Click here to learn more.
Vetstreet. All rights reserved.
Vetstreet does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. See Additional Information ›
Snapping a great picture of your cat can be a challenge. Often the cat is moving so fast the shot is blurry, or he’s looking in the opposite direction, or he darts out of range and all that’s captured is the tip of his tail.
I’ve worked with Joel Riner, a commercial photographer from Quicksilver Studios in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, on a variety of animal shoots over the past few years, and I’ve learned a lot from him about photographing animals. Joel was kind enough to talk with me about snapping the perfect cat photo. His first piece of advice: Decide ahead of time on the type of picture you want and get things set up accordingly before ever bringing the cat into the shot. Your cat’s willingness to stay in one place and be photographed may not last long, so being prepared will allow you to take good pictures quickly.
Here are five more simple tips for getting great photos of your feline.
1. Keep the background simple. Your cat should be the focal point of the picture, so opt for a backdrop that is not busy. Pull your cat forward and away from the background to make him stand out more. Perhaps the shot you want is of him sitting on his favorite perch; if so, move the perch away from the wall or other furniture to make your cat the focus of the photo. Using a shallow depth of field setting also helps; it will focus the camera on your feline while blurring out the background.
2. Choose the best lighting. Ideally, opt for soft, natural light. Indoors, an area with a large window often works best. Overcast days make for the best pictures; bright sun can cast odd shadows or make the background too bright. If you are shooting on a bright day, the best pictures often happen when the sun is low in the sky. Avoid using a flash if possible; in addition to causing the dreaded red eye, it can make your cat uncomfortable.
3. Choose a comfortable setting. Your cat may get uncomfortable if he is forced to stay in a certain area or position for too long. Make the area where you are photographing your cat relaxing and quiet and he will be more likely to stay put. Choose an area the cat is already accustomed to, such as his cat furniture. Tasty treats or toys can make staying in this one place more appealing.
4. Create a calm atmosphere. Classical music or a CD like Through a Cat’s Ear can help your feline relax during a photo shoot. Feliway, a pheromone product for cats, can be sprayed on surfaces the cat is resting on to promote relaxation.
5. Get down on your cat’s level. This may mean lying on your belly to snap a picture — you almost want to be looking up at your cat when you photograph him, rather than looking down at him. If it’s easier, photograph him on a climbing structure or perch — anything that puts you both at the same eye level. To get your cat to look at the camera, try making a strange noise. You may want help to get the cat’s attention; have a helper stand behind you and rustle a paper bag or bounce a feather toy.
Here are more Vetstreet photography articles you may enjoy:
5 Tips for Capturing an Unforgettable Portrait of Your Pet
Free Apps Make Pet Photo Editing, Sharing Easy
Shelter Photographer Talks About Her Hilarious Series of Dog Blooper Snapshots
5 Tips for Perfect Holiday Card Pet Snapshots
Photos Make the Difference: 8 Adoption Success Stories
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Take our breed quiz to find your next pet.
Get all the best pet news and information sent right to your inbox!
Thank you for subscribing!
The Community Hospital staff took care
of a lost black Lab who wandered into
their ER with an injured leg.
Dr. Debbie Mandell shares the signs of
heat stress, plus which breeds may have
conditions that could put them in…
These scented oils may help you relax,
but putting them on your cat or dog
could have serious consequences.
You may love the idea of sharing your
bed with a kitten, but Dr. Marty Becker
says you should wait until he's older.
There's a lot of false information out there
about heartworm disease, so we're
debunking common misconceptions.
A rare breed that's often mistaken for a
Chihuahua, the Russian Toy is a tiny dog
known for his big personality.
Annual examinations are the cornerstone
of a good preventive care regimen and
can save you money in the long run.
Check out our collection of more than 250 videos about pet training, animal behavior, dog and cat breeds and more.
Wonder which dog or cat best fits your lifestyle? Our new tool will narrow down more than 300 breeds for you.
Visit HealthyPet magazine for interviews with pet-loving celebrities, health advice from our experts, training tips and…
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.