What if the weather isn't suitable on the day?
I will contact you on the day of the shoot to confirm if it will go ahead or if the forecast isn't suitable. If the light or the weather means I can't get all the images I want then I will reschedule another session at no extra cost to you.
What does the session fee include?
The session fee includes:
the pre-shoot consultation. Usually this is over the phone, but if you have a very nervous dog I recommend we meet in person to give your dog more time to get comfortable with me
my travel to and from the location
the shoot itself (not time limited, apart from secure field shoots which are are restricted to the time we have booked)
professional editing of your images, which includes the removal of leads and other objects as necessary
the design consultation after the shoot (in your home or a location of your choice)
a credit towards print products (see individual pricing for details)
The fee does not include any digital files but these are available to buy at the design consultation.
How long does a session last?
The session lasts a couple of hours, depending on the dog, the light and how long it takes to get the variety of shots. The only exception to this are secure field shoots, as we are limited to the time we have booked (usually an hour).
Does the design consultation have to take place in my own home?
Absolutely not. If you would prefer to meet somewhere else, like a coffee shop, then we can do that instead. The reason I like to come to your home is because I can advise on wall art and you can see how sample products might look on your walls.
Why don't you provide online galleries?
My aim is to provide you with high quality artwork that lasts a lifetime, whether in the form of a photo album, wall art or desk piece. Wall art can range from a cluster of smaller images to a large feature piece. Printing photos professionally involves calibrating your screen and finding the right printer so that the colours print accurately and the photo looks its best. I have done a lot of research and test printing to find companies that I believe offer the best quality and xxx
My dog is nervous, can I still book a shoot?
Definitely. My own dog is nervous and I worked with a behaviourist to better understand him and how to gradually build his confidence, but he is still scared of some strangers. I know how to work with nervous dogs and there is never any pressure on them; their safety and happiness are the priority. We'll take as much time as necessary for the dog to get to know me, and if he/she isn't comfortable then we can reschedule (at no extra cost to you). If he/she cannot go off the lead then we can book a secure field for the shoot. For particularly anxious dogs we can hold the pre-shoot consultation in person to give the dog more time to get to know me.
My dog cannot go off the lead, can I still book a shoot?
Yes, and if you would like action shots in addition to portraits then I offer a special package with one hour in a secure field for action shots and one hour at a location of your choice for portraits (on separate days). Your dog can stay on the lead for the portrait shots and I'll remove it in Photoshop. This costs just £15 more (for up to X dogs) than the standard shoot to cover the cost of hiring the field. I will need a copy of your dog's vaccination card to secure the booking. We will need to book the field a long way ahead due to availability, but if the weather isn't suitable on the day and it's too short notice to get a refund then I won't charge you for it (I can use the booking for my own dog!).
Where can I have the session?
I'll discuss this with you during the pre-shoot consultation. The most important factor is that the location is somewhere your dog will be safe and happy. There are other considerations such as whether your dog can go off the lead. It needs to be somewhere that has enough variety for me to be able to get a range of photos, and some locations work better at different times of day or year, depending on light and weather.
Why does it cost more for X dogs?
I charge more because the session usually takes longer as there are more dogs to photograph and it takes a bit more time to set up the shots. There are also more images to edit. With a group of dogs there sometimes has to be some Photoshop magic to create a perfect group shot where all the dogs are looking at their best!
When is the best time for a shoot?
It varies depending on the location, time of year and weather. Slightly overcast days are ideal as the light is soft and balanced. The hour after sunrise and before sunset is great if it's sunny.
The light in winter can be perfect as the sun is low in the sky and the more extreme weather creates dramatic sunrises and sunsets. Although winter can be challenging as most of the foliage is dead, there are plenty of opportunities in woodland, in water, in one of the many beautiful Cotswold villages or on a hill with a view. Sunrise is also at a more reasonable hour!
One of the worst times to shoot is in the summer, during the day, in full sun. The light is far too harsh and contrasty, as well as the fact that it's often too hot for the dogs. So unless it's cloudy I usually only shoot first thing in the morning and last thing in the evening in summer. However, if your dog is fairly good at staying in one place it is possible to get dramatic portraits using flash.
What equipment do you use?
I use a Nikon D5 with a range of professional lenses. For lighting I have a Profoto B2 and Nikon SB-700 speedlights.