Unlike most days, when I got home from work the cats were not down in the kitchen waiting for me. In fact it took a minute or so for Julius to come down and Gus and Calla were even later. I didn’t think anything of it until this morning when I noticed that the trees and vines that used to be planted outside my back wall had all been cut down, uprooted, and mulched.
Apparently everyone had gone to ground with all the activity and noise out back. And not very far out back…my back wall is about six feet from the back wall of the house.
Even this morning Julius was a little spooked going out back, so I brought him back in because it was not very good weather anyway. I’m sure he will adjust easily enough, and the lack of branches on the wall top may make it more convenient for use as a highway.
It does help the view – I can see all the way down the pass and across the valley to the Santa Monica Mountains to the southwest from downstairs now.
I did a little more experimentation with the camera today to try and codify my observations about avoiding laser eyes or demon cat eyes. It seems with Calla that there are two major effects in play. The first is the flash intensity. If I put the light pipper on a relatively dark part, like I did in this picture, the flash is brighter and the white fur and reflective eyes are overexposed or bright. In the first two pictures it was on her white shirt front and thus the camera used less of a flash and probably a faster speed. The white fur is not over exposed, but the rest of the room is very dark. In the last picture the background is more filled in and visible.
Even the dark fur ‘fools’ the camera logic a little because it is closer to the light sensor and seems ‘brighter’. There are ways to compensate for this with the camera, but these would presumably make the eyes and white fur even worse.
The angle of the shot can also help – if the eyes are not looking directly at the camera then the glowing eyes effect is a lot less in all cases.
Of course the ideal thing would be to use enough ambient lighting and good backgrounds so that little no flash is required at all.
Presumably similar tricks would work for Gus, but with him you have a second issue is that the black fur wants to vanish unless there is a lot of light, unless you use enough flash to burn in the white and produce glowing yellow eyes. Calla’s cream to seal fur is a lot more forgiving.