March 25, 2014 at 4:34 PM ET
Who knew a dog’s snout could be so photogenic?
German photographer Elke Vogelsang did, apparently. She’s behind the popular photo series “Nice Nosing You,” which features close-up pictures of dogs' faces and their often humorous expressions.
The photo series began a few months ago after Vogelsang purchased a compact camera and decided to put it to use by photographing her favorite subjects: her three rescue dogs.
“Since I spend a large part of my spare time with my dogs, it’s only natural for me to take pictures of them,” Vogelsang told TODAY.com via email.
In an effort to do something out of the ordinary, Vogelsang took turns putting each dog in front of a dark garden shed, getting as close as she could with her camera and documenting whatever expressions her pets gave her.
What resulted was a collection of whimsical photos of her dogs liking, sniffing and staring at the camera. She began sharing the photos on her website and Facebook page, and they quickly spread around the world.
To get each image, Vogelsang often lies on the ground to get at eye-level with the pooch, then tries to get the dog to look into the camera. "During a photo session with a dog, you'll hardly ever see me standing," she said.
She also gives the dog a treat to not only help the animal stay still, but also to capture a doggie tongue or two hanging out. “The secret is liverwurst,” she said. “The dog gets a biscuit, then I get really close with my camera and snap away.”
Vogelsang is currently working on turning the series into a book, and is beginning to capture similar photographs of other animals.
“I already got pictures of horses and am working on cats,” she said. “I won’t try this with tigers or crocodiles though.”
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