I always thought that I couldn't draw. ...

"I'm a photographer; I can't draw." That's what I used to say. Well, ...

That's what I USED TO say ... until July 2006, when my cat Katie forced me to draw.
It's a long story ...

There I was ... sitting in my lounge chair reading a book, with my feet up and Katie sleeping between my knees as she often did.

Have you ever lived with a cat?
Do you know the cat-cushion position? That's the one where they curl up tight -- showing no face, legs, or head; they're just a ball of fur. That's the position Katie started in that day.

So... After a bit of reading, I feel this rustle, rustle, rustle and look down to see that my cat-cushion has grown two towers! ... with toes !! Cute.
I admire her and go back to reading.

Again I feel rustle, rustle, rustle and look down to see that now her front legs are stretched out. The toe-towers are still there, too.
An altogether twisted pose!

I couldn't reach my camera, my husband wasn't home, and moving would have disturbed her; so I had to give up on taking a picture ... as the photographer in me would have liked to do ... and just admire her creativity.

Ah, but she is CUTE!
Back to the book.

Rustle, rustle, rustle.
Look again.
Katie's first pose
Now she's got her head hanging off the the chair! No one is going to believe this position she's gotten in to! Still no camera, no husband.
In desperation, I try to just capture the SHAPE of her position by scribbling on the back of a grocery list. I get one contortion outlined ... then she shifts ... I start over, draw a leg ... shift... more leg drawing ... SHIFT ... ah, finally she's settled down. This time facing up.

I get THAT outline drawn too. Good!!! Now Jim will believe me. BUT...

Katie's first pose These sketches were drawn on wrinkled, written on, non-white paper. So scanning and printing them doesn't work very well. (Plus my toes look atrocious!) Time to try doing some tidying up...
[For the unnaturally curious, here are those raw sketches: Ksketch01raw.jpg, Ksketch02raw.jpg, Ksketch03raw.jpg.]

Eventually, I re-traced the lines in my computer (using the mouse) and ended up with two wonderful portraits of Katie. (I did have to modify the toes a bit. I even put socks on in one.)
But these drawings came out so well that I kept a sketchbook next to my chair in the following months and now have many drawings of my cat.

I hope folks enjoy Katie in all her many napping poses.

-- Lois Richter, catmom

postmistress of " " (AML# 255)
(MailArt always welcome -- especially kitties!)

"Napland" (c/o Lois Richter)
P.O. Box 7, Davis CA 95617-0007