Mitsuaki Iwago is a notable wildlife photographer, and is the only Japanese photographer to have his work grace the cover of National Geographic more than once.

So far he has journeyed to over nine different countries to photograph cats, and he doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. Iwago believes that by studying cats we can better understand people, and has mentioned his affinity for shooting felines during multiple interviews.

Apparently the cats feel the same way about Mr. Iwago – just check out this footage taken from one of his past adventures!

Mitsuaki Iwago is the son of Tokumitsu Iwago, who was also famous in Japan for his wildlife photography work. But does Iwago’s unique sense for connecting with animals, like this cute kitten in the video below, come by nature or nurture?  You decide!

▼ This little guy wandered up to Iwago while he was shooting in Okinawa.

Right now cat-lovers or fans or Iwago’s work within Japan can view many shots of cute kitties taken from all across the globe at his Neko Aruki (Go With Cats) exhibit now showing at the Sano Art Museum in Shizuoka Prefecture. The exhibit is a tie-in with his latest photo book release of the same name, displaying an intimate look at street cats in their natural and seasonal surroundings within Japan and abroad.


I received free tickets to his exhibit last week, and very much recommend it if you have the chance to go! Unfortunately photos inside the exhibit were not allowed, but many photos featured in the exhibit and from the photo book can be found in the “cat gallery” on his official website.


For those outside of Japan, not to worry! Between August 15-17, NHK World will show Wildlife Photographer Mitsuaki Iwago’s World “Cats” Travelogue, a program capturing his latest feline photography journey, at different times throughout the day. For more information on the program, click here. (Japanese NHK viewers can catch similar episode broadcasts of Sekai Neko Aruki during July. More information here.)

I can’t think of a more purrfect way to spend some of my time this summer. How about you?

Source: Bored Panda
Top image: YouTube
Insert images: Sano Art Museum, Digital Iwago