This is a photo of a cat that was born 120 or more years ago. I found it in an old album last weekend. I had been looking for photos of long gone ancestors and I had forgotten altogether that there was also a cat among the pictures of bearded men, children in formal clothes and women with elaborate hairstyles and lace collars. Isn’t it a gorgeous picture? What a lovely cat, sitting on her brocade cushion looking somewhat wary perhaps, straight at the camera – wondering, possibly, what on earth was happening. The original photo is postcard size, taken at a time when photography was difficult. The need for stillness was crucial to avoid a fuzzy shot. This cat must have been very patient. I can’t help thinking about who owned her (or it could be him). They must have loved her very much to have had her picture taken, and she looks very healthy. I wonder what her name was? The photographer was an M Moore, according to the stamp. Where did he work? Where was the picture taken? On whose chair or cushion? It is very tantalizing.
Whatever is the case, here we are more than another century later, using totally different technology to look at a digital impression of a photo taken all that time ago. Here we are looking at an image of eyes long gone, making a connection with a creature from long ago and waving hello to her through time.