There aren’t many things in life cooler than dogs and photography, so when the two collide, there’s sure to be some impressive results. And, the pinnacle of any dog photographer’s career is to place in the Kennel Club’s Dog Photographer of the Year contest.
The annual event always sees thousands of entries, which are assessed and selected by a panel of judges and 2019’s contest saw some of the best-ever entries. Picking up top prize and the Overall Winner title was this image by Swiss photographer Denise Czichocki. Entitled; ‘Dreaming Merlin’, the portrait of a rescued Podengo also took First Place in the ‘Oldies’ category and was captured with a Canon 6D, paired with a Sigma 105mm f/1.4 Art lens.
Taking Second Place in the Oldies category was this striking portrait of a Labrador Retriever named Bailee. Captured by UK photographer Cat Race using a Canon 5D MkIII, the low angle combined well with the 16mm focal length and flash lighting.
Puppies are always popular with dog photographers and this image by Dutch photographer Monica van der Maden took First Place in the Puppies category. Entitled; ‘The Little Twins’ the image was captured with a Nikon D850 paired with a 105mm f/1.4 lens.
Third Place in the Puppies category went to another Dutch photographer. This time it was Lotte van Alderen who took this timeless portrait, entitled; ‘Dark Dawn With Noah’ of a Labrador Retriever using a Canon 6D MkII in natural light.
The Assistance Dogs and Dog Charities was a special category that saw the winner able to nominate a charity to receive a cash prize and First Place was taken by German photographer Angelika Elendt. Angelika’s image, entitled; ‘Soul Comforter’ showed Lilly, a cross breed rescue dog, working in a retirement home and was captured with a Canon 5D MkIII.
First Place in the ‘Dogs At Play’ category was won by Dutch photographer Monica van der Maden for this jaw-dropping frame of an Australian Shepherd dog running towards the camera. Entitled; ‘Dirty Dog’, the image was shot with a Nikon D850 paired with a Nikon 200mm lens.
Taking Second Place in the ‘Dogs At Play’ category was this image by UK-based photographer Zoltan Kecskes. The perfect photo shows the subject teaching a Jack Russell tricks and was taken with a Sony a7RII, paired with an 85mm prime optic.
Dogs are of course an integral part of many jobs and the ‘Dogs At Work’ category was won by Canadian photographer Dorine Scherpel, who captured this image entitled; ‘The loyal co-workers’ on an iPhone while visiting The Lake District in England.
The ‘Man’s Best Friend’ category saw another First Place win for Cat Race, who took the honour for this frame entitled; ‘Connected’. The silhouette scene shows a Munstalander with its owner and was captured with a Canon 5D MkIII.
Second Place in the ‘Man’s Best Friend’ category went to Russian photographer, Alexandra Novitskaya for this larger than life portrait of a poodle and its owner. The impressive portrait was captured using a Canon 100D and studio flash.
Taking top honours in the coveted ‘Dog Portrait’ category was this ethereal frame by Russian photographer Anastasia Vetkovskaya. The subject, a Saluki dog, seems to blend into the background and the image was shot on a Canon EOS-1D X Mark II paired with 135mm lens.
Second Place in the ‘Dog Portrait’ category was awarded to Austrian photographer, Ria Putzker. The image, entitled; ‘Mirror’, shows a Pumpkin the Catahoula Leopard Dog and the dog’s reflection in a shallow lake. Ria is only 21 years-old and the image was shot on a Nikon D850.
The ‘Rescue Dogs and Dog Charities’ is the competitions newest category and is about promoting the positive attributes of rescue dogs. Taking First Place in this category was this shot from Austrrian photographer, Anne Geier, who captured this relaxed portrait of a rescue dog named Finn.
Of particular note in the ‘Special Mentions’ category was this image of a senior Vizsla dog taken by Monica van der Maden. Entitled; ‘Til the end of time’, the breath-taking image was captured on a Nikon D850.