Vintage Photo: Little Fawn, Just Before, 1988

torbie kitten on rug
Fawn on the rug, just before I took the photo for the painting.

The little torbie kitten is my “yiddle” Fawn, chasing one of her rolled up balls of paper around my bedroom floor. That’s not so remarkable, that was Fawn’s favorite game, and kittens do that sort of thing all the time, but she’s still as cute as cute can be.

And that was why I took the photo in the first place, enjoying the wash of light over her head and paws, speckles on the rug, thinking of a painting. But just moments later, when she looked up from her little game and saw her human and raced under the bed and…

photo of cat under bed
The reference photo for “Waiting for Mom”

…which, the next year, became…

pastel portrait of cat under bed
“Waiting for Mom”, pastel, 16″ x 23″, 1989 © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

…my “first” pastel cat portrait, in 1989. It just happened to be a day like today in October that I saw Fawn at play. Those floors were painted battleship gray, the baseboards forest green and the walls vanity yellow. The cedar chest in the background is at the foot of my bed today.

I still have the bed and the bedspread and the dust ruffle and the rug, though not all together any more. My mother made the rug right after WWII and when the rug’s threads began letting loose a few years ago I couldn’t keep up with it unraveling, so I packed it away until I have time to rethread all the rounds. I gave the yellow gingham bedspread to a friend when she moved years ago, but every once in a while I still use the white dust ruffle, expressly so that kitties can hide behind it to leap out and attack my ankles. I just have a long bedspread on the bed right now, but Smokie and Bella have been having a ball doing just that.

But that poster bed is the same one seen in all the photos in my bedroom. Fawn continued slipping under the dust ruffle even after we moved here, all her life, and every so often I look into my bedroom at that corner of the bed and I can just picture her there.

. . . . . . .

You can read more about “Waiting For Mom” in “The Portrait That Started It All”, and more about Fawn in “My First Litter” and “The Balloon”.

Also, see other Vintage Photos of my household of cats from days gone by, and taken on film with my Pentax K-1000.

. . . . . . .

What other photos have I shared on this date?

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Wordless Wednesday: Bean Looks Into Things
black cat looking into blue vase
Bean Looks Into Things

. . . . . . .

Imaginary Box, 2012
cat in box
Imaginary Box.

Mimi has her box. Mr. Sunshine wanted his own box.

When I set the frame on the table to begin framing, Mr. Sunshine decided that would do just fine, that and a little imagination.

. . . . . . .

Find Cookie in this Picture, 2011
tortoiseshell cat in weeds
Find Cookie in this picture.

Yes, tortoiseshell cats blend perfectly into any landscape! I constantly lose Cookie as her speckles and patches are perfectly camouflaged by leaves and mulch and moving shapes of sun and shadow through the trees. I was watching her out of the corner of my eye as usual but suddenly she disappeared! She hadn’t—she just sat down for a little break. She’s going to have to suffer the indignity of a flourescent pink collar lest I suffer the misfortune of a heart attack if I can’t find her—in plain sight!

cat with sawdust
Cookie with sawdust on her head.

We pitiful humans need feline supervision no matter what we do, even if it’s something no kitty would ever stoop to endeavor such as tree trimming and lawn clean up. Cookie is a specialist in everything.

This area was always shady under the high branches of the trees, mostly my neighbors’ and I encouraged woodland plants to grow in the shade and undergrowth. About ten years ago a mulberry tree sprouted in the corner of the yard and spread over the area somewhat close to the ground, providing a little too much shade for some of the plants.

photo of mulberries
Mulberries on a Summer Morning

However, it provided the best mulberries I have ever, EVER, tasted, like big deep purple blackberries, sweet and juicy and just falling off the tree. Really, when the tree was ready to bear these farthest branches touched by the sun would lean down toward the earth so that I didn’t even need to use a ladder but could stand and readily harvest them. I always felt as if the tree was telling me, “Look, now, my berries are just right, come and harvest, and make your jelly and juice and wine and dye and extracts, use my berries for all they are worth because there is more than enough for you and all the birds and animals.”

I had been about to remove her because I loved my shade garden and so did all my cats, but with all that, who could resist?

But two years ago the ice storm pulled her down and partially uprooted her. I tried to prop her and encourage her to produce her berries, but it appears she is done. I’ve been trimming back and cutting sections with lopping shears and pruning saw but leaving the lovely arching branches that have held my bird feeders for the past decade. I am looking forward to the renewal of my shade garden; with the iron will of these wild flowers I’ve no doubt they will return on their own since trees grow and fall all the time in the woods.

bench in greenery
My old bench.

I’m looking forward to spending time on my bench again to read and sketch and think and watch the birds, and commune with my little kitty memorial spot which is behind but near there. Perhaps Cookie and I will sit out there some sunny late afternoon this autumn.


Browse some rescued cats and kittens—browse here or visit PittsburghCAT!

cats and kittens
Gallery view of Pittsburgh CAT cats for adoption.

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 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!

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Bernadette

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.

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