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One thing nearly all dog owners can agree on is that you can never have too many pictures of your pooch. While our phones are a convenient way to snap our dog while out on a picturesque walk, for high quality photos you may want a DSLR camera at some point.
It can be a minefield picking a first camera as there are so many options out there. Luckily our very own Digital Marketing Assistant Lorren Francis is here to guide you. She’s sharing her guide to buying your first camera for dog photos.
Lorren has had a passion for photography for years, and loves taking pictures of her Dalmatian Loki.
Lorren and Loki are always hanging out on socials @Polka_dot_loki where you’ll find plenty of inspirational photography content.
Ready to discover the best camera for dog photos? Over to Lorren!
First Canon Cameras for Dog Photos
Canon EOS 600D
If you’re looking for your first camera for dog photos, this one has a user friendly design. The on screen feature guide will be especially handy for beginners, giving descriptions and advice on how to use the various functions. With 18.7 pixels and plenty of functions to try out, this is a great camera to cut your teeth on.
Canon EOS 250D
This Canon isn’t the cheapest beginner camera you can buy but it does offer a diverse range of features that will put you in good stead. Further down the line when you are ready to experiment with your photography more this camera will still be suitable. The camera has a fully-articulating touchscreen display and excellent auto-focus.
First Nikon Cameras For Dog Photos
The Nikon D3500 is a less expensive entry into photography that still offers great picture quality. The “guide” shooting mode is an interactive introduction to the cameras settings and features. The controls are straight forward and simple to get to grips with for a first time photographer. Overall, this offers great picture quality for the price.
The D5600 is an advanced DSLR camera that is suitable for entry-level users. A good all round performer with good handling. The 24 MP sensor creates detailed images in high resolution. This is a strong camera to get to grips with when taking dog photos.
Verdict On Buying Your First Camera For Dog Photos
The two best cameras I would recommend when buying your first camera, are the Nikon D3500 or Canon EOS 250D. Both are pretty similar with slight differences. The Nikon is cheaper but the Canon has a few useful extras such as built-in WiFi. The Nikon is Bluetooth only.
When looking at purchasing your first camera for dog photos, you will be faced with the challenge of choosing what brand to shoot with. I advise you to choose wisely!
It is easier to continue to upgrade your camera body and use the same lenses than to swap over to another make and have to buy all new lenses. While there are converters available, they won’t be as fast or as sharp. So don’t just buy on a whim and do your research.
Once you’ve purchased your first camera body and lens, I would recommend getting to grips with it for a few years before looking to upgrade. In the meantime, work on building up your kit with lenses.
Best Lenses For Beginners
Lenses will make a lot of difference to your shots. If you’re getting fed up of your camera, it is better to upgrade your lenses first rather than to upgrade the camera itself but only use kit lenses.
Best Starter Lens: 50mm
The ‘Nifty Fifty’ is a classic go-to beginner lens. The 50mm focal length is like that of the human eye, so what you see is what you get with your shot. This is helpful when knowing what to expect when framing.
It also allows you to be relatively close to your subject.
I shoot with a 50mm f1.4, as I wanted a low f-stop lens in my kit. However, there is a 1.8 version which is far more affordable and I highly recommend for starting out. You can always upgrade to a 1.4 later.
My Favourite / Go-To Lens: 85mm
My favourite lens and the one I use the most, is my Nikon 85mm F1.8.
I cannot recommend this lens enough. I love all of the shots I take with this lens and it rarely comes off of my camera. It is relatively lightweight and has a really nice focal length which helps you get closer to your subject.
It has great compression to give your subject separation from the background, creating a smooth bokeh effect.
Best For Action Shots: 70-200mm
In my opinion, the best lens for action shots would definitely be a 70-200mm. This lens allows you to zoom between 70mm-200mm focal lengths. This makes it easy to track when your dog is running towards or away from you. It also allows you to get a really nice depth of field when shooting stills.
This was my first Sigma lens. The quality and build of Sigma lenses is excellent -I highly recommended them.
Best For Close Up/Environments: 35mm
Although the 35mm is probably my least used lens, it is beautiful, sharp and accurate. It is great for getting your whole subject in, even if you are very close. I use it mostly for shots with my hands or interacting with Loki.
The wide-angle also makes it excellent at capturing your subject and landscapes. The 1.4 has a lot of glass and a metal body, making this lens quite heavy to carry despite its size.
Action Shots & Dreamy Close-Ups: 135mm
Ideal for portraits requiring a dramatic bokeh, the 135mm focal length delivers a stunning compression effect. Even when fairly close to the subject, the telephoto ring allows the photographer to establish a variety of dramatic perspectives.
The compression effect shines in both close-ups and full-length portraits, making composition easy. The large diameter of F1.8 makes a body shot with an impressive bokeh and soft background possible.
Want To Learn More?
Once you’ve bought your first camera, you’re going to want to learn how to use it. If you want to learn more about photography, Lorren has written her own Ebook on the subject that you can find here. This 124 page Ebook is full of tips tricks and must-know info on producing and editing gorgeous photography content.
Do you love to take photos of your pooch?
Let us know what the first camera you used was in the comments! For top tips on taking great photos of your dog with your phone, click here.