We usually think of cats as graceful, sophisticated creatures. But give them a little catnip, and they can become straight-up goofballs.
“I don’t remember the first time I gave my cat catnip, but I recall immediately wishing to see what it would look like frame-by-frame,” Marttila told HuffPost in an email. “As soon as my photography advanced to the point where I learned how to capture those wild moments, I was hooked on taking freeze frame action shots.”
It was after seeing his former roommate’s cat on the ’nip that he began getting the idea to create a whole photo series of blissed-out felines.
“My old roommate’s cat absolutely loved the stuff,” he said. “We’re talking 12-step program obsession. Whenever I’d give him catnip, I felt like my next move was to call the exorcist.”
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Cats acting cray on catnip soon became one of his favorite subjects to shoot, and he figured the photos would make a pretty good book. Armed with the knowledge that about 70 to 80 percent of cats have an intense response to the plant, he put out a casting call and began traveling around the country on a furry important quest.
Over the course of six months, he gave more than 100 felines piles of the kitty-safe herb and snapped photos of the cats while they went bonkers on it.
And for every shoot, he came fully supplied — with four to five tubs of different kinds of catnip.
“A lot of cat owners don’t know how to dish out the stuff,” he said. “Cats don’t want a pinch! They want to cover their entire bodies in it. I took a number of hilarious photos with cats completely covered in catnip like a suit of euphoric armor.”
To see some of Marttila’s photos of cats in their happy place, take a look below.