Critters Photo

The Cats of University Heights: Lupe

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Meet Lupe, who lives in the same home as Laramie and on the same block as Smokey and Monkey. What is it with the letter L in the household? The family also owns dog Lincoln. Hehe. One of my high school classmates had seven siblings—and all eight kids had names beginning with G. L works for me!

On some mornings, I see Lupe sleeping  on a chair in the yard. The Featured Image, captured on Dec. 3, 2017 at 9:08 a.m. PST, using iPhone X, puts him on the porch. Vitals: f/2.4, ISO 16, 1/510 sec, 6mm. The companion photo is a contrast in timing and lighting—bright sunlight versus darkening dusk. The smartphone could never have produced usable portrait. 

I captured the moment using Leica Q on Nov. 21, 2017 at 4:52 p.m.—eight minutes after sunset but already diminished light because of cloud cover. Something else: I happened upon Lupe after a long walk, when the sun was still bright and with the camera set for street shooting; preset smaller aperture and fixed shutter speed. Mix it together and you have a recipe for a photo shot with super high ISO. Vitals: f/8, ISO 25000, 1/250 sec, 28mm. The camera’s 24-megapixel full-frame sensor delivers admirably. iPhone X could never compete, or produce usable image even with considerably lower ISO.

Both photos are from the same cropped original, made by shooting through one of the spaces between a picket fence. The first is adjusted in Adobe Lightroom CC to reduce noise. The other is the grainy, unedited original.

Update Feb. 16, 2019: Lupe’s last day. Her owner is moving to Tucson, Arizona, in about 24 hours. Housemate Laramie will remain in San Diego, but his fate is less certain. I captured the additional portrait, which is close-cropped, using Fujifilm GFX 50R camera and Fujinon 63mm GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/2.8, ISO 100, 1/2000 sec, 63mm; 9:19 a.m. PST.

Update Feb. 17, 2019: Lupe’s owner couldn’t get her into the cat carrier, so he left her. Someone else will be staying in the rental house for a few weeks and feeding her and Laramie. But beyond that is uncertainty. Local non-kill shelters have long waiting lists, and the owner thought best to leave the animals for now rather than risk them being euthanized.

Also purring for you: ScruffyRoly PolyWooSkullBiscuitThe ColonelWhite,  Chipper, Frisky, Stretch, Needy, Farfisa, Mates, Hunter, Pee-PeeBlue, Blue Too, Bonded PairPatience, Fess, Jumper, Frenemy, Looker, Cozy, Scout, Lurks, Skit, Mini, Betty, Black and White, Stalker, Bell, Chill, Sammy, Scratch, Poser, Star, Grey and White, Watcher, Herman, Comet, RomanWillow, Chub, Nimbus, Watson, Lilo, Kit, Pepe, Twilight, Sebastian, Spot, Booger, Ash, Veruca, Riley, Mellow, Bonde, Flower, Glass, Black, BeBe, Fang, Bruce, Siamese, Pounce,  Tortie, HaikuFraidy,  PesoDaniel TigerDuskStrideDaintySpry,  Tabby, Betty Too, Still, Levi, Shadow,  SophieWinkFerals, MommaCharlie, Tux, Cool, Benny, Jellicle, Itchy Valentino, Goldie, Nine, Amanda, Siesta, ChaCho, Charlie, Too, Mika, Crystal, Seeker, MittensDancer, Smokey, Monkey, Captain Blackbeard, Season, Maven, Tink, Chunk, Curious, Hanoi, Bella, Tarry, Guido, Maxine, Mr. Kitty, Peohe, Panda, Frankie, Sunshine, Twain, Willow, Too, Brawn, Reddy, Burglar, and Laramie.

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