2015 CWA Certificate of Excellence Winners

watercolor of black cat on windowsill
“Snowy Morning”, watercolor, 5.5″ x 8.75″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Above, one of the winners of a Certificate of Excellence!

. . . . . . .

I’m pleased to share the news that I’ve won a number of awards for my articles, artwork, illustration and commercial art in the 2015 Cat Writers’ Association Communications Contest. These awards are self-nominated so I chose what to enter. They are judged by a jury of my peers, members of the Cat Writers’ Association. This is the ninth year I have submitted work to this contest.

I have been awarded eleven certificates, and while that may seem excessive it’s because the contest judges not just writing but also art, illustration, photography, books and publications, and I often have something to enter in almost every category, which is an opportunity not many other contests offer.

Nominating one’s self for awards in various professional contests is not necessarily an act for the ego; it’s one of those professional activities in which you participate especially when you’re self-employed, but even if not. Participating in contests and receiving awards distributes your work to a further audience and also puts it before other professionals in your field for assessment, a completely different set of judges from those who enjoy or use your work. This raises the value of what you do and helps to give you more opportunities to do even more work. And especially when you work for yourself it’s, in part, a benchmark for how you’re doing, and a pat on the back.

Thanks to you, my readers

Those of you who read and comment and purchase here on The Creative Cat are the first line of peers to judge my work. You are the audience to whom I write, and your feedback in good part determines not only the art and merchandise I choose to sell but also what I present here, and also what I entered into the contest.

The awards

The award letter typically states that “the standards for winning a Certificate of Excellence are very high and this award is a recognition of your outstanding work.” Also, winners of the coveted CWA Muse™ Medallion are chosen from among the Certificate of Excellence winners, all of which will be announced at the annual conference in June.

And thanks again to my family of felines

Thanks always go to my family of cats, yesterday’s, today’s and tomorrow’s. I may have the talent and initiative, but I must thank my ongoing family of muses for my career. This year, Bella is a star, featured in three images that won certificates! Basil makes an appearance in two illustrations, one of those with Bella. Kennedy is also included in this selection, and his portrait goes on to inspire. Patricia Fry’s book cover illustrations, and all the cats who became de facto models for those, also won a certificate as a series.

And the work I’ve been doing for promoting and outreach for the Homeless Cat Management Team also won an award. All the effort really pays off.


Magazine Article/Rescue & Advocacy
“Spectacular Seniors”, RescueMe Magazine

Upon Seeing Himself in a Mirror

PR/Humane Education Press Kits
Homeless Cat Management Team

Online Article/Any Other Topic
“Sometimes This Is What Cat Rescue Looks Like”

Online Column
Homeless Cat Management Team Volunteer Profiles


Blog Entertainment
The Creative Cat


One Long Kitty
Fun Things Bella Does With Her Tail

Illustration Single
Snowy Morning

Illustrations Series
Klepto Cat Mystery

You can see this list and awards I’ve won in previous years on my Cat Writers’ Association page. You can also see all the certificate winners in this contest on this page on the Cat Writers’ Association website. Read more about the Cat Writers’ Association and their annual Communications Contest which includes work published in all media, from books to television to newspapers and magazines—these are the people who write and broadcast about feline health and welfare, reviewing foods and books and products, cartoonists, illustrators and authors of all sorts. If you are a writer, illustrator, videographer, artist or in any way create public communications about cats, please read up on the organization and consider becoming a member!

A special discount to celebrate!

ink sketch of two cats around curtain
“One L-o-o-o-ng Kitty”, ink hybrid technical pen, 9″ x 5.5″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

For the next week I’m offering 25% off any print of the four illustrations that won awards, until Saturday, May 21.Use the coupon code CWACERTIFICATES2015 when you check out to automatically take 25% off the four sketches listed below.

Better yet, register for an account with Portraits of Animals and an 8″ x 10″ print of “Snowy Morning” is one of the new member thank yous.

And also note that $5.00 of the sale of each Kennedy print goes to the Homeless Cat Management Team.

Snowy Morning


One Long Kitty

Fun Things Bella Does With Her Tail


All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

Do you appreciate the stories and images we offer you each day?

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© 2016 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!



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From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, The Creative Cat offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats. From catchy and creative headlines to factual articles and fictional stories, The Creative Cat provides constant entertainment and important information to people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

14 thoughts on “2015 CWA Certificate of Excellence Winners

  • May 23, 2016 at 7:23 pm

    YAY! YAY! Concatulations on all those pawesome awards, Auntie Bernadette!!!

  • May 16, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    B….I am BUZZED happy, as the tabbies say, for you…congrats on every award, they are very well deserved….this is totally cool ~~~ 🙂 🙂 🙂 ♥♥♥♥♥

  • May 15, 2016 at 8:53 am

    A well deserved honor! You are extraordinarily talented across so many mediums and I am not surprised at all that you received such recognition!

  • May 14, 2016 at 10:48 pm

    Congratulations on your awards, b! Very well deserved!!

    • May 16, 2016 at 2:39 am

      And for some reason, all my comments need to be approved, another thing to figure out this weekend.

  • May 14, 2016 at 10:28 pm

    Congratulations, Bernadette! Very well deserved!!

    P.S. Check your email for another message…

  • May 14, 2016 at 9:38 pm

    Congratulations on all your awards. That is terrific to be recognized for your great work. I am very tickled that I have one of your Snowy Morning prints. When people ask about it, I can tell them it is an award winner. Keep up the excellent work Hugs, Janet

    • May 16, 2016 at 2:37 am

      Thanks so much, Janet. I actually thought of your purchase of that print and others’ when I read the awards. It’s all abut sharing the thought and the moment for me and that’s what makes my art complete.


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