Today was apparently a great day for naps. Sunshine is in the flat basket, Jelly Bean in the yellow basket, and Hamlet in the natural basket, but no one moved in to fill the box, but this was only the morning nap session downstairs. Later everyone was upstairs because the sun came in the windows, and several were on the bed including Sienna, who seems to like the bed very much.
Mimi and I thought the weather was pretty nice, and we hope it stays that way.
Warm concrete is hard to resist. (The red you see around her is just older layers of paint. I was a little freaked at first because it looked like blood.)
Flounder and Puma, 2017
Flounder and Puma are two of the five indoor cats living at Birgitta’s farm where the six feral cats now live.
Puma is the oldest cat in the house at 17. He was adopted with his sister for Birgitta’s mother years ago. His sister had a major personality change and decided to take off for the barn down the street when they were about 12 years old but Puma stays where he is happy. Puma was napping with Flounder on the sink in the mudroom when we woke them up, and was concerned about his grooming, but took a moment to greet me with the dignity of an elder.
The other cat is Flounder who invited himself into Birgitta’s house a few years ago, hopping right into the basement door one day—hopping because his legs were stuck together with burrs tangled in his somewhat feathery longish fur. He was very friendly and completely socialized, and likely either escaped and was lost or was tossed outside by someone who didn’t know what they were missing. Such a friendly, affectionate cat, when Birgitta rested her hand on the edge of the sink he did all the work of rubbing his face all over her hand. His round eyes and fluffy fur reminded me of Basil.
You can read more about Birgitta’s animals and the reason I visited to deliver the feral cats.
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What other photos have I shared on or around this date?
No, things aren’t always rosy and full of love among the family here. Sometimes Jelly Bean likes to poke Mewsette when all she wants to do is quietly curl up and meditate. But that wasn’t what happened this time—Mewsette just decided she didn’t want to look at his ugly fact and told him to get lost! Bean was up to the challenge and some pretty strong language was exchanged, which Smokie had apparently never heard before as he headed for cover in the basket. Bella focused on birdwatching, but kept turning around to see that they weren’t heading her way. It all came to nothing, at least it looked that way to me.
And it seemed to be a day for expressing strong feelings. In the kitchen I saw several of my cats looking out the window and door in a way that meant there was a cat out there. I looked in the direction they were and say my neighbors’ cats at their window, which was open with the screen. I guessed there was some sort of discord happening there too. No paws were waved but some intense looks were exchanged.
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Desk Accessories, 2012
Every desk needs a tortoiseshell cat!
Pens, calculator, calendar, notepads, glasses, Kelly, all part of what makes my desk work. I love how cats cuddle up to something that’s not really comfortable to cuddle up to, like two pairs of glasses in my hard-sided glasses case, but they’ll make do if nothing else is available.
Just a month after we’d lost Cookie, I was thrilled Kelly was comfortable on my desk without her there, even if it meant I couldn’t use my reading glasses.
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What Does the Cherry Paint Taste Like? 2012
Mr. Sunshine grew bored with supervising me and decided to get a little more involved with what I was doing. Not to help me work, mind you, he is a supervisor. He decided to taste one of the puddles of watercolor I’d mixed and watered down to use for what I was doing—one good reason to make sure all your creative materials are non-toxic!
I was really bored, she was doing the same thing over and over, just painting one one print after another, then hanging it up and going on to the next one. And I was just replacing Mewsette who usually supervises in this position but had to take a litterbox break. She told me this was fun! She really enjoys this!
But all I wanted to do was see what that stuff was she was waving her brush in—and mind you I didn’t eventhink of biting her brush like I really wanted to do! But she’d dip that brush into that little puddle and squiggle it around and I watched, then she’d move it around on the paper, then she’d put it in the water jar. Then she’d start on the next puddle. I was mesmerized, and as soon as she lifted her brush out of the first puddle I just put my nose in there and took a few licks.
Oh, the noises she made! And the waving of hands! Okay, okay! I got my nose out of there! It didn’t taste as good as it looked, anyway.
But then I really was thirsty so I thought I’d drink some of the water out of the jar. After all, it’s just water right?
More noises and waving of hands! What is her problem? It’s just water!
I look for the “AP Non-toxic” label on all the things I’ll be bringing into the house and using around my cats. Those standards test for exposure for children, and while our pets are generally smaller it’s a pretty safe standard of safety to use for them. Where pigments are concerned, most products no longer use the original natural pigments, many of which were toxic even to adults, but it’s still good to know what’s in the products you use for yourself and all living things in your environment. Read “Art Cats” in my Living Green With Pets series, where you can also read about the standards and labeling at ACMI, and how paints are made at Handprint.
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Supervisor in Waiting, 2013
“If you’re going to work today, could you get to it? I’d like to have a nap, but I’m scheduled to supervise today and I can’t nap until you’re done.”
Sorry, Mr. Sunshine, it doesn’t always work that way, especially when you’re in the middle of my work table. But at least I was in the same room for most of the day, and I won’t tell anyone you had a nap even while I was working.
Mr. Sunshine is always very aware of his tail, unlike a few other boys we know who leave it out where it can be stepped on or it’s…in my plate. Not Mr. S., his tail is always properly laid across his hind leg in a graceful curve.
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Hamlet and his sister Ophelia were rather feral kittens, did not socialize to fosters, and were placed in a barn to live as feral cats. That didn’t suit them either, so they came to me. It took a while for them to find their socialized selves, and I am more than happy to have gotten to know them and help them to realize humans were nice things, and to be able to have them as my muses and models for a couple of years. Hamlet was meant to inhabit the magic yellow basket. I featured this photo on Black Cat Appreciation Day in 2016. Read more and order this photo and browse other feline photos on Portraits of Animals.
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!