Good things come from sweaty palms

Good things come from sweaty palms

Fact: Good things come from sweaty palms

Last year, I made the decision to invest in myself, heavily. I am so grateful that the universe kicked me in the pants to go to an incredible pet photography retreat in the south of France. One of the biggest aha moments that I took away from the experience, is the fact that if I’m going to be successful, I need to shake things up. I was stuck in a safe zone and clearly I was going to have to start to look for and embrace photographic opportunities that made my palms sweat.

Welcome to the Year of the Sweaty Palms

This year, I’ve taken on several jobs that made me step waaaay outside of my comfort zone. No longer am I saying to myself, “yeah, a big no on that job. That sounds scary and complicated and like someone else should do it”. If I let that crazy lady hold me back, I won’t grow as a photographer and that, my friends, is my never ending objective. I was blessed to have found a path into pet photography and I will throw my heart and soul into it until I breathe my last breath.

Just this past week, I stepped further out of the old comfort zone than I ever have before. I had a pro bono photo shoot for a social impact company called Mother Erth. They upcycle discarded plastic materials, keeping them out of landfill… aaaaand, wait for it… they work with artisan mothers in third world countries to create gorgeous fashion accessories. Thus enabling them to become financially independent! I love that!

We are creating a movement of people wearing our bright bags as a statement of their commitment to care for others and the Earth.

It came together like it was meant to be

I was contacted by Co-Founder Sean Kelly and asked to create images that would appeal to Mother Erth’s hip, youthful, stylish customer and promote their line of pet carriers and beds. Pet photography has created a vehicle for me to give back, so when a good fit comes along, I’m all over it.

I reached out to friends, clients and colleagues to pull this shoot together and I have to say, that it all came together beautifully because of their generosity and kindness. The shoot took place in the ever gorgeous surroundings at The Good Earth Food and Wine Co.  My canine models were a breathtaking Papillon named Betsy (thank you so much Kait Ripley) and the fluffiest most adorable little Pomeranian Kismet aka Kitty Kat (can’t thank you enough Nikki Fowler). The dogs interacted beautifully together and with my stunning, stylin’ hoomans Eva and Loire, who along with Eva’s mom, coordinated their own hair, makeup and wardrobe selections. EEEEK, you girls ROCKED it!!!

For someone who works almost exclusively with four-leggeds, this really was a big stretch for me creatively and I’m proud of the final product. Even more importantly, my clients and models all had a great time and love the images. The feeling of accomplishment that comes along with doing something that literally gives you sweaty palms is so immense! I gotta say… I like it!!

Here are a handful of the final images, enjoy!



Niagara Pet Photography On-Location: Snow!

Niagara Pet Photography On-Location: Snow!

Pet photography, on-location, is not for the feint of heart, nor the Winter Wuss.

Who is MacLean’s Magazine calling a Wuss? Well, okay, probably me. I’m not much of a “freeze my butt off” girl at the best of times. Going for a walk and losing all feeling in my thighs isn’t exactly my favourite thing to do. That being said, my specialty is pet photography, on-location, and I will suck it up for the sake of a spectacular session. (more…)

Niagara Pet Photography: Lola + Louie

Niagara Pet Photography: Lola + Louie

Recently I was lucky enough to enjoy a play date with Lola and Louie. Lola is a spunky little mini dachshund with a charming overbite, a gleaming black coat and oodles of attitude. Louie… well your guess is as good as mine, I’m reckoning he’s part dachshund with some Catahoula leopard dog mixed in, so hard to tell. Whatever the DNA says, his resulting coat is simply stunning.

Louie – a rescue from Louisiana – was terrifically shy but he warmed up with a healthy dose of good treats and toys. Lola had no problem getting into the session, which she basically ran. Not surprising, this frisky diva dachsie runs the show at her house! We had a fabulous afternoon together indoors; running, playing and showing off for the camera. For me the best of all was the series of images I would have to title “Keep your eye on the ball (or the monkey)” – check out the slideshow at the bottom of this post.

Our session was booked to capture stunning images of Lola, who is the apple of her daddy’s eye, for Christmas. (Louie, being mom’s baby, had his fair share of camera time too.) My client Louise knew she wanted large wall art for her husband’s newly renovated office at Henry of Pelham Family Estate winery in Niagara, something that would greet him every day and make him smile. The first image below was printed as a 24″ x 36” gallery wrapped canvas piece. I ran into them over the weekend at the Winter WineFest in Jordan Village and by all accounts it was a huge success! Daniel was thrilled and while his office is still under construction, Lola is happily jogging on prime wall space in their home! Now that Christmas is behind us, we’ll be getting together over a glass of Henry of Pelham wine (Cuvée Catherine, perhaps!) to review the other images and choose more gorgeous artwork for their home.

Oh, and for the record…what I wouldn’t give for a studio with this light!

Photographer Karen Black is behind the lens at Indigo Pet Photography. I’m based in Niagara’s Wine Country in Ontario and specialize in natural light pet portraiture but will happily hit the road to capture your pet’s personality for posterity.

Facebook: /indigopetphotography
Instagram: indigopetproject
Twitter: @indigopetphoto


International Pet Photographer of the Year 2021 Top 100 Portrait category
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Embark 2021 Get Down Winner graphic
Top 10 winner on Hair of the Dog
Pro Member of the Pet Photographer's Club

Niagara Pet Photographer: Holiday mini sessions

Niagara Pet Photographer: Holiday mini sessions

Niagara-Pet-Photographer-mini-sessionzWe can’t wait to get into the Christmas spirit! In fact we want everyone in your family to get in on the fun. We partnered with The Good Earth Food and Wine Co. – a fab, dog-friendly winery, where we’ll be set up at the Annual Open House on November 29 & 30 for mini portrait sessions. Book a $50* “15 Minutes of Fame” session for your favourite canine (or feline if you’re adventurous!). You can go festive… or just straight up pretty portrait. You choose.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Call 905.932.1042 to book your session in advance. A credit card number will reserve your spot. Sessions run between noon and 5pm and will start on the half hour. Last session each day is at 4:45. Let us know if you’d like to go festive!
  2. Arrive with your buddy at the allotted time, please note that a little exercise in advance will go a long way to getting great photos! That a brushing up on sit and stay!
  3. We’ll have our 15 minute photo session, complete with requisite yummy treats, one pooch per session.
  4. Within a week, you’ll be emailed a link to an online gallery with a minimum of 3-5 fabulous images from the session.
  5. Select your favourite photo for your  5″ x 7″ archival quality print (beautifully matted to fit an 8 x 10 frame). Plus you’ll also get a digital watermarked version of the same image, suitable for sharing online.
  6. Roughly 10-14 business days after you place your order, your print will be either shipped or hand delivered to your home!
  7. Best of all, Jack Russell Terrier Rescue Ontario will receive a $5 donation for each session booked.

Booking ahead is required to allow for session planning.

You can start your holiday shopping, taste some fantastic wines AND get your favourite 4-legged his or her 15-Minutes of Fame. There will be lots of good cheer to go around. Enjoy a complimentary petite wine & cheese trio.

* session fee is $50 plus HST

The Good Earth is located at 4556 Lincoln Ave in Beamsville!