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Challenge: Pet Portrait (Advanced Editing IV*)
Camera: Canon EOS-10D
Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM
Location: Hickory, North Carolina
Date: Apr 1, 2005
Aperture: f/4.0
ISO: ISO 100
Shutter: 1/100
Galleries: Animals, Black and White
Date Uploaded: Mar 31, 2005

I think this is an excellent challenge. I have photographed my cat a few times before, but I don't have too many shots of him that I really like. I was reading some in the April issue of Shutterbug this week about portrait photography, and a lot of what I read can and should be used in pet portraits as well. It's easy enough to do a portrait photo of a person or a pet, but it's a little more challenging to try to capture something about the personality of the subject in the process.

My cat is extremely difficult to photograph. He usually runs the other way or wants to lick my lens when I get the camera out. For this experiment, I got out the laser pointer (our favorite toy) and let him chase the dot around the room for a while. Once I get him excited, he will run around and stop... hiding behind shoes and other miscellaneous crap on my living room floor. He will also stop occasionally to chase his tail, which is when I got this particular image. I called his name and he rolled back and looked at me for a brief second.

In order to get enough light inside for a fast shutter speed, I used two flashes (Canon 550EX) and just set my camera in manual mode for f/4 and 1/100" @ ISO 100.


File: CRW_9911.CRW
File size: 5,052KB
Image Serial Number: 299-9911
Camera Model: Canon EOS 10D
Camera serial number: 1020300016
Firmware: Firmware Version 2.0.1
Owner: John M. Setzler, Jr.
Date/Time: 2005:04:01 21:58:28
Shutter speed: 1/100 sec
Aperture: 4
Exposure mode: Manual
Flash: External E-TTL
Flash EF guide number: 2047.97
Metering mode: Evaluative
Drive mode: Continuous
ISO: 100
Lens: 70 to 200mm
Focal length: 200mm
Subject distance: 1.94 m
AF mode: One-shot AF
Focus point: [- - O - -]
Image size: 3072 x 2048
Image quality: Raw
White balance: Auto
Color space: AdobeRGB
Saturation: Normal
Sharpness: Normal
Contrast: Normal
Tone: Normal
Custom Functions:
CFn 2: Shutter release w/o CF card: Not possible
CFn 6: Tv/Av and exposure level: 1/3 stop
CFn 7: AF point registration: all

Place: 7 out of 273
Avg (all users): 6.7488
Avg (commenters): 8.1379
Avg (participants): 6.5242
Avg (non-participants): 7.0690
Views since voting: 4229
Views during voting: 378
Votes: 211
Comments: 38
Favorites: 17 (view)

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07/17/2006 03:51:24 PM
Wow! this is so cute.
07/29/2005 04:29:31 PM
Those eyes! And the angle. I love how cats turn themselves practically inside out. This is too good for words. I love the contrast and the whole composition. Good job.
07/29/2005 02:04:20 PM
I'm compelled to add this one to my favorites! What an OUTSTANDING shot!!!!
04/11/2005 06:10:24 PM
Two things that esp caught my attention, 1 how you got a quick action shot in low enough light to get those pupils so big. Even in play mode the pupils are not fully dialated in decent lighting. Kudos on your expertise there. 2 I love the dof and the clear texture in the rug. Some might think it distracts but for me it adds interest and leads you to his captivating expression! Wonderful focus, you even got the texture around the pupils!
04/11/2005 02:56:11 PM
so cute. looks so much like my tycho.
04/11/2005 01:14:38 PM
wonderful black and white with a great/fresh approach - i really enjoy this one.
04/11/2005 12:16:51 AM
really nice photo, I could tell the cat was in "psycho mode" as I call it. I love the huge eyes cats make when they are in that mode. nice image! :)
04/11/2005 12:06:59 AM
Hey John: a captivating image. Congratulations on your top ten.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
04/10/2005 11:14:40 PM
What an adorable sweetheart. Bumping up on the charm of those two bewitching eyes.
04/10/2005 08:10:36 PM
This is my favorite shot in the whole challenge..... great shot! 10!
04/10/2005 07:19:06 PM
Great viewpoint and shows character well.

Separate score for cat's tactile 'fuzzy-felt' mouth/nose junction (specially evolved to accommodate a gently moving human fingertip):
04/10/2005 04:48:06 PM
Well done I like the angle you chose here and the choice of B&W. Good composition, pose, and contrasts. Bumping up.
04/09/2005 10:17:57 AM
good angle. good crop. Works in B&W 8
04/08/2005 09:00:01 PM
Those eyes are hypnotic. I like the angle.
04/08/2005 02:35:19 PM
nice portrait !! lighting and composition is awesome..good DOF. 7
04/08/2005 09:28:22 AM
Love the composition of this shot. Its very narrow, which brings out the eyes; the frame helps too. DOF is quite interesting. Someone i would've wished not to see the bottom left portion of the shot which is not in focus, but seems to use a little too much of the pic and catches my eyes everytime. Would also've wished for a tiny bit more of those hears. 7
04/08/2005 09:04:06 AM
great shot, john ... 10
04/07/2005 06:22:48 PM
This is an awesome shot, but it makes me a little dizzy LoL! His eyes makes me wanna grab him and never let go!
a.d.o.r.a.b.l.e 9
04/07/2005 06:01:17 PM
The rotation of the picture makes it very special, well done.
04/07/2005 04:23:50 PM
Great shot! This is a perfect black and white portrait! I love it!
04/06/2005 09:25:03 PM
classic cuteness!
04/05/2005 03:30:30 PM
What a lovely cat ! I really like the eyes,it's a very good use of black and white.8
04/05/2005 03:14:56 PM
This is pure beauty. That's all I can say, I just love this photo! 10
04/05/2005 03:01:39 PM
Nice "twist" on things.
04/05/2005 09:54:02 AM
What big eyes you have!!! Very sweet...
04/05/2005 07:26:38 AM
I found it impossible to get my cats eyes like this, my camera cant handle low light, so I really appreciate this beautiful shot. 10
04/04/2005 11:48:30 PM
Great capture of the personality of this curious cat.
04/04/2005 11:13:57 PM
This is my secong go-around =) - Very nice angle! I love it! Great job!
04/04/2005 08:13:50 PM
This is my favorite. Great photo.
04/04/2005 07:49:23 PM
wow those eyes! 9
04/04/2005 04:46:21 PM
interesting, caught my eye
04/04/2005 03:32:03 PM
Too cute! Great photograph!
04/04/2005 02:50:55 PM
Perfection! 10
04/04/2005 01:34:04 PM
what a cutie, great angle.
04/04/2005 12:09:31 PM
04/04/2005 11:51:55 AM
What a cutie pie! I love the angle and the range of tones. Beautiful clarity and sharpness too. Wonderful shot! :o)
04/04/2005 01:32:59 AM
Excellent shot, in my opinion it would do better rotated 90deg to the left. 8.
04/04/2005 12:47:25 AM
By far the best I've seen so far. Love those big pupils and the tilt/composition.

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