I just couldn’t pass up sketching Kennedy in this pose. He looks at me like this so often, and I have so many photos of him, that it was another image that stayed with me until I decided what medium I really wanted to use. I had wanted to use gouache and could even picture the brushtrokes around his eyes and those bristly white whiskers. Then I remembered the gray background I wanted and the gray toned paper, then the soft charcoal and the clear white lines of white charcoal and knew that was it.
I’m still not sure I like the position, so foreshortened for the angle, but what I really wanted to capture was his face, the tattered ear, the copper eyes, the cataract, the prominent nose with the wavy front and those bristly whiskers. His front legs are each a little crooked, in different ways, as is his spine, so he sits a little lopsided. So there he is, all the things I picture when I think about him.
I sketched this from his photos, of course. But last night again I moved the baby gate to the landing, this time letting him into my bedroom as well, figuring he’d gotten his bearings the first time out and had the strength and focus to be able to get himself around the boxes in my bedroom. And he was ready as soon as I moved the gate, stepping out with confidence and heading right into my bedroom. All Five of the family were there too, stationed in various places around the floor in my room and the studio like baffles for a pinball as he walked around and between them. Mimi, surprisingly, was a small but immovable object in the center of the landing and though he poked her a few times ensuing in a hiss from her, she did not move. Each of them seemed to stay along his path and watch, but without any animosity whatsoever.
So each time he walked into the studio and looked up at me, I had another look at his eyes and his face, his stiffness and the awkward bend of his paws, and his determination, as I worked from his photographs and enjoyed this six-black-cat encounter. He gave himself little breaks for quick naps here and there, and when he finally seemed to settle in his bed I moved the baby gate back to the doorway. Everyone else settled down for a nap as well.
His health is changing and I’m not sure what the result will be. I’d decided to let him wander like this to help give him exercise and mental stimulation, hoping it would perk his appetite, but that remains irregular. He will be seeing a veterinarian tomorrow as none of my little tricks or cajoling have gotten him to eat regularly, he hasn’t been putting as much into the litterbox, and he’s not drinking as much. All the little things my cats have taught me through the years are not working, and with the mass near his heart in the position where we saw it on the X-ray I don’t want to administer fluids or attempt to force feed or give anything more than a test dose of famotidine to see if reflux is an issue. No appetite is one thing, trouble swallowing, if that is the case, is another more serious condition to overcome. My cats, and common sense, also taught me to call a veterinarian at certain points when I couldn’t determine what to do. I need a veterinarian to take a look at what’s happening with Kennedy and give me instructions.
I’m not sure what he’ll need, but I think we can safely presume blood tests and an X-ray for starters. He will probably also need fluids and some other supportive measures, so of course I’m going to get to money. Margo, one of the women who rescued him, still has a balance for his first exam on her account at her vet, which is where he’ll go. She also just fostered Marshmallow and her eight kittens, several other kittens, and one of her ferals recently developed a non-malignant form of lymphoma that emerged with a dangerously high fever and lethargy, an emergency hospital visit and continuing care from her regular vet. I am working with a number of situations behind the scenes. And of course, the kittens and cats keep coming.
So I’d like to auction off this sketch with all proceeds for the sale going one of two places: directly to Margo’s veterinarian, which would cover his care and the care of many other rescues but not be a tax-deductible donation, or to Frankie’s Friends, which is a 501(c)3 and your donation is tax-deductible. Whatever the amount comes to, it will support Kennedy, the rescuers, and all the efforts of people out there every day rescuing cats, bottle-feeding kittens, running cats they found in parking lots to veterinarians, giving information and assistance to people feeding cats outdoors, helping people feed cats when they can’t afford it, and spaying and neutering a lot of cats.
Instructions for the auction are below. We did this last year with Odilia.
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This auction is closed. Congratulations to Dani of Teddy and Tottie and thanks for your generosity!
How to Bid
- Bidding begins July 22, 2014 and continues through midnight EST on July 29, 2014.
- The opening bid is $25.00*.
- In the “comments” section of this post, please enter your bid amount and any message you’d like to include. Only bids entered on this post are valid so that bids may be kept in order of time entered and be made in public where other bidders can see. Bids entered anywhere else, such as on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google+ posts will not be considered valid bids. If by any chance you cannot enter a comment, please e-mail your bid to me and I will enter it into the comments section according to its time stamp in your email so that all bids will remain in order; please only do this if there is no other way to enter your bid.
- At midnight on July 29 I will review the comments for the highest bid and inform the winner immediately via e-mail. For this reason, please use your own account to bid so I know who it’s from.
- The highest bid is the winner, not the final bid.
- The winner will make their payment directly to either Bridgeville Animal Hospital in Bridgeville PA 15017 or Frankie’s Friends Cat Rescue in Tarentum. I will provide you with the method to send payment to them, and when they have received payment, I will ship the sketch to the winner.
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*For tax purposes, if you receive valuable goods or services in return for a donation you need to deduct the fair market value of the item from your donation before claiming on your taxes. For the purposes of this auction I am valuing Kennedy’s sketch at $25.00. Regardless of the tax issues, the entire amount of your donation will go to the recipient to support Kennedy’s care and the care of other rescues. And you know I’ll be writing about that here.
Prints of the sketch are still available to those who donate
Please visit this post about the winner to read more about available prints.
I’m adding this on Thursday after I’d posted the auction: I know I’ll be making prints of this sketch, and several people have simply donated for Kennedy’s care in an amount they could afford rather than bidding on the sketch. To all who donate for Kennedy’s care to either of the places above in Item No. 6 and who provide an address, I will mail a print of the sketch after the auction is over.
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Read more about the Petties in this post.
For a gallery of the ones available for sale, visit my Etsy shop in the “Cat Art and Prints” section.
Read about the reason for the daily sketches in Two Years of Daily Sketches.
And download your free desktop wallpaper calendar for computer or mobile, usually based on a daily sketch.
A collection of 34 images of feline artwork
Feline Style Sampler
Daily sketches, illustrations, commissioned portraits all in a small coil-bound gift book.
or find this book in my Etsy shop.
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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile 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.
© 2014 | 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!