Ah, the Fluffy Boys edition of my low-light animal portrait series. I don't think I need to say too much here - I'm sure you get it. I'm into low-key portraits of animals against black backgrounds and I have a long-running "On Black" project featuring all kinds of animals in this style. Over the years I've photographed everything from elephants to cockroaches. Today it's the turn of the cute and the fluffy.
Anyone who knows me would agree I'm not normally into 'cute' animals. But I like these because the images present a series of contradictions; an aesthetic that's serious but light-hearted, and a style that's a combination of classic and contemporary portraiture. I quite like exploring where two opposing notions meet.
Rabbits are another species new to my portfolio, and presented an enjoyable challenge. Above, he almost looks like some made up creature, such are the adorable proportions of the features.
Below, looking more serious but with that fluff it's hard to really be imposing!
I like to think he's channelling his inner-lion. Or maybe the rabbit from Monty Python.
Next, this grey rabbit poses very nicely. He's all business...
Nope, he's cute too:
Wow, what a gift! - A black animal on a black background. My absolute favourite combo.
It's hard to communicate the size of a harvest mouse if you haven't seen one before. They're so tiny. But they're good fun too, and always inquisitive, which makes for a good photo.
Here he uses that tail to balance as he adjusts his footing.
So nimble, they can clamber around on the end of plants and flowers with relative ease. Here he's at home on the end of a wooden twig.
I'm really pleased with these photos. I'm not sure the rabbits could have gone much better. The guinea pig and harvest mouse were tougher, requiring closer lenses, and presenting more of a lighting-challenge, working at this small scale. So that's something for me to practice and improve on in future. For now, the rabbits have made it into my gallery, and sit well alongside my more exotic species.
Thanks to Teaching Talons for the access to these animals, which I photographed as part of an on-going project to photograph the full range of their species. There's more to come too.