Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
First Light Stream by octane2 First Light Stream by octane2
View this image on a black background here.

A few weeks before leaving for my photographic trip, I was housesitting for a close friend of mine. My friend happens to look after one of my cats, Starex Bellatrix Carina (due to a no pet policy where I live). Recently, my friend started looking after her parents' 15 year old cat, Kosmo, as he had not been well. Kosmo developed a limp in his front left paw and had lost his appetite. The vet said that Kosmo may have had a stroke, and, X-rays revealed that his heart had enlarged to three times its normal size.

The vet prescribed some pills as well as a quarter aspirin every three days. He didn't like taking his pills, and, would cleverly pretend to have taken them. When I'd come back to his room, I'd see two little white tablets sitting there on the carpet where he had spat them out after I left the room! I got wise to it and started squirting some water into his mouth to make him swallow. He didn't like me for that, but, would still allow me to scratch his chin and cheeks right afterwards.

When I started housesitting, I became quite close to Kosmo (I'm a cat person). Kosmo slowly started showing signs of improvement by walking on his front paw where previously, it was buckling under his weight. He started scoffing down his chicken liver pate meals and didn't mind his cat biscuits, either.

Bella and Kosmo tolerated each other, but, if they happened to get close, there'd be hissing, grumbling and on a few occasions, Kosmo took a swipe or two at her with his good paw.

Kosmo lost his voice a few years ago, but, if he wanted to, he could still make soft meowing sounds. It was quite unique, though, as he would aspirate some air first and then meow; it was like a cackle then meow. I got used to it and thought it was very cute. Kosmo started visiting me in the middle of the night; he would jump off his bed in the spare room, walk over to where I was sleeping, to say hello and steal a pat. Or, sometimes, to meow for some food. He would also come and sit at my feet when I was eating food and would often prop himself up to let me know that he was also interested in my meal. I would gladly share.

I was at Fox Glacier on the night of the 15th of September, when my friend rang to tell me that Kosmo had taken a turn for the worse in the preceding few days; he hadn't been eating and just lay on his bed all day. She took him to the vet to find out what was wrong. X-rays revealed an inoperable tumour on his heart. It was only found now as it had gotten a lot bigger. The vet said that he didn't have too long to live and my friend was left with the decision to either come home and find him lying motionless, or, worse, make the rotten, gut-wrenching decision to have him put to sleep. After much discussion and thought, she chose the latter. I bawled my eyes out when she told me that his time had come. I'm wiping tears away as I write this now, too. How silly -- he wasn't even my cat!

I dedicate this stream of first light painting Walter Peak, moments after the sun had risen, to Kosmo. I will miss your quiet voice and your midnight visits.

Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM
1s f/16 at 150.0mm iso100
Add a Comment:
crucafix Featured By Owner May 9, 2013  Student Interface Designer
ironsides11 Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013
Beutiful work :D
StrixCZ Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
And I'm also a cat person so I understand your sadness... :nod:
StrixCZ Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow :wow: :+fav:
CharlieA-Photos Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Professional Photographer

Incredible colors and light, it feels very mystical. Beautiful capture, well done! :)
HerrHaller Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Student Photographer
Really sad story, I'm sorry to hear it! I can definitely understand how sad you must be!
MBKKR Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2011
da-phil Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
epic pano! well done mate :clap:
smallcraig1606 Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
A beautiful image made even more so by the moving and touching story. I'm a cat person too ... RIP Kosmo.

This image gives the impression that the Peak is attempting to stare down the sun with its craggy brow. This image is a delight. And dare I suggest that the light background may even be a compliment to the image? And can I use the word "image" any more times in one comment?

Wonderful work.
ElaboratePlanet Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
quite an epic photo!
RogueofAsgard Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2011  Student Photographer
what a heartwrenching story.... brought tears to my eyes (i'm also a cat person) damn. what a beautiful dedication ad a beautiful picture.
EagleEye666666 Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
nice story.

I am not a cat lover at all, but I used to live here with two. I am quite surprised about how different and special a cat character can be. I have never thought that.
Unfortunately one of them has gone already, as fast as it joined our family (got killed on our street, just in front of the gate to our area, sad thing).

The other one, also quite old. We guess, nobody does really know it, that he is more than 20 years. He is living and living, incredible. He is moving very slowly but he moves, he sleeps more than being awake. But lately he is eating like crazy. We are trying to not give him to a lot but he is really getting on our nerves :) It is quite some terror even :) and he is able to scream and make sounds like a crying baby and that really loud.
He is the every day example how we will also be when getting old. We are becoming again like children.

danUK86 Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2011   General Artist
lovely scene, great light :)
Add a Comment:


Submitted on
September 30, 2011
Image Size
395 KB


180 (who?)

Camera Data

Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Shutter Speed
1 second
Focal Length
150 mm
ISO Speed
Date Taken
Sep 18, 2011, 6:57:37 AM
Adobe Photoshop CS5.1 Macintosh
Sensor Size