We should have named him “Spot”

Working at the computer last night, I looked down and saw Ernest lying in tummy-rub position beside my chair. He retained the pose while I got the camera and took a couple of shots. I don’t know whether he was cooperating or just sleeping. I do know that if I’d asked him to pose, he’d have shot me a withering glance and left the room. For pet pictures, I depend on luck.

Actually, I depend on luck for all photographs. I point and shoot. After six months with a digital camera, I finally figured out that if I turn the little knob on top to “Landscape” or “Indoors” or whatever, the quality of my shots might improve. As far as cropping is concerned, I haven’t a clue. “Composition” is something I wrote a lot of in school.

Recently I discovered a real photographer who does pets as well as people. Her website, Patty Mora Photography, is delightful. On-line galleries display photos of pets, pets and people, just people, and out-takes. They’re all beautiful, but of course, people (except for babies and children) can never be as beautiful as animals. Or as cute.

The out-takes are a hoot. My favorite is the little red-haired girl smiling at the camera while the bulldog has turned around in the opposite direction.

I’d love to have professional shots of William and Ernest. But that won’t happen. They find travel traumatic, and they’ve proved competent at traumatizing family members who try to make them travel. Even a home shoot would be impossible. William and Ernest don’t do company.

But occasionally I visit Ms. Mora’s website to enjoy the slide shows, and to admire her talent for capturing cats and dogs and horses and kids–and even adults–at their best.

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