Getting Good Cat Photos

Here is a list of things to get in getting good cat photos. Nowadays it goes without saying, almost, that getting a decent digital camera is extremely useful in producing fine cat photographs. Camera prices have fallen. The best for greater control are DSLR cameras, Digital Single Lens Reflex cameras. With this sort of camera you see exactly what you are photographing through the lens of the camera. This helps with accurate composition. A typical compact camera screen is also available for cameras of this type.

Bengal Cat Vegas - Photo copyright Helmi Flick

Bengal Cat Vegas - Photo copyright Helmi Flick

Here's a photo of my cat Gabriel (May 2015) - bounced flash (camera mounted) was used:

Gabriel looking a bit sly

Helmi also suggests these things in getting good cat photos:

  1. Get on the Cat's Level (or get the cat on your level). We normally tower over a cat. We are giants to a cat. For cat photography to get on the same level is important for reasons of composition, form and to show off your cat to the best advantage. Obviously there are times when this rule can be broken to good effect.
  2. Get Rid of the Flash Built In to the Camera. Despite being convenient the light produced by on camera flash is unflattering and flat. Use good daylight or more directional and diffused flashlight. But a camera mounted flash unit that allows the flash light to be bounced of a wall is very useful to fill in shadows.
  3. Get the Cat and Only the Cat in the Frame. The cat should fill the frame but not be cropped unless for effect or when doing head shots, for example. Frequently people tend to allow too much dead space around the subject matter.
  4. Get the Cat's Attention. This is important to bringing life and focus into the picture and is best achieved by using a cat tease. A tease is even useful when photographing a cat's profile as it results in the cat's ears being pricked and eyes showing purpose. Whiskers can be more active too.
  5. Get Some Help. A friend can be useful in operating the cat tease referred to at 4 as it leaves you free to catch the moment. And moments are fleeting. A motor drive can help to take sequential images.
  6. Get Brutal in Throwing Out the Bad Pictures. Digital photography allows us to take a lot more pictures than with film and to weed out the bad easily. It is best to be critical and try again to raise standards.

From Getting Good Cat Photos to Helmi Flick Cat Photography

More on this at a professional level: Cat Photography with Ken and Helmi Flick

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