The easy answer is empathically YES! And it doesn't matter if you're wearing clothes or accessories when you're striking a Puggie pose either, cause a Pug Super Model can look just as adorable naked tilting their head, dropping their ears back a little and widening their big Puggie eyes .. you know the look I'm talking about.
The not so easy answer is, not every Puggie wants to be a Pug Super Model, which means no matter how much fun they're having at a photo shoot, they won't agree to being dressed or they won't agree to sitting long enough for clear photos to be taken of them ... I mean who can blame them with sooo much going on!
What I have found is that most Puggies love getting their photo taken, because they know that a photo means praise and treaties at the end (minimum) ... not to mention being the centre of attention for 5-10 minutes at a time!
Having said that, we have figured out the hard way that each Puggie needs to get used to the process in their own time, and the more time you invest in making them feel comfortable, the more enjoyable it will be for everyone AND you get the best pictures. We'll cover:
- the impawtance of introductions
- why taking it slowly helps get your Puggie comfortable
- knowing when to stop and walk away
- why capturing your Puggies natural expression will give you the best photos
- why practicing helps
Introductions - now if you're taking the photo's yourself then your Puggie is already comfortable with you, and no doubt used to you whipping out your phone at random times capturing the beautiful memories that you'll be enjoying for years to come.However, if you've decided to get professional photos of your Puggie done or they become a Pug Parties Super Model (for example), then it is really impawtant that your Puggie meets the Photographer and gets the opportunity to get to know them and the studio first.
We find that giving a Puggie an opportunity to have a good sniff around the place, and approach the Photographer in their own time works really well - the Puggie feels like they're in charge of the situation, they feel like they have time to understand their surroundings and have an ability to make a decision if they want to stay or not.
If a Puggie refuses to leave their Hooman's side we know that the session is over - a Puggies happiness is more impawtant than taking photos and if their Hooman wants to try again later, we want their experience with us to be positive.
|Little bits at a time - sometimes getting to the photo shoot, then getting dressed, then walking into the studio with the lights and the Photographer, then seeing the flash of the camera can be a little too much all in one hit for a first time Super Model.|
So we tend to take it a little bit at a time to start with. First they'll come in and play with the other Puggies at the shoot, run around and check out the waiting area and get as many pats as they can from the other Hooman's ... possibly sneak some treaties when their Hooman is not watching.
Then we'll dress them in their first outfit, and let them go back to playing and checking things out. Only after we can see that they're having fun and not hiding behind their Hooman do we call them into the studio (with their Hooman) to have their photo taken ... with a few more treaties strategically placed in the area we need them to sit or lay down on so they associate that spot with something wonderful.
We're not joking when we say that our Super Models don't pose for anything less than 10,000 treaties a session LOL!
This whole process might take 10 minutes or it might take 30 minutes; the impawtant thing is allowing the Puggie the opportunity to take it all in, in their own time so when we ask them into the Studio to take photos the Puggie is having so much fun that they want to keep going.
Know when to walk away - Even after all our careful preparation and treatie giving sometimes its just not our day to get photos. Typically a Puggie will jump off the lounge, dip their head or just plain turn their back to you - all signs that they're not interested in getting their photo taken today or that they've had enough of photos if they've already had one or two rounds taken. Sometimes a Puggie might be making a ploy for more treaties, but generally we know our Super Models well enough to know that they're just not feelin' this part of the game today and we give them a kiss and send them back out to play.
Typically we plan 2-3 outfits per Pug Super Model in a photo session - some will do less, others more and all determined on the day. Unlike Hooman photoshoots where Models will go through multiple outfits in a session, we find that on average a Pug will do a maximum of 3 outfits over about 2 hours - there is more playing than there is "working" for our Super Models and that's exactly how we like it!
We know that it should go without saying, but we're going to say it anyway; forcing your Pug to do something they don't want to do is futile, not to mention mean. We have heard of stories over the years of Pugs/dogs being drugged or forced to pose for photos and it is not something we condone or practice ourselves - ask any of our Pug Super Model Pawrents - we value our Puggies and their happiness above everything else, including getting the pawfect photo!
Smiling is not a given, natural is best - I love seeing Rosie and Charles smiling at me with their beautiful eyes and winkles looking up at me hoping for one more treat. But the simple fact is that Pugs don't smile all the time. They have the most expressive faces and they use them all to very good effective. We prefer to show photos on our website and social media accounts that show every expression a Puggie has, including the grumpy ones.
Charles is a naturally grumpy old man and most of his photos are of him looking like a 'grumpy old man', whereas Rosie is inquisitive and will usually wear a serious "I'm listening" face or a head tilt that says in exasperation "WHAT are you talking about Mum?". There is nothing wrong with either expression and both should be celebrated as much as a smiling face is.
Get to know your Puggies expressions and immortalise them in film, you'll be happy you did when you're remembering them and their pawsonailty.
Practice makes Pawfect - the more your Puggie sees a camera/phone and associates it with a bit of fun they'll begin to forget it's there when you're trying to get action shots, and if you're looking to get them to sit still long enough to get a non-blurry one they'll know that camera/phone out and the 'sit' command = sit still, look gorgeous and there will be a treatie/praise at the end.
In the end, the most impawtant thing to remember is that any Puggie can be a Super Model, professional or amateur, and as long as they think it's a fun game that they get to play and stop when they've had enough, you'll get the best photos you could have ever imagined.
We'd love to see your Pug Super Model photos, the good and the not so good, because we understand how hard it is to get a good one every time and we'd love to see them anyway! Tell us about their pose and their expression, what was happening when you took the photo, because sometimes the story behind the photo is better than the photo itself!
Until next time Puggies, have a pawsome week and Hooman's be generous with the snackies.
From Donna, Charles and Rosie
Founder of Pug Parties and Pug Supermodels
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Other articles in the Pug Community series:
PUG-PAWRENTING CONFESSION: I wasn't always a Crazy Pug-Lady. Read it HERE
PUG PAWRENTING CONFESSION: I lost my Pug at Play Group. Read it HERE
PUG-PAWRENTING; the emotional roller coaster that is Pug ownership. Read it HERE
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