Me with my muse, Bailey!

About Allison Shamrell Photography:

Thanks for visiting my blog! My name is Allison, and I work in San Diego, CA, capturing the personalities of dogs and cats of all sizes & temperaments. I do photo sessions on location and in-studio, wherever my clients prefer! My photography style is natural, playful & soulful.

Here on my blog, I tell the stories of recent sessions and events. You might even find an insight or two into the behind-the-scenes side of my business! I hope you have fun looking around!

If you would like to receive a quick little email to let you know when I publish a new post, see the button at the bottom left of this page! Thanks! :)

619-357-6624  ~  ~  3251 Adams Avenue, Suite C, San Diego, CA 92116

Officially Voted the Best Pet Photographer in San Diego, 2014-2017, by the San Diego A-List.

Archive: October, 2016

Tyson the German Shepherd (Photo Session in San Diego)

Friday, October 21st, 2016

I have a soft spot for German shepherds. I’m not entirely sure why, to be honest with you, since I didm’t grow up with one and I’ve never even had one – but they’re some of my favorite subjects to photograph! I think it’s something about their silly, expressive personalities that live in such tough-looking, handsome bodies. They’re guard dogs & goofballs at the same time!

So when I got a call from Tyson’s mom, I was thrilled to learn that I’d be working with a German shepherd – and as she told me about their situation, I realized I wouldn’t have to wait long to meet him. You see, about a month ago, their vet informed them that Tyson only had a month or two left… and he’s only 9 years old. This unexpected news was absolutely heartbreaking to his parents, as you can imagine, and we found a date just a few days later when we could both rearrange our schedules to get together. The good news is that with some alternative therapies, Tyson has been doing really well! I’m so glad they found the best treatment for him, and truthfully, you can’t even tell that he’s sick! (This is the same dog who, years ago, was diagnosed with Lyme disease so severe that he shouldn’t have even been able to stand up – and yet he seemed completely fine! The bloodwork was the only indicator of his sickness, since he was just as energetic & cheerful as usual! Ha!) So Tyson is no stranger to health challenges, but he’s also one of the toughest dogs I’ve ever met, hands down. This dog is a fighter, and I felt so privileged to meet him – because something tells me he’s got plenty of life yet to live.


Does this look like a sick dog to you? Nope, didn’t think so, haha! We started our session by playing fetch at the park, since Tyson will do ANYTHING for his tennis ball! (It’s even better than treats!)

german shepherd


Oh, that handsome German shepherd smile. Tyson, you are gorgeous.

german shepherd smiling


And then we headed to Coronado Beach, one of Tyson’s favorite places to play! We had the beach almost entirely to ourselves, and it was so much fun playing in the surf with this happy boy.

german shepherd beach



Jessica & Matt, thank you for introducing me to your incredible dog – he’s a champion. I had a great time with all of you! :)


Portraits for Pooches: a Mini Photo Session Event for the San Diego Humane Society!

Monday, October 17th, 2016

It’s that time of year again! November means the next Portraits for Pooches event, mini studio pet photography sessions that benefit a local San Diego charity! I can’t wait to meet dozens of local dogs for quick and fun photo sessions – so they can grace their families’ Christmas cards this year!

And better yet: this is a fundraiser for the San Diego Humane Society! $50 from every session will be donated to help homeless animals find their forever families. (Attendees can even bring a bag of dog food to receive a complimentary 8×10″ fine art print from their session, as well!)

These 15-minute photo sessions are long enough to create at least 10 frame-worthy portraits, and yet they’re short enough to keep the attention of any dog! (And you can feel free to jump in for a few family photos, too!)

Here are all the details:

pet photography mini sessions

Everyone is already walking away with their favorite photo as a high-resolution digital image, ready to be printed on Christmas cards & gifts – but what if you end up with TWO favorite photos? Or three, or four?

Here’s the info for any additional products, which are completely optional but entirely available:

mini-session pricing

Remember: registration for Portraits for Pooches opens on Wednesday, October 19, 2016!

There’s a limited number of time slots available, so call 619.257.6624 to reserve your spot!


North Park Pet Photography Session with Macaroon & Spreckles!

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

When I meet dogs named Macaroon and Spreckles, I just know they’re going to be sweet! :)

I had the opportunity to photograph these two adorable dogs during a recent North Park pet photography session, and they were absolutely wonderful to work with! They’re both Lhasa apso mixes, and our afternoon was relaxed, low-key, and full of cookies… they’re definitely food-motivated, haha! Old man Macaroon is a sweet dog who prefers to live life in the slow lane these days, and that’s fine by me – he was constantly by my side if I had the treat bag in my hands, and incredibly patient too. Spreckles is a younger dog and he’s got quirks for days; this goofy pup is definitely a unique character! His favorite things are also cookies, and his “babies” (toys) around the house, but sometimes he just likes to hang out under the bed. Hey Spreckles, whatever floats your boat!

We started our photo session at their beautiful & colorful house in North Park, which (I’m convinced) has the biggest & best backyard in the whole neighborhood! So we relaxed on the back patio for a while…

north park pet photography


Spreckles has the most incredible, soulful eyes… he may have a few silly personality quirks but he also seems to have moments of deep thoughtfulness, too. Such a fascinating subject to photograph!

north park pet photography


And then we headed to a secret location in Balboa Park – shhh, I can’t tell you where! – and let the dogs shine in living color! Macaroon’s sweet old smile just gets me…

north park pet photography session


Cindy, I had such a great time with you & your dogs! Thank you for a lovely afternoon, and for taking us to my new favorite spot in Balboa Park, haha! Talk to you soon! :)


Riley the Mini Goldendoodle Puppy in Encinitas, CA

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Are you ready for your day to get a whole lot better? Let me introduce you to Riley!

This little ball of fluff is an 8-week-old mini goldendoodle puppy, and I was so thrilled to meet her on her second day at home (!) with her new family in Encinitas! Everything in the world is brand new to her at this point, so I took my time introducing myself (and my camera) to her – but she’s an outgoing, confident little puppy, and she was happy to play with me all afternoon! (Well, let’s be honest, after only about 45 minutes she was falling asleep in her new family’s arms, haha!) So we had a lovely little photo session, and I was so honored to document this little beauty’s entrance into her new family’s world. And truthfully, I think Riley has hit the puppy lottery – her family is completely in love with her already, and she has a grassy yard, a spacious & comfy home, and I even spotted a pool in the backyard to enjoy (once she’s big enough to swim, of course). Can I come back in my next life and be Riley? :)


We started our photo session indoors, relaxing on the bed and playing on the living room floor. Riley already has a few favorite toys!

goldendoodle puppy photo


And then we headed outside for a bit of playtime in the grass! Riley is still figuring out the “leash” concept… so I decided to digitally remove the leash in this photo, since I think this little girl is going to have a serious independent streak, haha!

goldendoodle puppy


Okay, one more photo, just because I can’t resist. That is one cute puppy butt!

goldendoodle puppy butt



Deb & Mike, thank you for introducing me to the cutest little goldendoodle puppy I’ve ever seen (and the rest of your family too)! I’m excited to see you again soon! :)


Tierrasanta Pets – Obi, Bender & Fry! (Photo Session)

Friday, October 7th, 2016

I was so thrilled to meet this sweet family and ALL of their pets recently! 2 people, 2 cats, and 1 dog – that’s a recipe for a wonderful photo session, and Obi, Bender & Fry definitely didn’t disappoint!

These Tierrasanta pets are all so unique – and if you’re familiar with the show Futurama, you already have an insight into Bender & Fry’s personalities, haha! They’re gorgeous black kitties who are social, outgoing and love to be outside. I got to play with them and see their demure yet cheerful personalities for myself, and although they weren’t big fans of the “family photo” idea, they struck plenty of cute poses around their backyard for me! They’re also pretty patient around their younger (but much bigger) brother, Obi, the newest addition to the family! Obi is an 11-month-old goofball, a mutt with about 27 different breeds in his heritage (okay, more like 6, but still!) and show-stoppingly handsome good looks. He was constantly bumping into things, acting generally silly, and keeping a constant eye on the treat bag during our session, which meant that I never stopped laughing at his antics! He’s a sweetheart of a dog, and his parents are ridiculously lucky to have found him – or is it the other way around?


I may be wrong, but I think this is Bender! (The cats are practically identical so forgive me for making a guess here, gah!)

cat in tierrasanta, san diego


And my instincts say this is Fry… cheesing it up for the camera.

cat and dog photography


And this big boy is Obi! We had a great time walking around the neighborhood for Obi’s portion of the session, and he enjoyed showing me around his turf (especially the rabbit-chasing area).

dog in tierrasanta


Okay, just one more of Obi, just because this photo does a better job of capturing his in-your-face enthusiasm for life!

dog tierrasanta close-up


Brittany and Morgan, thank you so much for introducing me to all your gorgeous animals! I can’t wait to see you both again soon! :)



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