What to Expect When You Book A Custom Pet Portrait Session

So, you’ve decided to have a beautiful custom pet portrait of your dog to hang on your wall and enjoy every day—what a fantastic idea! Here’s what you can expect when you book a photo session for your furry friend.

Contact and Scheduling

The first step is to contact me through my website, and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours. You can call the studio directly. We’ll take your creative fee payment and confirm a date for your dog’s portrait session.



Pre-Session Preparation

Getting to Know Your Dog

I start by asking you to send a few photos of your dog, complete a pet release form, and fill out a questionnaire. This helps me understand your dog’s personality and preferences. I’ll ask questions like:

  • Is your dog shy and nervous or outgoing and playful?
  • What excites your dog—food, balls, toys?
  • What’s your dog’s height when seated?

These details help me plan the shoot and set up the lighting, ensuring everything is ready when you arrive. This way, your dog can get familiar with the studio without any fussing with equipment.

I’ll also inquire about any allergies, your dog’s obedience level, and any other quirks. Everyone says their dog can sit and stay, but a photo shoot can be a new and challenging environment. Don’t worry; I have tricks to get the perfect shot, and with my camera and special lights, I only need a fraction of a second to capture that perfect expression!

Preparing Your Dog for the Photoshoot

Should you groom your dog before the session? If you want that groomed look, book a grooming appointment a few weeks before the shoot. A bath is always a great idea, whether your dog looks best groomed or fun and scruffy! The most crucial grooming tip is ensuring I can see your dog’s eyes, so a trim of the brows or snout is helpful right before the shoot.

On the morning of our session, feed your dog a little less than usual since treats and noisemakers will be key to our success. Also, make sure your dog has a chance to go potty before arriving at the studio. Accidents happen, and it’s all part of the fun (pardon the pun)!

Your Dog’s Photo Session

When you arrive, we’ll spend about 15 minutes letting your dog get comfortable with the studio, my big camera, and me. I’ll pop the strobe lights randomly to see if your dog reacts adversely to the sound (this is rare) and reward them to create a positive association.

Then, we start the shoot calmly, with lots of praise and breaks. The secret to great shots is patience and keeping your dog comfortable while working quickly. Often, the best images come in the first 10-15 shots when the dog is most alert and responsive to noisemakers. But, we’ll keep it fun and relaxed—your dog will have a blast, and you might get a good workout too!

The Best Part!

Viewing Your Dog’s Photos

Approximately one week after the session, you’ll come back to the studio to see your lightly edited images. I’ll help you choose your favorites and show you mockups for wall art options. We have samples of various styles, image boxes, and albums to fit everyone’s needs.

The goal is to create beautiful custom portraits of your dog that you’ll cherish forever. So, get ready for a fun and memorable experience that captures the essence of your beloved pet!

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