Tara Sutherland | New Zealand Pet Photography http://tarasutherland.net Stories Without Words Sat, 26 Mar 2016 03:46:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://i0.wp.com/tarasutherland.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/cropped-TS_DisplayPic_White-Tangarine-1.png?fit=32%2C32 Tara Sutherland | New Zealand Pet Photography http://tarasutherland.net 32 32 Click, Click, Treat – The Pet Posse Pet Photography Ebook http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/click-click-treat-pet-photography-ebook/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/click-click-treat-pet-photography-ebook/#respond Sat, 26 Mar 2016 02:10:07 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10799 Click, Click, Treat is basically all of the information that Carol, Kelly and I wished we had – or knew – when we first started out in Pet Photography. We’ve taken the questions that we get asked via email and our Facebook pages and combined it with some of the notes from the first Pet […]

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Click, Click, Treat is basically all of the information that Carol, Kelly and I wished we had – or knew – when we first started out in Pet Photography.

We’ve taken the questions that we get asked via email and our Facebook pages and combined it with some of the notes from the first Pet Photography workshops and combined it with over 60 full colour images.

We wrote this book with pet owners and photographers in mind.  There are plenty of tips to help, no matter the size or type of camera you are using.

Click, Click, Treat is on sale for Easter (til 11pm Monday) for only $29.95!

 

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Pet Photography Project 52: 5 – Exposure – Optimise your RAW Exposures http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-5-exposure-optimise-your-raw-exposures/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-5-exposure-optimise-your-raw-exposures/#respond Fri, 05 Feb 2016 13:20:57 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10789 For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Exposure: Optimising your RAW Exposures’. The best digital negative (RAW, not JPG) is the one with the most amount of data. For this week, turn on the Highlight Warnings so when […]

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For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Exposure: Optimising your RAW Exposures’.

The best digital negative (RAW, not JPG) is the one with the most amount of data.
For this week, turn on the Highlight Warnings so when you review your images you can see the areas that are over exposed. Since we’re shooting in RAW, don’t use the LCD to judge your exposure, because it’s reading the camera’s JPG. Use the histogram for taking your images and try to keep the exposure as far right as you can. You’ll adjust the color and exposure in your post-processing.

This week has been a bit of a hectic one for me and whilst I started the assignment, I’ve haven’t fully completed it.  So instead I’ll quickly introduce you to our new foster pup – Demi Vedder Lix instead … with before and after RAW edits.

And I’ll promise to do better next week!

Project 52 is a weekly circle project so from here, use the following link to hop over and visit Future Framed Photography, South Dakota to see what they have created, and then keep visiting the other blogs until you end up back here.

Happy Friday y’all X

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Pet Photography Project 52: 4 – The Zone System http://tarasutherland.net/project-photography/project-52-2016/2016/pet-photography-project-52-4-the-zone-system/ http://tarasutherland.net/project-photography/project-52-2016/2016/pet-photography-project-52-4-the-zone-system/#comments Fri, 29 Jan 2016 09:00:58 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10764 For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Exposure: The Zone System’. Ansel Adams is known for many things, one of his most important contributions was an exposure model known as the Zone System. For this week, print out […]

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For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Exposure: The Zone System’.

Ansel Adams is known for many things, one of his most important contributions was an exposure model known as the Zone System.
For this week, print out the Zone System scale.  Get a gray card if you don’t already have one; if you can’t get one in time, try to get an idea of what is 18-20% gray. Use spot metering in your camera. Take your pictures this week using the Zone System scale by metering off different elements and making adjustments. For example, meter off something gray and not the exposure. Then meter off something white but still with details and then add two or three stops. Consult your Zone System scale to determine how many stops your metered area is from Zone V (middle gray)? The idea is to understand how your camera reads light and how to make the best exposures using it.

There is not a lot of grey around Hamilton in the Waikato region of New Zealand at the moment – because it is the middle of summer and we are having a very tropical one! Everything is either green or brown.  So I took Nixie Lix to The Narrows – partly for location scouting reasons and partly because I knew there would be a great mix of lights and darks and that nature would effectively create its own Zone System that I could work with.

Nixie Lix - Pet Photography at The Narrows

Nixie Lix - Pet Photography at The Narrows

Metering off Nixie Lix’s dark coat. I needed to underexpose by a stop for the reflections on the water.

Once I was happy with the results on the darker and more shaded side of the jetty, I turned around to work on the lighter side – and thus the other end of the Zone System.  It was much easier with more light and a lower ISO!

Nixie Lix - Pet Photography at The Narrows

Nixie Lix - Pet Photography at The Narrows

Nix was even faster on this side of the river as it was shallower so I metered off her chest and decreased my ISO to decrease my exposure by at least two stops.  Not easy when a part greyhound is screaming towards you and your camera wet, carrying a big stick!

I guess throwing water and a dog that loves to run made this assignment even harder – but it was a gorgeous location and one I will be adding to my list.  Later, for fun, we went around the corner and made some lovely portraits with Carol’s portable lighting system.  Well, lovely when she wasn’t looking back to her swimming location! Cheeky minx.

Nixie Lix - Pet Photography at The Narrows

Project 52 is a weekly circle project so from here, use the following link to hop over and visit Trina Bauer Photography, State College, PA to see what they have created, and then keep visiting the other blogs until you end up back here.

Happy Friday y’all X

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Pet Photography Project 52: 3 – Ask Better Questions http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-3-ask-better-questions/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-3-ask-better-questions/#respond Fri, 22 Jan 2016 09:00:43 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10703 For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Ask Better Questions’. “Beginners are full of questions. If we’re wise, we never lose that sense of always being a beginner with a willingness to ask questions.” Look beyond the basics […]

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For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 are working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Ask Better Questions’.

“Beginners are full of questions. If we’re wise, we never lose that sense of always being a beginner with a willingness to ask questions.”
Look beyond the basics and the technical (like “what lens did you use?” or “what were your settings?”) to consider more deeply things like “What am I trying to express?” or “What will my choice of settings change about the image?” or “What role does color play?” “What is the light doing?” Duchemin includes a list of questions that require more thought and consideration, but ask your own questions in regards to what you are trying to convey through your work and the settings and tools you use to complete that work.
For this week, take a look at the images you used in Week 2 and consider some deeper questions about them. For instance, what are the elements of the image that you like and why or what did you do with your settings or other equipment (flash/strobe, modifiers, etc.) that allowed you to get the look you wanted. There are no right or wrong answers. Consider the why and not the what, as you can learn more from the whys. This lesson is for us to get the “whys” included in our thought process. So, revisit the photos from Week 2 and ask the whys.
Take at least one new image for Week 3 by asking better questions that provide more depth and meaning to the why of what you do.

When I read the title of this weeks theme/lesson, it wasn’t camera equipment and settings that I first thought about. I completed the first part of the lesson, I looked back over last weeks photographs and it is the first suggested question that is actually the most important to me – “What am I trying to express?”

Billie and Josh Miss Pink Opie and Kelly Plum Studio Session Louis and Jo

I do realise that the point of going through Duchemin’s book is to start with the technical aspects of photography.  I just like to mix it up at the same time and these early chapters lend themselves nicely to analysing the whole package.
Whilst I still cannot describe my style, and don’t believe I have one that is easily recognisable (yet), I know that it will come with time.  What is more important to me is how I approach the time I get to spend with pets and their owners.  And how their relationship and personalities are captured in an environment that is special to them.
The questions I feel I should be asking are detailed in my Client Consultation form and continue throughout our session.  I love a jolly good run around to start off with and this allows me to talk to the people that belong to the pet.

So with all of this in mind, last night I headed out to the farm to hang out with my friend Kelly and her team of working dogs.
When I arrived, Kelly and Meg and Flirt and Flight and Patch and Teddy and Flick were roaming around in the front paddock having a great time.  I was greeted by waggy tails and panting tongues and none of them were surprised to see my camera bag.  We hung out in the front paddock a little longer and I learned some more about the dogs.

And they posed for me.

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Patch the Working Dog

Don’t get me wrong, I love these photographs.  The colour, the faces, the pretty bokeh.  But to me they are missing something.  They are missing an insight in to who these animals are.  So we walked, and we talked and they ran.  And we sat in a paddock and watched them dig and run zoomies after belly rubs and I heard more about what they are like as a working team, who is top dog and who gets told off for being a bit of a doofus.  Can you guess?

Teddy the Working Dog

This is it.  This photograph. Teddy is the doofus. He is a complete personal space invader.  Flirt and Flight like to dig together and he tries to get a little involved but sometimes he gets told to bugger off.  At this moment I made some ridiculous bull noise and Teddy popped out.  This is what I want to create – spontaneous, documentary photographs with heart.  It was a great night.

Project 52 is a weekly circle project so from here, use the following link to hop over and visit Carol Locey Photography serving Greater Cincinnati, OH to see what they have created, and then keep visiting the other blogs until you end up back here.

Happy Friday y’all X

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Max and Sonia | Auckland Pet Photography http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/max-sonia-auckland-pet-photography/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/max-sonia-auckland-pet-photography/#respond Mon, 18 Jan 2016 03:09:56 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10685 Every year I set aside part of my budget for Rescue Organisations.  I donate 2-3 Pet Photography Session vouchers for them to use in auctions to raise money for the items that they need to keep the rescue going or to pay for treatment that some of the animals might need. Sonya outbid the other […]

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Every year I set aside part of my budget for Rescue Organisations.  I donate 2-3 Pet Photography Session vouchers for them to use in auctions to raise money for the items that they need to keep the rescue going or to pay for treatment that some of the animals might need.

Sonya outbid the other supporters for the Chained Dog Awareness voucher and I had the pleasure of spending some time with her and her black labrador Max at their home in Auckland.
Isn’t Max’s greying muzzle absolutely stunning?

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Sonia really wanted some photographs that showed his gorgeous colours and his cheeky personality.  I love the images that we’ve made and I’m especially pleased that we were able to raise some money whilst we did it.

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Pet Photography Project 52: 2 – Considering Vision http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-2-considering-vision/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-2-considering-vision/#comments Fri, 15 Jan 2016 09:00:59 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10633 For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 will be working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’. Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Considering Vision’. “We all make photographs for different reasons.” We see the world differently and use the camera to express that vision. The photographs we take do not always have […]

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For 2016, the Pet Photography Project 52 will be working through David Duchemin’s book ‘The Visual Toolbox’.
Our lesson, and theme for this week is ‘Considering Vision’.

“We all make photographs for different reasons.”

We see the world differently and use the camera to express that vision. The photographs we take do not always have to be technically perfect, because it comes down to what we see, what we want others to see…our vision.
“Consider Your Vision” by looking at your favorite photographs you’ve taken to determine what you are trying to express. What are you going for with the images you take? Don’t look to hard or overthink. Look at the common elements in your work as clues. You are looking for your vision or your “style” as we might call it.
For this week, feel free to share some past images expressing your vision and take and least one new image to share that is representative of your vision or style. The goal of this lesson is for you to find your vision and learn to express it with your camera. As Duchemin says “Perfect photographs are overrated. The images that will always captivate others, and mean the most to you, are the ones made in that tension of learning to express your vision.”

My favourite photographs tell a story, they are not just a portrait, but a moment of life documented.  Whether it is a dog and their family, an individual and their cat or a pet by themselves, I try and capture what makes them unique – and loved.  Even with adoption photographs for rescue organisations, I’d like to show the world a bit of personality and a spark to fall in love with.

I deliberately choose to shoot at a wide aperture – to bring the subject out of their surroundings.  To put the spotlight on them.  I always go into a session with a shot list and as I work through these, and the spontaneous ones that present themselves, I’m thinking about how to process these later.  Duchemin refers to this as intent.

I’ve chosen four photographs that demonstrate this relationship and documentary style that I would like to develop even more.

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Opie and Kelly – Morrinsville, Waikato

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Louis and Jo – Auckland City

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Billie and Josh – Kawhia, Waikato

Plum

Plum – Studio Session

And in considering my vision; family and stories told with vibrance and luminosity, I quickly photographed this tonight during a visit to one of my best friends new homes.  I’ve been wanting to photograph Miss Pink for a long time and seeing her tonight, so relaxed in her new space, it was perfect.  She bought me her toy (well bunted me and sat between my legs) until I obliged.  Yes lady, let’s play.

tarasutherland-pink-consideringvision

Project 52 is a weekly circle project so from here, use the following link to hop over and visit Future Framed Photography, South Dakota to see what they have created, and then keep visiting the other blogs until you end up back here.

Happy Friday y’all X

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Pet Photography Project 52: 1 – New http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-1-new/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2016/pet-photography-project-52-1-new/#respond Fri, 08 Jan 2016 09:00:22 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10619 My 2016 kicked off wonderfully, wonderfully wriggly and fluffy and super super cute. Me and my [Pet] Posse Kelly Wolfe and Carol Howell went down to Haulton Border Collies in Cambridge to photograph their latest litter. These little pups are only 5 weeks old.  I think Ember and Troy definitely count as new – don’t […]

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My 2016 kicked off wonderfully, wonderfully wriggly and fluffy and super super cute.

Me and my [Pet] Posse Kelly Wolfe and Carol Howell went down to Haulton Border Collies in Cambridge to photograph their latest litter. These little pups are only 5 weeks old.  I think Ember and Troy definitely count as new – don’t you?

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Project 52 is a weekly circle project so from here, use the following link to hop over and visit ONO Pet Photography (Fairhope, Alabama) to see what they have created, and then keep visiting the other blogs until you end up back here.

Happy Friday y’all X

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Best of 2015 http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2015/best-of-2015/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/2015/best-of-2015/#respond Thu, 31 Dec 2015 03:18:47 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10606 2015 was, for the most part, very very good to me.  There were a few lows that knocked me around however I’m filled with hilarious memories of our pup Dj Mako and have a greater appreciation of why photographs can be so important especially when a pet passes on.  I entered the NZIPP IRIS Print […]

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2015 was, for the most part, very very good to me.  There were a few lows that knocked me around however I’m filled with hilarious memories of our pup Dj Mako and have a greater appreciation of why photographs can be so important especially when a pet passes on.  I entered the NZIPP IRIS Print Awards and did better than ±I ever expected and I am very pleased with the progression of my work  Most of all, I am very grateful to the amazing clients that I met and those I kept in touch with.

This years Lightroom Library summary = I took (or rather kept) 13409 personal photographs and 7434 client images and these images that follow are the ones that I have chosen as my Best 10, or Most Favorite 10, of 2015.

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Edelweiss – keeper of his castle and one of my all time favourite models.

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Always a space for Nixie Lix.  The B&W that kicked off my sessions project and my first entry into the IRIS Print Awards.

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Young Zephyr, just 10 days old.

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Tiki Taane and Hailie – the first of the models we shot for the Chained Dog Awareness Hunks and Hounds Calendar.  An amazing project I was so so pleased to be involved with.

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Spud – my second entry for IRIS. What a great little model this guy was.

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Billie and her Josh were one of the donated Pawtraits sessions I did this year. Its Josh that was ill however a cruel twist saw Billie pass away just a week or two after this photograph was taken. Unfair World, totally unfair!

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When you spend any amount of time with Rocco, its impossible not to have fun and laugh a lot. After chasing the ball around the field, Leigh showed me his jumping moves. Absolute gold!!

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My beautiful friend Kelly and her gorgeous horse Opie. Opie wasn’t very well when we made these photographs so it was a super special session. He was such a big love – more than happy for us to push him around a bit and I was truly honoured to be able to capture a little of their bond.

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McKinley and Early waited all winter for their session and once we got to our chosen location, they hammed it up and had a great time. I was rewarded with amazing poses and a lot of laughs!

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If I had to pick, I think this would be my number one photograph of 2015. Louis and Jo also waited nearly all winter and so I went to their session with a special photograph in mind. Thanks to my friend Carol and her Photoshop encouragement, it became even better than my idea.

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Louis and Jo | Auckland Pet Photography http://tarasutherland.net/blog/pet-photography-sessions/2015/louis-and-jo-auckland-pet-photography/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/pet-photography-sessions/2015/louis-and-jo-auckland-pet-photography/#respond Wed, 18 Nov 2015 01:50:14 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10598 Jo received a Pet Photography Session with me as a birthday present (ooh hay FYI: vouchers make great presents – email me if you want one!) however thanks to Auckland’s incredibly unpredictable Four Seasons in One Day, our session had to wait for the right day. I headed up to Auckland after frantically checking the […]

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Jo received a Pet Photography Session with me as a birthday present (ooh hay FYI: vouchers make great presents – email me if you want one!) however thanks to Auckland’s incredibly unpredictable Four Seasons in One Day, our session had to wait for the right day.

I headed up to Auckland after frantically checking the weather for days hoping that it would be just right.  I had two shots in mind which needed a little cloud … and NO RAIN!

I’m super stoked that Jo indulged my ‘just one more walk’ requests – this is my absolutely favourite photograph from the session (and hands down one of my most fav ever!)

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Louis was a total darling to photograph – talk about model material!

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McKinley & Early | Waikato Pet Photography http://tarasutherland.net/blog/pet-photography-sessions/2015/mckinley-early-waikato-pet-photography/ http://tarasutherland.net/blog/pet-photography-sessions/2015/mckinley-early-waikato-pet-photography/#respond Tue, 17 Nov 2015 03:17:26 +0000 http://tarasutherland.net/?p=10592 We waited the whole winter to complete the second half of McKinley and Early’s Pet Photography session – which was a graduation present for Pip. I think the wait was worth it! The girls had the opportunity to run around a pretty secluded area and then stop and pose with Pip before boosting off again. […]

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We waited the whole winter to complete the second half of McKinley and Early’s Pet Photography session – which was a graduation present for Pip.

I think the wait was worth it!

The girls had the opportunity to run around a pretty secluded area and then stop and pose with Pip before boosting off again.

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The Waikato has some stunning scenery and some pretty out of the way places if you would rather have some more space with your dog.  I’d love to create something special for you and your pet.  Contact me to book your own Pet Photography Session today.

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