More than one year ago, I decided to start a portrait project about cats and their female owners, being a cat lover myself, and also strongly believing in that sometimes saving bond between humans and pets. I took the first portraits, and then, overwhelmed by commissions, work, and other projects, I had to stop. But I was still looking forward to going back to that series of mine, and now it seems the time has come!
Last week I visited Becky Paton, a very talented artist who makes and successfully exhibits beautiful mosaics (please, have a look at her Instagram page @beckypatonmosaics). She lives with her family in the countryside just outside Oxford, and has a sweet and gorgeous cat named Lexi. He – yes, Lexi is actually a male cat, but the vet found this out too late for his name to be changed, as he really liked it! – was adopted by the family while he was still a fluffy little kitty. Now he is a four years old beautiful feline who loves to cuddle up next to his human mum at night, but also exploring the fields following his hunting instincts. I could see he was just impatient to go out and enjoy the sun, on the day we took the photographs. But I thank him and Becky for posing in front of my camera and sharing with me a bit of their happiness!
It is now three years since I met Neil, quite soon after moving to Oxford. It was one of my first models here in England, and he helped me so much with getting confidence in myself and in the work I am doing. I was then happy to photograph him again, after a long time, this spring. Here are some of the photos we took in his apartment, under the supervision of his playful snake Patrick (see the picture below!).
When I feel restless, when my days run too fast and I have not enough time to dream and to live, I look for a place and a though where everything may return to order. Wherever I find lines, geometries and minimalism, I can start breathing again.
This photo shoot was realised in order to explore the potential – speaking about composition – of a tennis court, as first done last year with my “Tennis court loneliness” series. Thanks a lot to my lovely and talented friend Dovile Ciapaité for helping me to create the photos below!
Yes, I am a cat addict, I have to confess it, and as living in a rented house (especially here in the UK) does not make it easy to have a pet, I find myself happy as a little child when I discover a new cat cafe where I can book an afternoon tea and enjoy the company of some little balls of fur. The London Cat Village is the third café of this kind I visit, and I have to say I was impressed by the relaxing atmosphere of it and by the beautiful cats who were so comfortable interacting with people as they would have been at their own houses, seeking for the attention of their owner. Food there was also good, so much that one of the cat stared at my cake with a jealous look. Of course, I did not let him try a piece, and when he got tired of waiting and yawned I shot a picture.
“Eppure è bella, anima mia, la vita: non fosse che pei giorni in cui le foglie giocano a quale per la prima spunti sui rami; e tu le vedi, così tenere e trasparenti, che ti s’apron l’ali nel rimirarle. Come puoi del mondo tante cose sapere, e non sapere come fa la fogliuzza a tornar verde entro la scorza, ad affacciarsi, e tutta nova ridere al sol che la richiama?”
I don’t often share photos from the photo-shoots I do for my clients (mainly for privacy reasons), but these days, going through my old photographs I found these lovely images and I thought I had to share some, after getting the child parents’ permission (I thank them for this!). This is going to be a great season for outdoor photo-shoots, and I would be happy to help you treasuring lovely memories of your family, children, dear ones. For any enquiry and information, go to my website – contacts section (www.flaviacatenaph.com) and do not hesitate to e-mail me! Thank you all!
When I was a child I spent hours playing and reading next to an old tree of my parents’ garden. That place had something magic for me; the shadow cast by the leaves in those summery afternoons felt me protected. It was like being embraced by a grandfather, and I did not know any of my grandfathers. That’s why trees are an essential presence in my photographs. Here again I want to celebrate their strong and protecting beauty.
I could never have dreamt that there were such goings-on
in the world between the covers of books,
such sandstorms and ice blasts of words,
such staggering peace, such enormous laughter,
such and so many blinding bright lights,
splashing all over the pages
in a million bits and pieces
all of which were words, words, words,
and each of which were alive forever
in its own delight and glory and oddity and light.
No, you are not going to see a lovely model posing in a nice outdoor location, this time, but… cats! They are special cats, because they live all together in a refined café in London. It is the first café of this kind opened in town, and since it was inaugurated last year, I tried in vain to book a table (booking is mandatory to have access to the café). Finally, on December, I was able to find an available date and last Saturday I happily traveled to London with my love for this unusual but exciting afternoon tea (should I also add purrfect to the list?). The experience was nice, but not quite what I expected. Cats are adorable, of course, and smart, but they are not that sociable and it seems they don’t like so much being pet, which is understandable because of all the guests who visit the café every day. Many of them prefer sleeping on the shelves and beddings arranged all around the walls for their amusement and relax. Maybe I was naive imaging myself surrounded by cats calling my attention! Only a black and white 5 month old kitty played with me a little. For the rest of the time, I just enjoyed taking some shoots, eating a delicious mandarin and chocolate cake, and listening to the cats snoring.