In Category: ‘Photography’


July 21, 2015

It was Dougal’s mom that told me about the canola field so it was only natural that we take some photos of him there.  He was perfectly at home in the field. He wasn’t as comfortable in the canal on the other hand.  ;)

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I donate my time to Windy City Canine Rescue and take photos of all their new arrivals. It’s usually about 50 dogs a year.  I love it.  It gives me a chance to meet every dog we help and I get to hang out with them and get to know them a little bit.  This year I decided I was tired of just doing the same old pictures in the same old backyards so I started taking the dogs out and about.  My husband has been helping me and he’s becoming a great assistant.  In most of these photos he’s just off to the side holding the leash (that I’ve edited out).  I thought I’d share a few favourites from the past few months.

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Here’s my husband helping out.  I was going for matching head tilts but all I got was matching forehead wrinkles. icon wink Recent Rescue Photos

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And what I love to do even more than taking pictures of the rescue dogs, is fostering them. One of my dogs can be pretty unreliable around other dogs but we’ve discovered that she is usually very good around puppies.  She tolerates them much more than she would an adult dog and often by the end of their stay she has become a good friend to them.  Usually these dogs are too young to go out to a park as they aren’t fully vaccinated yet so then I’m stuck just taking pictures around our house and backyard.

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As most of you know, Amanda has a ‘few’ dogs and she offered to let me take pictures of them for Bionic.  We opted for more green grass and met this time at Henderson Lake.  The nice thing about working is with a dog trainer’s dogs is that they are pretty well behaved and we didn’t need to worry about them running off to visit with the people or other dogs walking by.

First up is Brit.  I tend to think of Brit as a fairly serious dog but she was nothing but gleeful during our photo session.

Favs 17 Bionic Toys   Part 4 {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

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And then there was Pixel… Oh my.  You can’t help but notice her gorgeous eyes when you meet her, but they are never more expressive than when she is playing.

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Last but not least of Amanda’s dogs that came to “model” is Boone.  He is a very unique dog – in looks and personality.  His quirkiness is what I love most about him though.

Favs 26 Bionic Toys   Part 4 {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

Favs 27 Bionic Toys   Part 4 {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

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I didn’t set out to get any “official” photos of my own dogs but I always bring a toy with us on a walk and seeing as these were just hanging out in the car, I figured I’d bring one of them as our fetch toy.  Coulee didn’t seem to mind.  ;)

Favs 33 Bionic Toys   Part 4 {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

Favs 34 Bionic Toys   Part 4 {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

I got off to a late start with Sadie one night and all we ended up having time for was some silhouettes.  We literally had about 5 minutes before the sun went down so poor Sadie had to go, go, go so we could get some shots.  Thankfully she is a terrier and “go, go, go” is her middle name.

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Sadie 1 Bionic Toys   Part 3 {Lethbridge Pet Photographer}

Sadie 1 2 Bionic Toys   Part 3 {Lethbridge Pet Photographer}

Kaycee and Piper were my dynamic duo… They love to carry toys back together while at daycare and I was really hoping they would do that at the dog park to0.  And they didn’t disappoint, in fact they gave me exactly what I was hoping for!

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Favs 36 Bionic Toys   Part 3 {Lethbridge Pet Photographer}

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The last instalment of Bionic pictures are coming up tomorrow!  You’ll get to meet some of Amanda’s pups as well as my own dog Coulee.

Next up was Catch.  He was such a trooper!  He dealt with a tonne of distractions and still managed to give me some good shots.  He even braved the cold river for me!  I love the way every dog had their own personality and “style”.  I never knew what I was going to get, and every dog reacted to the toys differently.  Some loved the frisbee, others preferred the bone or ball.  Often, once they found their favourite, they wouldn’t play with any of the others.

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Catch 1 Bionic Toys   Part 2 {Lethbridge Pet Photographer}

Bionic had said that they wanted some on green grass. As you can see from all the previous pictures, the grass in the coulees where I like to go have already turned brown so we had to find some places with nice mowed and watered grass.  Izzy and her mom joined me at the park in Sunridge one morning.  It was the perfect place – lots of green space and no people around to distract us.  Izzy was into fetch much, but she was a tugging machine!  And you have to admire her colour coordinated collar – this girl came prepared!

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Then I kidnapped Perkins and took him to Nicholas Sheran… another perfect location for a little discrete, off leash fun.

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Two more days of Bionic pictures to go!  Next up are Kaycee, Piper and Sadie.

If I had to pick my favourite way to earn a living, photographing dogs playing with toys would be near the top of the list.  So when Bionic asked me if I was interested in photographing their toys, I jumped at the chance and frankly went a little overboard.  But I couldn’t seem to stop myself.  I was having way too much fun.

First up was Skorch – the cutest little jack russell.  His mom wasn’t too sure how well he would fetch but we decided to give it a try anyway.  She shouldn’t have worried.  He was awesome.  And he really loved the little bone.  He laid there and chewed on it with no encouragement from us.

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Scorch 1 Bionic Toys {Lethbridge Pet Photographer}

Next, I met with Journey and her dad.  I knew Journey from daycare and was sure she’d be perfect for the job.  She is toy crazy and gorgeous – what more could I ask for?  We met down at Popson in the evening and were able to get a few water pictures (the toys float) as well as some silhouettes too.  I LOVE the way the bone glowed orange in the silhouettes.

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These are just a few of my favourites from my first day of shooting.  I’ll share more with you tomorrow!  Lots more to come.

Lorelei and I met up with Macey, Indie, Sue and Leah for an Ultimate Family Session last week or maybe the week before (I’m starting to lose track of time this summer!).  Lorelei and I have teamed up to give you awesome dog photos AND awesome family pictures.  I focus on the dogs, she focuses on the people and we get a little bit of cross over just for fun.  We’ve done three together so far this summer and each one has been a blast.  I’ll leave Lorelei to showcase her photos (you can check her out on her Facebook page) but here are a few that I took that night.

Macey has been coming to daycare for a few years and I STILL managed to see a side to her I had never seen.  At daycare she is shy, reserved and very sweet.  Out at the park she was wild, playful, toy obsessed and had no time for pets or cuddles.  LOL.

Macey and Indie 1 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}



I’d never met Indie before but she was definitely my kind of girl – BALL OBSESSED.

Macey and Indie 2 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

Macey proved yet again that the Cuz toy is the best thing ever.

Macey and Indie 3 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

Although we couldn’t convince Indie of this. All she wanted was her tennis ball.  Nothing else would do.  I thew her another toy, she caught it and then instantly spat it out as if I’d tried to trick her into eating brussel sprouts or something.  She is a girl that knows what she wants!

Macey and Indie 4 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

I’m used to seeing Macey with one ear up and one ear down but for whatever reason in most of the pictures she had both up all the time!  Was it the excitement?  The wind? The cuz toy?  ;)

Macey and Indie 5 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

And we managed to get some silhouette shots as well.  As always, they turned out to be some of my favourites.

Macey and Indie 6 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

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This was one of the last shots I took of the night and the closest I got to getting an actually “family photo”.  Can you see why it will be nice to have Lorelei’s as well?  LOL

Macey and Indie 9 Macey and Indie {Lethbridge Pet Photography}

Thanks Ladies for a great time and for showing me your walking spot. The girls and I will definitely be checking it out!



I’m behind.  So behind.  In everything.  Photos, paperwork, blogging, housework, daycare maintenance, weeding, etc. etc.  I could go on and on and on and on.  But I won’t.  Instead I’ll show you some pictures that I took back in May.  Yup.  May.  I’ve been sitting on these cuties for like a month because I just haven’t had time to get to them until today.  It was a different session for me – I was on my own in a non-off leash area with dogs off leash, Duncan wouldn’t leave my side and I had to take my favourite lens off my camera.  It was good though. It made me do stuff and get photos I wouldn’t normally have gotten.  And you can’t help but have fun with these two!


Duncan and Russell Duncan and Russell   Lethbridge Pet Photographer

It has to happen at least once a trial I think.  A dog forgets that it is running on a teeter totter and instead of patiently waiting for it to tip, they go flying off the end.  I blogged a different series last year from a trial, but this year the angle I was at allowed me to capture the owner’s expressions – which are just priceless.  :)

Everything is going along great….





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She can see the danger coming and tries to get her to stop…

Series 21 When Good Teeters Go Bad

Horror strikes as she has past the point of no return and she is going to jump off.

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And finally hoping for a safe landing…

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Series 51 When Good Teeters Go Bad

Hunter made a safe landing and carried on like nothing was amiss.  She just gave us all a little scare with her high flying acrobatics.

Excuses, Excuses

June 4, 2012

This weekend Andy (with Lodgepole Photography) and I photographed the AAC AB/NWT Regionals.  It was a weekend filled with fun, fast dogs and we loved every minute of it.  The trial went incredibly smoothly and we were able to get back home to our hotel room every night by around 4:00 to start work on the photos we took.  We still have a tonne more to do, but as I am going through the photos I’m struck by a thought that comes up with every event I photograph.

Every time I photograph an event, I end up with tonnes of great shots of some dogs, and not nearly as many of others.  I wonder if owners notice and if they wonder why this happens. So I thought I’d explain.  It isn’t because I like one dog more than another one, or because I tried harder with one dog over another.  There are a whole lot of reasons why some dogs end up with more photos than others.

Warning – this blog post is purposely filled with not so great photos just to illustrate my points.  I realize that is probably not my best marketing move!  LOL.  Although I’ll crop the first one to make it a better image and while I quite like the last one, it probably isn’t really what an owner is looking for in an agility photo.  The other three are already in the “trash”.

  1. If your dog is small, odds are you won’t have as many pictures.  I like dynamic close-ups of dogs and little dogs don’t fill the frame nearly as much as the big dogs do.  Yes, I can crop the photo to compensate (and I often do), but a cropped photo is never as good as one straight out of the camera. Imagine this same photo with a large golden retriever going through the tire.  The dog would fill the tire and it wouldn’t get lost in image like this adorable papillon does. Small dogs are also harder to focus on (there is less for the camera to find) and handlers tend to run closer to them and often end up blocking the shot with their legs.Reason 1 2 Excuses, Excuses
  2. Dark dogs are harder to photograph.  Not because they are dark, but because lighting conditions are much less forgiving on a dark dog.  Any little shadow can have a huge impact on the image and can take a dark dog and make it black and can take a black dog and make it a faceless blob.  :)  If the dog below was mainly white instead of black, there would still be a shadow on the side of their face, but you’d still be able to see some detail in the shadow.  I like it when photos show the dogs’ eyes and it feels like something is lacking when you can’t see them.  My favourite lighting conditions are either high overcast (like on Saturday), or when the dog is facing directly into the sun so there are no shadows on their face. I try to avoid taking photos when the dog is sideways to the sun like in this photo below, but courses are not set up with the photographer in mind.  Shocking, I know. If I ruled the world…Reason 1 Excuses, Excuses
  3. Sometimes the equipment or handler casts a shadow that hits the dog at just the wrong spot.Reason 1 4 Excuses, Excuses
  4. The camera loves some dogs and struggles to focus on others. I’m not sure if it is the texture, the colouring or both, but the camera can have a hard time with certain dogs.  I struggle with Amanda’s dog Boone for example. It is like he is dressed in camo or something and the camera swears he isn’t there. When he picks up a toy  though, the camera can suddenly find him again.
  5. If you are the first couple of dogs to run, I’m probably not that confident of the course yet and therefore can’t predict where you are going to be and when.  I watch the walk through, but I definitely get better at remembering the course after watching a few dogs run it.  And of course, the littlest dogs often go first, which reduces their photo chances even more!  Those poor small dogs just can’t cut a break.  ;)
  6. Sometimes I miss.  If my timing is off at all, I miss the shot and there are rarely any do-overs in agility.  (I’m probably the only one on the field that likes it when a dog pops out of the weave poles and has to do them again – it gives me another opportunity to take more photos!)  In this photo below, my camera was fast enough that the next frame caught the dog in the middle of the tire, but that doesn’t always work out so nicely.  Occasionally my timing seems to be off for most of the run. I hate it when that happens, but luckily I have more than 1 run over the weekend to get some good pictures.Excuses 1 Excuses, Excuses
  7. If a dog does something unexpected it can throw my rhythm off, just like it can throw off the handler’s rhythm.

Reasons 1 Excuses, Excuses

This isn’t to say we won’t have some great shots of each and every dog from this weekend but just to say that some dogs will have MORE great shots than others.  We will be posting photos in the next week or two.  We both have day jobs and are working in all our spare time to get the images up for you to see.  I’m hoping we’ll have them up on the weekend, but don’t hold me to that.  I do promise to get up a few sneak peaks on the blog this week though and there are already some up on our Facebook page.

Thank you to Flashing Canines for hosting an incredible event.  The volunteers, the judges, the organizers, the dogs and all the participants were awesome!