There are 4,500 photos of cats on my phone. Literally.
They are mostly my cats, of course, and I take photos of them when the light is good or when they are doing something funny or when they are in a place I don’t expect them to be or when they’re snuggling together just too adorably for words or when my mom texts to ask what my cats are up to right now.
Cats are hard to photograph. They seem still and sedentary until you try to photograph them, and then you realize just how much they move. They reach out for the camera when you least expect it.
They photobomb each other’s photos.
They blink or turn their head inconveniently. And they never forget. I once had a cat who one time–ONE TIME–got a camera flash in her eyes as a kitten. She never forgot and forever after squinted whenever she saw a camera.
The majority of my cat photos aren’t very good. Blurry or grainy. Bad light. Weird eye glow. A tail when I was trying for a face. But that doesn’t stop me from trying.
I don’t only take photos of my cats either. Whenever I see a cat out and about, I want to photograph it. Street cats and bookstore cats. Cats in windows and cats on curbs.
The coffee shop cat at my favorite coffee shop.
I take photos of my mom’s cats.
I’ll photograph cat merchandise that catches my eye.
And I’ll even take photos of other people’s photos of their cats. The Internet makes this very, very possible.
My son, naturally enough, assumes I personally know the cats I photograph. “Who’s THAT?” he’ll ask as he scrolls through my phone.
“I don’t know,” I say. “But don’t you love them already?”