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  • Writer's pictureLisa Olson

How I became a pet photographer

Updated: Sep 8, 2022

These days, when I think about it, I have come a long ways since I was young. I was bullied in school for how I looked which left me with little to no friends, this gave me insecurities, social anxiety, and depression. Not only was I bullied for my looks, I am partially deaf, have dyslexia, and a speech impediment. It's easy to say I got along with animals easier then I did with people. Dogs only showed me love and acceptance without the hurt and pain people gave me.

Lisa Olson in a field with her two dogs, a yellow lab and a husky posing for the camera. on location photo shoot in mantua utah. girl and her dogs doing a photo shoot in the summer time in tall grass.
Pet Photographer Lisa Olson

When I became an adult I got the help I needed to think differently about myself and my life. Photography brought me back from being knocked down and at the lowest point in my life. It gave me joy, took me on adventures and an opportunity to learn something new. I started with landscape photography and learned all I could on how to use my camera. It was a lot more challenging then I thought it would be but persistence paid off


grand Teton national park photo taken at sunset near the pond by photographer Lisa Olson. sunset photo reflection of grand Tetons
Landscape photo by Lisa

After learning landscape photography, I moved onto portraits which gave me a lot more to learn! I started to study lighting techniques, the art of posing people, photography set building, editing, retouching, composition, compositing, photoshop, and the list goes on and on... I found out there is a lot more to taking pictures than just pushing the button.

on location beauty portrait by Lisa Olson, on location photo shoot on antelope island with model posing for photographer. sunset photo shoot in utah with portrait photographer Lisa Olson
Beauty portrait by Lisa

I started doing creative women portraits after I found a passion for being creative and making unique headdress and designer photo shoot sets. I wanted to help women escape everyday life and do something different. I also wanted to show women how beautiful they are, because we are our own hardest critics and we don't always see what others see. I was always a very shy and socially awkward person so I know how an amazing picture could give you a big self confidence boost. I launched my first photography business Custom Design Portraits. My goal was to help others step outside their comfort zone and be creative. 

creative photo shoot with Lisa Olson, medusa handmade headdress worn during a photo shoot in studio the is located in ogden utah.
Creative portrait by Lisa

In 2020 when COVID hit, my portrait business, went out of business. This was a perfect time for me to search my heart and discover what I really wanted to do with my photography business. I decided to rebrand my business to what I have always loved and that was working with pets. Pets are a big part of my life and my family. Since pets are such a big part of my family it helped me think of my new pet photography business name, Pets R Family. I truly believe Pets R Family and belong in photos too. Pets love us unconditionally and a pet photo shoot is a great way to capture the love of your pet for all time.


beauty portrait with your dog with pet photographer Lisa Olson with pets r family located in North Ogden utah. girl with her dog doing a photo shoot, vintage white chair and props in photography photo shoot set
Beauty portraits with your dog

My life journey with all its ups and downs has helped me find my mission in life. I want to help women like me who have self confidence problems, women who would rather spend time with animals then people, and women who want to feel beautiful because we are, we just don't always see it.

lady with pink hair and dog with blue fur having a creative photo shoot with pet photographer Lisa Olson with pets r family. pastel themed photo shoot with candy props and vintage couch, beauty portrait with your pet in photography studio located in ogden utah
Creative photo shoot with your dog

Most women want to wear big fancy dresses or have a cosplay photo shoot but they don’t feel comfortable or they feel judged for doing something like that. I give them a judge free zone to be themselves and be as creative as they want to be. I challenge them not care what others think and to do it for themselves and who they want to be. It’s not just a photo shoot it’s a journey of self discovery with their dog by their side because their dog is their family.

little red ridding hood creative photo shoot with pet photographer Lisa Olson with pets r family. on location photo shoot in ogden utah during the fall with dog mom and husky.
Creative photo shoot with your dog

Thank you for taking the time getting to know more about me and why I started Pets R Family. I am excited for the new journey ahead ~ Lisa Olson 

pet photographer Lisa Olson with pets r family, located in North Ogden utah. pet photography studio with vintage furniture that offers timeless pet portraits
Lisa Olson

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