Joanne Cheong, 37, adopted two feline cats after she left school in 2008. That got things going – headlong into an unintended direction. She found her love for both cats and photography, when combined with passion, produced results that evoked sentiments and emotions. Her photos tug at the viewers heart-strings and enable them to relate to the subject on hand.

Joanne and hubby now have a feline family of six – all rescued kittens. Making a living and career from her once-upon-a-time hobby is a feat she fast adapted to. "I totally get photographing them is no easy feat. I specialise in journalistic on-location portraits, where the kitties will be most at ease to capture intimate images of them at their truest self."

Giving Back

Many of these rescue cats and kittens were either abandoned or were offsprings of unsterilised abandoned cats. "That's why I'm also a passionate advocate of adoption, ethical and responsible cat ownership."

She adds: "I've also made it a point to give back by working with independent cat rescuers and cat shelters, photographing kitties to help them find their forever homes."

This is where her creations can be seen at their best. The photos, of dogs too, produce that emotional tug at the heart-strings, drawing potential adopters closer to the subject. Her work are done on a free-of-charge basis to fosterers and shelter homes.

Enduring Keepsakes

Joanne: To achieve tack sharp photos of kitties in play,
use an off-camera flash on high-speed sync with
shutter speeds above 300.

On the commercial side of work, she tells her clients that the photo sessions are generally done over two locations and involves two to three hours of work. "Some kitties do take a little longer than others to get used to being photographed, so the beginning of each session will be used to get your furry loved one used to me and my camera."

After the editing process, the high-res images are uploaded to a gallery for selection, print and download. The photos at the end of the day form enduring keepsakes that many can look back on fondly.

IG handle: @thecatographer_sg

Pet Photography Tip:

Most cats and kittens are drawn to movement or sound. 

Having a cat teaser on hand to make an interesting noise can help get kitty to look intently into the lens or look ready to pounce. They are also really great for getting those actions shots that showcase their athleticism!