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Mr Clooney - Canine Movie Star

Lesley O'Donnell - Thursday, August 02, 2018

Pet Shots Photography, German Shepherd, Smiling

Let me introduce you to Kaiser, a most handsome 9 year old Long Haired German Shepherd.

He is a movie star!!!

Particularly known for his role in the 2017 independent Australian movie “What If It Works?” Kaiser proudly walked the red carpet with his other starring cast members when it was launched at the Lido Theatre in Hawthorn.

He also starred as himself in “Some Happy Day” which was filmed this year in St Kilda and Daylesford. He has many other film, TV and modelling credits to his name.

Pet Shots Photography, German Shepherd, Sitting

I met him when he came into my photography studio recently to update his agency head shots. It is what all stars must do - keep current, relevant and able to stand out from the crowd when casting agents are looking for talent!

Pet Shots Photography, German Shepherd, Movie Star Dog, Standing Sideways

His luxuriously long black and red coat, engaging eyes and dashing good looks have earned him the nickname “Mr Clooney”; a reference to another “Mr Clooney” many of us ladies swoon over. This canine version is now also sporting a distinguished sprinkling of silver around his face and, as with George, it has done nothing to diminish his appeal.

Pet Shots Photography, German Shepherd, Headshot

The bond between Kaiser and Merran, his adoring guardian, is obvious as soon as you meet them. They have been housemates since Kaiser was 8 weeks old and as time progressed they also unexpectedly became work colleagues.

Not only is Kaiser in demand but he also introduced Merran into the world of film and television and she now works as a handler with other dogs on various productions. So it really has been a match made in heaven for these two.

Like many large dog breeds, Kaiser was responsive to being rewarded with treats for being such a well mannered and co-operative subject in the studio. As you might imagine he was also very responsive to commands and was joy to work with.

Pet Shots Photography, German Shepherd, Standing

May he continue to be in hot demand in the film and television world.


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Studio Portraits of Diva the Dog

Lesley O'Donnell - Wednesday, March 09, 2016


This adorable dog called Diva does not reflect her name by being an actress, famous singer or performer. However, there are several descriptions of diva in the Thesaurus that seem appropriate terms to describe this adorable little Jack Russell Shi Tzu cross.

Perhaps interpreting diva to mean heroine the words ace, worthy, ideal, champion, leading lady and popular figure all seem to suggest exactly what she is to her human companions.

To me, she also earned the title of “perfect model” when she recently came to the studio for her pet photography session. 

Her photos were taken as a surprise for one of her dads and, printed in black and white, will join two other framed pieces featuring Diva with her brother Nelix who is sadly no longer here. 


Francis informed me that resting in the soft comfort of an easy chair is Diva’s absolute favourite pass time and that, at 13 years of age, it is where she spends most of her time. So it seemed only appropriate that chairs were going to be the ideal prop for her photo shoot. Diva posed beautifully with a few different combinations of chairs, cushions and blankets. 

These two images with contrasting expressions and totally different pieces of furniture were the ones Francis selected as the gifts for John.  I think he will be thrilled, don’t you?

Please contact us if you would like to give someone a portrait of their dog, cat or other pet. It makes for a very special, personal gift.


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Maltese Shih Tzu Stars in Melbourne Studio

Lesley O'Donnell - Sunday, October 25, 2015


Meeting Buddy for the first time was tinged with sadness as Kylie had already informed me that he was suffering from mouth cancer and she wasn’t sure how he was going to respond to his treatment. There was an urgency to have photos taken that captured their relationship while he looked happy and well.

What struck me with these two was how close their bond was. Buddy by name and definitely buddies by nature.


This dear wee Maltese Shih Tzu stayed close to Kylie and, while we chatted about how she wanted simple, interactive photos to remember how close their relationship was, he rested his head comfortably across her knees as if that was the sole purpose of her lap.


They constantly shared intimate exchanges such as tummy rubs and kisses. As soft as silk, Buddy’s ears were irresistible to Kylie and he adored having them stroked. It was quite possibly his favourite form of affection.


I think Buddy understood human language because when Kylie spoke to him he would look attentively at her with his nose right up to hers.

Sadly Buddy’s health declined and he crossed the rainbow bridge shortly after these photos were taken.


Buddy was more than just a dog to Kylie, and indeed her extended family. He was a friend, a cuddle buddy, an exercise partner, a playmate and the perfect foil to life’s stresses. He would always greet Kylie with an enthusiastic welcome when she returned home from work each day. I know she misses him terribly and for the short time I knew him I completely understand why.

His photos will keep him alive in Kylie’s memories forever. RIP Buddy. You brought love and light into your world.

Read stories of other pets I have photographed.


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Cavoodle Archie Poses in Melbourne Photography Studio

Lesley O'Donnell - Friday, October 09, 2015


Archie was a handsome Cavoodle with seductively long eyelashes. His quiet, gentle nature meant he didn’t need to force himself upon you but would happily accept a tummy rub, a back scratch or a fondle of his long, soft ears. He was content to just hang out with you and keep you company.


He was my friend Leanne’s dog but one for whom I felt a particular affection. I treasure this promotional portrait Leanne took of me with Archie a couple of years ago. 

Sadly, Archie recently departed this world.


A few years ago, as a personal project, I photographed him in the studio with Leanne’s daughter Emelia.


I positioned him ready to take the first photograph and walked back to my camera. When I turned around again I noticed him pulling a very comical expression as he screwed up his nose and raised it in the air. Puzzled, I assumed he must have breathed in something that was irritating him. Then I noticed he was slowly, but determinedly moving towards me. 

With much amusement, I realised that, even though they were firmly sealed in a zip lock bag, he could smell the dog treats I had in my camera bag. He just couldn’t resist the lure of the liver treats so of course I had to indulge him with the tasty tidbits and then bribe him with them during his pet photography session.


Archie was a placid dog unless he sensed possums had intruded into his backyard. Then his defensive streak would come to the fore as he alerted all around that there was foe to be warded off. He sounded fierce so I doubt that they ever came down out of the trees until he was fast asleep inside.


RIP dear Archie. You are missed.

Read stories about other pets I have photographed.


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