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Light Shaft

Holy moly – this seemed like an easy task on the surface, but when I went to actually take the images I had some trouble. 🤪 Even though I typically utilize some negative space during a session, it often has color or “artifacts” that don’t necessarily CONTRIBUTE to the frame. So after I went out a couple of times (I captured some lovely images during those sessions, I just didn’t think they’d work well enough for a Negative Space prompt!) I decided to head to this local spot where a light shaft appears at certain times on sunny days. It was my third time shooting here, so I thought I knew exactly what to do to accomplish my vision – which was to let the light and shadow create my positive and negative space around a perfectly framed pooch.


Enter Kenny, and omgeeee what a CUTE little fluffnugget!! 😍 He and his brother Andrew are beyond delightful! I asked their mom what makes them special and this is what she said, “They have huge personalities in a little package! Andrew (blue) is confident and wants to be first even when he has no clue of what we are doing. Kenny (red) is following in his footsteps.” When we arrived, the shaft wasn’t in the right spot (it was too early, so the stripe was more horizontal than the diagonal I desired), so we flitted about using other elements of the surrounding area before focusing on the shaft.


“Light Shaft”:


Relaxed miniature Australian Shepherd illuminated in a diagonal shaft of light

The behind the scenes (BTS) look of how I created it:


Behind the Scenes (BTS) of a dog photography session at Discovery Park, in Parker, Colorado

Andrew was a total ham – doing whatever was asked of him to earn my cookies. And he made it very clear he required prompt payment each time he “performed” by running towards the camera after every pose. 🤣 Kenny is still a youngster at nine months, and he balked a couple of times during the session. The first time was when I was photographing him from above. That posture is very rude and invasive in dog language – a giant eyeball (the lens) staring down at you… that’s confrontational. So I took a few extra minutes and put some yummies on my lens hood, and Kenny ate them off. He learned pretty quickly that big eyeballs that feed you aren’t so bad! 😜 This is what Kenny’s mom said about that experience, “Kenny was a bit uncomfortable with the camera looking down on him, and I loved that you put treats on your expensive camera, just to make my pup more comfortable! 🙂” (Sidenote: dog moms and dads are ALWAYS more worried about my “expensive gear” than I am. Yes, it’s pricey, but I’m totally comfortable handling – and protecting! - it in all sorts of conditions. It’s more likely to be damaged by falling off of my kitchen counter than it is by a dog snuffling it during a session. 😄) The second time Kenny wasn’t a fan was when we asked him to stand on a slippery and slightly sloped plastic bench; that was scary for him and he thought he was going to die. But it was SO apparent he wanted to please his mom, and he pushed through his fear with gentle encouragement, praise, and treats. I want to make it very plain on that point: there was absolutely NO force used, he was never lifted or pressured onto the surface, he was simply reassured and he made his own choices and eventually hoped up there and stayed long enough to capture some images.


Additional (unedited) images of Kenny from the session:


Filmstrip of (unedited) miniature Australian shepherd images at Discovery Park, Parker, Colorado

And because I can’t leave him out since he was such a big part of Kenny’s session, here are (unedited) images of Andrew:


Filmstrip of (unedited) miniature Australian shepherd images at Discovery Park, Parker, Colorado

From Kenny & Andrew’s mom: “It was fun to see all the different areas and poses that were used. It made me very proud of my dogs that they did so well and seemed to enjoy themselves.”


Ginger Wick Photography is an award winning dog photographer specializing in creating beautiful custom artwork of dogs & their people. Based in Parker, CO serving the Denver area.

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