Josh Norem, also known as the Furrtographer, started out shooting rescue cats and dogs, then eventually, to his surprise, people started to pay him. From there he made some connections, started marketing aggressively, and did a lot of free shooting.
Now, Josh is highly sought after for his sharp, atypical, and fun images, which can be seen in magazines, calendars, and more. He has had sessions with some of the most famous pets on the internet, including Boo the Pomeranian and Grumpy Cat, both of which left him star struck.
The most memorable photo shoots for Josh are end of life sessions, as they are bittersweet, but in his eyes, probably the most important type of shoot for a pet photographer.
What’s the most challenging thing about working with pets? “You have one shot to make the shoot work every time, and there’s not really a chance to do it over, and sometimes conditions don’t always cooperate so it’s always somewhat of a crapshoot,” says Norem. “The most rewarding is when you DO get that killer shot or series of photos that the client loves, and you didn’t expect it to happen,” he says. “The real ‘skill’ of a pet photographer is that in every shoot you don’t know exactly what kind of shot you’ll get, which is both fun and scary at the same time. When something unexpected happens, and you nail the shot, it’s extremely rewarding.”
So, do pet photographers have pets? You bet. Norem has a 13-year-old Pekingese/Corgi mix and fosters cats and kittens with eye issues. At one point, Josh had two blind cats, and regularly featured them on his social channels. This spurred about a dozen adoptions of these special cats, which means a lot to him. Josh regularly gets emails from fans and has helped many along the way in their journey to adoption. His main cause is Saving Grace Rescue as they help special needs kittens and cats, like his foster cat, who was born with eyelid agenesis. They rescue blind kittens, tripods, you name it. You can find them on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/specialfeatureskittens/