Capture the right moment—that’s the secret to success of dog photographer Christian Vieler. Whether it’s his brilliantly funny photos, his Jimdo website, or the brave step to self-employment. This is his story.


As an amateur photographer, Christian Vieler only wanted to try out his shutter speeds. He never thought that same afternoon he would be taking the first step towards a professional career.

“I had everything set up. The camera and the new flash, which I had bought especially to capture fast movements in super sharp quality. Then I realized that I didn’t have a model. I hadn’t even thought of it,” Christian says on the phone. Christian needed a model. But only he and his Labrador, Lotte, were in the studio. So, Christian put his dog in front of the camera.

“Lotte sat in front of me and looked at me with big eyes. But she didn’t move. And I wanted to capture fast movements. Then the idea came to me. In my pocket, I still had a treat. I threw it at her. She snapped at it and I pressed the button.”

A few days later Christian looked at the photos more closely. He just wanted to try out his flash system. Then he noticed how funny the pictures of Lotte looked, while she snapped greedily at the treat.

“At second glance, I found the photos quite funny. It’s as if you can see what’s going through Lotte’s head at that moment. It was so much fun taking this photo, that I started photographing my friends’ dogs as well. I uploaded the pictures on Facebook and photo-sharing platforms then didn’t think any more of it.”

Christian vieler

Then one day the phone rings. It’s a journalist from New York who saw Christian’s photos on the Internet. He thinks they’re great and wants to publish the dog photos as a series. Christian agrees. Overnight, his photos become a viral sensation.

“Suddenly I was getting calls from newspapers and news websites from all over the world. Everywhere people were looking at my photos, and I just thought: Damn, you don’t even have a website.”

Christian was working as a social media manager in an advertising agency at the time. So he knew very well that the surprising wave of attention wouldn’t last forever. Without a website, he couldn’t be found as a photographer online. So because time was pressing, Christian went for Jimdo.

“I didn’t have the time or money to hire a web designer—that’s why I tried Jimdo. I chose my favorite design, uploaded my photos, then in less than two hours I had my own website. It’s really cool what’s possible with Jimdo.”

Christian Vieler's website

Christian Vieler’s website: Here come the dogs!

 “I didn’t have the time or money to hire a web designer—that’s why I tried Jimdo. I chose my favorite design, uploaded my photos, then in less than two hours I had my own website. It’s really cool what’s possible with Jimdo.”

Christian still has his Jimdo website www.fotosfreischnauze.de and it’s more important today than ever before. Half a year ago, Christian left behind his old job and took the leap to independent photographer.

“I’ve always wanted to do something of my own. And if I inspire other people by doing something I enjoy—that’s just awesome. “

The start has been successful: Christian is constantly approached with requests through his Jimdo website. In the next few weeks, Christian will start touring Germany with his photos. He’s signed an advertising contract with a dog food manufacturer. Then in September, his first photo book will be published.

So, in the future, would you ever trade your dogs for real models? “Dogs have too many advantages: they’re never bitchy and I can pay them in sausage meat.”


What is your dream project? Have you ever created something great by accident? Not yet? Why not to start your own photography website? Let us know in the comments.