Still Life with Fruit (and Cat)

My sudden burst of still-life activity is in response to a challenge that John and I set at Oldham photographic Society some weeks ago. My research turned up lots of “Dutch master style” pictures of flowers and fruit and so I though I would have a go myself…a style I have not tried before. My local supermarket provided some not-too-expensive fruit (some at half price) and some chilli peppers reduced to pennies. They all fitted in with a red and gold theme.

I had started to throw some items together on a studio background on the kitchen worktop – creating a bit of height at the back and a natural tumble of fruits with the chillis at the front. I left the kitchen for a couple of minutes and when I came back, one of my cats, Toby, had settled himself down.

Everyone knows that cats have a mind of their own, so no way could I have persuaded him to sit there if I had wanted to! Obviously I took a few shots, during which time he became bored and went to sleep. The lighting was simply an on-camera flash beam, bounced off the wall to the side and balanced with the ambient light (mixture of daylight and tungsten).

Fortunately, Toby soon became bored with his restricted position and went off to sleep elsewhere. Afterwards I added a few cherries, rearranged a few bits and took some shots “sans cat”, to some of which I added a soft focus effect.

© Christine Widdall