Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Concept Sketch from a Memory

Yesterday, I was in the master bathroom when I heard the unmistakable sound of little furry paws scuffling around as though chasing something. I cautiously peeked around the door into the bedroom to see Booger chasing after a phantom....something.....on top of the bed.

The very second she saw me she froze. Game over! We both knew the game was up, whatever it may have been, and that she would soon resume her matronly, elderly,* "stiff-upper-lip," "I'm-too-old-for-this-kitten-nonsense-anymore" routine. I also knew she looked about as cute as cute can look AND that the camera was at the other end of the house AND that there may, or may not, be a memory card in it! What to do, what to do!

Instead of running for the camera, I ran to grab paper and pencil. By the time I raced back into the room (30 seconds later), Boogs had moved over to the corner of the bed and commenced with her morning bath. She looked up at me as  if to say, "What?! You can't prove anything and I ain't 'fessing to nothin'!" If you are owned by a cat, you understand this cattitude all too well.

So, I closed my eyes so that I could see her in my mind and then went to work sketching what I had seen.....
Pencil with watercolor washes on 
computer paper

....and this was close to what I saw! She had the playful, wild-eyed look of a cat (kitten) on the hunt while she was playing hide and seek in the covers with whatever she had been chasing. After doing the pencil sketch I went back and added some very light washes to give it some dimension. When Chris came home, I showed it to him and was rewarded with an immediate burst of laughter–just the reaction I was looking for!! (I'm thinking this will eventually turn into a painting.) 

We have often wondered what spirits or faeries the cats interact with–sometimes playing, sometimes acting as if they're terrified, sometimes (often) acting as they're daft. These thoughts were fluttering around in my mind and I kept thinking that perhaps Booger had been playing with one of the faeries (gremlins) that inhabit our home....

Pencil with watercolor washes on
computer paper

....and so I added one very mad, little faerie that had just had her hair mussed by an overly playful cat! 

*What is interesting in all of this is that Booger will be 18 years old in late May/early June, but you'd never have know it the way she was acting! I guess she's feeling Spring just like the rest of us.


14 comments:

  1. 18!! Amazing. I love the little faerie...

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  2. Too cute Laure!!! The addition of the fairy is sheer genius!!

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  3. I really loved this one...the story...and the way you captured those eyes. I see them on Bip too--the crazy dilated cat eyes, chasing some unknown thing around the house. Then I saw your little fairy. Perfect. I totally see the eyes looking at the fairy. I love it. Now when Bip races through the house, I'll think he's chasing a fairy. very fun thoughts are in my head now!

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  4. I love it!!!! They are so adorable when they are chasing.....18? Wow! I hear the paws running up and down the hallway upstairs right now. Love the drawing and will make a great painting.

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  5. Aww, great sketch from memory! What a personality, that cat!
    -Krista
    www.kristameister.com

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  6. I LOVE these paintings and the story! I love how you've captured the cat's expression, and the addition of the faerie is perfect. Thanks for making me smile today!

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  7. What a delightful sketch to remember this moment. It certainly made me smile as soon as I saw those mischievious eyes and that tail aloft. Sure signs that someting exciting was happening. The fairy is the perfect addition to the sketch. I am sure Booger approves. I once had a cat that lived to be 18 also. Hearing about this activity reminds me of her. She was such a prima donna.

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  8. Thanks, everyone! Yes, Booger is a piece of work! She was rescued in a rain storm when she nearly washed down a drain in the road. Chris snagged her and handed her to me. I surely thought she be gone before the hour was up, but no, she's a fighter!

    This is also my first experience with a geriatric cat, and since she has always been a prima dona, Lisa, you can imagine the way she is now. Quite the Empress!

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  9. So sweet! We had a cat that lived to be 18 years old - they don't get that playful very often, but it's so rewarding when they do!

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  10. What a delightful drawing! And I love the addition of the little faerie!

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  11. LOVE IT! Your story is soooo cute and reminded us of how much we truly miss our little Misty and her antics!

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  12. Oh I LOVE this sketch! Beautiful Laure! You captured her playfulness perfectly!

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  13. I enjoyed your post and the picture so depicts the look of my rascally kitties. I laughed when I saw your art too.

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  14. I enjoyed the story. Your picture is terrific. I've seen my cat look like that! The fairy is a perfect touch. How my granddaughters would enjoy a picture like this. They are convinced they have a ghost in their house. I think I will tell them it could be a fairy!

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