Archive for April, 2016|Monthly archive page

Photographing your pet

In Cute Dogs, Dog Photos, Photography, Taking Photos of Your Dog on April 17, 2016 at 11:30 am


I look like a supermodel dog here as I pose for the camera.

Taking photographs of your dog is something you should do, if not every day, at least every other day. Or once a week. You want to mark our growing up, our good moments (such as birthdays—mine is Dec. 20, by the way) and our interactions with other dogs, cats and people (and even the occasional bird, reptile or other creature).

To take good photos, capture us in a moment of play or when we have a smile on our faces. Cut out the extraneous background and make us the focal point. Make sure the background isn’t too busy with lots of colors, lines and objects. And make sure nothing is sticking out of our heads.

Focus on lighting and sharpness. Get rid of red eye. Capture our movement with lots of clicks. Hold the camera steady by taking a breath and holding it while you release the shutter or hit the button on your phone.

And, remember, give us treats if we’re camera shy, so that we’ll think of it as another trick we get to do for a reward. Or sneak up on us and click away, so that you get us when we are being real and ourselves (which for me is cute, cute and extra cute!).

(I recycled this blog, because I’m on dog-cation this week in honor of National Pet Day on April 11. But for me, it’s National Pet Week, and henceforth, National Pet Month. My BFF Shelley is focused on National Poetry Month, and I want to tell her, not poetry, but dog.)

Dog Poet wants invite

In Cute Dachshunds, Cute Dogs, Zoey the Cute Dachshund on April 10, 2016 at 11:30 am

Zoey3I am so excited my BFF Shelley is reading her poetry, though she’s not letting me come. It’s at the museum, and because I’m not a service dog, I can’t go, which I think is quite unfair.

Doesn’t the museum realize I’m the cutest dachshund ever?

Here’s the link to Shelley’s blog and invitation to her reading April 14 at the Loveland Museum/Gallery (I really, really should be invited!):


More specifically, here’s what she says in the blog:

Before I read my poetry, I have to do some preparation work to make sure I make the best use of my mic time.

I will be reading one of my poems, “Cranky Town,” on April 14 during the Poetic Geography: Mapping Loveland poetry event at the Loveland Museum/Gallery in Loveland, Colorado.

Poets submitted their poems, which three judges selected for a final reading and booklet, about Loveland’s buildings, streets, art and places to visit to help create a poetic geography of Loveland. The idea is to make connections to place through poetry.

The reading will be 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Loveland Museum/Gallery, 503 N. Lincoln Ave.

Both “Cranky Town” and “Snow Cougar” will be included in the booklet, which I’ll be excited to give to my parents and brother (I have a large fan club!).

The reading and booklet together help honor National Poetry Month, an annual celebration of poetry started by the Academy of American Poets in 1996 as a literary celebration of poetry and its place in society.

Anytime I give a reading, I think of my reading as a performance, remembering to look at the audience to make eye contact and making sure I don’t read too fast or in a monotone.

To give a good reading, here are some other things I’ve learned poets need to do:

  • Mark up the poem to indicate where to change voice or emphasize certain lines or ideas.
  • Enunciate all of the words in the poem, so none of the images and ideas get lost.
  • Put the poem in a large font and make the last two lines even larger to remember to not let the poem drop at the end.
  • Rehearse the poem several times, reading the work out loud and timing it to keep a good pace.
  • Remember to look up and memorize a few lines, so it is easier to connect with the audience.
  • Put emotion into the reading voice and spoken words. Make sure gesture when appropriate to add some drama to the reading.

Lastly, publicize the reading via social media, flyers and emailing friends.

Canine Poet Speaks Up About Other Poets

In Canine Poet, Canine Poetry, Poetry on April 3, 2016 at 11:30 am

ZoeyBed1This week I’m going to defer to my BFF Shelley, because she blogged about poetry.

I’ve written a couple of poems as a canine poet, but I don’t really know what to say about poetry. I do know that poetry, like green lawns, can be a thing of beauty for running and playing with words, smells and sounds.

Poetry has rhythm and meter, just like I do when I get going around the yard, chasing circles as I try to capture the sounds of birds and wildlife into the sight of friendship, but the animals usually don’t want to play with me.

From my backyard, going-on-walks and being-around-town experience, I’ve learned cats generally don’t like dogs, and dogs, which, if they’re bigger than me, don’t like me (or is it the other way around?). I bark at them to let them know I am the bigger dog, except they look at me like, Are you kidding?

As I bark, I wag my tail as Shelley says, “Zoey, that’s not how you make friends.”

So how do you make friends? I hope I can find them in poetry, or in life as I try out the sounds and beauty of language.

See Shelley’s blog at shelleywidhalm.wordpress.com at https://wordpress.com/post/shelleywidhalm.wordpress.com/1175.