Snow Day with Stella

Finally! Snow! This is the first real snow, at least for us, of the year and I have a dog who, I know, will love to play in it. Stella is only 6 months old and has not see any real significant snow fall until a few weekends ago and what little she has seen, has been the most fun to play in for her. So I loaded up the camera, grabbed the leash as well as some treats and headed out to our favorite playground.

We make it to our destination and I let her go. Off like a shot she runs, bounces and rolls in the snow, taking in all of the cold powder and the joy it brings playing in it. I take the lens cap off, turn on the camera, bring the view finder to my eye, check my meter and squeeze off a few frames. I make a few changes and try a few more. Perfect! Now I that I am ready it is time to get her to preform which shouldn’t be too hard. She is off a few yards and just by calling her to me start her running my way, kicking up white powder adding to the drama of the shot.

For the better part of the hour we spend taking several shots of her running towards me, away from me and past me. In between the running around were the shots of her covered in snow and looking for the next big thing to pounce on or run through. That was , where I caught her in a few thoughtful, day dream moments, where she would ignore me so I could catch the perfect shot. In this particular moment she was taking in the sounds of the birds above and totally ignoring what I was doing. This is when I crept forward, framed up and snap a few frames off, then move forward and took a few more. I repeated this as many times as I could until Stella realized where I was and proceeded to run around me in her crazy fashion. That was okay, because I did manage to catch the shot where she, at least I believe, looks so perfect.


What I love about this shot is that Stella has that hero look, shot looking up, head turned across the body and her distant stare off. I feel that this is the shot you would see on a cover story about a dog that rescued a small child after an avalanche or a night in the forest. This is one of those images that I may never get again no matter how hard I set the stage. This image differently show what a little patients mixed with experience can get you.


I can’t help but to think I caught the true Stella when it comes to her feelings about snow. This is pure excitement joy expressed on one dog’s face. Since creating this image I have to admit I have looked at this photo when things are a little hard to get through. Just looking at the joy on her face gives me a dose of happiness to help me through the day.

I had so much fun getting out an creating these images of Stella. I really believe the best images you can create of your dog is one where they are getting out and playing. You can really capture some great expressions that you normally can’t in any snap shots while they are in motion. Stella brings me and my family so much joy in our lives and because I was able to create these and many other images now and in the future, we will always have that joy when we look back on them.