Get ready for your photoshoot with your dog

German Shepherd dogs animal only photoshoot in Hersham Surrey

Lots of clients ask me how to get ready for their photoshoot. Everybody’s shoot is as individual as the person who has booked it. However, there are a few basic things you can do to make sure you get the best from your session.

Getting your dog ready

To groom or not to groom

While not as lengthy a process as getting a horse ready (usually…) getting your dog prepared for a shoot is still something to consider. Firstly if your dog is clipped, you should get them booked in with a groomer. Chat to your groomer about the shoot and discuss when the shoot is and how you want the clip to look. Even if your dog isn’t clipped a bath and nail trim the night before would be a good idea.

Collars and leads

Quite often, clients will but a new collar and lead for the shoot, and let’s face it, who needs an excuse these days there are so many fab products around! Don’t forget coats as well, as we are heading into winter dog coats can look fab in a photo.

Keeping your dog happy

When I do a dog shoot quite often, I’ll meet up at your home first. I like to spend a little while meeting and greeting you and your dog and allow the initial excitement of a new person around to die down a little before we start, usually we will go out for a walk. You know your dog better than anybody, so you will know whether it’s best to take them for a walk before I turn up, or if we wait until the actual session before taking him out. I aim to get a level of alertness rather than so excited he’s going to disappear for half an hour or dragging him out of the door when he just fancies curling up in bed.

 Let’s not forget about you!

People tend to forget about themselves when they are thinking about their pet. You are just as important to me as your animal. Give yourself time to get ready. You might not want to be in all the shots; however, nothing makes me happier than capturing that relationship between a human and their beloved pet.

If you’re thinking of getting your hair done, get yourself booked in before our shoot. Alternatively, I have a lovely hair and makeup artist who I can arrange to come on the shoot, she’s fantastic, and I work with her a lot. Let me know if you’re interested in using her talents. If, like so many of my clients before a shoot, you don’t think you like having your photo taken. I promise you will be happy with having it taken afterwards! Having Jojo work her magic on you can really increase your confidence which always shows in a photograph.

What to wear

I suggest up to three outfit changes on a two-hour shoot which gives us lots of variety to choose from. When selecting outfits, it’s essential to feel comfortable and confident. I love it when people dress up for a session; however, the most important person is you. This is your photoshoot, and you are the one who will be looking at these photographs in years to come. If casual and low key is what you want, then that’s right for our session. If you’re more of a dress-up lady (or gentleman!), I have an amazing dress hire company called Complete Costumes who give all my clients a 10% discount on any of their fantastic period costumes.


If you’d like inspiration head on over to my Pinterest boards, there are lots of suggestions not only for what to wear but accessories, locations etc.. If you’ve got your own ideas on Pinterest, please feel free to share them with me before our shoot. Of course, you can always go and have a look at my dog gallery to see what I’ve done before

Beautifully familiar

Locations, I always feel it’s best to go with somewhere both you and your dog know, a favourite walk or park. When you are getting ready for your photoshoot, do think about where on your walk you perhaps like to sit for a while or what the scenery is like. Is it covered and wooded or open and sunny? What is the view like? Can you let your dog off the lead? Is it quiet or busy when we are planning to do our photoshoot? Like I ask of horse owners, have your shoot in mind next time you go there. If you’re really stuck or relatively new to the area, let me know and I will work out possible locations with you.

To get the ever-popular black background shots, I just need a shed or garage doorway (it’s so much easier with dogs than horses!). We can usually do this at your home, let me know if not. I’m very adaptable and can always find a spot to do these shots. I’d also suggest bringing some favourite toys and some treats with us for getting your dog to fetch and generally run around having fun.

Got all that? I know it’s a lot to take in. If you’ve any questions or suggestions, please drop me a line I love chatting about upcoming photoshoots and get very excited planning outfits, locations etc…

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