Area. Be sure to click the link at the end of each post to see each photographer's blog on negative space. Have a great week ya'll. :)

Kim Hollis2 Comments