Pet Cat Portrait Photography West Sussex
Cats can be quite challenging subjects to photograph – mostly because they don’t respond to spoken commands, preferring to do their own thing. This may amount to settling in for a snooze, or perhaps the opposite kind of behaviour – a boisterous playfulness which is a lot of fun but a bit of a nightmare if you’re trying to take pictures! There are various tactics we can employ to get around the various character traits we encounter as pet portrait photographers. Importantly, my style of photography is quite informal and I rarely lean towards the more staged traditional captures. I prefer to observe my subjects, catching interesting moments which exemplify the personality of the pet (or person) in front of the lens.
The gorgeous little cat in the photograph below is someone I’ve grown very fond of her over the years. Anything which wanders onto my land is fair game for a photo, and if we get the kind of picture which is good enough to print, they’ll get a copy themselves as a memento. After all, good pictures are what photographers live for, and our furry “models” deserve to be rewarded for doing their bit. Photographing the pets and animals of friends and neighbours can be a nice thing to do. It also helps word get around that there’s a good photographer in the locality, so it can be a nice way of spreading the news about your existence.
My feline friend has a liking for my upstairs landing, where she likes to play and roll, and watch me while I’m working. The landing is quite light, but the light isn’t always particularly good, so for this picture I bounced a speed light over my shoulder into the corner. This gave a lovely soft wash of light, which also enabled me to get a nice sharp picture. As my subject had a tendency to move, I shot this at a wide aperture in order to get the best available shutter speed (however we can’t exceed our X sync speed when using strobe) and was able to maintain a low ISO value. Not that noise would be much of an issue in a high key image such as this. I wanted to catch her staring at me between the banisters as I sat on the stairs with my camera.