39 Cat Picture Ideas For the Purrfect Shot

Cats can be elusive creatures, shying away from the camera or darting around so quickly it’s hard to capture them. This leads to blurry play-time pictures and lots of photos of them snuggled or sleeping. Here, we hope to inspire you to shoot your cat more creatively than ever before—using their personalities, favorite hideouts and lounge-spots to produce photos that are beautifully frame-worthy. Using light, your cats curiosity and some imagination you’re going to create some really atmospheric and professional looking shots. Ready to get started?

Cat Photo Tips

Use Your Cat’s Curiosity

cat in basket
Place them in front of a mirror or bring them outside and let them interact with their surroundings. Capturing your cat’s innate curiosity can result in some epic and creative photos.

Leverage Their Love of Light

Is there anything cats love more than sitting in a ray of sunshine? Use your cat’s love of warm sunlight for moody silhouettes, light-filled window shots or stretched-out morning cuddles.

Use Relaxed Moments To Capture The Details

cat walking on beach
Whether it’s their spotted back, extra-long whiskers or perfectly-pink paws, use your cat’s quieter and relaxed moments to zoom in on their unique features.

Make Your Playtime Shots More Creative

These are fun, dynamic shots to capture; but, they can also look formulaic. Bring down your shutter speed to capture the blur of movement or reframe the shot with the rule of thirds in mind to make it more interesting.

Elevate Shots With Depth of Field

kitten on bed
Whether you’re shooting your cat with props or simply capturing them snuggled up in your arms, use depth of field to elevate the shot. A blurred or bokeh background can instantly make an ordinary shot feel more professional but also personal and focused.

39 Cat Picture Ideas

1. Give Them Pets

cat picture chin scratched

Source: Yerlin Matu

Think you can manage petting and clicking at the same time? If not, ask someone to step in to do the hard work while you capture the moment. We love how you can even see the whiskers against that bokeh background.

2. Shoot Your Cat Purching

cat picture standing yellow eyes

Source: Furry Photos

Cats have wonderful posture, so next time they perch themselves up on the couch or the kitchen table, grab your camera. It’s a beautifully simple shot that captures their unique figure and markings.

3. Sneak A Window Photo

Cats love sitting in the window to soak up the sun or watch the world go by. So the next time they climb up on the windowsill, capture the way the watch the birds or how they contently nap.

4. The Non-Traditional Family Portrait

This is a great photo to capture if you want a family shot without being cliche. You can still distinguish who is who, but the real focus here is on the cat and how content they are to be with their family. It also helps if you match your outfit to your cat’s beautiful eyes.

5. Get On The Floor With Your Cat

Next time your cat is rolling around on the floor, get down there with them. Shoot with a low aperture so you can really focus in on their face, while at the same time providing some beautiful depth for the rest of the frame.

6. The Holiday Shot

Before your cat tries to climb the tree or starts knocking off ornaments, grab them for a festive photo. Use the tree lights to create ambiance and a colorful bokeh effect in the background.

7. Cuddle Up

cat picture purple sweatshirt

Source: Japheth Mast

Instead of cuddling up on the couch, grab your cat and head to a light-flooded space. It could be outside or simply by the window, but the light is going to really add some wonderful atmosphere to the shot.

8. Catch Them Climbing

Whether your cat likes to climb ladders, shelves or up the tree—catch them in the act. The photo shouldn’t be static, instead catching them in motion or a precarious position.

9. Catch Your Shaddow

Everyone who owns a cat knows how they follow you like a shadow—quietly and never far behind. Walk around the house with your camera and catch them in this adorable act.

10. Those Lazy Mornings

Don’t you just love the way your cat yawns and stretches out in the morning? Capture your feline friend in the morning light before they even have a chance to notice the camera.

11. Find Them Smooshed

You can practically hear the purring here, can’t you? Whether your cat likes to smoosh itself between the couch pillows or hop inside every shoe box, capture them totally snuggled and relaxed. We love the sharp focus on the face here while the fluffy fur has a soft focus.

12. Play Around

Remember how we said keep playtime fun? Keep the backdrop clean and simple so the focus is totally on your feline friend, then, grab their favorite toy and wait for them to get animated. Frame two shots next to one another like this.

13. Shoot Off Center

There’s this little thing called the rule of thirds. Use it. Your cat might be the center of attention, but they don’t always need to be in the middle of the frame.

14. Play With Tight Shots

cat picture kitten nose licking

Source: Sereja Ris

We love this shot because it’s up close and personal, but also fun and full of movement. The focus is sharp and the blur of a moving object—most likely a toy—really adds some depth to the photo.

15. Use A Window As The Backdrop

The pose the cat is in is otherwise ordinary, but, the lighting in this shot is superb. Shoot into a flooded window where your cat likes to hangout in order to achieve this ambiance.

16. Capture Them Cuddling

Getting your cat to actually pose for a photo can be tricky. So what we love about this one is that it’s quite natural—capturing a beautiful, snuggly moment between the owner and her pet. The way she’s kept her head down also keeps the focus on the feline’s stunning features.

17. Cradle Your Cat

This photo isn’t just adorable, it’s personal. The up close shot feels like you’re right in the lap with the kitten, and really highlights these precious few months when they’re small and can’t yet get into too much trouble.

18. Get Them Outside

Hook your cat up on a leash and get them outside for a photoshoot. Get down on their level like they did in this shot, or shoot them from above climbing up your leg or the side of a tree.

19. Catch Them Climbing

cat picture sitting wood shelves

Source: Paul Hanaoka

Cats love shelves. So next time you catch them climbing, grab the camera before you shoo them away. We love how you nearly miss this feline at first glance, as it’s the same color as the shelves.

20. Get On Their Level

cat picture grey white laying

Source: Seven Song

Get down on the floor and shoot at their level. From here, it’ll look like you’re lying around or playing right there with them. Plus, it allows you to capture their beautiful features without zooming in.

21. Shoot Together

cat picture wood background

Source: Mael BALLAND

Instead of doing something that could turn out to be another predictable shot, simply hold your cat in your lap and look down at them. Coax them into looking at the camera so it’s all about them and you beautifully fade into the background.

22. Try Using a Mirror

Instead of a traditional portrait, sit your cat down in front of a mirror. See what they do and how they interact with it then snap! Some cats will look totally regal while others will look hilariously confused.

23. Use Their Toys

cat picture scratching post toy

Source: Seven Song

Use their toys, cat climbers and scratching poles to capture movement and create a beautiful depth of field. Your photo will be much more dynamic than if you just waved around one toy.

24. Get Them To Make A Funny Face

This shot is both amusing and stunning. We love the natural light flares and soft focus—as the cat is definitely in motion here as it bites for the grass. A shot like this really shows off your cats personality, too.

25. Put Them In The Middle

In lieu of a classic family shot, opt for something more fun and abstract like this. We love how the cat in the middle is peeking up at the humans, too, instead of looking right at the camera.

26. Shoot Them In Their Element

Outdoor cats are all the more fun to shoot because you have so much more to work with. We love how this shot captures the cat in a purr-fect pose and how the light filters in through the leaves. It feels like a snapshot into his everyday life.

27. Keep The Focus On Them

This is another successful attempt to shoot a portrait with your cat without it being forced. The focus here is totally on the feline, while still showing the intimacy of the relationship as the woman hugs the cat in her arms. That wonderfully-warm light creates a beautiful atmosphere, too. Cat’s are just really the best, aren’t they? Get your fix with these cat quotes.

28. Those Sweet Moments

cat picture curled up sleeping

Source: Sarah Ball

Don’t let the little things go unnoticed. Even the most simple scenes can make for a great photo. These are the kind of adorable shots that make great gifts for cat lovers.

29. Use Natural Light To Enhance Your Portrait

The natural light in this photo is superb. The bright light allows for a wonderful up-close shot against a beautifully contrasted backdrop. Plus, the position the cat is in feels really fresh and modern.

30. Make Playtime More Fun, Visually

We’ve all seen those typical ‘playtime’ photos and while they have movement, they’re typically boring. We love how this photographer used a chair to add some depth and color to the photo, which in turn adds a lot more character.

31. Let Them Climb On The Table

You may normally brush your cat off the table, but for the sake of good photography, let them be a little mischievous. We love how this shot captures the cat not only sneaking onto the table, but crawling over their owner.

32. The Friends Shot

cat picture lab cat window

Source: Alexis Chloe

Showcase both your canine and feline friends together with a simple shot like this. We love how they’re on opposite sides of the door and how the condensation adds some beautiful depth and texture to the shot.

33. Shoot Dark Cats Against Light Backdrops

cat picture blk cat window chair

Source: Kari Shea

If you have a black cat, you already know how incredibly hard it is to capture them on camera. It helps to put them against a lighter background and situate them in a room that’s flooded with light so their fur pops.

34. Focus on Their Features

cat picture blk white palms

Source: Anton Darius

Whether they’re in your lap or perched on the couch, step in a bit closer and capture their features. Focus on those green eyes, pointy whiskers or unique markings.

35. Have Your Cat Look Down at You

We love this image because of the unique angle. The way the cat looks into the camera confrontationally really captures the feline essence. Plus, we love how the cats body draws your eye up and around the photo.

36. Take Them Out

cat picture yellow backpack window

Source: KiVEN Zhao

Have a cat carrier? Stick them in it and snap a few photos of their expression—whether that’s contentment or total confusion. Either is going to come out adorable.

37. Cozy Up Together

cat picture blk grey sweater

Source: Calum Lewis

Put on a cozy sweater and snuggle up. Your plush sweater against their fluffy body is going to make for one adorable and cuddle-inducing photo.

38. Focus On Their Eyes

Whether your cat is peeking out from under their favorite blanket or hiding in the laundry, capture their sneaky antics and the way their eyes light up. Keep the composition interesting, but be sure to focus in on their eyes.

39. Use Furniture For Composition

Use your cat’s sneaky nature to create images with beautiful focus and uncommon angles. We love how this shot not only captures the cat hiding, but peaking out from under this stool with beautiful fringe. It’s a lot easier to get creative visually if you just think like your cat.

Anyone who owns a cat knows getting them to cooperate with a photo shoot can be difficult. But with some patience and creativity, you can really elevate your everyday shots and even get them to pose for more stylized photos.