Agility shoot has mud, sun and speed!

On arrival I heard dogs being happy! Great Start!

 I looked for an area that I thought would bring best results and a more balanced strategy.  But this was where the fun started – 4 dogs running around waiting to be freed!  I like to take some time with owners and the dogs to work out where I need to be, find out what the dogs are likely to do, while understanding what the client wants.  Never ever assume anything, always ask.  This to me is common courtesy!


 It is a common misconception that a bright sunny day with little cloud is a ‘great day for agility photography’.  For me personally, I want to turn up to an event/shoot where the sun is not shining so much!  Ideal conditions would be a bright dry day with a layer of thin high cloud to give very diffuse lighting – lovely!  This definitely was not the case on this day, the sun was bright with thick cloud passing over it intermittently, casting shadows and constantly changing the lighting I was working with.  Check out the video showing off the start of this particular shoot;




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This shoot was one of the most challenging I’ve had as a photographer, but also the most enjoyable!  The speed, mud, different dogs, working with the owner, the obstacles, backdrops and the jolly sun! Having challenges though is good.  My aim is to produce images that show the dogs at their best – like the canine athletes they are.  They don’t care about their surroundings or the weather conditions! You might be surprised at just how much there is to consider in getting the best images.

Down to business – time to take photographs.

I like to get down to the dog’s level and engage with my subject.  Generally I’ll sit on the ground, maybe even lie down.  Here’s a hint; Check the floor!  I will track the dog through the camera viewfinder as it makes it’s run and prepare to press the shutter at my pre-chosen spot on the next run, or the one after that!  I am always watching the dog and ready for the unexpected – perhaps a moment of dog comedy or a glance to his/her handler.

I do try to include the handler in some images, there will often be precious moments of interaction – maybe it will occur when they are setting up for their run or perhaps it will be a show of joy at the finish line, but I will always seek advice or permission from the person.  Even in the presence of some occasional reluctance, in general I believe that people/handlers like a good ‘team’ image!




I love the connection pet owners have through the work they do with their beloved animals, so please share with me your favourite stories.  If you want to have your pet photographed in movement please feel free to contact me on