murdock ~ {Hamilton, Ontario pet photographer}

if you follow scruffy dog on facebook, you’ll have already seen a couple of sneak peeks of this fun little dude.

one look at this boy’s goofy mug and i’m sure you’ll have no problem imagining the blast we had during our three-hour shoot.

he is such a character …

like a lot of SDP clients, he and his sister came here for their shoot because of the locations we have at our disposal.  the red caboose is always highly requested …

from there, it was a scenic drive to a favorite swimming hole in the area, since i was told these two love water.  mom Kelly wasn’t wrong on that count!

both love water and love fetching …

i couldn’t believe this boy’s power in the water.  he’s such an amazingly strong swimmer.

did i mention how much fun this little dude is?

not to mention a real poser.

we had lots of fun in the nearby field …

but i had yet one more location in mind for these two gorgeous dogs (and don’t worry, you’ll meet Mabel in her own blog entry soon!) … yup, a local wheatfield I’ve been keeping my eye on.

of course, with the course stubble, i had no intention of having Murdock run through the field, but there was no stopping this little firecracker …

and i mentioned his love for fetching?  Murdock seems to be willing to fetch just about anything, even old, beaten and crushed corn stalks …

but if you really want to get this boy’s eyeballs popping, you need to bring a Cuz ball out of the camera bag!

thanks, Murdock, for such an awesome and fun shoot.  and thanks, Kelly, for bringing your kids here for their session as we were able to find some great locations for them.  i’m just about to start working on your 10×10 Signature album and all the rest of your prints and products, and so look forward to seeing everything when it’s done.

and if you haven’t gotten your fill of this handsome boy, fear not.  after i post his sister’s blog entry, i’ve got a number of images i want to share with you all featuring the two of them.  stay tuned!  and if you don’t already subscribe to the blog in order to be notified of all the latest posts, you can do so by scrolling to the bottom of the blog.  you can subscribe by RSS feed or directly via email.

have a great weekend, everyone!


Rochelle - I love the way you capture Murdock’s personality. He sure has a great eye contact and a great harness! So who makes that harness? I would like to get one for my special companion.

Jackie - oh my gosh, this little guy has me busting a gut, great shoot Illona, you sure did capture his personality!

Holly Garner-Jackson - Amazing as usual! You and Murdock made me smile!!

Meghan Grace - Isn’t he fabulous? Love the shots with the caboose!

Tami - You had me at the first picture, I LOVE BOSTONS!!! Can’t wait for my shoot with you in October.

illona - Rachel, i’m asked this question all the time. when it comes to crop fields (or any property) i always ask permission when it’s possible. quite often it’s rented land, and the landowner or crop owner cannot be located. regardless, if the property is fenced, even a little, i don’t violate that. if it’s not fenced, and it’s a standing wheat field, what you probably can’t tell from my photos is that i’m not actually in the field, and 90% of the time, neither is the dog. we’re simply using it as a backdrop … at worst, the dog is standing within the first foot of wheat and no damage is done.

with this cut field, there is nothing to damage … still, we stayed near the edge … there is no fence, but also, no nearby home to ask permission from. in this type of situation, we treat the property with the utmost respect and leave it as we found it.

but in most cases, i have gained permission.

illona - Lisa, whether on the blog or facebook or via emails, it seems that the #1 question is lenses … at least, this week it is. i’ve had 8 queries specifically about lenses. all i can say is that i carry several lenses during every shoot, and use whatever lens gets the job done. each situation calls for a different kind of lens … more important, and what a lot of people don’t seem to realize, is that what works for one photographer doesn’t necessarily work for another, especially when it comes to pet photography. choosing your lenses has to do as much with quality as it does with the type of shots you’re after (wide angle, action, shallow dof), and just as much about the kind of energy YOU bring to a shoot. how your energy affects your model will also dictate the lens you need, because your energy will be what determines if you’re shooting 3′ away, 6′ away, 10′ away or even farther.

you can check out this blog entry if you’re interested in a more in-depth look at what goes into making decisions about lenses:

Rachel - I always wonder… you take these beautiful photos in wheat fields that I am so envious of… but doesn’t this property belong to someone? Especially the wheat fields that haven’t been cut yet and are being grown likely for a profit for someone to cut and sell? I’m just curious. Do you ask the owners for permission? I’m always scared to ask, and I dare not trample on someone’s property without permission, so I feel like I miss out on some great shooting locations…. just wondering what your tactics are 🙂

michelle bradshaw - Goodness, he’s a doll!! I showed the girls at work the “cuz” shot, the laughter echoed thru the office. Awesome shots illona!

lisa - what clear images! what lens did you use for this little guy? LOVE LOVE LOVE these shots!

Sarah - Diddo what Rachel said! I totally laughed out loud with the bug eye shots! They are all beautiful and I bet their album will be gorgeous! 🙂

DLuker - omDDDDDDDDDD!!! LMAO at those big ‘ol googly eyes when you broke out the cuz!!! I laughed so hard! What a great pup! Can’t wait to see the rest!

Rachel Lauren - I laughed out loud with those bug eye shots! I love how well he stands out in the grasses and wheat, beautiful! I can’t wait to see more 🙂

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