Monday, March 28, 2011

Sadie and Katie play bitey-face

Sadie and Katie

Sadie (on the left) is more playful than Katie. She will instigate play, then Katie will join her. But there are times, though, when Katie decides to show Sadie that she can be first to show her ornery side. This often ends up in a good time playing bitey-face.

I always wonder what they're thinking as they do this. People see this picture (and other pictures like it that I've taken of Sadie and Katie), and ask how did I get them to roo. They don't -- not at all. They just play-bow, chase each other, play bitey-face.

My idea of capturing bitey-face was to not completely freeze the action. I didn't want a static picture, which is what you'd get by using a flash: I wanted to convey a sense of movement as well as freeze their position at one moment. So I was going use slow-sync flash, but I wasn't sure what shutter speed to use to get the picture I had imagined. I picked 1/10 second and tried it.

I had to move all around them as they played, trying to keep the camera pointed at them because I wasn't looking in the viewfinder. (Sometimes I can anticipate what they're going to do next better this way.) Then they both looked skyward and opened their mouths wide. Amazingly, they stayed this way for a few seconds, so I snapped a picture. Of course, most of the other shots I took were throw-aways (I keep them anyway just to see what I did wrong) but this one frame turned out okay.

(Shot with the Nikon D300; Nikon 10-24mm zoom at 10mm; SB-800 flash; shutter-priority; 1/10 sec @ f/3.5; ISO 400; auto white balance; normal JPG.)


  1. This is just the BEST photo:) I giggled as soon as I saw it even though I thought they were doing some synchronised rooing! I don't think anybody could see this photo and not immediately smile, I love it! Thank you.

  2. What a great shot! I love how synchronized they are! Our hounds never play bitey face, much to the Shepherd's chagrin. She'd love one of the hounds to play the game with her, but when Bunny's whole head went in her mouth, there was no way it was happening.