Daily Photo: Patterns, Textures, Light and Shadow, and Mimi

black cat on floor
Textures, Patterns, Light and Shadow, and Mimi

What a lovely sunny morning to spend on a nap in the sun.

Not only does this photo contain Mimi, who has apparently been my photo muse lately (you haven’t seen the half of it, whatever that phrase means), it also has all the other elements I like in a black and white photo as listed above—clear patterns, varied textures, bright highlights and intense though not heavy shadows. All the direct and reflected light catches all those textures and patterns, and in turn the light is refracted and reflected into all the dark areas. The floor on the landing has always been an interesting subject for me with its old mixed woods, some hard, some soft, some with finish still on them, and that piece of rolled corrugated has more than earned its keep as a cat toy and lounging spot as well as photo and art backdrop, something the cats and I can share while using it for our own very different purposes. And of course, the princess herself adds an organic softness to all those lines. I just wish I’d moved the vertical stack of matboard in its segregated plastic bags, it’s not so pretty, but does add its own texture and some nice reflected light.

The one thing that’s been a little difficult to decide with these photos on the landing is whether I use them in black and white or color because the colors are almost monochromatic, certainly a limited palette, very warm and inviting.

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5 thoughts on “Daily Photo: Patterns, Textures, Light and Shadow, and Mimi

  • April 15, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    Bernadette, I have a question for you:
    Did you frame the image this way in your camera (“pull a Richard Avedon,” as it were), or did you crop it later?
    Because I actually like the vertical stack in the lower left corner. I introduces a nice contrasting element in what would have been blank space. Which would have been fine, too. . . but predictable.
    You got Mimi’s tail mid-switch.

    • April 17, 2013 at 6:19 pm

      Meg, yes–I was “shooting” for getting the sunbeam from the window at a slight angle to the frame and the only thing I cropped out was on the left, the shadow of Giuseppe on the windowsill. It introduced another element that was distracting from this composition. And the stack is okay, but the pronounced wood pattern on the floor would have been in greater keeping with the image. Also, the top sheet of matboard is turquoise so seeing that in color influenced me as well. I walked around and stepped over Mimi and got her from different angles, and initially chose one that was the same as this except she had her head down on her paws, but decided that was too impersonal and I wanted to see her content face.

      • April 20, 2013 at 5:13 pm

        Bernadette — Thanks for all the details. I wonder what the “too impersonal” version looks like, the one without the matboard stack which you find so distracting from this composition? I’d love to see the alternate version. (P.S. If I were a dog, I’d be drooling.)

        • April 20, 2013 at 5:19 pm

          Meg, it’s actually identical, matboard and all but Mimi has her front paws closer together and her chin resting on them so you can’t see her face and her head is almost entirely in shadow, so she is less Mimi and more a cat reclining on the cardboard.

          What would a dog be drooling about?

          The only problem with the matboard is the plastic bag and its non-organic reflections.

          • April 20, 2013 at 5:22 pm

            A dog would be drooling to see the alternate version. Or just to be drooling.

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