Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Still Life With Dogs. OK, Not So Still.

SUMMARY: It's not the camera that's the challenge.

We just want a slightly silly shot of the 3 of us for facebook. ("We" loosely interpeted to mean "human residents of Taj MuttHall".) Can't have the same profile photo for too long!

The cheap snapshot camera goes onto the laundry hamper and we do a test shot for angle and height. Tika starts rearranging the bedding for us.


Too low, so we shim up the camera a little bit. Set up the dogs, turn on the camera's timer (TMH doesn't have a remote control), and leap into position.


Oh, man, I almost had it perfect on the first shot! Except (1) just before the timer went off, Boost shifted to her left, so she's cut off, although she's looking at the camera, (2) I just look way too cheery compared to the dogs, (3) I kinda thought it would be fun to have the dragon/heart art hovering over our heads, and here it's kind of cut off, and (4) why is it so dark?. (OK, "almost perfect" by some people's definition maybe isn't so picky.)

Next try--

dagnabbit, kinda cute--both dogs are still looking at the camera--but how did the camera shim itself too high this time, cutting off my hands, I thought I put it back in the exact same way? And Boost refused to put her paws over the edge of the bed this time. Next try--


OK, Boost is getting bored or stressed and wants to leave, and I'm trying to talk her out of it. Great. But the framing's just about perfect if I can convince the beasts to just stay there while I'm leaping in and out of position to check and reset the camera. Next try--

OK, Boost's not totally looking at the camera, but I've got more important things to do and this'll have to suffice. Except that, being lazy, I left the pink curtains closed so everything has a pinkish tinge, and it's still a little on the dark side. So, into photoshop we go--

Took out the pink nicely. Better. But Tika's fur should be white and I could swear that it has a yellow cast. More photoshopping--


Indeed it sure did! To my eye, this looks closest to the "natural" colors of the room and its inhabitants. It might look blue to you compared to the previous one--that's because the previous one is so yellow! See, taking a quick snapshot just doesn't work for me any more. It's gotten so complicated.

How did I get the dogs to look at the camera? Foul trickery--I just pointed at the camera right before the timer went off, when it was making little beeping sounds, and said "what's that?" Bing!, instant attention. In other situations, I might have used food and done the same thing.

For another self-portrait-with-dogs adventure, read this old post.

1 comment:

  1. First thing I wondered is how you got the pups to look at the camera. nice job!!! now that I finally found the remote for my little digital job, I may have to try.

    I see a photog blog in your future :)

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