Aby-a-Day – 10 Juni: Another way to look at the show (Hipstamatic Monday)

I keep forgetting to do Hipstamatic photos when we’re at FIFe shows. I used to take them at cat shows regularly back in New England. But they’re fun…and it’s interesting to see what Hipstamatic does…like this one. You’ve seen our show curtains, they’re shades of green. But Hipstamatic turns them into shades of red!

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I also love the randomness of it. Sometimes it really improves the photo.

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I used to take photos with the cameras Hipstamatic is meant to emulate, back when I was a kid. You would take the photo…but never know what you were going to get. It’s a kind of fun we don’t have nowadays (although I wouldn’t want to go back to film EVER).

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Sometimes it makes a good photo even better…I really like the way the focus is shifted to Izaak and his BIV trophy in this one.

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Some of the films have frames that are a lot of fun. This one flips the original photo around the edges and sort of “shatters” them. It’s a neat effect.

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Hipstamatic can make a boring photo more interesting…

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…and it can save a photo you might have kept. When Hipstamatic saves a photo, it also saves the original, “normal” version of the shot. In this photo, Zak moved his head and his face was blurred. But in the Hipstamatic version…that motion blur is not an issue.

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Some of the different films play with colour, as I mentioned before. This one only keeps red and blue and discards everything else.

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This film makes your photo look like it was printed on an old newspaper, which can be a cool effect on the right shot.

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I also like this film a lot. It makes this cute photo of Zak even cuter, somehow.

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Once, ages ago back in the States, someone asked me, “So…What’s this Hipstamatic Monday all about?” This. This is what it’s all about.

Aby-a-Day – 27 Maj: “I’m so hip I have trouble seeing over my own pelvis” (Hipstamatic Monday)

I know I have been posting a lot of Loreali and Izaak outside photos, but they are just so photogenic and they love being outside so much.

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On a recent outing, I thought it might be fun to take some Hipstamatic shots whilst we were outside. I got some astoundingly beautiful images.

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I never tire of the randomness of Hipstamatic. You never know what you’re going to get. And of course, they aren’t all good. But once in a while, you get lucky.

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I love how these two show Rory’s busyness when she’s out exploring.

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I’m also quite enamoured of these photos showing the camaraderie between Rory and Zak.

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And these last two, of Zak…somehow, the Hipstamatic lenses and films capture him beautifully.

Aby-a-Day – 6 Maj: Somebody’s got a case of the Mondays! (Hipstamatic Monday)

Just another average day Chez Hellqvist. As usual, I woke up with at least one cat on me.

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Lorelai hung out in her favourite spot.

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She loves to be on the top of the floor-to-ceiling cat tree.

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Angel spent most of the afternoon in her brown cave bed.

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I don’t think a day goes by that she doesn’t nap in there.

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Alfred spent most of the day doing what he does best…

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—looking for food. I swear, it’s like having a raccoon in the house!

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Freddy! Get out of the cabinet!

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And Izaak..?

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Zak basically followed me around whilst I did my everyday things and photographed the other cats.

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He really is my little shadow.

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Most adorable shadow ever!

Aby-a-Day – 22 April: Where the boys are (Hipstamatic Monday)

I needed to fix a couple of things on my bicycle, so I let Lorelai and Izaak come outside with me whilst I was working.

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In Sweden, however much it may seem like New England, we haven’t really got a spring. We go from winter to full-blown summer. And so it is this year. We went from freezing cold to OMG where are my shorts and sandals!? Björn says that Sweden is in the BiPolar Zone.

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The kids who live in our apartment complex love our cats and love to play with them.

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Usually, it’s the girls who go nuts over the kittens running around outside.

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But today, it was the boys. One of them told me his friend had a cat with kittens, and he got to hold them when they were one week old. Later, he told me he was going to get one of those kittens.

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We had told them that Zak will fetch his mousies and bring them back, so they wanted to see that. Of course, outside, Zak had zero interest in playing with IKEA toys.

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The boys didn’t listen to us, and tried Zak’s favourite toy on Rory. It was, I think, disappointment.

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But watching them play and interact with the kittens was adorable.

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The boys went between romping with Rory and Zak like they would with puppies (and which Rory and Zak were totallly down with)…

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…to the sweetest one-on-one play you have ever seen.

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It really warmed my heart, watching boys running around playing with cats.

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I hope we are fostering our next generation of cat daddies.

Aby-a-Day – 25 Mars: “I think the loveliest time of the year is the spring…I do, don’t you? Course you do!” (Hipstamatic Monday)

It’s finally spring here in midwestern Sweden.

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We can tell because there’s no snow, the temperature is getting up above 5°C, and the swans have returned to our little lake (See those two little white dots in that photo up there? Those are our swans).

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Even though it was still a little chilly, I took Lorelai and Izaak outside to run around. It has been ages since they really got to run around, and run around they did.

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Rory got out the door and immediately started bounding down the hill, with Zak in hot pursuit.

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It is amazing how far they can get in such a short time. They are almost down to the road at the bottom of our hill.

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Rory was fascinated by something in those sticks…

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…Whilst Zak was more interested in trees.

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Finally I got them back up the hill…

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…and into the open area behind our apartment.

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They’re very familiar with the back of our apartment.

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We had an audience…apparently that other cat we saw on the balcony last summer has a roommate.

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As much as they enjoyed running around on the back lawn, it was pretty clear that there was only one ultimate goal…

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the sandbox!

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Rory did her usual digging holes in the sand and then running away from them.

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Finally we all got cold enough to go back in the apartment. But we had 45 minutes of fun and bonding before we went back in.

Aby-a-Day – 25 Februari: In memory of Walter Hutzler (Hipstamatic Monday)

Sad news…CFA judge Walter Hutzler has passed away. He was a great cat judge and person. I didn’t know him well, but he lived in Region 1 and I was lucky to have seen him judge and have Jacoby judged by him a few times.

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The thing I remember about Walter is his flamboyant style of dressing. He also often wore scarves, which I thought was cool, and a nice change from the usual ties CFA judges wear.

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He was even featured in the 2006 PBS documentary Standard of Perfection: Show Cats. It’s always fun to see judges you know on TV shows.

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Walter was a really fun judge to watch.

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He really interacted with the cats as he judged them.

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Since it was Monday, I remembered I had taken some Hipstamatic photos of Walter judging Jake at a show in Groton, CT in October 2011 (the same weekend I met Molly and Mosey and Jake Gbecame a Grand).

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My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friend has stopped running today. Sleep well in Tuonela, Walter.

Aby-a-Day – 18 Februari: Presidential Photography (Hipstamatic Monday)

Back in the States, today is President’s day. Of course, there’s not much to celebrate lately, but in honour of the holiday, Hipstamatic released a special free Hipstapak with the Lincoln lens and TR Roosevelt 26 film, a subtle reminder of two good Republican presidents.

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Well, I didn’t have an idea for a Monday post, so I figured I’d try it out. Usually, I use Hipstamatic on random, mixing and matching lenses and films, but today I only used the new lens and film. Not sure what I think of the results…but here is Angel.

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It does do a great job on Izaak, though.

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Of course, it’s hard to take a bad photo of Zak.

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Recently all the cats have taken to sleeping in our bedroom. Most of them like our bed, but Angel, as you see above, prefers to sleep in a cat bed that’s on our clothing hamper. But it’s not uncommon to find everyone else on our bed, especially Jacoby and Lorelai, who like to burrow under the comforters.

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Now that she’s no longer a super crazy kitten, Jake has become more tolerant of Rory…

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…Well, mostly.

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When I was taking these photos, Alfred was sitting right outside our bedroom and next to the kitchen, hopefully awaiting a snack.

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Good ol’ Freddy.