How Much is an 8 x 10? The Answer is… You Don’t Want an 8 x 10 Anyway!

How much is an 8×10? I get this question a lot when people are first inquiring about a pet photography session. The answer is do you even want an 8 x 10? Probably not. Here’s why:

What to think about when cropping an image.

First, a lot of cameras today are formatted for 8 x 12 not 8 x 10. In order to print an 8 x 10 photo you’d have to crop a significant portion of the image. You’d be missing a large portion of the photo. Sometimes that won’t matter much but most of the time cutting that much of the photo off makes a dramatic difference in how it looks.

In the images below you can see the first photo is the original format. This is the way I see it when I’m taking the photo. There is visual space to give the subjects room.

8 x 12 print of a silhouette
8 x 12 camera format

You can see here how much space you are really cropping off the photo here.

You can see how much cropping from 8 x 12 to 8 x 10
how much are you cropping that photo?

The result changes the feeling of the photo. Instead of the feeling of freedom, fun, and energy, the subjects are cramped. There’s no room to move.

cropping to 8 x 10 changes the feeling of the photo
cropping too much changes the feeling of the photo

Sometimes the cropped image won’t be so dramatic. Like with these images of Poppy the Chihuahua below.

Poppy has plenty of space in this 8 x 12 crop
printing an 8 x 12 or 8 x 10
Poppy 8 x 10
printing 8 x 10 or 8 x 12

Both images are lovely and you don’t get a dramatic change in feeling.

What to think about when you display your prints.

Here’s another reason why you shouldn’t worry about how much an 8 x 10 is. You should think about the space you’d like to display your photos. Depending on the space an 8 x 10 print might look completely ridiculous. You can see in the photos below, the print in the dinning room is 30 x 40. It looks fantastic and fits the space.

This 30 x 40 print looks impressive in the dinning room
printing for the space

Here an 8 x 10 looks insignificant and inappropriate for the same space.

An 8 x 10 look small and insignificant.
printing photos for your living space
But how else can I compare prices?

I realize that most people are asking this question because they want to compare prices between myself and a competitor but just asking the price of an 8 x 10 can be deceiving. First, my 8 x 10 prints might be a different quality than another photographer’s 8 x 10. They might charge less money but maybe you’re getting a flimsy print that looks the same as the print you got from a local drugstore. The prints I carry are beautiful, thick, luxurious paper. I know you can’t get them at the local drugstore. So a difference in price might be because of a significant difference in quality. Or perhaps it’s service, does the other photographer fully edit the photos? Perhaps not.

Second, how much is the session fee for a pet photography session in Denver and what does it include? Some photographers include the digitals in the session fee and it makes the overall price sound cheaper. However, you still have the burden and cost of printing those photos so the price they quote isn’t going to be your finished price.

Not to mention some people end up never printing their photos, it stays on their to do list until they lose the digitals due to technology upgrades, viruses, or even theft of a computer. Then of course it’s too late and you spent all that money for nothing.

Some people do print the photos but by the time you add on the printing you might have spent more money than if you had hired a photographer that does the printing for you.

So a great question to ask is how much does your average customer spend? That can give you an idea of what people typically spend with that photographer.

Another way to ask about prices is to tell the photographer what you are interested in. I’m interested in wall art for my dinning room, how much do you anticipate I’ll spend? Or I’m interested in a top of the line album with about 30 to 45 photos, how much would that cost?

Don’t be afraid to tell them what your budget is. If you have $500 for your budget tell them. They can show you what the best quality print will be or show you how you can get the most with that budget.

Maybe you aren’t quite sure what you want yet. Take the time to set up a pre-consult with your photographer to see the samples and go over the pricing. Most of the time photographers will do this as a complimentary service. The quality of printed products can change significantly between photographers and so can the service so you would be doing yourself a favor in the long run by taking the time before you hire a pet photographer to meet with them.

There is more than one way to hang a photo! An 8 x 10 probably isn’t the best one.



If you’re interested in a complimentary pre-consult to see the products I carry or you are interested in our pet photography inquiry guide that has all the info you need for a dog photography session with StinkDog Photos contact us here.


Keeping Your Dog Cool During Summer Heat Waves

Today in Denver the temperature will climb to 102 degrees. It’s easy to stay inside and keep the air conditioning on high and hope temperatures lower quickly. Of course not only is that not practical it’s not necessarily fun either.

If you live near a body of water and your dog loves to swim you’ve got it made. But what about the rest of us?

Not everyone has the luxury of living near a body of water their dog is allowed to swim in.

Here are a few ideas to keep your dog cool.

1.) Walk your dog early in the morning and late at night. Aside from being uncomfortably hot, it’s not good for their paws and can actually burn their paw pads. Think of it this way if it’s too uncomfortable for you to walk barefoot across the street it’s too hot on your dogs paws.

2.) If your dog wants to sit outside in the back yard as mine often does please make sure your dog has shade to rest in and water in their dish outside. You can even place ice cubes in their water dish to keep it nice and cool. Make sure you check on them frequently or better yet stay outside with them and make them come inside to cool off.

3.) A kiddie pool filled with water might just the kind of thing your dog loves. Boo doesn’t mind getting in ankle deep to fetch a toy but he’s not much of a swimmer so I need to find reasons for him to want to get in the water. Throwing a few floating toys in the pool usually does the trick.

4.) Fresh fruit treats. Some fresh fruits are healthy for your dog. Take a few and put them in a stuff toy like a Kong or Tux and freeze them. Boo is a fan of watermelon so I slice it up and use a bone cookie cutter to give it a cute shape and toss them in the freezer to give him a cool treat. If your dog isn’t a fan of fruit you can use bone broths to make popsicles as well.

Fresh fruit your dog can eat

Fresh fruit you can give to your dog5.) Elevated pet beds can help keep your dog comfortable by allowing air to circulate underneath them.

6.) Find games to play inside instead of outside. We play hide and seek with Boo a lot. I’ll hide with a treat in my hand when he finds me he gets the treat. It’s fun if you have another person to play with and you can take turns hiding. If hide and seek isn’t your thing, puzzle toys can keep your dog active inside so they can play in cooler air.

Stay cool friends and feel free to comment below. How do you keep your dog cool in hot weather?


















Decorating Your Home With Christmas Portraits

Every year people rush to have portraits taken sometime in the fall or flock to find Christmas mini sessions so they can have a nice image to send out for a Christmas or New Year’s card. It’s a lovely idea sharing your best photos with friends and family. But then what? Most people don’t seem to do anything with them after that. The outfits they wore for the photography session last longer than the portraits if all you do is use them for a seasonal card. Print your portraits to make the most out of your Christmas mini sessions and make your memories last.

Aside from giving small gifts prints to relatives or creating ornaments with them why not decorate your home with them?

If you have guests coming for Christmas decorate your guest room to make things merry. A trio of prints above the bed with mini stockings or a wreath on the bed frame is a great way for them to enjoy a little Christmas spirit.

Christmas portraits in a guest room
Decorating a guest room with Christmas Portraits.

Deck the hallways with a Christmas portrait. I’ve seen people use wrapping paper to cover up their summer portraits for the season. Instead of covering them up, exchange it for the season. Select your favorite Christmas print and put it up in the hallway or entry way to greet friends when they come in the door. Who can resist a favorite portrait of your pooch by the tree?

Deck the hallways with professional portraits.
Deck the hallways with portraits from your photography session.

Decorate your own bedroom. Some people use small trees to decorate their bedrooms. I live in a house that’s over a hundred years old, there’s no room for a tree. But, the one thing I can do is hang a portrait of my favorite pup above my bed.

Decorate your bedroom with a fun portrait for the holidays.
Make your bedroom Merry and Bright.

Having a Christmas feast? Decorate your dinning room with portraits from those holiday mini sessions. They will make any feast more festive and you’ll have something that will last longer than that floral piece on the table.

A festive dinning room fit for a feast.
What to do with those portraits from Christmas mini sessions

Seasonal portraits are a great way to decorate your home for the holidays. You don’t have to water them, vacuum up the dead pine needles, or polish the sap off the table. It’s a simple easy way to make your home look beautiful and feel welcoming for the holidays. Canvas, metals, and framed prints are easy to take down and store the rest of the year too. Treat them gently and you’ll have timeless holiday decor that will last for generations.

If you’re still in need of a portrait session for you and your pet we have one more date left for our Christmas mini sessions email us for more information.



Fireworks and Fear: Helping Your Dog Cope

Fireworks aren’t fun for the dogs in our life but could they be? Probably not, but maybe they could be a little less awful.

If you’ve read any of our posts about our dog Boo Radley you would know that Boo is afraid of a lot. The vacuum, the laundry basket, the heat vents. You name it he’s worried about it.

When we first brought him home he was terrified of thunderstorms and fireworks as well and he would literally try to dig his way into the drywall. It was very upsetting for all of us. I couldn’t find a way to calm him. I’d shut all the windows to try to reduce the sound, turn music on for background noise. We bought a ThunderCoat for him and he chewed threw it in about 10 minutes. We thought the only thing that was going to work was medicating him.

One night there was a storm coming and Boo was getting nervous so we started playing a game with him. It was a game a dog trainer taught us when we first got him. She called it puppy popcorn but really it’s more of a hide and seek game.

My husband and I each have treats and my husband sits with Boo while I hide somewhere in the house. Once I hide I call the dogs name and he comes to find me. Once he finds me I give him a treat. While Boo is trying to find me my husband hides. We play until he’s tired and usually he’s so busy he forgets about the storm or fireworks. That game has worked miracles for Boo and for us. It’s fun too. We have a good laugh when he runs past us or finds us faster than we thought.

The amazing thing about playing that game is that now even if we can’t play the game when fireworks go off near us he’s not trying to dig himself into the drywall. He still doesn’t love them but he’s no longer a danger to himself either.

Relieve the stress from fireworks by playing games.
Playing games with your dog could relieve the stress from the noise of fireworks.

It can be a long week if you live in a neighborhood where people are lighting off fireworks every night for the first week in July. I hope this game helps you and your dog relax and have fun.

Remember hide, call your dog, reward them when they find you, repeat.










Dog Product Review: AutoDogMug

I work with dogs every single day as a professional dog photographer and that means purchasing a lot of products made for dogs or products for making living with dogs easier. People often ask me what my favorite products are and it made me think maybe I should do a little review of products made for dogs.

*Just a quick note, the companies have not sponsored me, paid me, or given me free products. They are products I bought and paid for and am reviewing without their prior knowledge. *

Since it’s summer I thought my first one should be water bottles. It’s important to keep dogs hydrated when you’re out for a walk or when they are having their very own pet photography session! Here in Colorado so many dogs are out with their owners, hiking, backpacking, camping and swimming important to have plenty of water on hand for them.

I’ve purchased a lot of different products made for this… travel water bowls, bottles that have a detachable spout. So far my favorite product is the AutoDogMug by HighWave! It’s a BPA free bottle with a small bowl attached to the top of the bottle. When you squeeze the bottle the water fills the bowl and your dog can drink. The thing that makes this product great is that when your dog is done drinking you stop squeezing and any left over water goes back into the container. It’s great because you don’t have to empty or toss out any water. So far in my experience I haven’t had any problems with it leaking. I love this product. It’s suggested retail is 14.99 and it’s worth every penny!

The AutoDogMug great for keeping your dog hydrated on the go.
The AutoDogMug. A great purchase for your pet.

HighWave also sells the AutoDogMug Pure which has a filter in it so that you can collect water from lakes, ponds and streams and the filter removes 99.9% of bacteria and viruses so that the water is safe for your dog. Brilliant!!

Looks like I’ll need to come up with a rating system too…. tail wags, play bows, doggie high fives… I’m not sure yet but the AutoDogMug is a five out of five. We love it! It’s a product you will want to have with you when you take your dog on any adventure.