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How Do You Take Pictures of Animals' Eyes?

We all know the feeling of capturing an amazing pic of our pet, only to realize the eyes are reflecting an eerie red or white light. Fear not! Eliminating pet photo flash eye is easy with a few tips. But, first, it's important to understand the cause of why animals' eyes reflect light in photos.

The eyes of animals, just like human eyes, have a reflective layer at the back of the eye called the tapetum lucidum. This layer helps animals to see in low-light conditions by reflecting light back through the retina a second time. In pictures, this creates an effect called "red-eye," where the eyes appear red, white, or bright green.

Now that we understand WHY animals' eyes reflect light in photos, let's talk about HOW to avoid it!

Tips for Avoiding Photo Flash Eye in Pet Photography

With just a few tips, you can avoid that dreaded photo flash eye in your animal photos!


Lighting plays a big role in whether or not photo flash eye will show up in your pet's pictures. If possible, try to take advantage of natural light by taking pictures near a window or outdoors. If you must use a flash, consider using a diffuser to soften the light.


The angle at which you take the picture can also affect whether or not photo flash eye will show up. If you take the picture from above, looking down at your pet, you are more likely to see the effects of photo flash eye. Instead, try getting on your pet's level by squatting down or sitting on the floor. This will help to avoid the direct glare of the flash.


The distance between you and your pet also affects whether or not photo flash eye will show up in pictures. The further away you are, the less likely you are to see the effects of photo flash eye. So, if possible, try to take pictures from a distance. If you can't get far enough away, consider using a telephoto lens to zoom in from a distance.


If you're taking pictures in low light, you may need to use a flash to get a clear picture. But don't worry, there are ways to fix photo flash eye in post-processing!

In Adobe Photoshop, go to the 'Filter' menu and select 'Red Eye Correction.' Then, just click on the red eyes in your photo and Photoshop will do the rest!

In Adobe Lightroom, go to the 'Develop' module and scroll down to the 'Effects' panel. Then, check the 'Enable' box and select 'Red-Eye Reduction.' Just click on the red eyes in your photo and Lightroom will take care of the rest!

With these tips, you'll be able to take amazing pictures of your pets without worrying about photo flash eye! So get out there and start snapping away!

A Note From Sue

As a professional pet photographer, I understand the challenges pet owners face when trying to take great pictures of their furry friends. I hope these tips help you take beautiful pictures of your pets that you'll cherish for a lifetime!

If you have any questions or need help getting started, I'd be happy to chat with you. Feel free to contact me. Happy snapping!

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