Archie - 1st June 2016 - Stephen Beecroft

On Wednesday I arranged to go and photograph my sister's dog Archie. He is a two year old Fox Red Labrador. He is currently on his way to being an Instagram sensation. Well he certainly has more followers than my Instagram page. So ever looking for a challenge and to test out some of my newly learnt skills form my recent Hawks and Hounds day we headed to Druridge Bay Country Park. As my vision was to have splashing and running.

The conditions were borderline perfect to not good. The light was perfect; pretty balanced behind the cloud so there would be no harsh shadows. But there was a little breeze and it was trying to rain, there was certainly an amount of sea fret. This meant I had to keep an eye on my camera and lens to make sure they were protected.

Things didn't start off that well. On arriving at Druridge Bay Country Park we were disappointed to find the cafe did not open until 11. Now we were there at 9.30 as I wanted to beat the crowds on the beach, especially with it being during the school holidays. So the plan of a coffee and sausage sarnie before shooting went out of the window. I instantly regretted not bringing my new thermos flask that was tested during the Carlisle Rally.

Speaking of equipment I decided to take my 5d mk3 with my 70-200 f2.8. The best weather sealed combination I had. And  the combination that served me well on the Hawks and Hounds workshop.

On the beach Archie was quickly running after his ball. It didn't take me too long before I had my eye in and the Camera's out focus system was playing ball. The main thing I wanted to portray was Archie's friendly and happy personality. So this meant when he ran he had to be smiling and his tongue had to be out.

I had sensibly put my wellies and waterproof trousers on so that I could get right up to the sea and I got the middle of the action. I encouraged my willing assistants to throw the ball in my direction so I could capture Archie running towards me. We discovered that people's throwing wasn't the most accurate and Archie had his own running arcs.

After a few splashing ones on the beach we then got Archie to sit still so we could grab some more calm portraits. I am really happy how this one has come out with Archie just siting on the sea defences.

We then headed into the country park - mainly just to check that the cafe hadn't opened early. But also because I had an idea of Archie running of a jetty of some description. I hadn't really done my research so we just sort of headed in that direction to see what we could find.

Luckily Archie doesn't really feel the cold and he was happy to jump in and out of the water chasing his ball again. There was a small jetty but it was difficult to get the angle I wanted and Archie didn't seem to want to jump off. He did however manage to jump in and out of the water.

I noticed him drying himself off every time he came out so I moved around to capture this with a really fast shutter to freeze the droplets and his movement.

Soon it was time to warm ourselves up and head to the cafe. A really lovely photoshoot to start the day off. If you would like me to photograph your pet then please get in touch.

Photos

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