Some friends recently asked me to do a quick photo shoot for their trio of adorable Boston terriers. How could I say no? We met up in a local off-leash dog-park which was mostly deserted. The dogs are all exceptionally sweet and would probably love anybody so they quickly warmed up to me. Unfortunately, the weather quickly deteriorated; the wind came up, the temperature dropped, and it started to drizzle. The dogs were definitely not happy. I wasn’t sure I had the shot, so we headed back to their place for a little more camera time.

Once in their natural environment the dogs quickly settled down and, for the most part, seemed quite content to sit and pose for me. It helped that they were enthralled by their two most important people offering a steady supply of turkey and cheese. Lucky dogs!

Fortunately for me, the home had neutral walls which worked as a perfect background. Combined with a quilt thrown over the couch I was able to provide a variety of photos.

I used my Canon 7D fitted with a Sigma 18-250 IS, Sigma 10-20, and Canon 50 1.8 II. For the indoor lighting I used a combination of a Canon 580EXII bounced of the ceiling/rear wall and a YN560 in a 18″ softbox triggered by RF-602 radio triggers. For most of the floor photos I stuck the 580EXII on a stand, raised it to within about a foot of the ceiling, and angled slightly forward. I set it as a slave and used the pop-up flash (at -3 EV) to trigger it in ETTL mode.

I made basic adjustments and crops in Lightroom and converted to black and white in Photoshop CS5 using the built-in B&W adjustment layer along with my usual sharpening/contrast-boost action which I will detail in another post. On a few of them I also created a luminosity mask to pump up 50% grey and brighter in order to add a bit more separation between the dogs and the background.