Friday, May 24, 2024
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Daily Sketch: Kennedy, and a Benefit Auction

charcoal sketch of cat
“Kennedy”, white and black charcoal, pastel pencil on gray toned paper, 5″ x 8″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

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.

. . . . . . .

This auction is closed. Congratulations to Dani of Teddy and Tottie and thanks for your generosity!

How to Bid

  1. Bidding begins July 22, 2014 and continues through midnight EST on July 29, 2014.
  2. The opening bid is $25.00*.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. The highest bid is the winner, not the final bid.
  6. 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.

. . . . . . .

*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.

If you’re not familiar with Kennedy, read this article about his rescue, or visit the archive of articles about Kennedy.

Click here to vote for in the Petties.

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Petties 2014
Petties 2014

Read more about the Petties in this post.

Click here to see other daily sketches.

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.

"Garden with Mimi" desktop calendar, 1280 x 1024 for square and laptop monitors
“Garden with Mimi” desktop calendar

"Feline Style Sampler" book of sketches and portraits.

A collection of 34 images of feline artwork

Feline Style Sampler

Daily sketches, illustrations, commissioned portraits all in a small coil-bound gift book.

Click here or on the image to read more

or find this book in my Etsy shop.

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


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

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 | | 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!




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.

15 thoughts on “Daily Sketch: Kennedy, and a Benefit Auction

  • Pingback: Remembering a Special Rescue, and Make a Donation With Every Purchase - Portraits of Animals

  • Pingback: Featured Artwork: Remember Kennedy, and Make a Donation With Every Purchase ~ The Creative Cat

  • Hi Bernadette, I have just seen this auction for your beautiful sketch – Dani with the late news!!! As you know, I love black cats and I have been so moved by Kennedy’s story and think of him every day. I am also deeply moved by the love and care you are giving him – perhaps the only love and care he has had in his whole life. I wish I could give him a huge hug, but being in Australia makes that a little hard, so instead I’d like to bid $150.00 for his sketch and to help pay for his care and medical treatment. If there are any issues with me being in Australia and bidding please let me know, but otherwise I am so happy to help. Helping Kennedy in some small way is helping me move on from the recent loss of my beautiful Dee Dee. You are an angel, Bernadette. Thank-you for all the wonderful work you do with cats. Dani xoxoxoxoxoxox

    • Dani, you are so generous! Of course, we think about you as well as we all cried big tears when we read about Dee Dee. We love all colors, but house panthers are somehow special and seem to keep arriving here. There is no problem with shipping to Australia—I use parcel post with a tracking number and it takes a while but is economical and we can watch where it goes. Kennedy and I and the Five thank you, as do those in the rescue!

  • kittiesblue

    We can’t beat that $100 bid but will be purring and praying for Kennedy. XO, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

    • Kitties Blue, we’ll gladly take all of your prayers, they are as good as gold to us! Thank you!

  • Pingback: The Creative Cat - An Update on Kennedy

  • bluemoonalone

    This is a precious sketch of Kennedy reminds me of the big eyed kitty art of the 60’s 0ne of which is hanging above my desk here..I so wish I could bid..Good luck!

    • Thank you, Bluemoonalone! You don’t need to bid in order to wish Kennedy well–thank you, he appreciates it!

  • Anne Slevin

    100.00 bid for Kennedy any day!

  • Anonymous donor bids $40.00! I am posting this as Bernadette because this person wants to remain completely anonymous with no identity here.


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