An interactive treat collaboration between

The Seattle Barkery and Dirtie Dog Photography

Welcome, friends!

I’m so happy that you have found your way here to learn more about taking great photos of your dog using Say Cheese treats.
First, THANK YOU for picking up your set of Say Cheese treats!
I’d like to take a minute to tell you about this amazing collaboration that I have been lucky enough to team up with The Seattle Barkery to create.
If you are a long-time fan of The Seattle Barkery, then you probably remember when they had a fundraiser last year to launch their Hammy Treat Trailer at Magnusen Park. One of the tiers of support in their fundraiser was to be able to collaborate on a treat. Do you ever have a moment when something so cool is presented to you to be a part of, and you just know you can’t pass it up? That was this moment for me, and I jumped at the opportunity for three reasons:
1. Dawn and Ben are two of the most giving people I know, and I always want to support them in the amazing things they do.
2. I love collaborating with awesome people who are doing awesome things, so this really was a no brainer decision for me.
3. I’ve had this idea for treats that encourage people to practice taking great photos of their pets for a really long time, and I can’t even tell you how excited I am to get to put this out into the world with my friends.


$1 from every sale of the Say Cheese treats will be donated to Old Dog Haven.
How amazing is that?!

Say Cheese Treats

Made with love by The Seattle Barkery.

Ingredients include:

grain free flour (garbanzo), cheddar cheese, water & oil.

Six tips to help you create great portraits of your dog.
By Marika of Dirtie Dog Photography.


 For me, personally, the key to creating a truly great photograph of a dog, is all in the feeling you create in the image captured. Yes, being skilled in the technical aspects of photography is incredibly important, but I believe that to create a truly great photograph of any animal, your image must have soul.
On that note, I won’t be giving any tips on how to use a camera or professional lighting, and I won’t be shouting out favorite editing tools or apps. I will tell you a few things I’ve learned over the years that help in the process of creating great portraits of dogs, but most of all, I hope to inspire you to find the soul in the photographs you take of your dog.

Help your dog be camera-ready.

You know how you need to weed your garden before you plant your vegetables or flowers? The same is true with making sure your dog’s face and eyes are clean before you take photographs of them. Even if you plan to remove them later in post-processing, cleaning slimy and crusty things from your dog’s face will save you SO MUCH TIME if done before you even take a single photograph.

Treats at camera level.

Where your dog’s eyes are looking is very important in creating a feeling for the person viewing the photograph. If you want the viewer to feel a connection to the dog in the photograph, then you’ll want your dog to be looking into the lens. In my sessions, I usually start with a variety of noises, but one of the best tricks is to hold your Say Cheese treat directly above (as close as possible) your lens so that your dog is looking right at it.

Play with light.

The light in your photographs will make or break your images. In my experience, the best way to understand light is to play with it. Watch how the light changes as you move around it. Watch how it changes as it moves around you. Discover how you can change the light simply by using the things around you as filters. A tree or tall grasses can give you shade and patterns that bring texture to your photos. Study everything, and the possibilities will be infinite.

Change perspective.

Once you’ve found the light and your dog is comfortable in front of the camera, start experimenting with the angles you photograph from. Go high, go low, go REALLY low. Ask your dog to change their perspective as well. Have them lie down or stand over you. Have fun with it, and break your treats into smaller pieces so you can try out more ideas.

The story is in the details.

While creating a portrait that viewers can feel connected to is important, photographs that capture the details you love will help to tell a story that you can feel connected to. The details are moments in between poses, they are tiny glimpses of your dog doing things unique to him. The details are the messages our dogs leave with us to help us remember them. The details tell their story.

Wait for it.

Patience is everything when it comes to photographing animals. You can have all the talent in the world, but if you don’t have patience, photographing your dog will be very difficult. I encourage you to ask your dog nicely to pose for you, and once they have done what you’ve asked, WAIT. Wait for the moments they are willing to give to you without asking. Watch what they do, and capture what feels good.


Your homework is to put these tips into practice while using the Say Cheese treats, and share what you create. Have fun with creating portraits, boomerangs, slo-mo videos, etc.  Use the hashtag: #saycheeseseattle on Instagram and tag both @dirtiedogphotography and @theseattlebarkery so we can find your beautiful posts!

Your Title Goes Here

The Seattle Barkery is a Dog Treat Bakery based in Seattle since 2014! Three locations to serve you and your pup: Buster the Treat Truck, Hammy the Treat Trailer and our Treat Bar located inside Dogwood Play Park. Our treats are grain free, made fresh daily and have a solid rating of two paws up!


Your Title Goes Here

Old Dog Haven is a small nonprofit group using a large network of foster homes to provide a loving safe home for abandoned senior dogs in western Washington. When we have room and the means, we take these dogs into our homes. We adopt out those dogs with a reasonable life-expectancy. We care for the rest as members of the family in permanent foster homes (what we call “Final Refuge”) for as long as they have good quality of life. In addition, we try to assist owners in finding new homes for their senior dogs through our website and referrals.


To learn more about Marika and her work as an animal photographer, check out these blog posts:
A love you never grow out of.

A love you never grow out of.

I was three years old when I fell in love with horses. My parents like to tell the story of how they knew it was serious when I exclaimed,  “Never in my whole life, have I ever had a pony!” 

Click to continue reading.

Thank you for loving your old dog.

Thank you for loving your old dog.

I love old dogs. I love everything about them. The good, the bad, the smelly. All of it. Give me an old dog to photograph, and I will leave part of my heart with them in their portrait. They will look at me with their soulful eyes, and I will be changed; transformed from every moment that came before our eyes met.

Click to continue reading.

Why not me.

Why not me.

Giving back where I belong.

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. – Winston Churchill

I believe these words with all of my heart. I don’t remember exactly when I knew something was missing from my life, but for many years I felt like I was searching for something to be a part of.

Click to continue reading.


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Pets nearing the end of their journey take priority in my schedule. If you're in need of a photo session ASAP, let's get you to the front of the line.