Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Garden Cat Peering Around a Corner

If you've been following this blog for awhile, you will probably recognize this cat. I featured her 'In the Garden' in a February post, and then again as the partially-hidden star of 'Cat Tail and Water Pail'. Here she is peering around a large white vase/planter in that same hotel garden on the island of Mykonos.

On a technical photo composition note, I'm not thrilled with having that planter in the background, directly behind the cat. I shot this photo at an aperture of f/8, which didn't help fade the background much at all. I was using a great Pentax 35mm prime lens that would have been fine at f/2, f/2.8, or f/4, so I would shoot at one or more of those apertures (to defocus the background more and therefore isolate the cat better) if I could do this one over again. Or I would shift my position a bit to the right or left, but then I might miss the classic blue shutters in the background. I'm guessing that 90% of shutters in the Greek Cyclades islands are painted this color blue, or something pretty close to this color.

Anyway, you don't always have much time to work the subject and backgrounds during these unplanned photo shoots, so sometimes you just take what you can get.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Black Cat Waiting for the Painter

I came across this cat during an early morning photo trek on Mykonos. It was a little bit after sunrise, and I wasn't having much luck finding 'good' cats to photograph until I saw this one relaxing on a white ledge in front of a painter's art studio.

As you can see near the upper right of the photo, the green door to the studio was locked. My thought was that maybe this cat was waiting for the studio to open, in hopes that the owner/operator might set out some food and water for him (this would not be at all surprising). Or maybe this guy was just resting for a while, plotting his strategy for the rest of the morning, or daydreaming about the mouse that got away, etc. Who knows?

Also, I was tempted to clean this guy up a bit in Photoshop, but then decided against it. The cat has bits of white/gray hairs mixed in with his black coat, dirt and sand on his face, and other 'beauty' issues that are so typical of the stray cats of Greece. Some are in really great shape, and others look pretty rough around the edges. This guy was in between, but still photogenic enough for me.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Cat Prowling in a Field on Naxos

I came across this cat early one morning on the Greek island of Naxos, close to our hotel. I had gotten up early to see what kind of photo opportunities might present themselves, and discovered this fellow in the field adjacent to the hotel. Judging by his low crouch position and slow forward movement, I believe he was in hunting mode, trying to secure a nice breakfast for himself.

He turned to look at me as I tried to sneak close enough for a decent shot. I was able to capture a few good images thanks to the zoom lens I had attached to my camera at the time. I took this photo at maximum telephoto zoom, 200mm, for a 35mm equivalent focal length of 300mm.

Anyway, I hope he was able to find a good bite to eat that morning. I know I did - the breakfasts at the Hotel Grotta were excellent!