If I was an animal I would be a cat. Fierce independence and zealous curiosity are traits we share. Along with playfulness and spontaneity. And although dominance and laziness (particularly when it comes to house work) are feline attributes I would rather not identify with, I regrettably do. Just wish I had the same freedom.
Challenging myself to draw using only the blob brush tool, Illustrator was my design weapon of choice for this artwork.
Taking my cat illustrations a step further, I though it would be fun to dress them up and accessorise them depending on their behaviour.
Hapless Harry spends hours sitting by the pond in his owners garden, just staring at the fish. His little head bobs round and round as he watches them circling the small raised water feature. Quite happy just observing, never attempting to snag its occupants.
Irritable Issac’s owner is a French Canadian musician, who enjoys a daily bike ride. He waves goodbye to the bad tempered cat as he cycles off down the street each morning. I often wonder if it is his absence that makes Issac so moody, or does the cat just long for a ride in the basket of his owners vintage bike.
Pretty Pepper adores lying on the warm bonnets of recently run neighbourhood cars. Favouring those that have been freshly parked, leisurely swapping from one to the next, up and down the road all day.
Audacious Audrey spends all day following the sun around my garden. And she doesn’t even live here.
I have been off the creative grid for a couple of weeks whilst my French cousin has been in the UK. We have had a lovely time visiting local landmarks and attractions and spending time with family.
Feeling rather uninspired I decided to take a Skillshare class. Most of my spare time has been spent playing around with watercolours lately and I wanted to try something new digitally.
Illustration in Photoshop: ‘Professional work from your sketches’, by licensed artist and illustrator Anne Bollman was my lesson of choice. Ann asks the class to draw their pet using various photoshop practises.
Until this class I have been using the photoshop pen tool to redraw the solid shapes in my illustrations, following the lines of my scanned sketches as a guide. However I have always been a little unsatisfied with the results. Preferring a more hand drawn look instead, but unable to recreate it.
Ann demonstrates a technique of drawing shapes with a brush tool, then selecting outside your line with the magic wand, inverting the selection and then adding a solid colour fill. Producing a hand drawn shape. And the results feel much more like how one would draw on paper.
One evening last winter there was a terrible storm. Hail and sleet battered the window frames and howling winds tore down the garden fence. My son and I were curled up on the sofa under thick blankets watching a movie, when we heard a meow at the front door. Our cat Bruce had gone missing 3 years previous and for a split second, we both thought he was back.
What met us at the door was actually a sopping wet, bedraggled black and white kitty. And she has been here ever since. Her name is Boo, on account of her surprise arrival.
Having enjoyed using this new approach so much I couldn’t stop at just one moggy. So I would like to introduce you to my neighbourhood cats. Over the years we have given them all nick names, depicting their individual character traits.