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Photograph Of Ace The Black Lab On A Black Background

This is Ace the black Labrador Retriever posed in front of a black background. This image was part of a series of works that I submitted for judging as part of the process of becoming a Certified Professional Photographer with the Professional Photographers of America.

Properly photographing a black dog on a black background is technically quite challenging as getting the right lighting is very important. In this case, without the right lighting, it’s easy for the subject to fade into the background.

There’s not a lot of backstory on this photo. This one is all about technical proficiency.

Here I used both a main light and a fill so that I wouldn’t underexpose the shadowy areas and simultaneously not lose any details. The fill light helps fill in the shadowy areas so that the details in the coat don’t get lost. On the main light, I used a soft box which creates a misty quality that clings to all the details and creates a more evenly distributed light.

The fill light on the left is doubling as a kicker, creating that bright edge on the left side of the dog and separating it from the background.

Location: Shoreline, WA

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