There is an Internet movement that’s commonly known as ‘photo bombing’. If you’re not au fait with this phenomenon, it consists of a person or persons in the foreground who are unaware that someone else has jumped into the frame behind them, making a face or doing something amusing to contradict the action in front of them. Or, that is, at least unaware of it until they’ve posted their photo to social media, only to find that the topic of conversation isn’t their awesome wedding photos or selfies, but the person who stepped in and added their own colour to the moment. I’ve been a photo bomber and I’ve been bombed. It’s the give and take that is the social media universe, and I accept the cycle.
I think that most hilarious of these in nature is when animals photo bomb. There are whole sections, I’m sure, of dogs ruining photos by squatting/pooping/humping in the background. These I find are hilarious because they were totally unintentional on the part of the dog, and also because I have all the maturity where humour is concerned of a teenaged boy. For the record, I still think farts are funny too. However, it’s come to my attention that certain animals might be slightly more aware of their actions. As the Internet has shown us on the wondrous talent show that is You Tube that animals are, indeed, jerks.
A perfect example of this was when I was shooting back in January with one of my collaborators, David Denofreo and his lovely wife Tracey. We were shooting in the place I now call home that is a fantastic and 107 years old Victorian salt box style house. The main thoroughfare outside was a dirt road with horses and buggies when the house was built in East Vancouver which is now one of it’s busiest arteries. Part of the charm of this space is the elderly cat, Jazzpurr. Jazz is not my cat, but I love his company. He is eighteen years of age which, were he were human and the equivalent age of eighty eight, would no doubt be regaling me with tales of things that happened to other cats, all dead now. As it stands he is cantankerous, loud, and sort of deaf.
He is also an expert photo bomber.
Jazzpurr showed little to no interest as I finished my hair and make up and David and Tracey loaded in the lights and other gear. It wasn’t until we were set up and shooting that his interest was piqued in what we were doing and photographing. It likely wasn’t that he wanted to see what we were shooting, exactly, I think he just wondered why we weren’t shooting HIM. He then proceeded to try and insert himself into every frame, so that there would be the top of his tabby head or tip of his tail in multiple shots. Finally, it got to the point where we all just said, ‘fuck it,’ and brought him up on the couch.
True to feline form, once we’d decided on incorporating him into the shots, he decided he didn’t want to be in them. But for a few of them, he and I were have a good time. Naked, wearing heels, and with good feline company, which is, how I like to spend my time. T.S. Elliot once wrote an entire book of poems on the contradictory nature of cats. I’m certain that if one was to read ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, that the contents would be between statements of ‘isn’t my cat cute’ to ‘he doesn’t know if he wants to be in the pyramid or out’. Never mind Facebook: the ancient Egyptians were the first to start the whole craze of posting cats to walls, and it’s gotten somewhat out of hand…
But I digress. I was successfully upstaged by an elderly, cranky, tabby cat. And to be honest, I don’t mind a bit.
Yeah, I still know enough to know when I’ve been photo bombed by a pro.
Little Miss Risk