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Dogs in silhouette: Sunsets on the Oregon coast are the perfect location

    Every year, we head to the Oregon Coast for an end-of-summer getaway.

    Every year, I anticipate a gorgeous sunset on the Pacific Ocean.

    Two years ago, I went with the thought, “OK, this a great time for dogs in silhouette.”

    No, better: a family portrait in silhouette. I put the Nikon D500 on a tripod, set up a timer and voila!

    silhouette at sunset on Oregon Coast

    Immediately I saw things I wanted to change. On our 2019 vacation, though, we had clouds, rain, clouds, rain and so many more clouds.

    Another attempt at dogs in silhouette

    Oh but we were all set up for a perfect week on the Oregon coast this year. The forecast said mid-20s (sorry, guys, I cannot get away from Celsius! Mid-70s Fahrenheit) and sunshine.

    Lots of sunshine.

    Which meant sunsets.

    Glorious sunsets.

    We got one night out of three. And what a night it was.

    We arrived in Rockaway Beach two days after that vicious windstorm that ripped through the Pacific and Inland Northwest. It wasn’t so bad here in Spokane Valley, although Bella wasn’t much a fan of it.

    The power was still out all over the little town, even at our AirBnB.

    Cell towers were even inoperable and we had the worst time just getting in touch with our property manager to get the key code.

    But we had beer.

    And a beach in a less than five-minute walk from the house.

    And a sunset.

    I grabbed my camera. My husband helped, holding Bella’s leash for me so I could get her standing for the image at the top of the page.

    And he posed. My most reluctant model acquiesced, knowing how fleeting our chances at sunsets have been.

    man and dog enjoy sunset on beach in Rockaway, Oregon
    My family

    We even got so brave as to let Bella off-leash for a little free play in the water:

    Maremma sheepdog on the beach on the Oregon Coast
    Happy girl

    Oh wait … another Pupscape panorama, because I’m absolutely addicted to them.

    maremma sheepdog at sunset at Rockaway Beach, Oregon
    Those colors of the sunset!

    And I thought, “OK, I haven’t really nailed dogs in silhouette yet but there’s always tomorrow.”

    There wasn’t.

    Smoke rolls in

    The wildfires throughout California, Oregon and Washington states are terrifying, horrific and tragic. Homes, dreams and lives have been lost.

    I’ve been reading on my Maremma sheepdog Facebook groups about ranchers losing livestock and their dogs, who refused to leave their flocks behind. One rancher watched her dog fleeing the flames get hit by her brother’s truck.

    It’s heart-wrenching.

    My dog photos became so much less of a priority as we made the best of our getaway and wondered whether our favorite little town would be evacuated. Just two hours south of us, the skies of Newport were blood red from the flames.

    Even driving through Portland on our way home, knowing suburbs were being evacuated, was stressful.

    The fires continue to rage and we’re still covered in smoky air in Spokane, waiting for the promise of a wind shift and some rain this weekend, to clear the skies.

    A special Spokane dog

    If you’re a regular around here, you know my penchant for working with off-camera flash.

    I went out with a friend a couple of weeks ago to one of my favorite locations, Saltese Uplands Conservation Area in Liberty Lake.

    I wasn’t aiming for dogs in silhouette, but I had my Nikon D750 on continuous burst (are my cameras ever off continuous? erg …). In between recycle on Godox AD200 strobe, I inadvertently got a cool silhouette of this special Spokane dog.

    dogs in silhouette at saltese flats in liberty lake, washington
    Saltese Flats

    All around the circle

    As you may have guessed, the subject for this week’s worldwide pet photographers blog circle is dogs in silhouette.

    Let’s go see what work the others are up to. Start with Jessica Wasik with Bark & Gold Photography, celebrating the joy and love between Pittsburgh pets and their people.

    Click the link at the bottom of Jessica’s post to get to the next post and so on.

    When you get back here to sunsets on the Oregon coast, you know you’re home.

    Right where you belong.


    Dogs. Adventure. Outdoors. These words set Angela's heart afire. Angela Schneider, an award-winning writer and dog photographer, documents the story of you and your dog and the adventures you take together. Your portraits will be a statement piece in your home, art that will make your friends and family beg to hear its story.

    11 thoughts on “Dogs in silhouette: Sunsets on the Oregon coast are the perfect location”

    1. Those photos are amazing, especially the one of him sitting with the sunset in the background, and I agree with you with the smoke from the fires at the moment, the innocent animals losing their lives kills the beauty of the photos with that in thought. We have not done anything over here, not even park as such as the air is so bad

    2. These pictures are all so stunning. I am head-over-heels in love with the one of Bella on her own, standing in the water. She looks like she is genuinely smiling for the camera. Beautiful pictures!

    3. Those dog silhouettes are amazing. I typically don’t get the chance to take such photos with my dog because there are trees everywhere so the sunset background isn’t happening.

    4. This is my first time seeing “dogs in silhouette” and they are beautiful. I love the panoramic shots the best. I’m so sorry to hear about all the wildfires on the West Coast. And to read about the rancher and his dog in the accident breaks my heart. So sad. Fingers crossed everyone suffering gets some relief, shift in wind and lots of rain!

    5. You had beer, a dog and a camera what’s not to be happy with of your visit!

      You did have a fun time, although I have to admit those wildfires have made the news a bit here and the damage must be having a lot of impact worldwide. So much loss for so many.

      I confess that your final photo made me smile. Love me a happy fun accident!

    6. That photo of Bella at the water is beautiful. I love silhouette shots then it doesn’t matter if Plush has a face in the photo. Stay safe from the fires. I pray for a few days of good dousing rain!

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