Paul Melcher's selection
You don't teach an old dogs new tricks. Or do you ? While you might think you have seen everything about pet photography and you are now officially bored with any image of dogs, think again. There is something new.
Photographer Seth Casteel is reinventing the genre completely. Based in Los Angeles and Chicago, Seth has the pet magic eye. Instead of repeating the over used pet portrait cliché of the dog sitting in a studio with soft lighting and soft focus, he prefers to go outside and challenge them to a game of ball, or Frisbee catching. After all, our dogs are action animal. They really only stand still when they sleep and even so, they tend to move when they are dreaming. In a successful effort to capture their personality rather than their faces he gets them to become themselves before he snaps pictures. And it works. Each dog portrait that you see makes you feel that you know this dog, even thought you have never met them. Very similar to the work of great people portraitist, Seth is capable of making us, the viewer, become intimate with its subject.
Lately, he has pushed some of his models to new highs- or low- by making them plunge into a swimming pool attempting to retrieve a pool. He, the photographer, placed himself inside the pool, under water, and waited for them to plunge. Along with extremely well position lighting, he has capture some of the most innovating and stunning images of dogs . The photographs captures them as they have just entered the water but not caught the ball. Between the distortion of the water and the passion in their eyes, the result is stunning.
Seth, impressively enough, is not just a gimmick photographer. His past work in any and all type of circumstances shows that he is a very talented photographer. He volunteers his time to, once a week, photograph dogs at animal shelter around him so that they get a better chance to be adopted.