Beginner Cat Photo Skills

An Unusual Ginger Cat Portrait

This week’s short post is a lesson in what works, and what surprises you, and works in a different way.

I often tell beginners taking cat photos that the perfect photo is not always the image you expect, this unusual ginger cat portrait is a great example.Think about it. What kind of image might people expect as a ‘cat portrait’? A clear, sharp image of a cat, nicely posed and looking calmly at the camera. The light is as good as it can be, and focus on the cat’s eye is pin sharp, as this is where people look first.

But, sometimes the photo becomes something else.

An Unexpected Portrait

You end up with an image like this unusual capture of our senior ginger boy Jack (who I have showcased in a lovely cat portrait). Take a look and you will see what I mean.

Why is it different? As I said at the start, we expect a portrait to face front, and be sharp and clear but this is the opposite!

If you need to make the photo bigger it should enlarge if you click on it. This is something I am trying in WordPress, so please let me know if it works for you.

The Story Behind the Cat Portrait

It’s a shot of Jack’s back and tail as he walks slowly away up the garden path. More importantly, for me and the family, this is the first time that Jack has ventured out for a garden stroll in many months.

He had plodded past me before I gathered my wits and grabbed by camera. So it may not be perfect but it is a sweet memory and this is its whole point. A family member portrayed with great affection and a smile.

In its favour the image has a leading line that guides your eye to his receding figure and a sense of movement from his body. You can see the pink toe beans of one paw as he walks.

That’s why I am sharing it. It’s a lovely photo, and to me it matters. That is your first call when you take a photo. Not its perfection but the message it carries from you to the world.

Jack’s ‘Portrait’ Settings (DSLR)

  • ISO 800
  • 180 mm lens
  • f8
  • 1/2000

13 thoughts on “An Unusual Ginger Cat Portrait”

  1. I love this photo! It does capture an instant of the way cats move, which is included in my total fascination with everything about cats. And the pawpad! I love to see pawpads!

  2. Lovely photo and oh! So typically catlike!
    We also didn’t manage to enlarge the photo, although the Plus sign appeared.

  3. There are many sides to cats, and all beings, so it is lovely to see folk taking great pictures of a cat’s tail. After all, this style of image tells a story. Where is Jack heading and where has he been, to name but two.
    Great picture, Marjorie

  4. That is a lovely photo, and if I didn’t know I would have said it was Flynn.
    Thank you for your card/calendar which arrived yesterday. I hope you had a good New Year.
    BTW, the photo had the symbol to enlarge, but when I clicked it nothing happened.

  5. I so agree that the perfection of a photo is in the message. Well done and so very true to a kitty just out on his walk.


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