Sarah Wells went from shooting her dog to starting her career in pet photography, and with her D3200 in hand she wants to photograph them all
As a child I used to love going to the shops and buying disposable cameras. I would take photos of everything. I couldn’t wait to get them developed at the chemist so I could add them to my photo album. When I turned 14 I was bought my first point-and-shoot digital camera. I would take lots of photos of my cat, (who I still have now) and this meant a lot to me, as they’re memories I can keep and cherish forever. From that time on I knew that I wanted to focus on taking photographs of pets.
More recently I’d been yearning for a D-SLR. I wanted something that wouldn’t break the bank but was also reliable. I spoke to a friend who is very much into his photography, and he recommended the Nikon D3200. After reading the reviews I decided it was the perfect choice for me.
I don’t believe you need the most expensive equipment to capture good photos of your dog, just good knowledge of the different settings on your camera. I have taken some lovely portrait shots of my dog, Sam, using the 18-55mm kit lens. Obviously if you invest in a fast prime lens you get that lovely creamy bokeh, especially if you get down low and shoot the dog at eye level.
On top of the world
Above everything else, I love photographing Sam. Here  I wanted to get a portrait of him looking happy and breezy. It was a beautiful clear blue sky day, so I laid on the grass, threw the ball, and then waited for him to bring it back and get into the right place for me to capture
I don’t believe you need the most expensive equipment… just good knowledge of the different settings on your camera
this shot. I love how carefree he looks here, almost as if he’s on top of the world!
Molly  is very camera-shy, so it’s very hard to get a photo of her. I was practising some action shots here with Molly, throwing treats into the fields and getting her to come back. Luckily this distracted her from the camera. I love how her ears flop around uncontrollably and I wanted to capture this. This was a bit of a challenge for me because I had to get into the right position to get a head-on running shot. A shutter speed of 1/1000 sec froze her motion.
Charlie  has a very different temperament from Molly – he doesn’t mind the camera one little bit. This little dog has a very big personality. He is very cheeky, and I think you can see that by looking at the expression on his face.
Charlie loves to be outdoors running in the woods, so I photographed him in his favourite place. I shot with the aperture wide open at f/1.8 on my 50mm to create a shallow depth of field. Trying to keep him still was a bit of a challenge as he just wanted to keep going, but shooting wide open in the forest gave me a shutter speed of 1/1000 sec with ISO400 so I could freeze his movement. Of course, persuading him to keep still with some tasty treats helped as well.
1 Charlie Nikon D3200, Nikon AF-S 50mm f/1.8G, 1/1000 sec, f/1.8, ISO400 2 Molly Nikon D3200, Nikon AF-S DX 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED VR II, 1/1000 sec, f/4.2, ISO160 3 Sam Nikon D3200, Nikon AF-S DX 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II, 1/1000 sec, f/1.8, ISO400