Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer

Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer dog photography for commercial campaigns + private collections by Hannele Lahti
VA / DC + beyond I love how dogs see the world. To a dog, a ball is not just a ball.

That shiny, slobbery plaything is an opportunity, a challenge, a steadfast companion. In my dog photography—often down on all fours—I strive to glimpse life on their level: A bowl of food is love and comfort. A warm bath is the ultimate back rub. A knock at the door is a chance to prove courage and loyalty. Therein capturing the reality of dog ownership—a reminder to enjoy the small things. My jou

That shiny, slobbery plaything is an opportunity, a challenge, a steadfast companion. In my dog photography—often down on all fours—I strive to glimpse life on their level: A bowl of food is love and comfort. A warm bath is the ultimate back rub. A knock at the door is a chance to prove courage and loyalty. Therein capturing the reality of dog ownership—a reminder to enjoy the small things. My jou

Operating as usual

Last chance for holiday gift cards! 📸🐶🎁☃️ Order by Dec 17th to receive a physical card and session guide by Christmas! 🎅...
12/14/2021

Last chance for holiday gift cards! 📸🐶🎁

☃️ Order by Dec 17th to receive a physical card and session guide by Christmas!

🎅Order by Dec 23rd for e-cards.

Pick one up here: https://clients.adogphotographer.com/-/galleries/gift-cards

Image: Gibson | Virginia, 2021

Last chance for holiday gift cards! 📸🐶🎁

☃️ Order by Dec 17th to receive a physical card and session guide by Christmas!

🎅Order by Dec 23rd for e-cards.

Pick one up here: https://clients.adogphotographer.com/-/galleries/gift-cards

Image: Gibson | Virginia, 2021

We're back from our adventure in western NC last week and can't wait to share more about all the great hikes we went on!...
12/06/2021

We're back from our adventure in western NC last week and can't wait to share more about all the great hikes we went on!

But first — Join us SUNDAY Dec 12 / 10am for our last group hike of 2021 at Mount Vernon, Virginia!

Get the deets & RSVP via the link below. We hope to celebrate the holidays with a stroll around GW's estate with you. (Holiday attire encouraged🎄✨☃️)

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/travelwithollie-december-holiday-stroll-registration-171212861277?aff=ebdsoporgprofile

📸Ollie + David | Devil's Courthouse, Blue Ridge Parkway | 2021

We're back from our adventure in western NC last week and can't wait to share more about all the great hikes we went on!

But first — Join us SUNDAY Dec 12 / 10am for our last group hike of 2021 at Mount Vernon, Virginia!

Get the deets & RSVP via the link below. We hope to celebrate the holidays with a stroll around GW's estate with you. (Holiday attire encouraged🎄✨☃️)

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/travelwithollie-december-holiday-stroll-registration-171212861277?aff=ebdsoporgprofile

📸Ollie + David | Devil's Courthouse, Blue Ridge Parkway | 2021

Been a crazy few weeks of shoots, editing and emails with little energy for social posts. Anyone else feeling the exhaus...
10/22/2021

Been a crazy few weeks of shoots, editing and emails with little energy for social posts. Anyone else feeling the exhaustion of always needing to have something to say/post? I’m with you.

Anyhoo—here's Kell, the gorgeous Icelandic Sheepdog from Maine, to light up your Friday. I just adore the muted tones & soft light in this image. 💕
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Enjoy your weekend, friends.
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#lifewithdogs #animalphotographer #doglifestyle #lifewithpets #ilovemyjob #dogsarethebest #petphotography #doglife #commercialdogphotographer #lifewithdogs #girlsbestfriend #wethedogsdc #mainedogs #dogsofmaine #portlandmaine #portlanddogs #icelandicsheepdog #dogportrait

Been a crazy few weeks of shoots, editing and emails with little energy for social posts. Anyone else feeling the exhaustion of always needing to have something to say/post? I’m with you.

Anyhoo—here's Kell, the gorgeous Icelandic Sheepdog from Maine, to light up your Friday. I just adore the muted tones & soft light in this image. 💕
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Enjoy your weekend, friends.
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#lifewithdogs #animalphotographer #doglifestyle #lifewithpets #ilovemyjob #dogsarethebest #petphotography #doglife #commercialdogphotographer #lifewithdogs #girlsbestfriend #wethedogsdc #mainedogs #dogsofmaine #portlandmaine #portlanddogs #icelandicsheepdog #dogportrait

Limited Edition | Autumn Pop-Up 🍁🐾📸Saturday, November 6, 2021 | 3-6pm — 2 Spots left! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀Join me to celebrate fall...
10/08/2021

Limited Edition | Autumn Pop-Up 🍁🐾📸
Saturday, November 6, 2021 | 3-6pm — 2 Spots left!
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Join me to celebrate fall with a pop-up photo session at a beautiful park in northern Virginia! Learn more + book your spot:
https://clients.adogphotographer.com/limited-edition-pop-up

Limited Edition | Autumn Pop-Up 🍁🐾📸
Saturday, November 6, 2021 | 3-6pm — 2 Spots left!
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Join me to celebrate fall with a pop-up photo session at a beautiful park in northern Virginia! Learn more + book your spot:
https://clients.adogphotographer.com/limited-edition-pop-up

Quick favor: I'm photographing a 2022 calendar for City Dogs & City Kitties Rescue and need YOU to help decide who will ...
09/30/2021

Quick favor: I'm photographing a 2022 calendar for City Dogs & City Kitties Rescue and need YOU to help decide who will be in it! Go to the link below to vote! Each vote is a buck and all money raised will benefit the great work the rescues does to save pets throughout the southeast. Voting ends Friday night.
https://www.gogophotocontest.com/citydogsandcitykittiesrescue

You can also pre-order a calendar because you know you want one. 🌟

The final images will feature a portrait of each contest winner composited on a vintage pattern background from the Victoria & Albert Museum in London!! 🤯🥰😊 I'm thrilled they granted us permission to use their amazing archive of pattern designs for this project! Unbelievable. Let's just say, their designs are SO MUCH better than this star pattern I mocked up as a proof of concept.

A huge thank you and shout out to The LINE Hotel DC for hosting our upcoming photo shoot! You guys are the best. 🐶📸🐱

Sept #TravelsWithOllie Hike | Sky Meadows State Park 🐾We had a fabulous hike yesterday in the Virginia countryside—meado...
09/13/2021

Sept #TravelsWithOllie Hike | Sky Meadows State Park 🐾

We had a fabulous hike yesterday in the Virginia countryside—meadows, forests, challenging climbs, amazing views, great company and a little stint on the AT. Sunday funday, indeed. 🌟
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I'm having so much fun organizing these monthly adventures. If you're in the DMV and want to join us, check out the fall line-up here: https://www.eventbrite.com/o/hannele-lahti-dog-photographer-17172930892

How to Grieve for a Very Good Dog
09/10/2021
How to Grieve for a Very Good Dog

How to Grieve for a Very Good Dog

When my yellow Lab died last spring, I was flattened by an overwhelming sadness that’s with me still. And that’s normal, experts say, because losing a pet is often one of the hardest yet least acknowledged traumas we’ll ever face.

New Work Wednesday | Remi, the rescue pup 🥰📸 Manassas National Battlefield, Virginia | Aug 2021Now booking sessions for ...
09/01/2021

New Work Wednesday | Remi, the rescue pup 🥰
📸 Manassas National Battlefield, Virginia | Aug 2021

Now booking sessions for fall!
https://clients.adogphotographer.com

Because they do this every time you come home. Happy #NationalDogDay. 🐾🥰🐶⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀#TBT to our originals, Annie + Murray....
08/26/2021

Because they do this every time you come home. Happy #NationalDogDay. 🐾🥰🐶
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#TBT to our originals, Annie + Murray. 💓🌈🌈

Because they do this every time you come home. Happy #NationalDogDay. 🐾🥰🐶
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#TBT to our originals, Annie + Murray. 💓🌈🌈

Happy #WorldPhotographyDay! 📸I've wanted to be a photographer since I was about 12 years old. My story is not unique – I...
08/19/2021

Happy #WorldPhotographyDay! 📸

I've wanted to be a photographer since I was about 12 years old. My story is not unique – I found my love for photography on family road trips and in the pages of @natgeo magazines. What is unique, I suppose, is sticking with it when nobody (including myself at times) thought I could actually make a living from it.

20 years in and I can say perseverance paid off. I've had my work repped by Nat Geo and exhibited internationally. I've traveled near and far, partnered with wonderful non-profits and institutions and played with the most gorgeous puppies around. I've carved out a niche in the industry that celebrates my personal interests and continues to challenge me daily.

It hasn't been easy. There have been low low's and high high's but at the end of the day, I can say I've built my life and career around something I love to do every single day. If you find something you love, go after it with all you've got. Make mistakes, fail frequently, keep learning and press forward.

📸 by my friend and fellow badass photographer Julie Socher

Happy #WorldPhotographyDay! 📸

I've wanted to be a photographer since I was about 12 years old. My story is not unique – I found my love for photography on family road trips and in the pages of @natgeo magazines. What is unique, I suppose, is sticking with it when nobody (including myself at times) thought I could actually make a living from it.

20 years in and I can say perseverance paid off. I've had my work repped by Nat Geo and exhibited internationally. I've traveled near and far, partnered with wonderful non-profits and institutions and played with the most gorgeous puppies around. I've carved out a niche in the industry that celebrates my personal interests and continues to challenge me daily.

It hasn't been easy. There have been low low's and high high's but at the end of the day, I can say I've built my life and career around something I love to do every single day. If you find something you love, go after it with all you've got. Make mistakes, fail frequently, keep learning and press forward.

📸 by my friend and fellow badass photographer Julie Socher

NEW WORK | Kell, the Icelandic Sheepdog📸 in Portland, Maine
08/11/2021

NEW WORK | Kell, the Icelandic Sheepdog
📸 in Portland, Maine

06/28/2021

PSA: It's a blazing hot week out there! 🔥🔥🔥

With the 4th of July weekend coming up, we wanted to take a moment and remind all of our awesome pet parents that heatstroke is a very real thing! Please be careful!

It's important that you...

☀️ Keep your pets inside! But if they need to be out, make sure they have access to shade and fresh water.

☀️ Restrict outdoor exercise during the day! For longer walks, try to do it in the evening when it's cooler.

🚫 PLEASE DO NOT leave your pet in a hot car under any circumstances. The temperature inside of a car can jump up 30 degrees, even if it's left in the shade or with the windows cracked open.

Stay cool out there, everyone! 😎

Those moments right before impact. 😳It's a hazardous job but someone's gotta do it.
06/28/2021

Those moments right before impact. 😳
It's a hazardous job but someone's gotta do it.

Those moments right before impact. 😳
It's a hazardous job but someone's gotta do it.

New Work | Rufus the Bernedoodle, Washington, DC, June 2021 🐶📸💓We're slowly getting back to full service thanks to vacci...
06/22/2021

New Work | Rufus the Bernedoodle, Washington, DC, June 2021 🐶📸💓

We're slowly getting back to full service thanks to vaccinations and low case counts in the DMV. Private commissions are now available indoors for clients who are fully vaccinated. Contact me for more info.

New Work | Rufus the Bernedoodle, Washington, DC, June 2021 🐶📸💓

We're slowly getting back to full service thanks to vaccinations and low case counts in the DMV. Private commissions are now available indoors for clients who are fully vaccinated. Contact me for more info.

Sending so much love to the Biden family today 💓
06/19/2021

Sending so much love to the Biden family today 💓

Our hearts are heavy today as we let you all know that our beloved German Shepherd, Champ, passed away peacefully at home. He was our constant, cherished companion during the last 13 years and was adored by the entire Biden family. Even as Champ’s strength waned in his last months, when we came into a room, he would immediately pull himself up, his tail always wagging, and nuzzle us for an ear scratch or a belly rub. Wherever we were, he wanted to be, and everything was instantly better when he was next to us. He loved nothing more than curling up at our feet in front of a fire at the end of the day, joining us as a comforting presence in meetings, or sunning himself in the White House garden. In his younger days, he was happiest chasing golf balls on the front lawn of the Naval Observatory or racing to catch our grandchildren as they ran around our backyard in Delaware. In our most joyful moments and in our most grief-stricken days, he was there with us, sensitive to our every unspoken feeling and emotion. We love our sweet, good boy and will miss him always.

We had a fabulous time hiking around Great Falls National Park yesterday for our first #travelswithollie hikes of the ye...
06/14/2021

We had a fabulous time hiking around Great Falls National Park yesterday for our first #travelswithollie hikes of the year! I was too busy chatting to take many pics and I missed a critical turn so we had to do an extra steep climb but 🤷‍♀️
Thank goodness for vaccinations and awesome people. It was so great to be back!

Join us in July with a stroll at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens during the lotus bloom! FRIDAY July 9 @ 8:30am
Sign up here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/travelswithollie-july-hike-registration-153532900037

We had a fabulous time hiking around Great Falls National Park yesterday for our first #travelswithollie hikes of the year! I was too busy chatting to take many pics and I missed a critical turn so we had to do an extra steep climb but 🤷‍♀️
Thank goodness for vaccinations and awesome people. It was so great to be back!

Join us in July with a stroll at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens during the lotus bloom! FRIDAY July 9 @ 8:30am
Sign up here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/travelswithollie-july-hike-registration-153532900037

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤🤍🤎
06/02/2021

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤🤍🤎

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤🤍🤎

I just realized it’s the last week of Photography Month so I thought it would be fun to spend a little time sharing a fe...
05/25/2021

I just realized it’s the last week of Photography Month so I thought it would be fun to spend a little time sharing a few of my favorite images along some info behind them.
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Here's Sebastian from a shoot in 2019. I like this image for its simplicity. White dog on white background with a bright pink tongue and glistening eyes/nose. I also love his sweet expression ☺️
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White on White can be tricky to pull off well. You don't want to blow out the highlights so much that there's no detail in the fur. It's also very easy to get a muddy image with low contrast and no deep blacks.

In order to keep the background white you have to overexpose it by about 1-2 stops. Then adjust the key light so it rakes across the dog at a 45 angle and feather and raise the fill light to soften the shadows a bit. Final adjustments are done in in Lightroom. 📸

I just realized it’s the last week of Photography Month so I thought it would be fun to spend a little time sharing a few of my favorite images along some info behind them.
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Here's Sebastian from a shoot in 2019. I like this image for its simplicity. White dog on white background with a bright pink tongue and glistening eyes/nose. I also love his sweet expression ☺️
⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

White on White can be tricky to pull off well. You don't want to blow out the highlights so much that there's no detail in the fur. It's also very easy to get a muddy image with low contrast and no deep blacks.

In order to keep the background white you have to overexpose it by about 1-2 stops. Then adjust the key light so it rakes across the dog at a 45 angle and feather and raise the fill light to soften the shadows a bit. Final adjustments are done in in Lightroom. 📸

Good news: I'm starting up the #TravelsWithOllie hikes again for small groups! This summer we'll hit up Great Falls Nati...
05/07/2021

Good news: I'm starting up the #TravelsWithOllie hikes again for small groups! This summer we'll hit up Great Falls National Park, Kenilworth Gardens during the lotus bloom and Prince William Forest for our fun summer hike & doggie dip.

Learn more | Sign up: https://bit.ly/3b9Lu49
Hikes are always free but RSVP's will be required.

I hope you can join us! 🥾🐾🥾

Good news: I'm starting up the #TravelsWithOllie hikes again for small groups! This summer we'll hit up Great Falls National Park, Kenilworth Gardens during the lotus bloom and Prince William Forest for our fun summer hike & doggie dip.

Learn more | Sign up: https://bit.ly/3b9Lu49
Hikes are always free but RSVP's will be required.

I hope you can join us! 🥾🐾🥾

Happy #NationalPetParentDay! I think we can all agree that the past year has been made much sweeter by the pets in our l...
04/26/2021

Happy #NationalPetParentDay! I think we can all agree that the past year has been made much sweeter by the pets in our lives, yes? @ Washington D.C.

I started this week with Pepper's Gotcha Day and tomorrow will celebrate Ollie's! Some of you know Ollie's story, some m...
04/22/2021

I started this week with Pepper's Gotcha Day and tomorrow will celebrate Ollie's! Some of you know Ollie's story, some may not. Either way, I LOVE to tell it:
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Seven years ago as I was leaving a photo retreat in North Carolina, I pulled out of the driveway, looked right and gasped.
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"Wha? Is that a Boston terrier running at me??? ...
OMG yes, yes it is!!"
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I immediately pulled on my dog rescuer pants and slowly got out of the car. At first he ran past me but as soon as I sat on the ground, he pivoted, ran toward me and jumped in my lap.
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Let's just say my heart melted right then and there.
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After summoning a friend for help, we took him door-to-door to see if he belonged to anyone nearby. Nada…no one had even seen him before.
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I googled a local vet to see if he was a patient and scan him for a microchip since he didn't have any tags. Again nothing.
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Knowing that rural shelters in the south are not always great places for wayward pups, I called the Boston terrier rescue I adopted my dogs from for help. They jumped into action and set up a foster home in Asheville, NC for me to leave him while they worked on the Lost & Found listings. I dropped him off and assuming I wouldn't see him again, cried as I backed out of the driveway.

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Three weeks later, the rescue called me to let me know that no one came forward and he was going to be put up for adoption. I told David (husband) and he said, "well I guess we need to go get him." (Best husband ever). And we did.
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If you've read this far, wouldn't you agree that Ollie might just be my soul dog? I think so.
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Ironically, tomorrow is also #lostdogawarenessday. #meanttobe
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Happy Gotcha Day, my sweet, sweet boy. 💓
(Swipe >>> the last photo is from the day we met) 🥰

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Washington D.C., DC

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Our Story

My journey with animals began as a child in the wilds of Maine, surrounded by balsam forests and freshwater lakes. I was often exploring the countryside and playing fetch at the lake with one of my family's loyal Chesapeake Bay Retrievers. As adult, my love affair with dogs grew through Annie, my intensely brave and loving Boston Terrier rescue, followed shortly after by her adopted brothers Murray and Ollie, who are just as full of life. They inspired me to use my passion for photography to tell their stories.

My life in photography has been a wild ride. In addition to the chaotic world of canines, I pursue projects and assignments dedicated to my intense love of the natural world and exploration. I'm a contributing photographer to National Geographic Image Collection and a photo graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology. When I’m not making photos or chasing after the pups, I enjoy spending time in the great outdoors and practicing my downward dogs.

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A festive Sunday hike at Mount Vernon with Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer
NEW BLOG POST! Ever wondered how pet photographers take such incredible photos? We could all use a few pointers on getting that picture perfect image! We reached out to one of our favorite professional dog photographers, Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer, and she gave us a few tips that will help you get better pictures of your pet no matter what camera you have. You can read the blog post here: https://www.wethedogsdc.org/post/4-tips-for-taking-great-photos-of-your-dog
Thank you Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer for playing far more than a “small role” in the Bipawtisan March! We love this post and you! ❤️
Do you know why we love Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer? She truly loves and supports rescue pups. ❤️ This is the third year in a row that she has donated her time to photograph the Bipawtisan March, and she hosts fundraising mini shoots on her own as well, so you know she truly cares about supporting animal rescue efforts! We’re always blown away by how well she captures the real moments during an event, and we are so grateful for her being willing to donate her time! Make sure to check out all of her photos on our website at www.bipawtisanmarch.com
We want to say a HUGE thank you to the photographers who volunteered their time to document the Bipawtisan March this year: Hannele Lahti :: dog photographer, Aaron Wong, and Go Fetch Photography. So much goes into photography that you don’t often get to see (equipment, lighting, editing, sheer freaking skill, etc) and we’re so grateful for their time!! ❤️ We will be releasing all of the photos on our website later this week so stay tuned!!
Hannele is AMAZING. She has gotten such wonderful pictures of my dogs. I don't know how she does it, especially with the skirmy dogs. I'm truly impressed with Hannele's talent and am really grateful for the priceless pics.