Mimi enjoys the dappled morning sun as she lazily observes the birds. I get the idea they’re not the most important thing to her in this moment.
For all the photos I take that don’t work out or aren’t spectacular, there is one that does and is. The play of light is so important, like the dappling instead of full sun in this photo, the way it catches her whiskers in little rainbows and gently defines her features, and the colorful objects in the background blurred into a pattern that defines the negative space above her.
But most important is the model herself who inspired the shot, and trying my best to capture her personality in a simple shot.
A good part of the success of this photo is the camera and the lens—my Pentax K10D DSLR with the favorite lens combination from my old film SLR a 50mm fixed focus fully manual lens with the f-stop full open to F1.8 and a 1.5X teleconverter between the camera and the lens that focuses on one point and blurs out most everything else.
As an example of how this photo would appear when shot with other cameras or lenses, below is approximately the same shot with my Pentax K10D DSLR, same camera, but with the digital 28-80 zoom lens at f4.0. You can see that much of the same blurring happens but the lighting isn’t quite the same, especially on her whiskers.
I also took a shot with the new point and shoot which has no manual controls, and it focuses, as usual, into infinity trying to get as much of the detail in your shot as it can get, but the light and dark are very contrasty as it tries to enhance available light.