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: February, 2018

Tug & Frankenstein, Doggie Siblings from San Diego!

Tuesday, February 6th, 2018

I first met Tug & Frankenstein in my studio – and although they look so similar, I immediately knew I wouldn’t have any trouble telling them apart! These lookalike doggie siblings (no, they’re not twins or biologically related – but I don’t blame you for wondering!) are best friends and polar opposites. Tug came right up to me as soon as we met; looking back, I realize that it was probably to see if I had a ball or toy of some kind on me. When he realized I was empty-handed, he confidently strolled right past me, into the studio… probably to continue the search. He’s a happy boy and always ready to lead the way! Frankie, on the other hand, wasn’t so quick to say hello: she’s a shy girl and preferred to stick close to her mom for most of our pre-session consultation. She cautiously said hello and sniffed my hand a few times… it takes a little time for her to warm up. But during those moments when she feels happy and safe, she gets the cutest smile on her face!! Her ears relax, her whole body gets wiggly and she grins from ear to ear. It’s absolutely adorable – and a total change from the “cautious” look she normally has on her face!

So we spent our session in the studio as well as visiting their favorite place, Fiesta Island. And since their dad is currently deployed, I’m excited to say that this is their first session – but we’re planning some great family photos when the whole family is back together!


Doggie siblings. Not to mention doppelgänger status. (Although I bet you can tell who’s who from my description above!)

doggie siblings picture


Oh my gosh, Tug is a rocket when he gets to play fetch on the beach! You wouldn’t think a dog that’s half French bulldog would be so athletic – but it must be the half-Jack Russell terrier coming out! Fun fact: the only way to get the ball back from Tug is to trick him, distract him, or step on the ball so hard he can’t get it out from under your foot. Otherwise you’ll never get it from him! #ballislife

doggie siblings


See what I mean about Frankie’s sweet smile?! And those floppy ears, oh my gosh… Her favorite thing to do at the beach is chase her brother as he chases the ball – she tries to bite his ears as he runs back & forth! Extracurricular hobbies include chasing birds if her brother is slowing down, and wandering off to find other families to adopt her. (She found a fisherman at Fiesta Island and I swear she wanted to stick around and help him catch fish!) But really, she’d never go anywhere without her brother, or her mom. It was so much fun to see them play together!

dog sibling


Becca, thank you so much for introducing me to your amazing dogs! And Alex, I’m looking forward to including you in our next photo session in a couple of months! :)


Bailey, the San Diego Dog

Monday, February 5th, 2018

Hey everyone! I’m participating in’s Tail of 20 Cities, celebrating my dog Bailey and our city of San Diego, along with 19 other photographers from around the world! Check out all the different city/pet portraits here: Tail of Twenty Cities Photo Journey and feel free to join the fun by posting a own picture of your own pooch representing your city with the hashtag #RoverCities!


Bailey and I visited Coronado for this project – because can you believe that view of San Diego at sunset?! Those colors make my photographer heart happy…

san diego

(Although Bailey was a little more interested in the birds that flew by…)

san diego dog with skyline

dog looking at san diego

The we headed out on the pier for a better look!

san diego dog

san diego

san diego dog picture

san diego dog with skyline

san diego dog skyline


And just for fun, a little throwback… you can tell this photo is a few years old because there’s no gray fur on her face… (sob)

san diego dog water


You know what? Why stop here?! This post has got me thinking about “quintessential San Diego” photos… and I have no shortage of those, thanks to my clients and their pups! Here are some of my favorite photos at various locations around town, modeled by just a few of my favorite dogs!


Maverick at the dog beach (well, one of the dog beaches!)

happy beach dog

Lucy, Gracie & Scarlett in Presidio Park

san diego dogs at the park

Haley & Teddy at Sunset Cliffs

san diego cliffs and dogs

Trevor & Tori and their parents – that’s San Diego (Bay Park) in the background!

san diego family

Garnet, hiking at Mission Trails

san diego hike with dog

Foxy at the botanical gardens in Balboa Park

san diego balboa park dog

Stella, on Coronado (with the Hotel Del in the background, of course)

san diego coronado dog

Candice, in North Park

san diego sign dog

 Mister Mister and his parents, out for a sunset walk on the beach.

san diego dog sunset


What a fun project – I love San Diego! And who better to explore it with than all these dogs?! Thanks for inviting me to participate, – I can’t wait to see all the other portraits from photographers around the world! :)


Chewy & Milo, Del Mar Dogs at the Beach!

Friday, February 2nd, 2018

I often wonder how my dog, Bailey, would get along with my clients’ dogs. I envision what they have in common, how they’d play together, what they’d “talk about”: their parents, their favorite kinds of treats, the squirrel they almost caught last week, etc. (It’s possible that I have an overactive imagination.)

And I’ve made a decision: Bailey is NOT allowed to meet Chewy & Milo! Want to know why?

They get to go to the beach in Del Mar every. single. day. If Bailey ever heard that was possible (instead of just going to the beach once-in-a-while like we do), I think she’d petition to be adopted by Chewy & Milo’s parents!!!

Haha – #beachlife aside, Chewy & Milo are awesome dogs, and they were incredibly fun to work with! We started our photo session in their backyard, and soon after walked down to the beach, where I got to see their boundless energy and incredible zest for life (or at least their zest for tennis balls and running through the surf). And I have to say, their moms – who are actually sisters – have done a pretty amazing job training their boys. Their recall is spot-on and I was impressed at how content the dogs were to stick nearby their moms; with a whole beach full of other dogs and people, there were distractions in every direction. But Chewy & Milo never went more than 5-10 seconds without turning around to make sure their moms were still close by and okay. I think they must know how loved they are – not to mention how good they have it!


This is Chewy – master of the adorable head tilt and one of the most easy-going dogs I’ve ever met. His favorite thing to do at the beach: chase Milo and play with the other dogs!

del mar dog


Milo’s favorite beach game, on the other hand, is FETCH! He’s an incredible athlete and will jump over waves and swim out into the ocean to get his ball back (usually with Chewy on his tail)… my favorite part of watching him play was how he’d bring the ball back to a different person every time! As if to say “okay, she threw it pretty far, let’s see what you can do!”

del mar dog at the beach


Del Mar dogs to the core.

del mar dogs


Janet, thank you for introducing me to your fun-loving boys – and for helping me support the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy! I’m excited to share the rest of our photos with you soon! :)



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