Photographing Your Reptile

Do you have a pet reptile? Not everyone thinks that snakes and lizards are attractive, but we beg to differ. Reptiles can be quite captivating! However, it isn’t always easy to capture those charms in photographs. A local London, ON vet offers some tips on taking pictures of your scaled buddy below.

Understand Your Subject

Reptiles are all very unique, and they all have their own characteristics. Some move quite quickly. Others? Not so much. Pay attention to your pet, get to know their daily activity cycles, and time your shoot accordingly.

Shoot At Eye Level

One common mistake people make is shooting from a downward angle. Taking photos from at or even below your pet’s eye level often offers much better results.

Focus On The Eye

Reptiles have absolutely beautiful and fascinating eyes. Make those peepers the focus of your shot! Single-point autofocus may help with this.

Center The Shot

Although asymmetrical photos can be beautiful, when it comes to snapping pet photos, it’s usually best to center your subject. Try shooting with a narrow aperture to get a good all-over focus. Or, just focus on your pet and let the background stay blurred.

Capture The Patterns

Reptiles come in a variety of beautiful colors and patterns. Their skin (or scales) also has a very interesting texture. Good lighting is a must for getting great detail. Try snapping a few black and white shots. Also, experiment with different angles. Softer lights often work well here, as they reduce reflection and glare.

Try Different Zooms

Close-up photos of our scaled pals can be quite striking, as they will show details of scale patterns and colors, and those striking eyes. However, for best results, vary your zoom level. You may find that getting some background in can really make for some great photos!

Clean The Glass

Before taking snaps of your scaled buddy inside their habitat, be sure to clean the glass. Smudges can definitely ruin a shot! If you’re using an actual camera, rather than a smartphone, a lens hood may also be helpful here, as it can help block reflected images.


Many reptiles require special lighting. This can create its own challenges. Use a camera or setting with a high ISO. A faster shutter speed setting can also help.

Do you have questions about reptile care? Contact us, your local London, ON vet clinic, anytime!

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