Do you have a hobby, activity, or a career that just takes your mind off all the stuff going on in your life and gives your brain a break and you just blend in with time for hours-on-end. Well, that’s me when it comes to pet photography…that’s all I can do is focus (ha!) on that one thing!
So, when I had a chance last March to spend four days at a dog photography workshop in the beautiful mountains of South Lake Tahoe while breathing in the fresh, pine-filled air, getting down low in the dirt, sand, and snow, it was a no-brainer…sign me up!! Ahhhh, four days of non-stop photography at a workshop called “Houndvison, a dog photography workshop for wild hearts.”
Well, let me tell you, my nickname in college was “Grandma,” so I have never been the super crazy, wild type. But I knew I would be just fine with a bunch of pet photographers in a beautiful house near the lake that fits 15 people, a private chef, and my own room. Yeah, that’s my kind of “wild”!
And to top it off, this wild-in a good way-workshop was lead by three rockstars of the pet photography world; Kaylee Greer and Sam Haddix of Dog Breath Photography and Nicole Begley of Nicole Begley Photography and Hair of the Dog Academy.
First-Class Pet Photography Education Experience
Each day, breakfast was served by the private chef (so ahhhhmazing!) at the house, followed by “classroom” time (in comfy recliners). Topics covered were editing, creativity, pricing, marketing, and motivation, and we had photo critiques from the prior day’s photo session. Having my photos critiqued by three rockstar photographers and student peers is not easy! But it is so necessary to become a better photographer and find one’s style. Sometimes there are things you just can’t see (good and not so good) in your own photo.
The pet photography community is so supportive. We all know that there are plenty of dogs for everyone to photograph!
Everything was so perfectly organized! Early evening each day we were met with amazing dog models at a different location. (They got paid with beautiful digital files that literally would cost thousands of dollars.)
Best Dog Photography Workshop
The first day we photographed at Sand Harbor Beach. Oh, the beautiful blue water, lots of big rocks, sand, and the mountains in the background. And there was a short hike up higher to beautiful views of the lake. Any direction was a stunning shot…to tell the truth, at a place like this, I get a little overwhelmed about where to start. Then I get my thoughts together, and the time melts away.
The second day we were at Kiva Beach. The walk into the beach there was more of a forest area that we shot at first, then headed to a big beach area for the dogs to run around. The dogs I photographed weren’t too interested in the water!
The third day was at the picturesque Emerald Bay. There was still lots of snow, but that didn’t stop any of us from getting some really beautiful shots of the dogs with the lake and mountains in the background.
I was so fortunate to be a part of this first-class educational experience. It flew by so fast, as I was so focused on soaking up all the creativity, beauty, and new friendships that were surrounding me!
Why Education is so Important to This Pet Photographer
A substantial part of my daily, weekly, and monthly schedule includes education. Whether it’s a 20-minute podcast or a 4-day out-of-town photography workshop, it’s an important part of my life that I truly look forward to and keeps my life interesting. Not only do I hope to continually hone my craft, but I look forward to bringing my new knowledge to the next pet photography session. If you’re thinking about scheduling a session with me, please send me a message here. I look forward to speaking with you!