Clean Gene wrote in post #17000657
I just want to pick out one thing here. In particular, your comment about the rough contrast and the soft fur.
That kind of struck me as a little bit weird, because the lighting which was employed isn't doing a lot to emphasize texture.
"Employed"? I didn't have that much control. The lighting was available. Midday is the most practical time for me to go out, and it was a bright day.
My point is that the same process is happening when one dismisses it as a snapshot. I'm TOTALLY making assumptions when I see harsh midday sun with a cat (I blame the internet for this).
Could it be that when you see a cat, you think "There's a cat" and you stop looking?
airfrogusmc wrote in post #17000932
It's about our own life experiences. We know that direct sun is warm. The fur of cats is usually very soft and concrete is rough. And it's not a photograph about a cat but those experienced relationships and the contrasts. If it were a cat portrait, which the world wide web is full of, then it's not a good cat portrait.
You are so right. Had I been trying for a cat portrait, I would have rejected this shot because most of the face doesn't show and some of the tail is cut off at the top. After I took pictures, the woman said "It'll be the ten millionth cat on the Internet" (no one had mentioned the Internet until then). Maybe it is, but putting another cat on the Internet wasn't the point. The marginal utility of Internet cats is by now very low.
It is an interesting image about subtle color, opposing textures and shape.
Opposition between the manufactured environment and what happens there. Sidewalks (with their dull, uniform color and their straight lines and geometric forms) are made for walking, not for showing affection to animals. The organic forms (multicolored with curved lines: woman and cat) are at this spot temporarily. The woman interrupted her other business to get down on a knee and attend to the cat. She was carrying things--you can see bits of a bag or something at the right--and later she got into a car and drove off. Of course, you can't see her exit, but something near the right edge isn't clothing. So, among other things, the picture is about time.
The person is only relevant to show the act of touching the soft, warmed by the sun fur, which most know what that feels like. The person is also relevant because the cool blue on the jacket also bringing contrast to the warm skin tone.
I didn't think of rendering temperature. That you see it there is a surprise. I did have complementary colors in mind, at least at the stage of viewing on the computer.
Another thing about colors: it was fortunate that the pants were white, like the cat's torso, which is the main mass of the cat and is similar in shape to the woman's thigh.
Phooey. I thought I was proceeding independently.
The Wiki article is inconsistent about whether the subject is centered. Subjects are usually centered in snapshots, but off-center framing is mentioned early as a feature of this style.