From the Easel to the Wall, and On

pastel sketches on easel
What’s on my easel, waiting to be framed…and then some.

Landcapes 2, Cats 6—I’d say the cats are winning my attention as art subjects, at least during the late winter/early spring months, after the snow and before the flowers, judging by what’s clipped to my easel at the moment. I do actually have one more landscape that was too big for the board, so the score is not so unbalanced. A few months ago, there were only cats. Most of them you’ll recognize as daily sketches.

pastel sketch of cat looking out window
“Winter Morning (full paper)”, pastel on textured paper, 5″ x 7″ © B.E. Kazmarski

Easily smeared, pastels can be difficult to store so I usually hang them somewhere, clipping them or taping them to a drawing board or a door until I get to them. Charcoals and contés can be difficult in the same way but I’ll also sometimes use a sketchpad and slip the drawings between the pages, taping them lightly in place so they don’t move. Watercolors, pencils and ink can stack in a box or a drawer or likewise between the pages of a sketchbook, then be stored away where they will stay clean and flat—there’s nothing worse than trying to wrestle a curled pastel drawing onto a piece of mounting board when all you can touch of it are the edges and you can’t use any heat or weight or moisture to flatten it out, or trying to clean errant pastel dust off of a sketch that’s been hanging on the wall a little too long. Many of my daily sketches remain in the sketchbooks until I want to use them for something, and the sketchbooks stay stored away in a drawer as well. And I don’t let my pastels get anywhere near my watercolors or even other dry media.

watercolor and ink sketch of two cats.
“The Sun is In Their Faces”, watercolor and ink, 5″ x 7″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

But I like to look at my artwork, an not just for feeling pride in what I do. A constant review is necessary for any creative person, and looking over what I’ve done in the paste few weeks or months shows me trends in color, style, medium or content I wouldn’t notice any other way. I recently realized I hadn’t done any oil pastels for a while, and then also realized I’d been using pencil or charcoal way more often then any color medium. Well, it’s been winter, and I’m influenced by my surroundings—winter has many colors but I love the starkness of bare trees, for instance—and now I’m beginning to see more color in my sketches. I study them for areas where I need improvement, or areas where I’d like to experiment. Having them on display is also how I decide which ones I’ll frame and which ones I’ll use for keepsakes and other products too.

"Spring Morning Leaves", pastel, 9" x 12" © Bernadette E. Kazmarski--the "other landscape"
“Spring Morning Leaves”, pastel, 9″ x 12″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski–the “other landscape”

I’ve been planning a big framing binge, choosing the art I’d like to frame and the mats and frames and other displays for those originals. A few people have requested to purchase an original daily sketch, and these are included in what I’ll be working on, as well as some custom framing of other artwork that is not mine. Above you see only the pastels I’ll be framing though even this isn’t all of them, and then there are a few watercolors too.

Preparing frames is part of the fun, whether I’m choosing custom framing, purchasing frames off the shelf or giving a thrift store or yard sale frame a new look with colors and finishes that coordinate with the painting. Looking at them day after day in changing light helps to determine what mats and frames I’ll use as well.

I’ll be posting these very soon, in my e-newsletter, here on The Creative Cat and then in Etsy shop, likely next week and the week after.

I’ve already designed a few mouse pads and garden flags and keepsakes with a few of the new sketches, so you’ll see those here as well.

For now I’ve got a few art cats and administrative professionals ready to supervise my work.

See a few other originals I’ve framed for sale.

black cat watching sketch
I am very closely supervised at every step of my creative process.

Take a look at other new merchandise and featured artwork.

Once a week on Thursday I feature something new in my “shop”, whether that’s here on The Creative Cat, in my Etsy shop, on my main website or even at one of the bricks and mortar shops that carry my work.

Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.

It’s all done under the close and careful supervision of my studio cats!

Click the image at right to see “Feline Punctuation”.

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!

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.

Gifts Featuring Cats You Know
image of cat calendars
2013 desk and journal calendars on sale!


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

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