PET REFERENCE PHOTOS
How to Get the Best Portrait
All pets are cute but as I can’t meet your little pals face-to-face, the photos you supply are the best way to capture their details and character in thread.
You can sent through a couple photos or a whole bunch, but what I need the most is at least one really great photo to draw the majority of the portrait from. Below is a quick guide to getting the best photos, featuring my favourite models and studio assistants, Scraps and Lil Cat.
The main things to consider when selecting photos are: does this capture my pet accurately, is there enough detail and will their pose translate well into a hoop?
Lighting and Detail
This is a big one! We want bright photos, in natural lighting with no filters to get the most detail and the most accurate colour of your pet. Dark photos tend to have less detail making it harder to see fur patterns and face shape.
We also want shots that are relatively close to your pet’s face. Too far away can mean the details get blurry and I have to do a lot more guess work.
The first two photos below show great natural lighting and both animal's fur patterns and colours realistically.
The second two would be harder to work with. Although the lower left is a good pose, the eye colour is hard to tell. We could still use this photo in conjunction with another for the eye detail. The last photo is very cute but too far away for good detail.
The way your pet is posed in the photo is also really important to make a great portrait. Consider how the angle of their face will be captured. Dogs look great when they are stitched from a side angle or with their face slightly tilted at a 3/4th’s angle. Their snouts can easily look too long or too short. Cats look great straight on looking up so their eyes are nice and wide.
Whichever way you wish to pose your pet, a good idea is to get down to their level to take the photo. Their pose and expression can change the mood of a portrait so try and think about how you want them to come across in the final piece - goofy? cute? noble? It’s all possible through pose.
The first three photos are great for portraits. They are either looking straight at the camera or have an upwards gaze. The last three are examples of difficult poses either with a downward gaze or awkward snout angles.
Does your cat have a little tongue that hangs out or does your dog have only one ear? Make sure if there is a really important detail that is unique to your pet that you point it out to me and supply a good example.
I can use more than one photo to create a portrait - if you have a photo that is a great pose with lots of fur detail but it doesn’t quite capture your cat’s green eyes, send through another with the eyes.