Better pictures make a big difference for dogs and cats awaiting their forever homes, and it can be difficult to photograph the true beauty of animals with black fur. If you work at a shelter (or if you just want some better pictures of your own dark- colored pet), learn a bit of the basics with these tips from Seth Casteel, professional pet photographer and co-founder of One Picture Saves—an organization dedicated to teaching shelter staff how to take better photos of their adoptable pets.
1. Pay attention to light.
For indoor photos, bring the black dog closer to a big window so you have enough light. For outdoor photos, take pictures in the shade to avoid a glare.
2. Make sure your shutter speed is fast enough.
Photographing black dogs can result in blurry pictures if you don’t watch your shutter speed. For a portrait, you’ll need at least 1/100th of a second. Action shots require 1/500th.
3. The background should contrast with the dog.
If a black dog is on a black background, she won’t stand out.
4. Highlight the parts of the dog that aren’t as hard to see.
Try to get the pup to smile or pant, so you can see their big pink tongue, or focus on his eyes.