If you don’t know your Spanish classical guitar composers, now is your chance. I was listening to them while I painted this, but it could also be that Fromage was listening to them when I took the photo of her while visiting her family on Easter four years ago. I got to see my former foster kitten again this Easter, and among other things it always reminds me of this inspiration.
No, this is not one of my Five. Don’t I have enough black cats, I have to go looking for others? Well, Fromage is related to us, not by blood, but by bond. She is the neo-natal kitten I fostered in 2009, bottle feeding her and helping her along until I handed her over to the capable paws of the Fantastic Four so that she would learn to be a proper black cat.
Fromage was rescued by and lives with a friend (Cranberry’s lady), and I visit regularly. I took this photo of Fromage on the striped woven pillow last Easter, several photos in fact because her soft black shape looked so graceful on the colorful pillow, and ever since that moment this image has been requesting its chance to be painted. That happens with many images, like Dusk in the Woods and Peaches and Peonies—each time I thought about what I’d like to paint next, the painting itself would appear for me and patiently hover in my mind. When an image wants that badly to be painted you have to give in eventually.
In fact, this painting was such a pest it was getting in the way of other things, like visualizing daily sketches and a portrait or two. And there are plenty other images I’ve been waiting to paint when I found the time, but this one finally won its place. And I’m really glad!
So this is not really a “daily sketch”, it’s a planned painting taking a little more time and effort. Typically with daily sketches, no matter the medium, I don’t do a starting sketch underneath, I just start to paint, but here I did, wanting to be sure I captured all the details in proportion. And I wanted to work it a certain way, with flat bright colors but just enough detail through a few highlights and shadows. Fromage is not entirely black because I wanted to capture some of the warm and cool highlights and accentuate her graceful curve. The native pillow is really just a few colors but I wanted a little more shape in the larger red areas.
And the pillow was on a tan leather couch but from the beginning I pictured this yellow gold background, kind of rough and slightly gradated, like stucco perhaps. That may have been a suggestion from the pillow, but I really was listening to Spanish classical guitar as I was painting and when I got to the background, last of all, after everything else had been painted, I was fully into the color and texture of antique stucco.
You’ll be seeing a few other more intentional paintings of my cats and others’ coming up. I’ve also finally worked out a few portraits and will be starting on those, and have at least two large and deeply detailed paintings of my cats coming up this year as well. Now that I’ve given this little painting its day!
For a gallery of the ones available for sale, visit Portraits of Animals in the “Daily Sketches” section.
Read about the reason for the daily sketches in Three Years of Daily Sketches.
Download your free desktop wallpaper calendar for computer or mobile, usually based on a daily sketch.
And don’t forget that each month’s Featured Artwork is also one of the free prints available on Portraits of Animals when you sign up for an account.
A collection of 34 images of feline artwork
The award-winning* Feline Style Sampler
Daily sketches, illustrations, commissioned portraits all in a small coil-bound gift book.
*Certificate of Excellence, Cat Writers’ Association 2014 Communications Contest
Gifts Featuring Cats You Know!
Daily Sketch Originals and Prints from Portraits of Animals!
This painting probably has the longest name of any of my pieces of artwork! But there’s a story behind it, as there always is. Read more and order.
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.
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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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