Having not learned my lesson with the horses I decided to up my game and this time try a photograph including not one but two dogs. The vision for this one was a very highly stylised almost Chanel like photo of Carys with her two dogs. I’ve put the photo up on the blog before but here it is again along with a couple of others we snagged to jog your memory.

Well if you want to know some of the secret sauce which went into this photo hit the read more link…

So this was actually the second attempt at this photo. We had originally intended to shoot it after the horse photo. However as soon as we finished with the horse and Carys went in for make-up the heavens decided to open. With no sun in sight we opted to leave it for a couple of weeks and go for a reshoot.

This time around we were seriously lucky with the weather. While it had rained in the morning the wind was blowing hard and any rain showers quickly passed. We ended up with some really nice cumulous, however it was moving quickly switching us from hard sunlight to shade in the blink of an eye. I had to consider this while setting up the lights but we’ll come to that in a bit.

Now posing dogs. How on earth do you pose dogs? In hindsight I’d have loved to have them sitting down at Carys’ side looking out into the distance. However in the absence of a skilled dog whisperer we had to settle for them standing and looking out. (Yeah OK, I’ll admit we took about 60 photos here and only two have the dogs looking in the right place!) We used all sorts of toys, shouts, screams, incantations to make them look in the right direction but hell, they just didn’t like me.

OK so now onto the techie details:

Main Light:
Elinchrom Ranger cranked up to 1200W/S into a small Chimera soft box up high above Carys. This was on full blast in an attempt to allow me to underexpose the sun as far as possible and saturate the sky.

SB900 on the floor in front of me. This was mainly to add a little pop to the dogs.

Left Rim:
Ranger Quadra with an 18cm reflector pumped full blast into the camera left side of Carys. I really had to push this one in an attempt to mimic the sun on the right.

Right Rim:
Mainly the sun. However I did have a couple of SB’s as well for the times the sun went behind the cloud. This allowed me to continue taking pictures and getting the same effect regardless of the current cloud state.

Here I just asked Carys to pop her hip to give her shape then give me the distant stare along with the dogs. I also got her to hold her arms out from her body just a little in order to accentuate her figure.

OK so I’m no make-up artist. I’m told though that this was the ‘smokey’ look though (whatever that means 😉 )

This is mainly just aperture again. I darkened and saturated the sky to give it that lovely colour. I also added a bit to the vibrancy of the entire photo.

So there you go, that’s the secrets once more. If you have any more questions don’t hesitate to hit me up in the comments.

More adventures (and techie posts) soon.


  1. Thanks for the info! I’m doing something similar next week with wolves and was just starting to think of setups. This one would work great. Have a great weekend man.

  2. Love this series! You do need to find yourself a ‘crazy dog’ icon. LOL!

  3. Great photograph. Love the concept. Thanks for the explanation.

  4. Love the series! Dogs can be tricky but looks like you managed! Love the layout and the model!

  5. Amazing! Love the styling of these photos.

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