How about some dogs for a change?

Ivan Written by:


  1. Guillermo

    Love these photos! I just got me a Refurbished Nikon 1 V1 I am also trying for the first time Adobe Lightroom. As you can see I am very new at this. Did you shoot this pictures in RAW or Jpeg? Do you use any settings in the camera that you can recommend? Also if you do post processing any advice or presets you can recommend?



  2. Ivan

    Hi Guillermo!

    I shoot RAW only and use Lightroom as well.

    In camera settings that I recommend:
    – switch to burst mode, so you can utilize the incredible speed of the camera.
    – disable AF assist light. Nikon V1 acquires focus in low light better without it.
    – use single point AF when shooting regular scenes. Use Target tracking for some special purposes and area continuous AF (AF-C) for sports and action. You can use face-detection in combination with continuous AF (AF-C) for photos and videos of faces. It is very effective.
    – Set standby/shutdown time to 10min, the large battery can take it. This way V1 will always be ready.
    – Use electronic shutter to eliminate camera noise and shake. This way V1 will be completely silent when shooting at wide open aperture and you will be able to hand hold it at much longer shutter speeds, without resulting in blurred images. When you stop down, there will be noise coming from aperture blades closing and opening.
    – set LCD brightness to highest level, this helps outdoors in the sun.
    – don’t use Auto-ISO, it chooses too low ISO levels, which results in too slow shutter speeds and motion blur. Set ISO manually.
    – disable high ISO noise reduction but enable long exposure noise reduction. The latter helps with long exposures, by taking an additional photo with closed shutter to calculate the noise out of the photo. It DOES NOT reduce image quality. Use it!
    – use matrix metering, it is very precise. Same goes for white balance.

    Lightroom settings I recommend:
    – set levels for sharpness and noise reduction from standard 25/25 to 10/10 or 15/15, for ISO1600/3200. 25/25 is too high in my opinion.
    – always add a bit of magenta, LR interprets V1 files too greenish.
    – move yellow a bit to the left (-5 to -25), move orange to the left (-5), and move green also a bit to the left. Can’t tell you a level for green, because it varies a lot from photo to photo. Also experiment with the luminance level of these three “problematic” colors. This all depends on taste, so use your own judgment. This is at least what I like to do.
    – Values for exposure, black, brightness, contrast and so on, will vary greatly from photo to photo, so you will have to experiment and see what you like. I like to bump contrast from standard 25 to 40-45 on many images.

    Hope that helps. 🙂


    • Guillermo

      Thank you so much for the detailed advice! I will keep playing with the camera and lightroom and learning. Can’t wait to purchase the 18.5 lens too! Keep up the good work!

      Thanks again,


      • Ivan

        Thank you very much Guillermo!


  3. 14/04/2014

    Ivan, do you have anything to add to the list above for the camera settings and use specially for pet photography? Thank you for being so open to helping other photographers. I love your nature and pet photos.

    • Ivan

      Ivan, do you have anything to add to the list above for the camera settings and use specially for pet photography?

      Nothing related to camera settings, that is pretty much all I can think of. Only two general ideas regarding pet photography come to mind: 1) the angle makes a huge difference. Get low and photograph them from their own level/hight. This way you are threating them like human beings and giving them the respect in your photos, which they deserve. Most times photos look better this way. If you want to make them look cute, you are probably better of shooting photos from above. But this will make them look more like cute “things” and less human. They will lose their individuality and character. 2) regardless how prepared you are, animals are unpredictable, which means that one has to shoot many, many photos. Dozens, hundreds if need be. Don’t hesitate to shoot as many as you feel is needed, delete the bad ones at home. Use a fast application for this, like FastStone and be ruthless to your own work. Half of the skill of being a photographer lies in being able to detach yourself emotionally from your work, in seeing it for what it is (good or bad?) and being able to weed out the bad parts. What you see on my Flickr and my Blog is probably 0.1% of my photos. The rest gets deleted. And chances are I’m not deleting enough! 😉

      Thank you for being so open to helping other photographers. I love your nature and pet photos.

      Thank you for visiting and being so kind.

  4. 15/04/2014

    I have and use FastStone Image Viewer and use it to first look through new images. I have a hard time deleting images but do find it easier to do when some time has past. I really need to get better at deleting images, specially of ones that look close but I have a hard time picking out which one is the best.

    • Ivan

      When I’m “stuck” I ask my girlfriend. Most times she can name good reasons why one photo is the best of the bunch. Sometimes she can’t, in which case I leave those photos in order to view them in the following days. I need a week at the most to decide.

    • Ivan

      You have a lot of lovely photos Joni. My favourites are those of the kittens Lukas and Kourtney. They are simply adorable.

Leave a Reply