Erika Anderson is a well known Montreal pet photographer whom I came to know when a friend gave me the perfect gift one Xmas. A surprise photo shoot of my 3 dogs! ( great idea people… book early.)
When did you first realize you wanted to be a photographer, particularly with animals?
I have always taken photos since I was a kid, photographing Barbie with cats I had at the time. But when I got my Border Collie, Frodo, from the SPCA, he became my Top Model!
What was your first experience in working with animals?
I started working with animals, mostly dogs, in my photography.
This is before digital so every image had to be well put together before I took the shot, and my first client was a Pug!!!
I understand you were born in Montreal but have recently moved?
I live on the Quebec/Ontario border with 5 Border Collies ( 3 of which are rescue dogs ) and 1 lovely cat which I got at the SPCA.. Oh yes, and my husband 🙂
Tell us about your studio
My studio is based in Beaconsfield, Quebec
I also do location work, which is so much fun!
Pricing is $180.00 for one hour, and in that hour you can get a lot of amazing images. This price also includes a photo CD, which you can print from; all images are saved as 11×14.
I also offer Photo books and Calendars for an extra fee.
I have been in this line of photography for 9 years professionally.
I see your work on the wall at Sherwood Park Animal Hospital. Are there any other places we can see your photos?
Yes, Sherwood Park is a very good client of mine, they have given me great opportunities.
You can also view my work at Guides Canins, a fun facility for agility training.
I also donated some images to Animatch. My friend Helen Nair volunteered her decorating/reno skills to Animatch, which is how I became involved in the project.
I am always looking for new places to showcase my images 🙂
I see you are friends with many of the Montreal area rescues. How are you involved with them?
In my heart there is nothing more rewarding in life then rescuing an animal. I started off in rescue by fostering cats and kittens. Then I started to walk dogs at the SPCA. At the time I didn’t even own a dog, and thought of myself as a cat person. As time went on I got to meet so many different breeds and see their personalities. This taught me a lot about characters and behaviors. Then I fell in love with Frodo, and that was the beginning..
I do a lot to raise money for shelters, right now I am starting to work on a photo calendar for a Border Collie rescue.
What would you like to tell fellow Montrealers about photographing their dogs and cats. What should they have prepared before coming to you?
When going to a professional photographer with your dog it’s always best to have basic obedience (sit, stay, and down), grooming, and a good walk right before the shoot! (With all that hard work that’s how you will get those fun photos you see in magazines)
As for the cats, well.. cats are cats, if you have a very shy personality, most likely your cat won’t have fun and all they will do is give you that grumpy “I will scratch you later” face. You need to have a spunky I don’t care attitude Cat to get exciting photos.. Let’s face it, when a cat doesn’t want to do something, they are not going to do it.
Taking photos on your own …is all about good lighting. The sun should always be in front of your subject. Watch your backgrounds, you don’t want a telephone pole coming out of your pup’s head 🙂 Treats and A LOT of patience.
”In rescuing animals, I lost my mind, but found my soul.” ~anonymous