January 23, 2011

EDM Challenge 185.

When we bought a house in France we didn’t realize that the purchase price included 15 cats. There seemed to be cats everywhere: snoozing in the shade, under one of the many rose bushes, sitting on the wall blinking in the sun or making a dash for it as we approached.
I had never thought about cats as anything else than pets and had no idea that half-wild or feral cats existed.

It also took a few days for us to understand that this was an enormously incestuous little clowder. Down the road lived a stringy tom who was the granddaddy of them all and who would make his rounds to his harem several times a day. Our own (neutered) cat only watched from a safe distance or came indoors with a disgusted air that said, “I want no part in this”. It was all a little too uncivilized for his taste, I believe.

After the second litter had arrived, I decided that it was time return all the cats and whenever there was an opportunity I would put on ‘the gloves’ hoping that I would be successful at catching cat and putting it in a box to take it three villages down to it’s owners. Every so many days I would make the journey with a box containing a snarling, scratching cat on the seat beside me and show up at their door.

It was a cold, wet and windy April night when I looked out of the window and saw a cat crawling out of the neighbor’s basement and making a wild dash to our side of the road.

When I later went to look in the laundry room that we used as a potting shed, there were three kittens in a corner on a sack, their eyes still closed. This was the litter that stayed, although their Mother Mimi was later delivered to her rightful owners, who managed a sour smile, because I don’t think they really wanted me to return their cats and were wondering when this would stop. Mimi was the last.

My brother adopted the two males and called them Mad Max and Dirty Harry, I kept the little gray female.

In the drawing Dirty Harry and my little gray kitten share a basket. She was with me for 19 years.

Challenge 185: Draw a cat. 
I decided to try the dreaded watercolors again, and ended up using them as I would gouache. Not quite the intention. The paper is 300 gsm, cold pressed Fabriano watercolor paper, which contains 25% cotton. For a brush I used a medium Niji waterbrush.
The watercolor paint is Pelican. For watercolor I prefer a box because tubes of paint can dry out seeing I do so few watercolors. Seeing that the paint isn't really very transparent I must have the box with opaque paint. All Dick Blick.

Listened to "Staying On" by Paul Scott, author of "The Jewel in The Crown".
In this sequel to The Raj Quartet, Colonel Tusker and Lucy Smalley stay on in the hills of Pankot after Indian independence deprives them of their colonial status. Finally fed up with accommodating her husband, Lucy claims a degree of independence herself. Eloquent and hilarious, she and Tusker act out class tensions among the British of the Raj and give voice to the loneliness, rage, and stubborn affection in their marriage.Staying On won the Booker Prize and was made into a motion picture starring Trevor Howard and Celia Johnson in 1979.


Related Posts with Thumbnails