Today’s selfie portrait is a fun portrait that lets you see how focused and crazy a leaping tabby cat can be as it jumps after a wand toy.
I love taking cat photographs and like all of you, I work to improve some of my photography skills. You might be working on better pet composition, trying out black and white photography or maybe just finding out how your camera works.
For me practice, right now, means getting a sharper action shot or a sharp closeup. Every photographer has an ongoing project and this is mine. Beta is almost in focus – a win for me.
Let me introduce Beta at Neko Ngeru Cat Adoption Cafe. He and his brother are student cats and both love to play.
- Check out the cafe’s FB link for a bundle of gorgeous photos.
The trick is to follow the cat with your camera as it leaps upward, and try to keep the cat in your viewfinder frame. This time I got lucky, sort of.
If you want to see a master at work. Check out the opening photo slideshow at the Cafe’s own site for a breathtaking image about 4/5 pictures into the slideshow. Sabbath the young black cat is caught frozen in mid air.
TOP TIP: If you click on the first image on the cafe’s front page, you will be able to scroll or swipe easily through the set of photographs. The set includes one of my photos – the cats feeding.
Cat Portrait Stop Press
While on the cafe’s front page of the cat cafe’s site, scroll down, to see my photo of Tiger Lily and cafe owner Richelle Okada. I was so pleased with the portrait that I entered it in the Cat Writers’ Association’s annual Communication Contest, and it has won a CWA Certificate.
So that you know how sweet Beta the cat is, here he is helping Paul. You may remember my previous selfie of him.
The Importance of FPS (frames per second)
After you experiment and learn while taking photographs, you begin to learn and realise different things as they challenge you. You may learn about the best place or method to focus, or how to expose your photographs better.
For me and my journey through cat action photos, it has been ‘learning about camera speed’.
I believe that if you have a fast camera it can help. Photography blogger Bill Bennet reviewed my Canon EOS 1300D and lets you know that it shoots 3 frames per second. This is not super fast but Bill believes the EOS is a great learner’s camera. The camera used by Masanori Udagawa for his winning portrait of leaping tabby tat Tiger Lily is much faster. (FB link to respect copyright).
The Virus Doesn’t Mean You Can’t Practice
Finally, the world has found that 2020 is a lot more interesting than it expected. But. You can still remain safe, and at home, and use some of your time to practice photography.
- And yes, tabbies this means with your iPhone camera!
Experiment and explore, take portraits or action shots. Grab your manual, read it, watch tutorial videos. Keep trying, especially if your cat is startled by the noise of a shutter. Shutter noise worried my cats to start with, but now they ignore me because I kept taking photos.
Sometimes my cats don’t even wake up until I rattle the treat tin. Do you have this problem when you take photos?