Tag Archives: cat merchandise

Two Hand-printed Holiday Card Designs

    Hand-printed linocut holiday cards.
Hand-printed linocut holiday cards.

Years before I really went into business at home and I’d just begun freelancing, I designed and printed my own cards each year. This initially meant in the 80s I created a design in black and white and copied it…then when I got a computer in the early 90s I printed them on my black and white laser printer, then my color printer as the years marched on, and then finally had them digitally printed as I do with most of my cards today.

But every so often I want to print a card by hand and I go back to my love of block prints—in fact, my first block print designs outside of classes in school were for holiday cards, not for wall art. One of these days I’ll pull out and reprint the half-dozen non-feline designs I have and still enjoy, but for the past few years I’ve printed a limited number of two designs featuring cats.


Meowy Cats’ Mess

Meowy Cats’ Mess red.

I designed this linoleum block print  for my holiday card in 1996. Back in the day, if you were a graphic designer using clip art, the “wood cut” look was really popular, and it also helped to really revive my need to create block prints. At first I was drawing illustrations that incorporated the signature patterns of long and short incised lines for both decorative pattern and dimension and shading, then decided to take it to the real thing.

Meowy Cats’ Mess green.

My hands have always had a little touch of arthritis and tendon issues, even before heavy computer use, and while I love wood blocks and the exceptionally fine details you can achieve, I decided to go with linoleum blocks since they were easier to cut and that put less stress on my hands.

I’ve earlier referenced losing two of my cats in 1996, Kublai and Allegro, and all the things I’d done to work my way through my grief that autumn. This was really my final big project in that process, and while I’d initially decided to try to avoid the subject of cats in my holiday cards, I could take joy in them again, watching them in their everyday play and activities, and thought I’d celebrate them instead, my whole household at once.

Meowy Cat's Mess in red on brown kraft.
Meowy Cat’s Mess in red on brown kraft.

In brainstorming a clever visual or verbal “headline”, I like to twist words and “Meowy Cat’s Mess” came up as I thought through all the phrases connected with Christmas and other winter holidays. I worked my way through a few sketches with the text and the cats and pretty quickly came to this, with all these happy busy kitties making a mess of my design!

I took the little feline silhouettes I’d designed years earlier, then stylized them for block printing in 1993 when I designed the “Tabbies” series. In this case, however, I wanted each of the cats to be a little different and more or less representative of the cats in my household at the time including a few prior fosters, so I designed them with stripes, spots, specks, white paws and solids dark and light.

The design is derived from playing around with fonts then hand-lettering. I liked the design, but it looked to be floating on the card so I added a border with a bow because I liked how the cut lines in the bow and ribbon used for shading looked.

Meowy Cat's Mess in green on brown kraft.
Meowy Cat’s Mess in green on brown kraft.

Just in case you haven’t read this in prior posts, block printing is a technique wherein the artist carves the surface of a piece of linoleum, leaving raised areas which will become the image. Ink is rolled onto these raised areas, then a piece of paper is pressed against the block and when it’s lifted away the ink remains, leaving the image on the paper. Because of this process, each print is slightly different and therefore unique. You can see a little slideshow of the process in a recent post, “Featured Artwork: “Fawnball”.

I’ve also recently found an economical little Speedball printing press which enables me to print cards faster. I usually print only a dozen cards at a time because I have to have a place for them to dry for at least a day, out of the reach of curious paws…and that means hanging clotheslines in my studio and bathroom and clothes pinning them to hang to dry before I stamp my information on the back and fold them.

This card is 5″ x 7″ and is printed in water-based acrylic ink on card stock in four variations, with several choices of envelope:

  • cream card stock with red ink, cream or red envelope
  • cream card stock with green ink, cream or green envelope
  • kraft card stock with red ink, red or kraft envelope
  • kraft card stock with green ink, green or kraft envelope

Cards are blank inside and can also be framed. You can find all the cards here. In addition, this year I made a set of 5″ x 7″ wood-mount prints of just the prints.


Window Kitty, Snowy Night

cat themed holiday card
Window Kitty, Snowy Night

Kitty is waiting in the window for you to return home.

I designed this linoleum block print for my holiday card in 2001.The design is based on the actual scene that met me many snowy nights when I came home from my day job and seeing one of my kitties in silhouette, Sally for many years, then Sophie, sitting on the windowsill at the big casement window facing north, the light falling across the snow on the ground below.

It’s printed in cobalt blue ink on smooth yellow card stock, and the ink wraps completely around the back. It’s then lightly rolled with iridescent glitter in a clear base to simulate the sense of falling snow at night as you move the card. Unfortunately, it doesn’t scan or photograph well, you’ll just have to use a little visualization…

I had initially used all sorts of other glitter to achieve the effect, but it either obscured the design or just fell off in the envelope when it was mailed. Each year for four or five years I experimented with another type of glitter, unsuccessfully. I put it away for several years until 2012 and decided I’d revive the design somehow, even if it just meant printing the design on the paper, which is nice on its own, though I really felt the need for the extra dimension of glitter. So it took over a decade to achieve that final idea, but it was well worth it.

As with the “Meowy Cat’s Mess” card I print these cards one dozen at a time, let them dry, then roll on the iridescent finish and let that dry, add a little label to the back with my information, then finally fold it.

This card is also 5″ x 7″ and printed in water-based acrylic ink on yellow card stock, iridescent glitter finish hand-rolled onto the paper as described, and hand trimmed and folded. It includes a matching envelope in your choice of yellow or white. Card is blank inside and can also be framed, though I haven’t made any wood-mount versions of this, but only for lack of space!

Find this card in my Etsy shop.


cat and art materials on table

Take a look at other new merchandise and featured artwork.

Usually once a week on Thursday I feature something new in my “shop”, whether that’s here on The Creative Cat, in my Etsy shop, on my main website or even at one of the bricks and mortar shops that carry my work.

Read about creating custom items.

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.

Mewsette may look like she’s sleeping, but she is ready to get up and give instructions or even a helping paw at any moment.


Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.normalcy.

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Click here to find out how you can help homeless cats this holiday season!

Sophie-HolidayCheerForHomelessPets-300


Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy.
Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy!

© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST



New Holiday and Winter Garden Flags

cat garden flags
New garden flags, “Star of Wonder” and “First Light”.

I tried to catch our convenient little snowfall for these photos, but no luck! Still, I didn’t want to wait for another snow to bring these out—here are my seasonal garden flags for the holidays and winter, now gently waving out in my front yard.


“Star of Wonder” garden flag

cat garden flag
“Star of Wonder” garden flag, waving gently.

holiday card featuring kittens looking at star

When the Fantastic Four were just the Curious Quartet, four rambunctious black kittens and their mama Mimi, I began visualizing feline silhouettes as designs for so many things. Watching them from tiny fuzzballs growing into curious, lithe and active cats I also thoroughly enjoyed observing their changing silhouettes, taking many reference photos along the way. While no one was clamoring to adopt them—as we know, black cats are difficult to adopt—at about 15 months I decided they needed to stay with me for art reasons because I was already hooked on all the ideas I’d developed. I’m sure you’ll agree that was a wise decision.

In 2011 I designed the image above, “Star of Wonder” as well as another at right, “Can We Get That Thing?”, and offered them as holiday cards. This year I have a new version of those cards with a greeting inside and decided I’d like a holiday garden flag as well. The design “Can We Get That Thing?” just didn’t work on the flag no matter what I did and that was a disappointment, but “Star of Wonder” is simple and elegant.

This flag has the same image on the back, mirrored so that no silhouettes show through. You can enjoy it from any angle!

This “Star of Wonder” garden flag is available in my Etsy shop, and for all orders between now and Thanksgiving I’ll include a holiday card in the same design for you to use for your holiday greetings.


“First Light” Garden Flag

cat garden flag
“First Light” garden flag.

ink drawing with watercolor of cat on windowsill

This image began as a daily sketch using my brush pen and watercolors. Though it’s a little more involved the the smaller pieces I generally create for my sketches it was an inspiration to follow after visualizing for several days. I watched Mimi on the bathroom windowsill where we watch the sunrise, and this was such a strong visual one morning I decided I’d simply do the sketch no matter how long it took.

You can read the original post about First Light from nearly a year ago and see the original artwork full size, especially since I could not avoid a slight breeze when I photographed these flags and the images are just a little blurry. To make this artwork into a flag I filled in around the edges with black, and also reversed out my signature at the bottom right. Outside the window the sky is in morning tones fading from pale blue at the top to creamy pale yellow at the bottom.

This flag also has the same image on the back, mirrored so that no silhouettes show through. I had actually designed this flag with the first set of flags in April, but decided the image was wintery in comparison to the other garden flags and waited until now when it matches the season to offer it.

This “First Light” garden flag is available in my Etsy shop.

Holiday Cards and Gifts

All my other garden flag designs are also available in my Etsy shop along with a large selection of holiday cards featuring cats, of course, pets, birds and nature.


black cat with sewing machine

Take a look at other new merchandise and featured artwork.

Once a week on Thursday I feature something new in my “shop”, whether that’s here on The Creative Cat, in my Etsy shop, on my main website or even at one of the bricks and mortar shops that carry my work.

Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.

It’s all done under the close and careful supervision of my studio cats! Mr. Sunshine inspected my sewing machine and had the whole thing figured out before I even sat down to thread it.


Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.normalcy.


Click here to find out how you can help homeless cats this holiday season!

Sophie-HolidayCheerForHomelessPets-300


Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy.
Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy!

© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST



Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats and Their Caretakers

Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats and Their Caretakers
Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats and Their Caretakers
Donate a gift certificate, get a gift certificate

Help homeless cats come in off the streets, get veterinary care, shelter and food—make a donation that helps people help cats, and I will give you a $10 gift certificate to my shop, now through the end of 2013.

Every day, selfless individuals are helping homeless cats in any way they can from answering the call to capture orphaned kittens to foster and care for and find forever homes, trapping cats living outdoors for spay and neuter and veterinary care and either keeping them indoors or returning them to a supervised outdoor site, scouring craigslist for kittens and cats being given away for free or for sale and retrieving those they feel are in danger, also offering information and assistance to humans who can use it, and providing safe housing for and feeding thousands of cats every single day in outdoor colonies and much, much more. There is no payment for this and much of the expense for it out of their own pocket.

homeless cat management team logo

Homeless Cat Management Team logo

After the endless parade of kittens over the spring and summer and into fall, many of whom are still looking for homes, we are headed for the often deadly winter months where sturdy straw-filled shelters are needed to be built and maintained for cats living outdoors, and often critical emergency veterinary care is needed for kittens born in the cold, and cats suffering injuries caused by or made worse by wintery weather along with the usual street injuries and, unfortunately, abuse.

We may call this Trap-Neuter-Return or TNR or simply rescue. It’s far more than just grabbing homeless cats and spaying or neutering them, returning them to their outdoor home; there’s a network of assistance behind what rescuers do to help them with this rescue and care for outdoor cats, offering food and materials if they can’t afford it on their own and low-cost veterinary care for a cat they’ve rescued or a foster or outdoor cat they are caring for.

The Homeless Cat Management Team (HCMT) and Frankie’s Friends provide that network of care to rescuers in the Pittsburgh area, loaning out traps, networking rescuers, providing low-cost or free spay/neuter clinics at least monthly and making low-cost emergency veterinary care available to rescuers as well as distributing food and even shelters to those who are caring for rescues in their homes or community cats living outdoors.

$10 gets you $10

Frankie's Friends Cat Rescue

Frankie’s Friends Cat Rescue

There are two ways you can help this effort by making even a small tax-deductible donation to Frankie’s Friends for HCMT and their network of rescuers and caretakers through a donated gift card or with cash, and I’ll give you a $10 gift certificate to my Etsy shop for you to use for your holiday shopping, to give as a gift, or keep for later, good for $10.00 off your order of $25.00 or more. And don’t forget that both cash and gift cards are fully tax-deductible as charitable contributions unless you are receiving a gift from the organization you are donating to—but you’re not receiving a gift from Frankie’s Friends, the gift comes from me, and I’m doing this of my own free will and get no benefit from Homeless Cat Management Team or Frankie’s Friends for it.

Make a donation

A cash donation will help support the low-cost veterinary care that has saved many lives and, most importantly, prevented the births of many kittens. And Frankie’s Friends also treats dogs in many of their low-cost clinics in Tarentum and in the mobile van, so you are helping prevent puppies as well, and also helping rescued dogs with low-cost veterinary care.

Here’s what you do:

1. Go to the Frankie’s Friends website and make a donation of at least $10.00.

2. The donation is made through PayPal which has a “notes” section. Note that this is through “The Creative Cat Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats”, or just “The Creative Cat”.

3. Email your confirmation to me, or simply email me that you donated cash through the Holiday Cheer program. Please let me know if you’d like to be acknowledged publicly at the end of the campaign with just your name, no donation amount. Your name will not be used without your permission to publish it.

4. Frankie’s Friends will email me to confirm your donation.

5. I will reply to your email with your numbered gift certificate attached.

Donate gift cards electronically

Help HCMT and Frankie’s Friends continue to provide much-needed food and supplies to rescuers and caretakers by donating a gift card for pet supplies and they can purchase food and supplies tailored for the animals they are caring for. Petco, PetSmart and WalMart are each convenient to the HCMT clinic in Tarentum where the TNR clinics are held and the veterinary care happens, and where the materials are collected and distributed, so gift cards from these three would be most appreciated.

Here’s what you do:

1. Go to the Petco, PetSmart or WalMart website and purchase an electronic gift card for at least $10.00.

2. Designate it as a gift to “Frankie’s Friends”.

3. In their “notes” section (most have one for gifts), note that this is through “The Creative Cat Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats”, or just “The Creative Cat” so Frankie’s Friends knows where it came from.

4. To complete the gift card, here is their contact information:

Mailing Address: Frankie’s Friends Cat Rescue, P.O. Box 161, Tarentum, PA 15084

Email: frankiesfriendscatrescue@gmail.com

Phone Number: 724-889-7011

5. Email your confirmation to me, or simply email me that you donated a gift card through the Holiday Cheer program. Please let me know if you’d like to be acknowledged publicly at the end of the campaign with just your name, no donation amount. Your name will not be used without your permission to publish it.

6. Frankie’s Friends will email me to confirm your donation.

7. I will reply to your email with your numbered gift certificate attached.

If you’re not comfortable purchasing it on the internet, you can purchase it in person and mail it to them using the address above. Simply include a note that it’s part of “The Creative Cat Holiday Cheer for Homeless Cats”, or just “The Creative Cat”, and make sure you include your email address. They will contact me when they receive it and I will send your gift certificate.

How to use your gift certificate

sample gift certificate
Sample gift certificate.

Your gift certificate will have a code that will be active for use in my Etsy shop until December 31, 2013. This code is entered at checkout for your $10.00 discount. But if you are shopping elsewhere on one of my pages or you’d like to use the discount toward a commissioned portrait or in person, you’ll just need to give me your name and the certificate number and I’ll either manually discount your order or refund $10.00 to you.

Feel free to use your certificate for your holiday shopping, for your post-holiday shopping, or to give as a gift. For my own accounting purposes, I’d like to keep all the transactions within this calendar year.

. . . . . . .

Read a few articles about what Frankie’s Friends and the Homeless Cat Management Team are doing:

HCMT Feral Cat Day Clinic: 99 Cats Spayed and Neutered

Free For Ferals Clinic: 95 Cats

Spaying By Candlelight

HCMT to “Fix” 15,000th Cat, and Clinic Dates

Black Friday and the Story of 38

Shop for Homeless Cats, and Help Trooper Find a Home Trooper was adopted!

Help Kopy Kat Sanctuary—Adopt! And Donate for a Discount



Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy.
Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy!

© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST


2014 Calendars From The Creative Cat

cat calendars

2014 Calendars from The Creative Cat

Calendars are a natural with as many images as I have, and I could easily design a dozen different styles, each a different theme and type of image. The difficult part is narrowing the ideas down to a few that I can reasonably put together and have printed. This year, in addition to continuing three other popular designs, I have a very special new design that features popular daily sketches and includes a donation with every purchase.

I’d been waiting to introduce these until I had details settled out with my Amazon.com account—it seems I’ve actually had two accounts all along, which I’d thought (I set them up using different computers), and we had a difficult time moving things around so everything was in one account. We’re still not quite done so these calendars are not on Amazon.com at the moment, but they will be soon. I didn’t want to wait any longer to offer these, though! Right now they can be purchased here and in my Etsy shop. I will add them to Amazon and other sites once the Amazon account information is settled out.


12 Sketches of Cats 2014 Wall Calendar

"12 Sketches of Cats Calendar"

“12 Sketches of Cats 2014 Calendar”

I’ve always admired oversized “art calendars”, the ones where the art is foremost and the calendar just an incidental means of presenting it. Calendars are printed on quality text or cover stock and are only printed on one side of the page with plenty of clear space around the artwork because the image is intended to be framable with nothing printed on the back.

And so 12 Sketches of Cats is digitally printed in the same archival inks and acid-free natural 100# smooth cover stock I use for the digital art prints I sell. Each page is 11″ x 17″ so there is plenty of space to have the art at or near its native size with room for the name and information about the art with the calendar at the bottom. The calendar is spiral-bound at the top with a hole drilled just beneath the spiral so you display one page at a time.

In addition to keeping art near its native size I’ve also sized most of the artwork so it will easily fit a standard frame size. Some images, such as “Shades of Gray” and “World Cat” are smaller than the originals to fit the page. I chose sketches for popularity and narrowed them down for a variety of style and medium. All are in color; none of the pencil, charcoal or ink sketches seemed to fit with the color art, so of course that might be a calendar of its own someday, but don’t worry—I have a special little gift book I’ll introduce next week.

And there are actually 13 sketches if you count the cover, but because covers see more wear I’m keeping the title at 12. The art included in the calendar is:

Cover: Mimi’s Sunbath

January: Winter Light

February: Shades of Gray

March: Catamount Brushmore

April: Two Cats After van Gogh

May: In Afternoon Sun

June: Lazy Saturday Afternoon

July: Stanley with Geraniums

August: Happy Birthday, Andy Warhol

September: Three Warm Cats on a Cool Ground

October: Two in a Basket

November: Vigilant Nap

December: World Cat

This calendar costs a little more than the typical calendar because of the size and quality, and the value of what’s in it—I generally sell my prints for $10.00 to $25.00 each depending on the size, but in this calendar you get 12 prints, or 13 if you count the cover,  for one price.

Most important, each calendar purchase also generates a $10.00 donation to an organization that benefits cats.

Order a calendar now

Calendars are $45.00, and from now until the end of December 2013 I will donate $10.00 of each sale to FosterCat, Inc. Not only has FosterCat been doing it’s typical wonderful work in rescuing and finding forever homes for cats of all ages through its foster home-only all-volunteer organization, they have also been helping kittens and cats find home who have been rescued by Pittsburgh Feral Cat Movement, which allows all those who volunteer as a rescue to foster more cats and kittens.

Click here to order a calendar through my Etsy shop.

Click here to order a calendar through PayPal

NOTE: I will continue to sell this calendar until all I printed are gone, but because of the value of the art within it I will not discount it after the beginning of the year as I do others. The purchase price will always generate a $10.00 donation to a specified cat rescue or assistance organization.


Compositions in Black and Green 2014 Calendar

calendar with black cat

Compositions in Black and Green 2014

I’ve been collecting photos for this calendar since I finished last year’s calendar! These five wonderful black cats will show the world that everyone needs to have at least one black kitty in their life, and, at least in my house, the more the merrier! Again, it includes a collection of silly, cute and artful photos in equal measure, just the thing to show others what black cats can bring to your life.

Again in 2014 Jelly Bean is on the cover, and rightly so—he spends the most time in there and is the most beguiling where the faucet is concerned, and he also does some of the most interesting things…

Each month includes one main photo which was likely taken during that particular month so the lighting is right. On the right a monthly calendar includes basic holidays, moon phases and room for notes at the bottom, and thumbnail photos of the Five from other activities in green and white decorate open areas on the calendar page.

And Emeraude makes an appearance in this calendar since, not only is she a black cat in a green and white bathroom and she has spent most of her time in this house in that room and enjoyed it just as much as the Five, but her eyes are the greenest too! And even Lakota, though he was not black, appears as well.

The calendar is a 5.5″ x 8.5″ spiral-bound calendar printed on 100# matte-finish text paper so it’s easy to write on but the art still looks bright and crisp, and I have it available in both a journal and wall calendar style; I had been planning to choose only one style but last year’s orders were divided just about equally between the two styles so I decided to print both again.

The convenient size is either coil-bound across the top so that it hangs like a wall calendar, or down the left so that it opens like a journal. I have both variations available for sale, so be sure to choose Wall Calendar or Journal Style when you purchase.

images of black cats calendar

Compositions in Black and Green, journal and wall style, two spreads from the 2013 calendars.

Throughout 2013 I created handmade and printed items such as wood-mounted art, keepsake boxes and the set of greeting cards of the same name using images from the 2013 calendar. As a complement to the 2014 calendar I will be doing the same, and any image can be ordered as a print. You’ll see them throughout 2013. Sign up for my e-newsletter at the bottom of this page to be sure you don’t miss any special offers.


Order Compositions in Black and Green 2014 Calendar

You can purchase this calendar in my Etsy shop if there are also things you’d like to purchase there.


In the Kitchen with Cookie 2014 Calendar

cat calendar

“In the Kitchen With Cookie 2014″

Just as I had a request to create a calendar featuring Cookie and her antics in the kitchen, I’ve had requests for another for this year.

Because I used just about every photo of Cookie in the kitchen I had, I can’t really create a new calendar, but I am working on another related project—a book and calendar set that combines so much of what Cookie and all my garden cats shared with me: the backyard wildlife habitat, the organic garden, cooking, and photographing and painting all of it.

That’s an ambitious project to say the least! I didn’t think I’d get it done in time for 2014 so I asked of those who requested what they thought of simply issuing the same calendar with new dates. Most said that was fine, so that’s what I’ve decided to do for 2014, and I hope the second time around everyone can try more recipes and experiment a little!

A little bit of background

If you’ve followed my daily photos on The Creative Cat you may be familiar with my photos of Cookie interacting with properly-warmed pasta bowls, enamel pots and glass salad bowls in the series called “In the Kitchen With Cookie”. I was lucky enough to catch her in the act through the years photographing a dozen amusing images of Cookie exploring alternate uses for these items. A number of readers requested a calendar which sounds like a wonderful idea to me, especially as a tribute to a part of Cookie’s unforgettable curiosity that still makes me laugh.

About the calendar

The calendar is a 5.5″ x 8.5″ spiral-bound calendar printed on 100# matte-finish text paper so it’s easy to write on but the art still looks bright and crisp, and I am offering it as both a wall and journal style calendar.

Each month includes one main photo of Cookie caught in the act which was either taken during that particular month or is themed for that month food-wise, plus a bit of the text from the original post on The Creative Cat with a background pattern of blue gingham that so matches my kitchen—and Kelly even makes an appearance with Cookie in two of the photos! I’ve also included a simple recipe of my own that corresponds.

images of calendars with cat

In the Kitchen With Cookie, journal and wall style open to spreads from 2013.

On the right a monthly calendar includes basic holidays, moon phases and room for notes at the bottom, and other photos of Cookie from the same and related explorations decorate open areas on the calendar page.

The recipes celebrate winter days in my kitchen and the seasons of my garden, long enjoyed with Cookie’s supervision, including my special “Cheesecake”, “Healthy Multi-fruit Crisp”, “Easy Lemon Vinaigrette” and my best advice for cooking fresh sweet corn…after you’ve extricated it from Cookie’s paws.

The convenient size is coil-bound either across the top so that it hangs like a wall calendar, or down the left so that it opens like a journal. I have both variations available for sale, so be sure to choose Wall Calendar or Journal Style when you purchase.

Throughout 2013 I created a number of products such as wood-mounted artwork and plaques using images in this calendar, and will continue in 2014, and any image can be ordered as a print. I’ll offer these through 2013. Sign up for my e-newsletter at the bottom of this page to be sure you don’t miss any special offers.

Below is a handy slideshow from 2013 so you can flip through the pages like a book, and below that you’ll find ordering information.

Order In the Kitchen with Cookie 2014

You can purchase this calendar in my Etsy shop if there are also things you’d like to purchase there.


Great Rescues Day Book

cover of book

Great Rescues Day Book

I released this earlier this year, but had an issue with the ISBN and barcode…it was my own fault! After resolving it I had the back covers reprinted and rebound all the copies with the correct ISBN and barcode.

New format, same great kitties! If you’re familiar with Great Rescues Calendar and Gift Book, this book carries on the idea in a way that’s much more permanent. This book is not dated for one year, but has all the dates in a month for you to fill in the birthdays, anniversaries, holidays and social and personal events in your life.

I’ve used a day book for over 20 years and have all the arrivals and, sadly, departures of each of my cats along with my friends’ weddings, my nieces’ births and the births of their children, the day I first registered a business name, all that sort of stuff, conveniently included in one place. Below is a sample two-page spread for the month of January.

On the left is the featured portrait with the kitty’s story, below that the monthly fun quote of something feline. On the right is the month name with enough lines for all possible dates in that month. The holidays that are celebrated on a certain date are marked on that date, but ones that float, especially those Monday holidays, are explained at the bottom just to remind you that they also happen in that month. If animal-themed holidays are celebrated on a certain date, like Spay Day USA, they will also be included, but just the same if they are ones that float like Pet Memorial Sunday they will be explained at the bottom. The book is 8″ x 10″ and spiral-bound on the left edge, still small enough to be easily carried around.

great rescues day book

Great Rescues Day Book, January featured portrait and day book page.

I had originally wanted to do this as a day book, but was uncertain enough at the reception I decided instead to go with a calendar. I was certain about one thing: I wanted to share those stories and the lovely kitties I’d painted, and a calendar works fine for me. But compiling each one is such an effort because as I’d found with the original Great Rescues Calendar and Gift Book, I have to rephotograph nearly every painting, a tricky and time-consuming endeavor, one that would be difficult to pull off each year. This day book still shares the stories and art, but as I publish the variations including other cats and dogs and even animals and people I know the work I’m doing will be in use for much longer.

cat peeking out from under bed

Waiting for Mom, pastel © B.E. Kazmarski

Although Great Rescues Day Book is a 12-month book I am still featuring from the original calendar all 15 portraits of rescued cats I’ve been commissioned to paint in the 20 years I’ve been an animal portrait artist, plus the portrait of my own which I consider my first. These portraits won both a Certificate of Excellence and a Muse Medallion in the 2011 Cat Writers’ Association Annual Communication Contest, as well as the 22 Cats Notepaper mentioned below.

While the portraits are lovely and I’m proud of my body of work, the stories of these cats, and the people who rescued them, is what compels me to share them with you. Each of the stories tells of cats from shelters and cats abandoned and saved, cats found inside car engines and cats reluctantly surrendered by people who could no longer care for them, but each one has a happy ending as a cherished companion in a loving home.

And while each cat has an individual story, each rescuer has a story as well of reaching out to an animal in need to bring it in from the streets. In many cases they helped heal physical and emotional wounds and gave that cat a lifetime of love, in return receiving love and devotion; often those humans received some healing in return they weren’t aware they needed.

Great Rescues is spiral-bound and measures 8″ x 10″ to easily fit on your desk or in a purse, briefcase or backpack. While the original Great Rescues had a die-cut cover with the title stamped in gold foil, this has a solid 12 pt. printed cover for durability.

Following the calendar section is a section of stories of the rescuers and their feline families today and notes on the design and rendering of each of the portraits, followed by a mini cat-care book illustrated with my drawings. I’ve also redesigned my “22 Cats” decorative notepaper with a collage of all the portraits, to fit the new size, as seen below.

black and white notebook paper featuring a collage of cats

Award-winning 22 Cats Notebook Paper

As a complement to the day book, I am also designing from the images in this book a number of complementary products such as placemats, pet bowl mats and memo pads. Sign up for my e-newsletter at the bottom of this page to be sure you don’t miss any special offers.

For now, scroll down a little farther to find the Add to Cart button. If the book is a gift to someone, or you have a particular cat or cats in mind, I would be glad to add an inscription in the front of your book.

Here are images of the other portraits in the book—perhaps you’ll recognize a kitty you know!

collage of portraits

All the portraits except Fawn.

Purchase through my Etsy shop

Click here to purchase from my Etsy shop.

Please also see “Calendars” for other dated calendar products.


Take a look at other new merchandise and featured artwork.

two tortoiseshell cats in studio

The girls are ready for work.

Once a week on Thursday I feature something new in my “shop”, whether that’s here on The Creative Cat, in my Etsy shop, on my main website or even at one of the bricks and mortar shops that carry my work.

Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.

Generations of cats have had to supervise me in my studio to make certain what I produce is acceptable—Cookie watched over me beginning in 1992 and Kelly beginning in 1997! Here they are, telling me to settle down and get to work.


Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.normalcy.


Click here to find out how you can help homeless cats this holiday season!

Sophie-HolidayCheerForHomelessPets-300


Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy.
Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy!

© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST



Feline Garden Flags!

garden flags with cats
Garden flags are here!

Eight two-sided garden flags are now available in my Etsy shop, each one a completely different style and theme to suit any garden—fine art, Impressionist, Warhol-esque and “after van Gogh”, black cats, pink cats, tabby cats and calico cats, and of course, those tortie girls!

These first eight flags actually feature twelve images. All are two-sided, most have two different designs so you can turn them around and show something different, or you can put them along a walk and see both sides as you move in each direction. I began with the most popular and requested images, and from those chose and ones that fit well on the shape of the flag while the image was still easily recognizable from a distance. Colors can be a little unpredictable with digital printing, and this digital fabric is a new product, but the colors and detail are astonishing.

black cat with garden flag
Mimi poses with her favorite design, featuring her, of course.

Above Mimi models her favorite design, I presume, since this was when she chose to saunter over and rub herself on the bracket even though she is featured in three other designs. Mimi is not included with your order, I need her here to model for more art, supervise their design, and especially act as art director for our back yard photo shoots.

These are digitally printed on a product called digital satin, a woven product intended for outdoor as well as indoor use. It’s heavier than the nylon most other flags are made of, but if I’m judging by the one I’ve had hanging out in my back yard since winter this is tough and durable material, no fading, scratches in the finish, fraying or wrinkling of the flag in any way. I’m sure, like any other product, if the flag is in direct sun for more than four hours per day it will eventually fade, but the testing worked better than I’d thought. You can read about the development of these flags as well as backyard testing and a photo shoot with Mimi and me in Backyard Product Development and Testing With My Assistant, Mimi.

My friend Bonita at Distinctively Different Decor and More actually sews the pockets for me and also sells them at her shop. Aside from sharing her life with five cats Bonita is a professional interior designer and upholsterer and she expressed an interest in selling these as well as assisting with the finishing. I have other art and merchandise at Bonita’s boutique, these will be on display and available through her at 103 Chestnut St. Carnegie, PA 15106.

Flags are 11” wide x 15” tall and fit the most common garden flag bracket available, seen here and sold in most hardware and home renovation stores with a garden area. I sell them for $15.00 each plus shipping I ship the garden flags rolled in a tube unless you also order other merchandise and I can fit them into the box. You can order one through me, but with their weight and size it adds to the shipping cost.

Current designs

The eight designs below are currently available in my Etsy shop—click the image to go to the product on Etsy, and scroll down for links to the images here on The Creative Cat.


"Cats After Van Gogh"
“Cats After Van Gogh”
cat garden flags
“Mimi Among the Geraniums”
cat garden flag
“Fine Art Cats”
garden flag with cats
“Impressionist Cats”
cat garden flag
“The Roundest Eyes”
cat garden flag
“The Goddess”
cat garden flag
“Kitty in Pink:
cat garden flag
“In Afternoon Sun”

Following is a list of links to the daily sketch or painting:

Cats After van Gogh: Two Cats After van Gogh/In Window Light

Mimi Among the Geraniums 1/Mimi Among the Geraniums 2

Fine Art Cats: Peaches and Peonies/After Dinner Nap

Impressionist Cats: Stanley With Apple/White Cat Reflecting

The Roundest Eyes (white background)/The Roundest Eyes (yellow background)

The Goddess (white background)/The Goddess (yellow background)

Kitty in Pink/Kitty in Pink

In Afternoon Sun/In Afternoon Sun

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And other special deals

Sign up for my monthly e-newsletter below for discounts on these and other products.

Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

Gifts Featuring Cats You Know

image of cat calendars


 Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST



July Featured Artwork and Desktop Calendar

ink and watercolor sketch of cat
“Stanley With Geraniums”, ink and watercolor, 9″ x 12″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

This painting is one I’ve wanted to do for years—since the very moment it depicts, in fact, on July 30, 2006, in fact, when Stanley and I enjoyed a Sunday morning on the deck.

As I’ve been digging through old photos while I’ve been moving them to my studio and organizing, both prints and digitals, I’m finding special moments I’d forgotten, moments of inspiration, beauty and especially a growing closeness with my older generation of cats even as they stepped ever closer to their last days with us. While it seemed like any other morning, looking at the rest of the photos from this day, I can see this was a quietly memorable morning. This was Stanley’s last summer with us, he’d been with me for 21 years and at my best guess was 25 years old, and he and I spent every possible moment together, especially out on the deck. While he slept most of the time and was fragile and often confused, each time our eyes met we built a deepening bond I’ll always carry with me; we had lost Moses and Cream in the spring, Lucy had just joined us in June, and though there were seven (or more) other cats in the house, Stanley and I carved out time for just the two of us nearly every day.

detail of painting
Detail of “Stanley With Geraniums”.

And on this morning when I looked at Stanley sleeping on the table I knew I’d want to remember this moment and to paint it, and visualized the painting in this style. But believe it or not, for as often as you see this particular style of ink sketch with watercolor washes, I was not at all skilled with it at that time and had only tentatively experimented in a few sketches. The desire to see this painting on paper was one of the driving forces for me to work this out, find the right drawing pen with the right ink, the right brushes and set of watercolors. And finally, seven years later, here it is.

The details are comforting to look at: the round picnic table where I’ve spent so much time with and without cats; the faded linen dishtowel calendar with the cardinals, one of many with birds, all of which are beyond threadbare and completely faded now; the mug I loved for my Sunday morning coffee; the binoculars my mother had used to watch birds and I “inherited” for birdwatching, given to her by someone who’d served in Viet Nam; the geraniums, collected over years from friends and family, overwintered and renewed each year—they are ancestors of the ones you see in my photos today.

Here is the reference photo, and as I remember Stanley this month—we had a little escape in July that year which I’ll be writing about—I’ll be sharing other photos as well.

photo of cat on table with flowers
Reference photo for “Stanley With Geraniums”

You can see I took a number of liberties with lightening the entire scene and reorganizing some of the flowers, but this particular digital camera was not terribly accurate for color or lighting, and being able to change some of the details is part of the fun and challenge of creating an original piece of artwork. I actually liked the flag in this photo and had originally intended to include it because I’d brought it home from the Carnegie Memorial Day parade I’d taken my mother to in May and that was a memory too, but I didn’t want to “date” this painting for a holiday or event, or set it for a country since many of my readers and collectors are from other countries. That detail was not so important to me as the others I included.

And in designing this month’s desktop calendar I am pulling from another idea and design style I have long enjoyed. As a long-time gardener I’ve saved lots of empty seed packets, even bought seeds I didn’t need, just because I like the style. While this design isn’t as detailed as one of those seed packets or the derivative signage or decorative items patterned on them, but perhaps at a later date I can work on that style beginning with this painting.

On a side note, I hand-lettered “July 2013″, and had intended to hand-letter the rest of the text as well, but when I design these calendars I need to be able to be flexible with the text and didn’t want to have to re-letter then entire calendar several times.  I also enjoy hand-lettering in my designs and I’ll be integrating that into other designs as well.


This month’s desktop calendar

Stanley-1920x1080

I’ve worked this image into a desktop calendar for you to enjoy and use for the entire month. Reading statistics and knowing that more than half of my readers view use a mobile device, I also offer the dimensions for desktop images for mobile devices from iPads to Smartphones. Click here to visit The Creative Cat to find your electronic device and download the right format and size.


And other special deals

Sign up for my monthly e-newsletter below for discounts on these and other products.

Subscribe to My E-newsletter

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Gifts Featuring Cats You Know

image of cat calendars


 Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

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Tortie Girls for Summer!

wooden trays with tortoiseshell cats
Tortie Girls wooden trays!

Perhaps it’s their colors, orange and yellow with black, or perhaps it’s that I remember how much my tortie girls loved the summer, the open windows, and even visits out to the yard, but for me the tortie girls are always a summer theme.

As you know, I am unendingly inspired by my houseful of felines, especially my Tortie Girls. I initially designed these in 2001 because I wanted art I could print myself on a variety of things to offer inexpensively for sale and for donation, combining my love of hand-cutting and printing with linoleum blocks and hand-coloring into the black with watercolors or with cold-set dyes depending on the paper or fabric.

About the artwork

hand-painted and printed wooden tray the goddess
“The Goddess” wooden tray.

“The Goddess”

Well, everyone knows a fat cat who knows she’s beautiful, and Cookie would tell you that a woman with a round shape was once most desirable and an object of worship. That’s why I call her “The Goddess”.

hand-painted and printed wooden tray the roundest eyes
“The Roundest Eyes” wooden tray.

“The Roundest Eyes”
Sometimes when I look at Kelly the only feature I can distinguish in all those tortie markings is her extremely round eyes.

You can read more about how I developed both designs, and about block printing in the post “Tortie Girls Block Print T-shirts”

Here is a collection of all the housewares and art with my tortie girls printed on them—enjoy!

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Tortie Girls Trays

These trays, featured above, are lightweight 10″ x 13″ pine wood trays each with a hand-colored and signed block print of my tortie girls, “The Goddess” and “The Roundest Eyes”, decoupaged in the bottom. Inside of the tray is painted pure white, outside and upper edge is painted pure black with a matte finish on the entire tray.

Find these in my Portraits of Animals shop on Etsy:

Set of two trays: $60.00

“The Goddess” tray: $35.00

“The Roundest” Eyes tray: $35.00

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Handmade, hand-printed, hand-painted Tortie Girls textiles

I’ve always offered my block print designs on a variety of textiles, from tees to tablecloths, one of the reasons I love that medium. I had wanted to find a washable alternative to the oil-based inks I’d been using, and the cold-set fabric dye I’d long used to paint the Tortie Girls designs was no longer available. Beginning last summer I experimented with various inks and fabric paints and came up with a combination of materials that are easy to use and washable, widely available and non-toxic and in addition to the tees I have a line of textiles.

block printed tablecloths with tortoiseshell cats
Tortie Girls Tablecloths!

Tortie Girls Tablecloths and Runner

I keep a bolt of unbleached cotton muslin on hand for these little accent tablecloths. Each 36″ x 36″ tablecloth has the same image printed four times, one on each edge. The Roundest Eyes table runner is 11″ x 36″. Each is signed and dated below the design and has my handwritten “label” reading “handmade, hand-printed, hand-painted” and the year. Washing instructions are included on a separate tag. I have only one of each tablecloth and one table runner—for now!

“The Roundest Eyes” 36″ x 36″ tablecloth

“The Goddess” 36″ x 36″ tablecloth

“The Roundest Eyes” 11″ x 36″ table runner

hand-printed placemats with tortoiseshell cats
My tortie girls Cookie and Kelly on canvas placemats!

Tortie Girls Placemats

I made these extra-large 15″ x 19″ placemats of sturdy cotton duck with the edges stay-stitched and fringed. Each is signed and dated below the design as any of my art is, so it’s art for your table! I have six of “The Goddess”, left, and four of “The Roundest Eyes”, right, and they are for sale in sets. You can find them in my shop on Etsy and see more detail shots of them as well.

“The Goddess” placemat, set of four

“The Goddess” placemat, set of two

“The Roundest Eyes” placemat, set of four

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Tortie Girls Wood-mounted Prints

hand-colored linoleum block print of cat
Tortie Girls wood-mounted hand-colored 9″ x 12″print set.

The 9″ x 12″ block, originally intended for painting, is a 1/8″ birch wood panel “cradled” with a 1.5″ tall canvas stretcher added to the back for strength and stability and, incidentally, ease of hanging, and this size can even stand up on a tabletop. I’ve painted the sides black and mounted a print edge to edge on the top surface, then covered it with acrylic finish.

The prints are hand-colored and signed block prints of “The Goddess” and “The Roundest Eyes” decoupaged on the surface. I first print the block print in acrylic ink on rice paper, allow it to dry, and hand color each one individually with watercolors. Then I paint the block with acrylic paint, black on the sides and white on top. I adhere the finished, colored print onto the block and let it dry, then put a coat of matte-finish acrylic on the top and sides.

Set of both Tortie Girls Wood-mounted Prints: $60.00

The Roundest Eyes Wood-mounted Print: $35.00

The Goddess Wood-mounted Print: $35.00

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Tortie Girls Garden Flags

garden flags with tortoiseshell cats
“Tortie Girls” garden flags.

These “garden flags” are digitally printed on both sides of a heavyweight, durable indoor/outdoor woven printable fabric, and I finish by adding the rod pocket. (Bracket is not included.) Each flag has a design on both sides, in this case it’s “The Goddess” or “The Roundest Eyes” on both sides, one side with a white background and one side with a yellow background. Flags are 11” wide x 15” tall and fit the most common garden flag bracket available, sold in most hardware and home renovation stores with a garden area.

The Goddess Garden Flag: $15.00

The Roundest Eyes Garden Flag: $15.00

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Matted and Framed Tortie Girls Prints

framed artwork
Hand-colored Tortie Girls block prints matted and framed.

A set of hand printed, hand tinted linoleum block prints featuring my tortoiseshell girls,matted and framed and ready to hang. Each image is 8″ x 12″, with mat and frame outside dimensions 16″ x 20″, horizontal or vertical as shown in the photo.

Set of both Tortie Girls Framed Prints: $125.00

The Roundest Eyes Framed Print: $75.00

The Goddess Framed Print: $75.00

Click here if you’d like to see all the Tortie Girls goods in my Etsy shop together.


And other special deals

Sign up for my monthly e-newsletter below for discounts on these and other products.

Subscribe to My E-newsletter

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Gifts Featuring Cats You Know

image of cat calendars


 Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

FACEBOOK | TWITTER | LINKEDIN | ETSY SHOP | PINTEREST



Garden Flag Giveaway

garden flags with tortoiseshell cats
“Tortie Girls” garden flags.

Eight two-sided garden flags are now available in my Etsy shop, each one a completely different style and theme to suit any garden—fine art, Impressionist, Warhol-esque and “after van Gogh”, black cats, pink cats, tabby cats and calico cats, and of course, those tortie girls!

These first eight flags actually feature twelve images. All are two-sided, most have two different designs so you can turn them around and show something different, or you can put them along a walk and see both sides as you move in each direction. I began with the most popular and requested images, and from those chose and ones that fit well on the shape of the flag while the image was still easily recognizable from a distance. Colors can be a little unpredictable with digital printing, and this digital fabric is a new product, but the colors and detail are astonishing.

You have a chance to win one as well—details below! I want to tell you more about the designs…

black cat with garden flag
Mimi poses with her favorite design, featuring her, of course.

At left Mimi models her favorite design, I presume, since this was when she chose to saunter over and rub herself on the bracket even though she is featured in three other designs. Mimi is not included with your order, I need her here to model for more art, supervise their design, and especially act as art director for our back yard photo shoots.

These are digitally printed on a product called digital satin, a woven product intended for outdoor as well as indoor use. It’s heavier than the nylon most other flags are made of, but if I’m judging by the one I’ve had hanging out in my back yard since winter this is tough and durable material, no fading, scratches in the finish, fraying or wrinkling of the flag in any way. I’m sure, like any other product, if the flag is in direct sun for more than four hours per day it will eventually fade, but the testing worked better than I’d thought. You can read about the development of these flags as well as backyard testing and a photo shoot with Mimi and me in Backyard Product Development and Testing With My Assistant, Mimi.

My friend Bonita at Distinctively Different Decor and More actually sews the pockets for me and also sells them at her shop. Aside from sharing her life with five cats Bonita is a professional interior designer and upholsterer and she expressed an interest in selling these as well as assisting with the finishing. I have other art and merchandise at Bonita’s boutique, these will be on display and available through her at 103 Chestnut St. Carnegie, PA 15106.

I ship the garden flags rolled in a tube. Flags are 11” wide x 15” tall and fit the most common garden flag bracket available, seen here and sold in most hardware and home renovation stores with a garden area. You can order on through me, but with their weight and size it adds to the shipping cost.

Current designs

The eight designs below are currently available in my Etsy shop—click the image to go to the product on Etsy, and scroll down for links to the images here on The Creative Cat.


"Cats After Van Gogh"
“Cats After Van Gogh”
cat garden flags
“Mimi Amng the Geraniums”
cat garden flag
“Fine Art Cats”
garden flag with cats
“Impressionist Cats”

cat garden flag
“The Roundest Eyes”
cat garden flag
“The Goddess”
cat garden flag
“Kitty in Pink:
cat garden flag
“In Afternoon Sun”

Following is a list of links to the daily sketch or painting:

Cats After van Gogh: Two Cats After van Gogh/In Window Light

Mimi Among the Geraniums 1/Mimi Among the Geraniums 2

Fine Art Cats: Peaches and Peonies/After Dinner Nap

Impressionist Cats: Stanley With Apple/White Cat Reflecting

The Roundest Eyes (white background)/The Roundest Eyes (yellow background)

The Goddess (white background)/The Goddess (yellow background)

Kitty in Pink/Kitty in Pink

In Afternoon Sun/In Afternoon Sun

Below, just my favorite photo of my first proofs in my yard! Of course, I’ve moved them around, but this is what I was envisioning last year when I first had the idea to create these.

garden flags with cats
Garden flags are here!

The Giveaway on The Conscious Cat

Enter to win the garden flag of your choice between today and June 20 on The Conscious Catclick here for details!


And other special deals

Sign up for my monthly e-newsletter below for discounts on these and other new products during the month of June.

Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

Gifts Featuring Cats You Know

image of cat calendars
2013 desk and journal calendars on sale!

 

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


Click here to nominate “www.TheCreativeCat.net” for a Petties Award.

petties 2013 logo
Read more about the Petties in this post.


© 2013 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
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Wood Mounted Art and Photos

photo of art mounted on wood blocks
Introductory selection of art and photos mounted on wood blocks.

I love matting and framing my artwork, and even visualize a piece in mat and frame while I’m working, yet I’ve been finding ways to break free from the complications of mat, frame and glass for wall and display art for years—and I’m really happy with the way these wood blocks turned out!

example of artwork.
Side view of 6″ x 6″ wood-mounted photo of “Cookie in the Pasta Bowl”.

The blocks, originally intended for painting, are 1/8″ birch wood panels “cradled” with wood bars added to the back for strength and stability and, incidentally, ease of hanging. The depth of these wood bars “cradling” the back is either 3/4″ or 1-1/2″ depending on the style of the block, and because they have wide sides the smaller ones can even stand up on a tabletop or shelf. I’ve painted the sides either black or natural white and mounted a print edge to edge on the top surface, then covered it with acrylic finish. I love the clean lines and modern look, and have been experimenting with other colors and sizes.

I began with several images from which I had plenty of feedback and which would also work in this medium. Because my daily sketches are often 5″ x 7″ or smaller, these blocks are ideal especially the smaller square format.

Above, most of the blocks are 4″ x 4″, in front you see “The Eye Model” and behind two small ink sketches, “Looking Out the Window” and “Three After Dinner Baths”. I’ve also included “Everyone’s On My Desk” and “Spooked on Halloween” in the small blocks.

And because “First Light” was so popular the other day I’ve included it on an 8″ x 10″ along with “A Sunny Room”, and “World Cat” on an 8″ x 8″ panel.

They range in price from $12.00 to $25.00 and come in a variety of sizes that will accommodate many photographs and sketches—including a 6″ x 8″ panel that will perfectly fit my cartoon “Being Used as a Fort”. See them all on Etsy. I regularly add new ones as I get more feedback, so when you visit my Etsy shop again, use the keyword search “wood mount” to see all that are available.


black cat looking at art stuff

But what do they look like to Jelly Bean? A bunch of kitty-sized pedestals!

. . . . . . .

Take a look at other new merchandise and featured artwork.

Once a week on Thursday I feature something new in my “shop” on The Creative Cat from my Etsy shop, on my main website or even at one of the bricks and mortar shops that carry my work.

. . . . . . .

Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.

It’s all done under the close and careful supervision of my studio cats!

 

Gifts Featuring Cats You Know
image of cat calendars
2013 desk and journal calendars on sale!

Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.


 

Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


The Spring Kitten

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum  block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors

I once had a pure white long-haired kitty with pea green eyes and a pink nose named Sally. She was also completely deaf, and completely fearless; without distraction, she lived in her own little world, full of sleep and joy and play. She was the inspiration for many sketches, paintings and photos, and for this little piece as well; click the image to see a gallery of other black and white photos of Sally.

white cat reclining
Sally reclining, click the photo to see more black and white photos of Sally.

Almost everywhere I’ve lived there has been a quince bush, an old-fashioned favorite for its early bright pink flowers—so early, in fact, that the bush in my neighbor’s yard in the years when Sally was young bloomed every year during the January thaw, and then snow would fall on the bright pink blooms, nestling in the curve of the branches like Sally when she’d found a good cozy spot.

Below is the actual reference photo I used for this block print. Can you see the white kitten shape in the snow? Scroll down to the detail of the block print below.

quince blossoms with snow
Quince blossoms with snow, the actual reference photo for this block print.

Sure, I took some artistic license with the snow, but that’s what art is all about—and the shape you see below is what I actually saw when I got the photos back and flipped through them (remember those days?), and though it was years before I created this little print the idea stayed with me all that time.

detail of "The Spring Kitten" linoleum  block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors
Detail of “The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors

I had actually also used the image for a few other projects as I explored my own talents and my abilities to turn what I’d visualized into an finished piece of artwork. It’s always interesting to find several interpretations in one image!

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors, white frame with blue and white mats
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors, white frame with blue and white mats

The style of this design was inspired after studying and practicing many illustration traditions, from Asian-inspired block prints and brush paintings to metal and wood etchings and block prints used for books and periodicals. My reference photo (which I kept) shows the branch with the flowers against a brilliant blue sky, and a soft little pile of snow in the angle which became the sleeping kitten.

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink only
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink only

Also inspired by the idea of a book illustration, it’s just a little thing, image is 5″ x 3.5″, and manuscripts were often illustrated with wood block prints. It’s difficult for me to carve wood, so I’ve gone for artist’s linoleum, much easier on my hands.

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors, white frame with black and white mats
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink and hand-colored with watercolors, white frame with black and white mats

Block printing is a technique wherein the artist carves the surface of a piece of linoleum, leaving raised areas which will become the image. Ink is rolled onto these raised areas, then a piece of paper is pressed against the block and when it’s lifted away the ink remains, leaving the image on the paper.

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink only
Detail of “The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on rice paper, black ink only

I began only printing this on white rice paper in black or hand-tinted as you see here, and sold them framed and unframed. I love colored rice paper as well as handmade and unusual papers, though, and every year I create a few on new and different papers.

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum  block print on pink silk and rice paper
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on pink silk and rice paper

Of necessity, they can only have a small amount of texture and small or muted patterns so that they don’t compete with the print. I have a limited amount of space to hang prints to dry, so I’ve only used two of the papers, and am preparing for more!

"The Spring Kitten" linoleum  block print on handmade buff paper with white and pale orange flecks
“The Spring Kitten” linoleum block print on handmade buff paper with white and pale orange flecks

My wood-mounted and keepsake art was quite popular and fun to make, so I also made up a few 4″ x 6″ wood-mounted prints and have a few 5″ x 7″ blocks as well as small keepsake boxes on hand for the next part of the experiment.

Wood-mounted "Spring Kitten" print, 4" x 6",
Wood-mounted “Spring Kitten” print, 4″ x 6″

I also offer this image as a wood-mounted piece and on various textiles, such as t-shirts, curtains, tablecloths, shawls and tote bags. You can click any image in this post to find the item for sale in my Etsy shop, or to find everything that’s available featuring this little piece of artwork, search my Etsy shop for: “SPRING KITTEN”, which will bring up all the items currently available.

Because of the nature of the medium, each print is unique and ink coverage is not always perfect. Most artists consider this random activity to be part of the process of creating an individualized print, and along with the hand-painting makes a unique work of art.

Epilogue

I had actually also used the image for a few other projects as I explored my own talents and my abilities to turn what I’d visualized into an finished piece of artwork. It’s always interesting to find several interpretations in one image, and I created this one before I felt really confident in my drawing skills and was experimenting with ripped-paper collage, popular in the late 80s, using a piece of matboard, construction paper and tempera paints…it’s a bit worse for the wear of 25 years, with a few pieces missing.

paper collage
“Petals on a Wet Black Bough: After Ezra Pound”

And of course I can’t photograph any artwork without my composition and lighting director cruising through…and it’s an interesting thought to connect my feline households of long ago with today’s in this way.

black cat with artwork
Mimi adjusts the lighting by walking through.
Read about creating custom items

Find out more about creating custom items for your own home using the images you see here. Visit the “Ordering Custom Art” page to see samples and read bout how to order.


Subscribe to My E-newsletter

Subscribe to The Creative Cat e-newsletter for specials on exclusively feline-themed art and merchandise.

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


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