Crufts will soon be upon us and we have a BIG stand booked with a 4 metre wall at the back and I started thinking that’s a lot of white wall to do something with!
Then the epiphany came to me while I was suffering the 4am insomnia that plagues me when I have lots on my mind - How great would it be if it was covered with photographs of customers hounds Wearing Redhound? Ok, lets make it a COMPETITION! And call it Wearing Redhound Photo Competition for Crufts 2018 - who knows it might become an annual event!
Then I ran with it! I asked Kerry from Whippet Snippets Dog Photography if she would judge for us, she said yes ( hooray ) and will be at Crufts to judge your photographic genius on Friday 9th March. We are hoping to cover it with a Facebook Live on the day.
Because there are prizes!
1st Prize - £75 Redhound Voucher
2nd Prize £50 Redhound Voucher
3rd Prize £25 Redhound Voucher
All of which can be put towards getting your hound more attire!
Many of us can take a great shot on our phone or point and shoot camera, but that might be one in 30 that we snap! So, I thought it would be a good idea to get some tips from Kerry on how to take a great photo, and this is what she had to say and the tips below can be used no matter what camera you have!
Light – any tips?
This is one of my favourite subjects! Look where the light is coming from. On a dull day position your hound facing the light (you can test this by holding your hand out in front of you and seeing where the shadow falls on your hand).
If it’s super sunny, one of the easiest ways to get some lovely even light is to find shade, like a tree or a building and position your hound about a foot from where the edge of the light falls (again, facing the light). This way, the sun bounces off the ground and gives you a nice reflection in the eyes.
How do you get your dog to pose?
This is all about training. All of mine know the ‘wait’ command and it’s one of the simplest! Start by getting your dog to sit or stand in front of you, say wait and reward after 2-3 seconds. Do this consistently, upping the amount of time gradually to 10+ seconds. Once they have a solid wait with you in front of them, you can try starting to take one step back, then increase the distance.
Are there any photo printing apps that you would recommend?
This is a tough one. There are plenty of apps out there, which are great for fun snaps, however the quality of them generally won’t stand the test of time, you will also find they won’t check the colours are correct. However, I have used the La La Labs app and loved it! You can print in a square Polaroid style and they come in the cutest little retro box.
If you wanted to print something larger or a special memory of your hound, I would source independent printers near you (not Boots or Snappy Snaps). A lot of them will do online printing.
Any settings on a phone that will help you take a better photo?
Absolutely! A lot of the newer smart phones have portrait mode which is so advanced, I’m addicted. You can select your subject by clicking on the screen, and the phone will guess where the background is and blur it out, giving you the same effect as a lot of the more sophisticated cameras. I know Debbie loves this one!
If you can find a setting on your phone that gives you a grid overlay on the camera, use it! It makes it super easy to compose your images well (no more wonky horizons).
Where to position your hound?
Unless its a close head shot, try to put your hound closer to the bottom of the image, especially if you have a beautiful landscape to include.
Phew! That’s a lot of very useful information and I hope it helps and has got you inspired to get snapping, get printing and get posting!
The boring stuff:
We are asking you to print - yes print - your image or images - you can enter more than one, then send them to us at the address below in the good old fashioned post!
Redhound for Dogs, The Kent Barn, Great Tong Farm, Tong Lane, Headcorn, Kent, TN27 9PP
Images need to be 4" x 6" with your contact details on the reverse of EACH entry.
Entries to reach us by Friday March 2nd.
The entries are already coming in, and the standard is high, but I urge you to have a go, and maybe get an extra copy for yourself to put in a frame instead of it being just stored on your computer, put it somewhere you will see it and enjoy it!
Paws crossed for some good weather so you can get out there and take that winning photo!
PS - I have done a little video on Facebook with all the information on too, if you need to refresh your memory on the details!