It’s that time of year again – Christmas lights, plenty of snow, and of course the family photos. That makes this the perfect time of year for our 6th Annual Hoppy Howlidays and Meowy Catmas Pet Photo Contest! You’ll definitely want to get in on the action for your chance to win an awesome bag packed full of goodies for your furry, feathery, or scaly friend. The photo with the most votes wins, so get your cameras focused and read the tips below for the best methods to capture just the right moment of your pet looking their best in their holiday swag!
Trying to get an action shot of your pet with that goofy head tilt or those puppy dog eyes just so? While it’s not necessary, it definitely helps to have a ‘pet wrangler’ on the sidelines while you’re snapping away. Make sure they stand next to you in order to get your pet looking your way when they are vying for the animal’s attention. If you don’t have the luxury of an assistant, there are a multitude of apps, such as iSqueek by harryapps.com, that can be used, or a squeaky toy may do the job. Just make sure your flash and shutter speed are set to your desired settings so you are ready to snap, because the perfect shot may be brief before your pet becomes distracted once more. Treats are also a great way to keep your pet’s attention and reward them for that camera-ready pose!
Initiating a play session really helps to get fun, energetic shots, especially with sometimes-stubborn kitties. It’s not always possible to achieve just the right action shot, but it definitely helps to get your pet moving and in a happy mood. It’s always tempting to dress your pet up for a cute, holiday-ready photo and sometimes it makes the shot, but other times your pet may be uncomfortable and it might hinder their movements and mood. If you’re set on a holiday theme, try incorporating it in other ways, such as a Christmas tree background, shooting on a holiday blanket, or if you’d like toys in the shot, choose some holiday-themed options.
Get used to taking a lot of photos to get just the right one and picking the perfect scene. So much of what makes photos great is the type of lighting used in your photos. If you’re shooting outdoors, try to shoot in the morning or evening for a warm, natural light that won’t wash out your pet. If you’re planning an indoor shoot, you may need your flash, but if possible you may want to diffuse it in some way in order to avoid scaring your pet, and also casting shadows on their faces or harsh contrast. The best angle to take the photos is straight at your pet, so get down on their level in order to take the best photos pointing directly at their eyes; this will help their depth and personality shine through!
These are just a few tips to get you started on your perfect pet photo quest, but really the winning photo comes when you let your imagination soar to get the most creative photos possible. We know all of the photos are sure to be cute, cheerful, and full of Christmas spirit; once you’ve narrowed down your favorite, upload it to our 6th Annual Hoppy Howliday and Meowy Catmas Contest gallery today!