The Art of Amazing
animal photography beyond perfection
by Paul Croes & Inge Nelis
Animal photographers need a lot more skills than just camera technique and the ability to know what makes a good picture. To compete well in this fascinating field, animal photographers learn all they can about their subjects, so they can be in the perfect position at the perfect time. A pet photography session requires patience – animals rarely pose for the camera! Anyone who has ever tried to take a photo of their pet knows how difficult it can be to get the perfect shot.
Who is Paul Croes?
A short introduction from Paul’s homepage:
For 15 years I was a fashion photographer in Belgium for retail and magazines, this was my first choice to be active in the pro world of photography. In Belgium, the possibilities are not abundant, due to the empty void and unpleasant atmosphere of this in combination with the financial and career possibilities I suffered from a burnout.
At that time, I did a sort of free work shoot with a big white Borzoi, this dog posed in some pictures as a really elegant and beautiful model. In the Belgium fashion world, it is frustrating if you are a perfectionist like me, you do not work with the best models, with the best hairstylist, the best make-up artist, you cannot take pictures like the big names because you do not have the resources.
In dog photography you do not need all that to have a perfect picture, whether the dog is old, or blind or has one leg missing, is too fat or too skinny, every dog is like a top model and does not need haute couture or a famous hairdresser, it is perfect by itself! Because of my experience in fashion, I am glad I can also capture dogs’ owners in a beautiful way.
Year after year, more dogs and owners have found their way into my studio as we have a very different way of working during the shoot. We always start with the dog’s abilities and work step-by-step, taking many breaks…
I always try to search for the beauty in each of the dog models and of course here and there with a bit of fun.
There are no tricks, apart from the fact that we do use snacks and rewards for the dogs. We take enough time and patience for a shoot.
After travelling to the studio and two hours of games and commando in the studio, the dogs are showing certain fatigue, which gives them a whole other expression.
Since 2014 I have worked with a permanent assistant, Inge Nelis, who takes over the lead from the owners and it works very well. It is very important as Inge, my assistant, is very calm and gentle with the animals but also resolute, she gets more out of the dogs than the owners do, that’s because a lot of dogs we get in the studio are rescue dogs and they are not used to getting many commands, so they listen much more to a nice third person in combination with dog snacks or candies.
The photo session is meant to be educational for the dog (especially for scared dogs) I mean we want the dogs to have a good afternoon while it gets more comfortable with new people, new situations and new environments.
With the combination of all those new things, the long trip to the studio and lots of commands the dogs get tired and more comfortable with us and therefore in the third of four hours of the shoot the magical moments start.It is the moment when the dogs can be themselves again. (Paul Croes homepage)
You may have heard the saying “animals are people too.” When it comes to photography, that statement is very true!
animal portraits can be truly amazing
Eyes are where human beings tend to make the most connection with another living creature…
Animal photography is a favourite pastime of many photographers, both amateur and professional …
The three most important words that govern animal photography are patience, patience and patience. Photography is like fishing in this regard. You often have to wait a long time in the right place to catch the best ones.
Dog photography, cat photography and other animal photography is Paul’s speciality and his images appear in published form all over the world.
If you’re lucky enough to share your home with a dog or cat, no doubt you’ve turned your camera in their direction many times to get that one perfect shot photo…
How can I get animals to sit still for photographs?
Ever since I was young I have had a passion for photography and also I have always had a profound love of animals…
Currently, Paul & Inge travel a lot to other countries for dog shootings, in every country they have an organizer who invites them, makes the planning and does the communication with the models before the shooting.
Paul said… “Everywhere we go, people are so nice, it is like a dream come true. I could not wish for more, well, yeah, maybe someday a lovely coffee table book with my favourite pictures ..”
It’s not only dogs that Paul puts into the right spotlight …
….. some more awesome shots
amazing animal photography at its very best
…. a few more
All images copyright ©Paul Croes & Inge Nelis
Animal photography requires skills of a photographer
It wasn’t easy for me to choose the photos for this article, as with a portfolio that is simply brimming over with astounding visual feats of this incredibly creative photographer!
Some of the things that make an exceptional animal photographer are understanding the animals and being able to anticipate their actions and reactions.
I could go on and on and on …. if you are as fascinated as me about Paul’s outstanding works of art, please go to Paul & Inge’s Behind Eyes there you can find information about their home studio and travel shootings as well as the place where you can order their fine work of art.
You can purchase all photos as art prints!
“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened”
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated”
I hope, you’ve enjoyed these amazing works of art as much as I did.
Thank you so much, Paul & Inge, for the courtesy of giving me permission to use and publish your images!
Your work is AMAZING! Loved the shots of flying ears and lushes coats!
I love, love, love each of these photos! What a great eye to find the personality of each of these pets.
So interesting! And great photos. (Though I am concerned about that dog that’s eating a baby’s foot!)
Hahaha, I don’t think the dog is really eating that baby’s foot, tho. It’s only nibbling 🙂 LOL
These are indeed amazing shots and I’m not even into dogs very much!!
Animals are incredible! These photos are AMAZING!!!
I have a kitty sitting on my lap as I read this, and she’s probably wondering why I don’t take photos of her and make her an internet star! 🙂
You probably should, do you know how attractive kitty posts and images are? Puppies also, but they come second. Think of Grumpy Cat! 😉
I LOVE these images! I Totally need to see more cute animals every blog post! lol 🙂
Wonderful pictures – thank you 🙂
These are so beautiful! I have a Bobtail and a Cocker Spaniel so seeing these pictures are so breathtaking! Danke 🙂
Wow, these are so amazing. 🙂
Thank you , Christine 🙂 agree , Paul is amazing !
These are amazing! Love them so much!
Thanks a lot for coming over , Julie
Each photo is more gorgeous than the last.
Thank you , Anna . Lovely comment !
sharing this on pet related social media groups!
Awww, thank you Gav <3
Wow. These photos are amazing. I try so hard to get pictures of my dog but he never cooperates. I find it so much easier to just photograph my children!
Hahaha , yeah it’s not easy to get a perfect animal shoot , tell me about ! Thank you Kristen for visiting and your kind comment .
Wow! That’s the most amazing animal photography I’ve seen by far. IMO, each picture has its meaning and expression. I love it! Thanks for sharing.
Amazing article! I love animal and nature photos so much so this was quite the perfect read.
Thank you Johanna , very kind !
Great photo captures. I am such a sucker for animals. Thanks a ton for sharing 😉
Thanks a ton for visiting my site 🙂
Omg! I did not expected to see all of these amazing photos.This post was from far the best thing I have seen today. To create such beautiful images you need to have a special connection with the animals…. and yes these photos can be perfect as a print for on the wall at home or office or anywhere else. Artistic, funny and sweet !
Thanks a lot , Elena !
These pictures are gorgeous! I feel like hugging each one of these dogs. Brilliant photography!
These are all so freaking adorable! I love that you make it a fun experience for the pet, it makes the photos great.
Oh my goodness. All this is absolutely inspiring! I could literally fawn over all these photos all day long. I would love to bring my mom’s dog Kael to them. He’s incredibly vain, sure they would conjure magic with him. Half collie , half wolf.
🙂 Thanks Keiayra , I am glad you like these amazing photos ! Thanks for visiting my site !
The pictures are beautiful, they look so professional and I have never seen a better animal photography elsewhere!
Fatima | http://www.blogsbyfa.com
Thanks Fatima , I am sure Paul will be delighted about your lovely compliment ! I agree by the way , haven’t seen a better animal photographer either 🙂
This is the first time I am seeing animals like this,and it looks startling!! Great photographs.
Thanks for visiting Pranshu !
They all look adorable especially the puppies.
As much as I love cats, I also love dogs!! Great photos indeed!!
My eldest would be happy to see the first picture with the dog on the piano. 🙂 He loves to play the piano. I’m sure he’ll have a good laugh when he sees it. 🙂
🙂 thanks for visiting Teresa !
My little Lana is the one with the piano. It was so nice to be at the studio with Paul and Inge. Great people who do amazing work. Nice article.
Oooh , how nice Joyce ! Thank you , yes I do agree . I don’t know Paul & Inge in person , but absolutely yes,they do a fantastic job !!! I am following his great photo portfolio for years already . Thanks again for your nice comment . A high paw to Lana <3
I am so in love with those pictures, literally all of them. The poodles are my favorite, they are sooo cute. Bobby and Pascha would be so cute together in a picture if they would sit still like that.
🙂 Thanks Sabine for coming over ! I think , Paul & Inge would know how to make Bobby and Pascha sit still . Amazing , isn’t it ?!
Thanks for reading and commenting on the post , Alison !
Hahaha , totally understand , what you’re saying . Got nearly 300 pics of my dog on my mobile only ! plus the videos etc . Yes , Paul is a great talent , have you been on his website to check for more ? AMAZING photos , my friend uses him for her dogs . She has got some stunning photos aand prints ! Thank you for visiting my site !
These are beyond brilliant! Thanks for sharing.
Wow! Stunning photos! Thanks for the story.
Those pictures are so beauty, there’s a lot of patience required. Thanks for sharing
Awesome pics!!! Being a lover of animals…i appreciate the beauty in these pics..kudos
Gorgeous pictures! I am am amateur photographer and I sometimes practice on my cats. I know how hard it is to catch a good picture as they never stay still.
Aren’t they just amazing , Joanna . Thank you for your kind comment .
this is a great article , wonderbar …… thanks for it
Thank you a lot , easy with these amazing photos and gorgeous pets ! Thanks for reading .
Thank you , very much appreciated !