It recalls our relationship with Russia. Here and now it is among my older cats and Mozart, the new. (pardon the mess) Mozart is ready to pounce upon the two Maine cats. They are alert and wary. Mozart jumped up. He jumped down. No fur was lost. Everyone remains in a state of high alert. Mozart remains a kitten in search of a bit of acceptance and affection. Willow? Mostly they orbit but do not interact. I fear that Mozart is an “only cat” in a room full of cats. He walks about the house “chirping” and hoping to make a friend. At this point the best I have is less hissing when Mozart enters a room. BTW, how often do you get an opportunity to get three cats in the same picture frame? Lucky!

It’s all flash (photography) for different reasons. I need the very fast shutter effect. Movement would kill my shots. The room is otherwise too dark to get a good image. It’s ain’t great but a least it’s less worse. Posing a cat on a table is less worse unless you factor in the squirming. Flash, sometimes it is necessary. I have it, and, use it.


Here is the end shot. Ah! Ha!

After all you the reader are the end user. I decided today was the day for a family pic. It ain’t easy. First you clear the table. Oh dear! My my! Then set up the tripod. Get out the big camera, the flash, and the remote. Catch each cat and pose with them. Ha ha! Eight cats! It’s a good trick to find and then catch them all. But after all, I am the human. No cats and no humans were injured in the production of this photo.

There! Easy! It took 109 shots and a couple hours. I can do it again. Would you want to? Yes, yes, I realize we’re gonna need a bigger table. …’cause I saw this cute orange cat in the pet store…

And yes, I used Photoshop.

A moment ago…

Cats orbit one another. They never sit together. Rarely. Maybe when they were kittens… but never now.

Spice and Feather gathered upon my desk behind my computer and gazed at the street below. Grand! Camera! Get a shot! Any shot. Good?

I was editing. Really! Downloading. I download from three or four cameras at the same session. I switched on the flash because of the backlighting. You have to use flash or the cats will be severely under exposed. Got it? I checked the shots – “chimped.’ Ok?!

I continued downloading. Then I backtracked. I usually wait to the end of the day before downloading in order to keep track of what is ready to edit and not. I could not find these shots. I checked three memory cards. I had reviewed them a moment ago. Oh boy! Dementia! Bruce Willis was on my mind. Colleen reminded me of my concussion but a day ago. I wuz losin’ it! Oh boy! Damn and double damn?! So, where did these come from? Right straight from the memory card I shot a moment ago. Am I repeating myself?

Bottom line: found! You have to use flash. The backlighting was too much. Lucky for me the cats were patient and said go ahead, set up, and we will wait till you are ready…. I wish my memory were as good.

Pecking order

Not many people have seven cats. Don’t ask. Colleen arrived with three. I am helpless in the pet store whenever we buy food. Call it “tryouts.” A lot of cats fail. Some do not.

Our merry band gets along after a fashion. There is no battle for food or water but there is a pecking order. Elle is our oldest cat and the cat most afraid of her bigger companions. Peas is one of the younger cats, our “victim” picked upon by the older cats. Nutley is a “tank.” He is large, no one picks upon him. Tillie is crazy. We’re all afraid of her. Dare I mention Colleen adores her?

Yes, our merry band keeps us entertained, alert, and on our toes to spot any altercation.

Timing and patience. Ya gotta be there with a camera. Do cats get bored? Or do they get used to me with camera in hand? I wait. It is not as though I can ask Tillie to be fierce?! And, no, they do not look into my lens with adoring gazes. I have to be patient. Mostly, my cats are looking elsewhere or they are asleep. Hey! It ain’t easy….


Twas the night before…. It was but a year ago…. eight cats! Seven now. Ray is gone too soon. Sudden death. He died in my arms. CPR was unsuccessful on my beloved cat. At least he did not die alone. Too soon. Christmas is a time of celebration. Colleen and I celebrate each day our good fortune to have found one another in this life and to share the marvelous highs … and the lows. Nutley remains beloved. We cherish each day. It all means so much more lately when I hug Colleen. Unspoken. Beloved. Peace on earth, good will toward men. All the best to you and yours.

Family group. Who knew it would be so poignant a year later. Fun. Sure. Documentary. I did not know going into this season there would only be seven cats. Hold them close and hug them tight.

One shot

You think it’s easy? Does it look easy? Work? Does it make you shudder? Cooperation? Any??!!!

Even Colleen was reluctant… till I told her she could wear her favorite dress. Try to get a squirming cat to look at the camera. Flash helps – fast shutter speed. A pose? Just get the cats with their eyes open and looking forward. No cats were harmed in the making of this picture. We got it pretty much down to routine. I set up a tripod, so the perspective does not change. I load batteries in the flash. Each cat is wrangled into position on the table. The order is not important. They all fit side by side according to expression. Done.

Ha ha. Jen pointed out we got photobombed. Spice was in our picture over Colleen’s left shoulder. Yes, I do not have eyes in the back of my head. Hey, I got a shot! Let’s not get too picky.

Luck, persistence, and a lot of space on the memory card…


A mother knows. Colleen could look at the cats and know them easily. For me it was harder. I needed telltale markings. Ray had a complete white fur collar around his neck as opposed to Nutley who otherwise was identical. So, now you know.

Composition, focus, subject, all are important. Props – a box, Christmas ornaments – give context. There is certainly cuteness built in. Even if it ain’t perfect it is worth a smile in wistful remembrance.


Life gives you lemons – take ‘em. Yeah yeah, it is – make lemonade.

I shoot my cats. They rarely pose together. By the time I have a camera in hand, the moment has passed. I try. I fail. Sometimes I get a shot. While never perfect I consider myself always practicing. I’m better one on one. Of course! But two is better! I got a lotta lemons.


It ain’t easy photographing your cat in its carrier. Focus, what does your camera focus upon? It knows and it does. How? Miraculous! Outta the box. Done.

Black cat, photographing is a nightmare. Ha ha. A pun? Tillie had one eye open. Otherwise it is an expanse of black fur without much detail.

Upon return from our recent trip, it would appear that my skill – assisted by the camera – has not diminished too much.            

Favorite cat (?)

I got seven – cats. Pick one? Ha!

I am Feather’s. I am her human. She, is, my cat. Colleen swears it. I do not deny it. We all got our favorites. (Fortunately I have only one wife.) I am “dead ham” for that thought. But seriously, I did not choose Feather. She chose me in the pet store when she sank her kitten claws into me and said I’m coming home with you.

We got a serious relationship with unconditional love. I have to give her medication. It’s liquid. She sees me coming and hides. She holds it in her mouth to spit back out as soon as I let her go. She comes and climbs on me to sit and purr forever in my lap. She forgives me when I “wallow” her. yes, she is a special cat.

Her sister is identical. I can’t tell them apart looking at their faces. I know them by their paws. I know them by their purring when either sits on my lap. Feather has a special place she has claimed. She is in my lap.

Yes, yes, I love my wife. That’s another story.

Commentary: The images? I shoot the cats with whatever camera is at hand when they are posing. They don’t pose on demand. I see them together. Or not. I focus on the eyes. A portrait is no good without good eye focus. There are exceptions. Sure. But it all starts with the eyes. And no, it is not Feather peeking at me from the corner of her eye.