Posts tagged ‘black cat’

“Angry Kitty”

Cats are amazing creatures are they not?  I have one and contrary to popular belief they have incredible personalities.  If God created dog as man’s best friend, defining what it means to show unconditional love, then surely the intention behind creating a cat must be, “You alright but you ain’t all THAT.”

Cats will impose themselves on you, walk all over your computer keyboard while you are typing (okay just now that happened), swat at your legs as you walk by, lay on the stairs in front of you as you are attempting to go down them, tear your toilet paper, boots, socks, couch, and drapes to shreds. Basically they are jerks. Hard to believe they were actually worshiped like gods during ancient times.  Can you imagine crowds of people genuflecting in front of an aloof creature that sat there licking its nether regions?

I am amazed at cats’ physical capabilities including the ability to jump up several feet in the air from a sitting position. I I also find it most remarkable that when provoked, they can swell up to the size of the state of New Jersey.

The latter was my inspiration behind “Angry Kitty.” I wanted to capture that stiff, defensive body posture with the hair standing straight up and running down the center of its back, and the skinny tail swelling up at a moment’s notice.

My initial sketch looked like this.    It was too contrived.  I had referenced a photograph of an angry cat but my interpretation was too literal.  The posture didn’t look intense enough or angry enough.

Instead of trying to work with what I already sketched, I just took the eraser and started over.  As a result, I created a looser sketch where this time the cat looked larger, more imposing, and took up a lot more canvas space.

Overall I’m thrilled with the painting. It was one of those pieces where it turned out to be pretty close to what I wanted and that’s always exciting.  Once I finished it, I held it up to my cat and said, “Look at what I did.”  Shock to no one, my cat didn’t give a crap about it one way or the other.

Chat Noir – The Final

Here kitty kitty!  I’ve finally finished “Chat Noir!”  Not bad for a second attempt at a final piece.  I had an especially hard time painting over the past weekend and I’m sure it was the added pressure that I put on myself trying to complete it.  Also, I spent a few days prior working on some art for church function, where I painted three small “murals.”  I”m sure I suffered from a little painting burnout after that.

The other setback involved color-mixing, where I was trying to find the right shades of gray for shadowing and for the bottom wall.  Initially I thought that the wall color was a little too dark but now I like it because it makes the red curtains pop.  Speaking of curtains, I wanted to give them some texture and interest so I added some swirls.  So much for uniformity.  Some of  them looked like “6s” and some looked like “Es.”   Hey, it was a tough weekend.  Still I am happy with them and the piece overall.

Now on to my next work called “Ninja” where I will be painting some throwing stars.  Here is my sketch.  I’m looking forward to working on this one and am considering making individual stars on smaller canvases.  Each one will have a different color background.   I realized that this was a bit of  a departure from my calm and tranquil art.  Not everyday that I show some blood spattering in my portfolio.  Blood is red though, so I’m just keeping up with the red, black and white theme!

After I complete my “Ninja” project,  I’m going to give painting a rest and go back to drawing.  I need the break from it and plus I want to work on “The Veil,” that I wrote about in a previous post.  It will be nice to go back to pencils and chalk pastels.

Sketches: Black and White and Red All Over

I wish there was enough time to make everything. There are just so many ideas that pop into my head and I can’t draw them fast enough.

I am attempting this new series called “Black and White and Red All Over.”  Personally I think this is crazy for me to do since I’ve got other projects that require my attention including the ongoing “Twelve Days of Christmas ” and “The Veil” from my earlier writings.

Is this normal behavior for artists to be so scattered?  I typically like to start on one project and stick with it until it’s finished.  Oh, to be able to work on my art full time!  It just doesn’t seem fair does it?

Anyhey,  in an earlier post, I talked about working more in black and white with a splash of one color.  “Mercy” is the most recent example of that.  This time I  decided to throw some red in the mix which is a little out of the norm for me.  I needed the change-up.  When I look at my body of work, I can see that the predominant colors are green and blue.  Personally I think green is perfection because it’s calming, soothing, and ever-present.  I call it my spirit color (although I am far from perfection for sure).

Red on the other hand is energy, it is fiery, aggressive, my natural opposite but  I am still a fan of it though.   In my opinion,  red, black and white produce the most striking color combination.  Individually these colors are all strong in their own right.

Now here’s the kicker, my goal is to put this series on canvas.  YES, canvas!  I don’t have a clue about painting other than painting the walls in my house or dishes from the pottery painting places that are all over town.  I went to Hobby Lobby last week and bought some black, white, and red acrylic paints, brushes, one large canvas and one tiny canvas to practice on.   I should have researched this a little more but sometimes it’s just nice to do some free experimentation.

Here  are my preliminary sketches that I drew with Sharpie pens.  Pretty simple.  Not trying to do “The Last Supper” especially not on canvas.  One of the sketches that piqued my interest was that of  a black cat.  I am really thinking about doing a sub-series of the black and white series called “Chat Noir,” meaning “Black Cat” in french.  “Chat Noir” would be the one getting into cat-like shenanigans such as clawing a sofa to pieces, hissing and rearing up in arch-like formation at the sight of a dog, hunting birds, or getting stuck in a tree.  There’s lots of material to work with, especially since I own a cat.  I plan to do my best to avoid being cutesy as you see with so many cat and kitten pictures.  Chat Noir” should have an attitude, pretty much like most cats.

After creating some sketches of an apple, I painted one on the small canvas.  It was a fun exercise.   The red paint wasn’t applied as evenly as I would have liked so that will be something to focus on in the future as I paint on larger canvases.

We’ll keep you posted on how all this goes. I think it’s funny that now that I have been thinking about creating works in red,  I see the color in my surroundings now more than ever before.

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