Pet Photography 101: How to Take Perfect Photos of Your Pet with Your Smart Phone


Get started on your journey to making your pet an Instagram celebrity with our pet photography tips.

What guarantees you likes on every social media post? Pets and babies! Whether you’re capturing photos of your pet to post to social media, to grace the front of your next Christmas card or to frame and display around your house, you can use your smartphone to capture their best (or silliest!) moments. Here are a few pet photography tips to get the best shot!

Utilize the Rule of Thirds

Next time you use your phone’s camera, imagine there’s a grid on your screen. This grid splits the view into nine boxes. Rather than always placing your pet in the middle of the frame, try framing them off to the side, ideally where the lines intersect on the left or right. This adds interest to the photo! You can also use the grid to line up your shot with horizons, columns, or floorboards that appear in the frame with your pet.

Take Advantage of Your Camera’s Features

Many cameras found on phones have a burst mode capability. This takes a lot of sequential photos very quickly. Utilizing burst mode for action shots of your pet playing or running can help you pick the best shot possible.

If your camera has portrait mode, remember that it is not just for hoo-mans! If your pet will sit still long enough, use portrait mode to focus on the details of their adorable little face and blur out the background to make their nose look extra boop-worthy. (This is using “depth of field.”)

Natural Light is Your Friend

Whenever possible, use natural light to illuminate your pet. When taking pet photography indoors, open the curtains and blinds to let that sunshine in! If the pet photography session is outdoors, keep the sun in front of or to the side so your pet is not backlit.

Most Important to Pet Photography: Patience

Although the “stay” command is helpful for photographing your pet, also remember to “stay” patient! If your pet has other plans…just go with it! Sometimes a picture of them hopping off a chair turns out cuter than just sitting still.

Don’t Forget the Reward

While squeaky toys, catnip and balls can be great for holding a pet’s attention, nothing beats a treat. Treats are especially useful if you’re wanting to get your pet to stay for an extended time or do a fun trick. Reward them with a treat, like the “I and love and you” Super Smarty Hearties. They are only five calories, so you can use them liberally to help get the shot.

Get on Eye Level

While adorable pet pictures come from all angles, it can oftentimes be helpful to get down to eye level with your pet to capture the best shot.

Most importantly, just remember to have fun when capturing your pet’s unique personality! If you do decide to post to social media, make sure to tag us at @iandloveandyoupet and use #myilypet. We cannot wait to see what you snap!


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