Photography has many sorts of enthusiasts, and some of them can be quite unusual individuals. Philadelphia-based Andrew Marttila can perhaps qualify as one of those odd ones. He is a cat photographer and has a growing portfolio that names few celebrity felines.
Marttila has done work with clients like Lil Bub, Pudge, and Grumpy Cat. In his latest series, he takes a look at that one sense of a feline that has been most talked about: their eyes. Marttila did this by shooting macro images of cats’ faces as they gaze back into the camera.
As you stare into the many eyeballs in this series, here are a few fascinating facts that make cat’s eyes rather peculiar:
- Felines of the white variety and with blue eyes typically cannot hear.
- To make use of all available light, the back of a cat’s retina has a layer of mirror-like cells known as the tapetum lucidum. It absorbs and reflects light and is the reason why weird glowing-eye cat photos occur when a flash is used. This is not to be confused however, with a human’s “red eye” during flash photography.
- Contrary to popular belief, cats are unable to see in absolute darkness. They do see better than humans though in low light conditions. They only require one sixth the light we require to see well in the dark.
- Another myth to be debunked is that cats are certainly not colorblind. A few colors are just less distinct than others to them.
- Cats are nearsighted! A feline’s eyesight is at its clearest 2-3 feet away from its face.
- A cat’s pupil opens and shuts quicker than the pupil of humans. Cat’s eyes therefore adopt to light changes faster. A feline’s pupil is also a window into its feelings (yes, they have feelings). A narrow pupil could mean irritation or anger, and a wide open pupil could indicate excitement or fear.
So the next time you gaze into a cat’s face, or when you look at Andrew Marttila’s pictures, ponder over these factoids about our friendly feline’s eyes.