Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Kitten Portraits

When our foster kittens are just almost ready to go back to the shelter and find their adoptive families, I like to use a nice afternoon to take "kitten portraits"--photographs of each of the girls with each of the kittens, and one photograph of all of them together, as nice-looking as my amateur photography skills can manage.

The girls treasure their kitten portraits, as tender-hearted Sydney, especially, dearly misses her kitten buddies after they've gone, but I also like to print out an extra copy of each portrait to give to the shelter when we return the kittens. Now, kittens don't really need a lot of extra marketing, but I still like to give them the best odds that I can, and I think that everyone can agree that, while an animal shelter mug shot certainly makes a critter look more pathetic and in NEED of adoption, it takes a beautiful, sunny day, a happy and comfy animal, and a lot of time and patience to take a photo that lets a potential guardian see my little foster kittens as a pet and a best friend.

Here are our best friends:

Photographing kittens is hard. They don't "smile" like dogs do, and generally the best you can do is a photo in which they don't look like they're actively trying to escape. You can better see their happiness in candid shots, but candid shots of each kid with each kitten? Yikes!

So we may not get the best portrait of each foster kitten in our foster kitten portraits, true, but in each portrait, look at the kid. See the love in their faces? Those kittens put that there, and that's what I hope sells them to their future guardians.


Kimberly said...

I am NOT a cat person, but even *I* want the wee grey one.

Miranda Jacobs said...

Oh my! The eyes on those kittens. They'll be adopted in about 10 seconds. ;-)

Tina said...

So cute! The more I think about it, the more I like the idea of having kittens for a bit, giving them lots of love, and then letting someone else share the wealth of kitty love.

How do the girls do when the go back to the shelter? Is it really hard every time?

julie said...

Will doesn't seem fazed when the kittens go back, but I'll be honest that Syd is always very upset. It's a healthy grief, though, if you know what I mean--it doesn't break her spirit, she's able to work through it, and she's amenable to being encouraged to focus on the happy memories and the mementos. Frankly, I want the girls to have this regular practice in sacrifice and loss and service; I want them to have the coping skills to deal with grief before they have to experience a devastating loss, and I want them to become used to the idea that service to others includes sacrifice of one's own temporary comfort. When they're older, I hope that they'll be able to appreciate their personal legacy of bettering the lives of all these kittens.