Written by Marjorie Dawson

A Tall Black Stranger Cat

A Tall Black Stranger Cat

Today’s selfie is a lucky chance, as photographs of cats often are. This is a local neighbourhood cat. I do not know it’s name or even if it is a he for a she.

I am calling this picture Tall Black Stranger Cat after the ‘tall dark handsome stranger’ people are often told is in their future when they visit a fortune teller at a fair! I don’t think there are any tall black cats in my Kuykendall Tarot deck, I had better check!

Tall Black Stranger Cat Portrait
The Dark Stranger – ISO 400 f6.3 1/20

How I shot the Tall Black Stranger Cat!

I saw the black cat out on the fence next door and took the chance to grab a quick portrait. I had seen it cross the garden then stop by the deck where it sat still!

Grabbing my DSLR camera I put on my 55-250 mm telephoto lens and sidled as carefully as I could in the cat’s direction. I began at a ‘safe’ distance, taking photos as I moved in. I said hello and approached at a very slow and patient pace.

  • I tried to keep the light ISO as low as I could, 400 worked for this portrait and added a small amount of dodging to lighten the deepest areas.

I wanted to experiment a bit with my camera settings, which I always encourage you to do, I tried Manual mode and also TV (S on a Nikon) with results that varied from inky black to super sharp. Aperture Priority worked best here, but always push the boundaries of your camera.

Pushing the limits of your smartphone camera too

Push your camera gently by moving in close, or zooming in from far away. Check slow-mo, time-lapse, panorama and portrait.

Use every idea you can think of – high up, low down, behind, in front. Sometimes you will be rewarded with a fabulous picture, like these cat photos of Toulouse, and Jack. If your image will not be a success it’s no big deal, you will have fun learning your smartphone’s capabilities. Some of your failures will make you laugh which is always a bonus.

Never forget to have fun with your cat photos!

Marjorie Dawson

Marjorie is a motorbike riding blogger and award winning cat photographer who believes that everyone can shoot and edit wonderful pictures they love regardless of the camera they use.

She is a Professional member of the Cat Writers Association, Kuykendall Image Award winner and published photographer at the Guardian newspaper.

15 thoughts on “A Tall Black Stranger Cat”

  1. That’s a great picture of that Dark Stranger, Marjorie😺 Thank you for bringing so much comfort on the passing of my sweet Little Binky. It feels good to know that she had so many friends and that you were one of them. Thank You🌸 Soft Pawkisses from Heaven especially for you🐾😽✨

    Reply
  2. Oh, MY! What a regal looking mancat! So very handsome.
    What a great ‘catch/capture’, too.

    Reply
  3. Gorgeous Cat, Gorgeous shot! Thanks for telling us what you did to capture it! (I need all the help and guidance I can get). Barb

    Reply

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