This is about what it looks like in there. I came upstairs at all the noise and opened the door, and there it was, what two kittens had created. My other cats slowly joined me as we watched Smokie and Bella play with everything in the room at once. In particular, Bella is on her back in the tub with a blue felt fish that is obviously making her feel good. Smokie has his striped crocheted ball, the best toy in the whole world, ever. But just about everything else stands a fair chance at being swatted, kicked, bitten or rolled on in just the next few minutes. What a joy to watch, two kittens who at one time didn’t play at all and were frightened of me.
I stood at the doorway behind the baby gate with my cats and sketched as fast as I could.
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What other sketches did I share around this date?
My Basket, 2013
Hey, if you get some black cat hair with your order, talk to Giuseppe. I have temporarily lost the battle of the basket. He knows it’s the focus of my attention, so he has occupied it.
This is drawn in brush pen like the last view of Giuseppe in the basket, “Just Fits”. This time he has some deep black areas that contrast with the light coming across his fur at an angle, and he’s very pleased with his own composition. So in this brief moment before I unceremoniously dump him out of it—and I do, with the same smugness with which he occupies it—I get to sketch him and he thinks he’s won the game. But the game never really ends!
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Getting Very Sleepy, 2012
I don’t usually do a sketch this detailed or time-consuming “on a school night”, meaning “on a day when I have so many other things to do that I already don’t have enough time”; it’s enough for me to take a quick break and let my mind rest from other logical pursuits to simply visualize something in pencil or marker.
However, when I came up the steps and saw Giuseppe at the top having a bath and enjoying the sun on a cool morning, I realized as my jaw slowly dropped open with wonder and I realized I was already planning which drawing paper and pastels I’d use, how I’d apply them, could in fact feel their softness in my hands, could feel myself blend them with my fingers, just which shade of blue, that this was the sketch I wanted to do right now, and no other sketch was going to get done until I managed to get this one out of my mind, and that only by actually drawing it.
What got me first was that graceful long curve of highlight from Giuseppe’s shoulder down his leg, and from there the delicate secondary highlights in his shadowed areas made by the sunlight reflected off the wall. Just like Sally’s photos from the other day, I love the subtleties of that secondary highlight in reflection.
The problem was that my pastels were upstairs, beyond Giuseppe, as was my camera. I did my best to hold the memory, tiptoed past Giuseppe who was still absently bathing, got my stuff, tiptoed back down the stairs, turned around and took a few photos. Then I put my camera down and got that long line of highlight down on paper, then the outlines of other areas as Giuseppe continued licking at himself and I could tell he was done with his bath and thinking about a nap. He turned his head and stopped in thought about whether or not he should lick his shoulder, I caught the expression on paper, then a blurry photo. He did lick himself and within a minute was headed for my bed for the afternoon, but I had gotten the major outlines and color areas down. I finished it just now, from one of the photos I had taken, blending in his torso with my fingers and then rebuilding the highlights and deep shadows; blending tends to knock them off.
I had originally called this “Regal” and “Statue”, and while Giuseppe is very statuesque I know the influence of a good relaxing bath and warm sunshine were taking a toll on his awareness.
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.
A collection of 34 images of feline artwork
Feline Style Sampler
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or find this book in my Etsy shop.
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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.
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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!