Thursday, 26 May 2011

How to paint a cat - step 5

Today we are going to paint our cat's face. Tricky business as cats notoriously avoid eye contact. The trick is to fart - despite walking around farting half the time themselves cats find it interminably fascinating when we do it. If you find your cats attention slipping at any time while you are painting just parp out a fresh whistle and I promise you she will be all yours. The key here is detail. Here is my painting so far.

At first glance it looks like a masterpiece of portraiture but if we look closer at my painting and compare it with some photographic reference material we will see something is missing.

That's right I have not painted baggy's tongue. What an oversight! She won't be drinking much strawberry milk without that. The lesson here is about attention to detail and ultimately - looking. Thats really what painting comes down to. So lets give baggy her tongue and move on to the final, most important step.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

How to paint a cat - step 4

In this step we are going to make use of many of the techniques we learned in the previous lesson "how to paint a dog shit".
This time however we want to portray action - this shit is not static - it should have LIFE as it cascades to earth. Just as Michelangelo studied the human skeleton to better understand the human form we must study the skeleton of nature - gravity.

Gravity is a force that acts on objects, it makes objects accelerate "downward". While we do not need to know about forces to analyze projectile motion we do need to know a very important detail: gravity causes objects to accelerate downward at roughly 9.8 m/s² 9.8 m/s² is the generally accepted amount of acceleration that happens, in some areas of Earth it is more or less but we will use 9.8 for our calculations.

A further note on the penis.
It is not the case in the majority but many male cats get aroused when they take a shit and I assume this is the case with Michael's cat. No doubt - as is so often the case with any artist - upon witnessing the event he was inspired to capture the phenomenon in paint but frustratingly found he was restricted by his technical abilities. The difficulty lies not in the penis but in the baggy balls. I will tackle these later in the tutorial. For now I am going to trust that you have developed your skills enough to paint your cats penis without my advice. They are all different anyway and it would be difficult for me to make any assumptions. See how I handled the task in my painting.

Friday, 8 April 2011


Dear readers. Apologies for my recent absence. I have been away in Tijuana for the past few months painting monkeys and waterfalls. I will share these with you at a later date. Anyway I will get back to the cat painting tutorial immediately, I know many of you have been waiting for a long time. Time to reflect can never be a bad thing though. Titian spent 49 years painting the Mona Lisa and that turned out very pretty.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

How to paint a cat - step 3

Michelangelo’s wall fresco The Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel of Vatican City was commissioned 30 years after he completed the ceiling of the same building. However, the prevailing attitudes of the time and the artistic movement of the Renaissance did not always line up, as is the case in The Last Judgment.

The artist was accused of immorality and obscenity, having depicted naked figures inside this most important church. After Michelangelo’s death, the nudity was censored with robes and fig leaves painted onto the work by one of his own students, Daniele da Volterra. History remembers da Volterra by the derogatory nickname “Il Braghettone,” which translates “the breeches-painter.”

Similar covers have been applied to paintings and sculptures in many cases since, causing debates between art purists and advocates for modern applications of decency.

Now I am not one to dictate what you should and should not do but I personally feel this sort of censorship is a sad reflection of the times we live in and I strongly recommend you do not succumb to any social pressure you may feel to censor your work. We all know cats have dicks and burgers. Your painting is a representation of life, nature, a lingering projection. Project the truth. I will go into technical details in the next step.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

How to paint a cat - step 2

Cats are well known for their elegance. The body of your cat is going to be the part that will be most instrumental in conveying this grace. Try to hold your brush or biro between your forefinger and little finger and define the shape of the torso with one seamless stroke (no pun intended) like so.

Even when painting the pope the great painter Velasquez refused to lower himself to flattery so if your cat is fat or just lacks this inherent feline poise we're talking about, do not feel obliged to follow this advice.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

How to Paint a Cat - Step 1

Thank you to Michael below for requesting a lesson. I will do my best to help you Michael. I don't know if you have a particular cat in mind but for this exercise I have used my own cat, for reference.
I suggest starting by painting a nice coloured ground. This will govern the atmosphere for the rest of your image. I've used a soft pink to suggest a still, calm feeling and it also subtly suggests a desire for strawberry milk to the viewer.

Cats are well know for being bad still-standers and so you might find it helpful to fix your cats feet to the floor in some way. Baggy made quite a fuss when I did this so I quickly painted his legs first and then let him go.

Monday, 9 August 2010

I Am Here For You

If you are struggling with any area of painting or would like me to create a tutorial on how to paint something specific that you are having trouble with please feel free to get in touch with your suggestions. I am here for you.