The evolution of my animal photography skillz

by janet on March 1st, 2009

Ladies and gentlemen, meet our darling hammie CHEETO! We have had her for a looong time but I never could get an MTFB-worthy picture of her, for two reasons. (1) Hammies are nocturnal; hard to get good light for pictures; and (2) I suuuuck at taking pictures of animals (this includes humans).

Entrees and appetizers sit STILL. They don’t wiggle or careen or blink.

Witness the evolution of my skills, from beginning (horrid) to end (mildly out of focus but passable):

This clearly belongs in the “horrid” category. There actually is an animal pictured above (don’t get distracted by Tinx’s nice rack). It’s a papillon puppy. But she’s squiggling so violently that with the no-flash photography she looks like a dementor on a foggy day.

When I showed this picture to some of my friends, they were horrified. “WHY WOULD YOU TAKE PHOTOS OF DEAD SEALS?!??” Epic fail. They are actually elephant seals, and they’re just lounging around, for god’s sake. Anyway, the sky looks pretty in this photo (note: probably because skies don’t move) but the things on the beach look like gray poos.

Apparently I have a more luck with my freaking iPhone than with my nice camera. This photo was aided by the fact that this lil’ girl was the chillest puppy ever. Her owner was three thousand years old, so maybe that’s why.

Hmmm. Ok. I’m starting to understand that lethargy is the key to good animal photography. (Except in the case of seals, which apparently swing too far in that direction.) Above is Emry’s dog, getting some coolness off the floor on a hot day. Good, good. We’re getting closer to “awww” territory now.

One lucky night, I got home to realize that Cheeto was sitting IN HER FOOD BOWL. Resisting the urge to chide her for being rude, I instead took the opportunity to snap some photos. She’s in focus, yay, but…night-time-orangeness, not to mention…a FINGER in the photo? That’s such a cliche bad photographer move lol!

OK, try 2, without getting my left pointer in the frame. Too late, too late. See her little paw sticking out of the food dish? This picture is mid-ENH! and she’s moving already. Bah.

FINALLY! A semi-blurry but still somewhat acceptable shot! This and the one at the top are culminations of several strategies: (1) Humans tend to settle down when they eat, so I gave her a cutie to nom on.

[Digression: When I posted these pictures up on bookface, the following ensued:

Monican at 11:47am February 25
Misleading: I thought your hamster was named Cutie and it's eating a cheeto. But at closer inspection, it's the other way around.

Janet at 11:56am February 25
lol. She's called Cheeto because she's orange. But then again, so is a Cutie. Misleading all around.]

(2) I woke her up in the daytime, which meant good light. (3) It also meant she was groggy and not wiggly. (4) She has a new pink cage (clashy cute!) which is smaller – easier to pin her down.

Now that I’ve gotten some chops, I will now really get to work on my “Dogs That Should Have Been Named Oreo” photo essay.

5 Responses to “The evolution of my animal photography skillz”

  1. Shirubia says:

    hahahaha ‘gray poo’

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