Tag Archives: cat photographs

Composition in Black and Green

black cat on green sink
Composition in Black and Green

Does this look familiar? This very photo was the inspiration for the calendar of the same name, Compositions in Black and Green, and gave me a focus for the whole series of images, taken on this date in 2011.

I loved the look of this image as soon as I saw Bean quietly resting on the edge of the sink, all its shades of green lit by the spring sunlight, Bean’s pleasantly rounded shape contrasting with geometric shadows of the window frame and muntins, and even before I photographed it the idea of a series of photos on this theme was born, including even the name. I already had a number of photos in the theme of black and green and knew I’d get more, and even to this day I am photographing more “compositions in black and green”.

Jelly Bean enjoys being washed in spring sunlight as I enjoy how the pattern of the window muntins falls across the wall, the sink and him. What you can’t hear in this photo is Jelly Bean’s loud, vigorous purr as it echoes in the sink, truly an amazing percussive technique.

A little later this year I’ll be choosing up to a dozen “Compositions in Black and Green” for a set of greeting cards, notebook covers and “black cat wear”, tees, bags and other useful items. Remember the ones you like and let me know.

And so I did! At least the cards and the calendar. See the cards in my Etsy shop, and read about the 2014 calendar below.

. . . . . . .

calendar with black cat

Compositions in Black and Green 2014 and other calendars from The Creative Cat

The photo above was the inspiration for Compositions in Black and Green 2013, a calendar featuring the Fantastic Four and the Mama Mimi in the vintage mint green bathroom, just being their lovely selves. I published Compositions in Black and Green 2014 with all new photos, and it even includes Emeraude and Lakota!

Special Offer for Black Cat Adoptions

Now through 2014, I’ll send a copy of my Compositions in Black and Green 2014 calendar to anyone who rescues or adopts a black cat so that you can use it to keep track of all the wonderful things your house panther does. Or keep track of the house panther you’ve rescued so that you can keep track of veterinary records and send it along with the person who adopts the cat you’ve rescued.

Just email your rescue story to me, or a copy of your adoption contract—all personal information you don’t want to share eliminated of course—and a photo of your cat. I will keep all of your information completely private unless you want to share it with my readers.

If you’d like to to purchase a Compositions in Black and Green 2014 calendar as a gift or for yourself, visit my Etsy shop.

Read more about this calendar and all my 2014 Calendars from The Creative Cat.


Browse some rescued cats and kittens!

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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.

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© 2014 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!
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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



Valentine Cards for Cat Lovers, and Lovers with Cats

valentine cards
“Two Yellow Cats”, Valentine card based on a daily sketch!

Here is my newest Valentine design, “Two Yellow Cats”, to finish out my set of six different Valentine greeting cards, as always inspired by and based on images of my household of felines!

As an artist I turn to my surroundings for creative output, and you may recognize many of the photos and illustrations I’ve used to create these cards. Each of the cats depicted here is one of mine, even if they are in yellow marker outlined in black. My cats have no choice but to be models, especially “if they like to eat” as I always tell them when they roll their eyes.

These cards are 5″ x 7″ and are printed on 12 pt. gloss cover, uncoated inside. Orders of a half dozen or more are packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box.

Envelope Options with Valentine Cards

Red or white? No, not your wine choice! All cards come with a 70 lb. text weight acid-free envelope which is inkjet/laser compatible, but for Valentine’s Day you can choose red or white when you order your cards on Etsy. “Two Yellow Cats” above is shown with the red envelope, while the white envelope is bright white.


Two Yellow Cats

This card was designed from one of my daily sketches and just lends itself to a variety of themes—Valentine, friendship, thinking of you…I’m introducing it for Valentine’s Day and actually offer it in two designs.

You may just be friends with the recipient, or you may be using the card for an entirely different purpose, so I offer this two ways in the same item on Etsy:


card design of two cats in yellow outlined in black with heart
“Two Yellow Cats” as a Valentine card.
card design of two cats in yellow outlined in black
“Two Yellow Cats” as an Everyday card.

text inside card
Text inside “Two Yellow Cats”, both design versions.

The message inside is “…purrrr….purrrrr…purrrrr…” in my own handwriting in an attempt to simulate the kitty purring on my lap at the time, a message that can be given to a friend or to someone who is a little more than a friend!

Both design options will be available all the time so you can send your chosen greeting any time of the year.

Each card comes with choice of red or white acid-free envelopes which are inkjet/laser compatible. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.

ABOUT THE ART

This daily sketch was done in felt-tip brush markers, signed and dated 7/7/12.

“Even if it’s too hot to cuddle, I still love my sister.”

That’s Jelly Bean and Mewsette enjoying a quiet moment looking out the basement door. Actually, Jelly Bean was trying to get Mewsette to give him a little bath on the head, knowing that if he leaned in at just the right angle and just the right moment, Mewsette would turn and lick him without even thinking about it. It didn’t work, but it was okay.

Jelly Bean and Mewsette are black but as you know I have fun sketching them in totally unrealistic colors.


Nuzzles and Purrrrrs for Valentine’s Day!

Nuzzles and Purrrrrs

The operatically romantic Giuseppe and the French-Canadian belle femme Mlle. Daisy Emerald Marguerite have been carrying on a long-distance affaire since the summer of 2011; they always conclude their correspondence with “nuzzles and purrrrrs”, hence the name and the text inside.

I photographed Mewsette and Giuseppe cuddling on my desk while I worked at my computer and posted them as a daily photo. So many readers immediately said “Valentine” that I thought I’d oblige with a design! And even though it’s Mewsette and not Mlle. Daisy, Mewsette looks so much like the lovely and dignified Mlle. that she is a stand-in when needed, and always knows when her brother needs a hug.

nuzzles and purrs inside crop
Text inside “Nuzzles and Purrs”.

The message inside is “NUZZLES AND PURRRRRS” in a really fun font. Each card comes with choice of red or white acid-free envelopes which are inkjet/laser compatible. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.


two black cats with heart on yellow background
“Heart Cats”, featuring Mr. Sunshine and Mewsette.

You Are My Heart Cat

The siblings of the Fantastic Four often cuddle and hug, cheek to cheek, but this design adapted from the original heart-shaped cats photo of Mr. Sunshine and Mewsette is still my favorite; the background color of the card is adapted from the color of their eyes.

I photographed these two in the bathroom at night in poor light, but no matter, such a sweet photo I’d do my best. Since then I’ve adapted the two into many different designs and colors. Here, for Valentine’s day, they are solid black with the solid cerise of their eyes, and just one red heart as they hug.

you are my heart cat
Text inside “You Are My Heart Cat”

The message inside is “YOU ARE MY HEART CAT” in a really fun font. Each card comes with choice of red or white acid-free envelopes which are inkjet/laser compatible. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.


two cats on red blanket
“Purple Cats, Red Blanket”

Purple Cats, Red Blanket

This daily sketch was done in felt-tip ink technical drawing pen with watercolor washes, signed and dated 1/6/12, and pictures Jelly Bean and Mewsette using a red blanket I’d tossed to the landing for the laundry as a comfy impromptu cat bed.

Black cats, like white cats, have all sorts of colors in their fur, and in the day’s filtered sunlight their fur glistened with all sorts of highlights and shadows. The randomly shaped and wrinkled red blanket heightened the range of colors in their fur and even the neutral wood floor held random combinations in its old unfinished grain. Mostly, the composition was what attracted me in the first place: two similar heavy rounded shapes, the random soft shape and the smooth shape brought elements together in a very pleasing way.

text inside card
“Purr Hearts” illustration inside card.

The message inside is “Purr Hearts” in my handwriting and hand-drawn heart-pawprints. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.


black and white photo of cats
Steal a Moment With a Kitty You Love

Steal a Moment

This photo was originally an unfocused mistake but I liked it better than the focused version, and so did many readers of The Creative Cat.

text inside card
“Happy Valentine’s Day”

The message inside is “HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY”—imagine that!

Each card comes with choice of red or white acid-free envelopes which are inkjet/laser compatible. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.


card with moon and silhouette of two cats
Silhouettes for Valentine’s Day.

Silhouettes for Valentine’s Day

I originated this design as a Halloween card using autumn shades in autumn 2011, but with a little color change it suits Valentine’s Day. It features my photograph of the Harvest Moon and the silhouettes of Jelly Bean and Mimi derived from a photo of the two.

Each card comes with choice of red or white acid-free envelopes which are inkjet/laser compatible. I sell them individually as a set of six packed in a clear-top vinyl greeting card box in my shop on Etsy.

Unlike all the others, this card is blank inside, ready for your message.


Set of Six, one of each

Purchase a set including one of each of these six cards with your choice of red or white envelopes, and even your choice of design for “Two Yellow Cats”!

Also read about my handprinted Valentine note cards: Block Print Valentine Note Cards.

I’ll have other Valentine’s Day merchandise specials to offer next week. If you’d like to receive advance notice with special discounts on these and other items I offer here and on Etsy, scroll down and sign up for The Creative Cat E-newsletter.


Inspired by felines you know!

Click on the banner below to visit Portraits of Animals on Etsy for more of my designs inspired by the cats you read about each day.

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

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.


Victoriana Cats Greeting Cards and Keepsakes

set of four sepia images of black cats

Victoriana Cats in dreamy semi-sepia tones

Though these photos may look antique and sepia-toned, they are neither. My cats are perfect models and knew to pose in the bright yellow morning sun in front of my round antique mirror and the narrow casement window with the lace curtain. I applied a few Photoshop filters to the original photos to make them consistent in tone and style.

Use them for all-purpose greeting cards, sympathy, thinking of you, friendship, or find some shabby chic frames for 5″ x 7″ images and frame them for your walls. Find these in my Etsy shop in sets of four or a dozen.

I also have this design available on a small set of keepsake boxes.

Victoriana Cats Keepsake Box Set

“Victoriana Cats” Keepsake Box Set

Papier-mâché boxes hand-painted in black and crackle-finish gold and cream with prints of three photos decoupaged to the lid. Lid and bottom are finished with matte-finish Modge Podge. Boxes measure 6″x4″, 5″x3″ and 4″x2.5″ in diameter x 3″ high.

Use for storage for small items, photos or special keepsakes, or use as gift boxes.

Black was a natural color for “Victoriana Cats”, and I’ve been waiting to try a new crackle-finish glaze–this was the perfect subject. The base color is a pale antique gold, pulling mid-range highlights in the sepia-look photos, with a natural white top coat nicely crackled. I paint each box, then print my artwork on acid-free matte-finish paper with archival waterproof inks and adhere the print to the lid. I finish the bottom and lid of the box with matte-finish Modge Podge. Box insides are unfinished.

This set is available on Etsy, and scroll down to see the greeting card set.

Discounts in honor of Black Cat Friday

Support small home-based black cats and small home-based businesses, conserve air quality, save money, shop in your jammies and pet your kitties all at the same time. Friday, November 23 through Monday, November 26, The Creative Cat is offering 25% off all black cat-themed items already available and custom-made—and a few things I’m working on right now!

I find it imperative to create things that will benefit the adoption of black cats, so often left behind in the shelter by using the five wonderful black cats who live with me. They’ll 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! I strive to include silly, cute and artful photos and sketches in equal measure, just the thing to show others what black cats can bring to your life.

In preparation for Black Cat Friday (and Saturday and Sunday and Monday) browse my black cat-themed items on Etsy, and a few easy suggestions I have below for things you’ll find there and here on The Creative Cat.


Getting Ready for Black Cat Friday Specials!

black and white photo of five black cats
All five waiting in line for their dinner.

Support small home-based black cats and small home-based businesses, conserve air quality, save money, shop in your jammies and pet your kitties all at the same time. Friday, November 23 through Monday, November 26, The Creative Cat is offering 25% off all black cat-themed items already available and custom-made—and a few things I’m working on right now!

matted framed sketch of cat
A Dozen Shades of Gray, matted and framed © B.E. Kazmarski

I find it imperative to create things that will benefit the adoption of black cats, so often left behind in the shelter by using the five wonderful black cats who live with me. They’ll 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! I strive to include silly, cute and artful photos and sketches in equal measure, just the thing to show others what black cats can bring to your life.

In preparation for Black Cat Friday (and Saturday and Sunday and Monday) browse my black cat-themed items on Etsy, and a few easy suggestions I have below for things you’ll find there and here on The Creative Cat.

Or use your imagination to create a special gift—a piece of original art which I can custom frame like “A Dozen Shades of Gray”, at right, with a molding that matched the customer’s pressed tin ceiling which had been painted white. Or create a custom print, set of greeting cards, or other totally unique, handmade gift item from an image you find here. Visit the page “Ordering Custom Artwork” to get an idea of what you’d like, then start looking for images.

Browse for black cat images here on The Creative Cat in daily sketches, daily photos, or to see sketches or photos of the Fantastic Four all together search Fantastic Four and also Mimi, or search their individual names in the categories. I have created items from many of these images and review a few popular ones here.


calendar cover with black cat
Compositions in Black and Green

Compositions in Black  and Green

Shop for sets of items beginning with “Compositions in Black and Green 2013 Calendar” and related items such as keepsake boxes, coasters, mounted images for wall or tabletop, and greeting cards for an all-around gift.

The calendar features 12 popular images of the Fantastic Four and their Mama Mimi in the mint green and white bathroom. Each calendar page also features other smaller images as well, so it’s a feast of black cats containing about four dozen images.

The calendar is a 5.5″ x 8″ spiral-bound and is bound two ways: across the top so that it hangs like a wall calendar, or  down the left so that it opens like a journal.

photo of cat looking in mirror
“God, I’m Cute” greeting card set.

Click here to browse some of the images included in this calendar. To order, please visit the Calendars page on The Creative Cat.

You can also choose from the set of cards featuring four of the images that inspired this set on Etsy or you can just find the most popular image, “God, I’m Cute”, also on Etsy.

Some of the things I’m—oops!—still making are the individual and sets of keepsake boxes, coasters, and 5″ x 7″ images mounted on plain wood blocks for wall or tabletop.


Victoriana Cats

set of four sepia images of black cats
Victoriana Cats in dreamy semi-sepia tones

Though these photos may look antique and sepia-toned, they are neither. My cats are perfect models and knew to pose in the bright yellow morning sun in front of my round antique mirror and the narrow casement window with the lace curtain. I applied a few Photoshop filters to the original photos to make them consistent in tone and style.

Use them for all-purpose greeting cards, sympathy, thinking of you, friendship, or find some shabby chic frames for 5″ x 7″ images and frame them for your walls. Find these in my Etsy shop in sets of four or a dozen.

And following this theme I am also designing from the images in this calendar keepsake boxes, coasters and trays for wall or tabletop.


Black Cats with Yellow Round Keepsake Box Set

Set of keepsake boxes with black cats
Black Cats with Yellow Keepsake Box Set

I hand-painted these papier-mâché boxes in yellow with black trim, with prints of three daily sketches decoupaged to the lid.

For these keepsake boxes I choose a color that coordinates with the artwork and paint each box, then print my artwork on acid-free matte-finish paper with archival waterproof inks and adhere the print to the lid. I finish the bottom and lid of the box with matte-finish Modge Podge. Box insides are unfinished.

In the order above the names of the sketches are: “Looking Closely “, “In Afternoon Sun”, and “Mimi en Silhouette”, all done in brush pen with marker and watercolor embellishment.

Find this set and others on Etsy.


Your 25% Discount

Click on the image to download your coupon.

BUY FRESH, BUY LOCAL, BUY HANDMADE!

I honestly believe in supporting local businesses, small businesses, and people who offer unique, handmade goods, and I encourage all shoppers to do the same. Meet the person who made what you’ve bought knowing that what they do isn’t just a job, it’s their life, a life they love, and know where your money is going—and which cats it’s going to feed!

If you are shopping on Etsy, use the code BLACKCATFRIDAY at checkout—and remember that you can use Etsy’s Direct Checkout with your credit card and not if you don’t care for PayPal. Just choose Etsy when it asks how you’ll pay.

If you’re shopping on The Creative Cat or requesting a custom item, click on the coupon at left and download it to your computer. You can e-mail it to me or just mention it when you order.

Happy shopping!


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.


June Featured Artwork and Desktop Calendar

pastel painting of calico cat with peonies

“Peaches and Peonies”, pastel, 23″ x 16″, 2008 © B.E. Kazmarski

It was at the beginning of June five years ago that I took the reference photos, and at the beginning of June in 2008 that I finished this painting of my little Peaches in her moment of glory.

There it is, that moment that turns on all the lights for me…one of my cats in the sun, the conditions that have inspired most of my portraits. Cats are creatures of habit, and Peaches chose this spot to have her after-dinner bath every day for a few weeks when the sun was right; I knew it was a keeper whether a photo or a painting, so I photographed it several times over a period of several days, knowing I’d use at least one photo or all the photos as reference to create one painted image. A painting this size and level of details is a significant investment of time, so I had to wait until my schedule allowed the night-after-night sessions with tiny sections of detail. It’s one of those paintings I still look at and can’t believe I painted; Peaches and Peonies hangs in my studio watching over my work and providing constant inspiration.

detail of painting

detail of painting

Senior Pet Adoption Donation Program through prints of “Peaches and Peonies”

I would make a big donation to the shelter or rescue of the person’s choice who chose to purchase the original of Peaches and Peonies, but I also have a Senior Pet Adoption Donation Program regarding the purchase of a giclee of this painting, and this also ties in to Adopt-a-Cat Month because you should always consider a senior kitty! Through the purchase of a full-size giclee of “Peaches and Peonies”, $25.00 of your purchase price will be donated to the senior pet adoption program in your name or the name of your choice.

detail of painting

detail of painting

About Peaches

Peaches came to my home at age 15, and despite my efforts to place her in a new home, she ended up staying with me. Most prospective adopters were concerned that Peaches was older and might not live long, but my point was that Peaches needed a home no matter what age she was. At the time this painting was done, she’d been with me three years, her petite prettiness, pleasant personality and simple friendliness providing much joy for me, and she was a big favorite of most visitors to my home. And then, she’s also the subject of not only this painting, but several other paintings and sketches as well as photographs, so in three years she provided a good bit of inspiration, not to mention wake-up duties and not-so-gentle reminders about it being dinnertime.

Peaches came to be homeless because her owner died; she was nearly euthanized because no one could figure out what to do with her, not wanting to take her to a shelter. Often, older pets come from situations like this, or where the owner has to enter the hospital or a care home, and no one can take the animal left behind. They are euthanized by the family or end up in shelters and are most often passed by, even though a “seasoned” pet usually makes the best companion.

Three years or three decades or three weeks, every adoptable animal like Peaches deserves a good and loving home. Especially now, during Adopt a Senior Pet Month, consider helping those who are most vulnerable.

detail of painting

detail of painting

Purchase a print and choose your senior pet adoption program

Giclée prints are printed on heavyweight acid-free archival paper using light-fast archival inks using a direct liquid printing process so fine that my prints are often indistinguishable from my originals. Each print is signed by me, the artist. I prefer this process not only because of its clarity and precision but also because I can order only one print at a time instead of ordering dozens or hundreds, and it costs the same per print no matter how many I get. For that reason, I order them from my printer as I receive orders

  • Full-size, 23″ x 16″, $150.00
  • Half-size, 13″ x 9″, $75.00 (see “framing” below)

You pay for the print and give me the name of the senior pet adoption program of your choice. I process your order and send a donation to the program in your name or the name of your choosing, and either ask them to send you an acknowledgement or send you one myself. I usually make the donations through PayPal since most shelters use it now, and I can send you a acknowledgement through PayPal.

detail of painting

Detail of painting

Shipping

I can ship the smaller prints flat for $10.95, but need to ship the full-size prints rolled for economy at $15.95 since the package is slightly oversized when shipping flat. However, I can ship flat for $25.95, or a surcharge of $10.00. I’m not fond of rolled prints, but I don’t like bent ones either.

Framing

Framing is often more expensive than the art itself. Custom framing is available for an estimate; I custom frame all my own things. To save a little bit on framing, I chose 13″ x 9″ for the the smaller print so that it would fit into a pre-made 16″ x 20″ frame that comes with an 11″ x 14″ mat leaving white space around the print, which is typical in framing a high-quality print. The larger will fit into a pre-made 24″ x 30″ frame, though you may need to purchase a mat since most larger frames don’t come with a mat.

Ordering

Visit the Portraits of Animals Marketplace on my website, choose “Cats” under “Original Art and Prints”, or click here to go directly to “Peaches and Peonies” in my Marketplace. In your PayPal shopping cart you’ll be able to give special instructions, and you can add that you’d like to donate through the program and give me the contact information for the shelter of your choice.

You can also visit my Etsy shop, and when you order through PayPal you’ll be able to enter instructions about your chosen donation program.

Download a desktop calendar featuring Peaches and Peonies

And to give you something inspiring and beautiful to look at for all the month of June, and to remind you how special senior kitties are and the importance of finding homes for all cats, I’ve designed a simple desktop wallpaper calendar featuring Peaches and Peonies. It’s too darned difficult to create one that fits everyone’s desktop, so I’ve created three basic shapes—full size, wide and square—that will probably adjust to fit most desktops; I can give you some help with this if it’s not working quite right.

  1. Click on one of the images above to pull it up in a new page.
  2. Click on the image on that page to pull up a full-size version of just the image.
  3. Right-click on that image and choose “save as desktop wallpaper” or “save as background” or whichever option your operating system gives you to be able to do this.

Other New Products and Specials for Adopt-a-Cat Month

framed pastel painting of two cats at window

“The Sunny Upstairs Window”, pastel © B.E. Kazmarski

This month I have several of the daily sketches you liked best for sale and I’ve been busy with block prints for note cards and textiles, and I’ve compiled two new sets of greeting cards for you to choose from. I’m also experimenting with a monthly desktop calendar featuring one of my paintings for you to download!

I firmly believe that looking at beautiful images fills our hearts with a special sort of peace, and also promotes love for the subject of the image, and so I always hope with every image I share that I am helping to promote a peaceful world in even a tiny way and a love of cats in all their beautiful shapes and colors and ways of being. Because June is Adopt-A-Cat month, I’ll be offering specials to help promote adopting cats from shelters—if you’re not convinced already, I hope this will!

Favorite Daily Sketches

At left is “The Sunny Upstairs Window” from May 11, 2012. The original is for sale in my Etsy shop along with many other original and prints of daily sketches in my Daily Sketches section.

You can also visit The Creative Cat in the category Daily Sketch to see more sketches and to read an article which displays and describes each one, or visit the Daily Sketches gallery in my Etsy shop to see which other sketches are available.

Handmade, hand-printed, hand-painted Tortie Girls textiles
hand-printed placemats with tortoiseshell cats

My tortie girls Cookie and Kelly on canvas placemats!

block printed tablecloths with tortoiseshell cats

Tortie Girls Tablecloths!

Hand-printed “Tabbies” Summer Notecards

Bright-colored card stock and bright-colored inks, I’ve been having fun experimenting with the “Tabbies” series in different styles and colors.

colorful hand-printed notecards

“Tabbies” handmade block-printed notecards for summer.

Compositions in Green and Black

Who knew that vintage mint green sink would photograph in such a rich tone, especially when filled with a black cat? From the time I installed the new bathroom, the black cats owned it and the contrast of their black fur with the mint green fixtures and white walls and floor has been stunning and created some of the most favorite photos in my cat collection.

set of four cards with black cats

Compositions in Green and Black

Victoriana Cats

Though these photos may look antique and sepia-toned, they are neither. My cats are perfect models and knew to pose in the bright yellow morning sun in front of my round antique mirror and the narrow casement window with the lace curtain. I applied a few Photoshop filters to the original photos to make them consistent in tone and style.

set of four sepia images of black cats

Victoriana Cats in dreamy semi-sepia tones

photo of five cats in studio

My studio cats are ready for a creative day.

Special orders and requests

If you see a daily sketch on The Creative Cat you’d like to have, please tell me. Likewise, if you have a custom item in mind contact me to describe it, or if an item is out of stock and you’d like to know when I’ll be making that item again, please ask!. Send me an e-mail.

I couldn’t do it without my studio cats!

My feline inspirations and I thank you for browsing and for purchasing handmade goods and supporting a small business! Click here or on the photo to read about the studio cats in the photo.

________________________________

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

Read about the reason for the daily sketches in The Artist’s Life: Daily Sketches.

And read about purchasing them and requesting them as a donation item for your shelter or rescue group in The Artist’s Life: Daily Sketches for Sale and Donation.


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 purchasing one as a print, or to use in a print or internet publication.


“Reorganizing Sale” February 18 at Portraits of Animals Shop in Carnegie Antiques

panoramic image of shop

About one-third of the shop!

In the next few weeks I’ll be completely reorganizing my shop in Carnegie Antiques, taking home things that haven’t shown any interest and heaping up things that have, moving furniture in and out and restocking with new framed art and packaged sets of cards.

The sale will be this Saturday, February 18, between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

I’ve moved my greeting card printing to a new printer who uses new paper stock which doesn’t match the older stock. Select individual greeting cards will be $1.00 each, reduced from $2.50.

All matted photos are $2.50, reduced from $5.00.

Everything else is 10% off the price that is marked including other individual greeting cards and sets, crocheted pawprints and flowers, tote bags, framed and unframed wildlife, nature and flowers prints and anything else you can find there.

Carnegie Antiques and Portraits of Animals are located at 423 West Main Street in Carnegie, PA 15106.


Open House October 22 at Portraits of Animals and Carnegie Antiques

panoramic image of shop

About one-third of the shop!

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22
Judi and I will join forces and open early, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and will both have discounts for visitors!

I’m offering 10% off your entire order of items from my Portraits of Animals shop including greeting cards, crocheted pawprints, tee-shirts, tote bags, unframed prints and anything else you can find there.

As a bonus, I’m offering 25% off framed artwork over $25.00, both originals and prints! I’ve been framing even more prints of my feline, wildlife and nature art as well as photographs, including views of Pittsburgh. I’ll be bringing in a few originals as well, so if you’ve had your eye on something, now is the time to get it! If the cost is less than $25, the 10% discount still applies.

ETSY PURCHASES
You can see a good bit of what’s in my shop in my Etsy shop. And for recipients of this post who can’t make it to the open house, I’ll also extend FREE SHIPPING for any items in my Etsy shop through the end of October. It will be as if you bought it in person! Enter “OPENHOUSE1011” in your shopping cart and it will automatically deduct the shipping.

Carnegie Antiques

In addition, Judi has been packing her shop with so much new merchandise I can hardly keep track of it all, and she’ll be offering discounts as well. There’s new furniture large and small, sets of dishes, hand-painted china, novelties, jewelry and more. Make sure you take time to visit Carnegie Antiques too!

Carnegie Antiques and Portraits of Animals are located at 423 West Main Street in Carnegie, PA 15106.


Open House December 18, 9 to 4!

panoramic image of shop

About one-third of the shop!

One more open house before Christmas plus gift ideas for the animal and nature lovers on your list for any holiday! Click here to find my December e-newsletter on the internet.

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 18
Hard to believe Christmas will only be a week away! Judi and I will join forces and open early, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and Judi will be offering deals on all the beautiful things she has in the shop. Carnegie Antiques and Portraits of Animals are located at 423 West Main Street in Carnegie.

I’m offering 10% off your entire order of items from my Portraits of Animals shop including greeting cards, crocheted pawprints, tee-shirts, tote bags, unframed prints and anything else you can find there.

As a bonus, I’m offering 25% off framed artwork over $25.00, both originals and prints! I’ve been framing even more prints of my feline, wildlife and nature art as well as photographs, including views of Pittsburgh. I’ve brought in several larger originals as well, so if you’ve had your eye on something, now is the time to get it! If the cost is less than $20, the 10% discount still applies

10% OPEN HOUSE DISCOUNT EXTENDED TO ETSY PURCHASES
You can see a good bit of what’s in my shop in my Etsy shop. And for recipients of this newsletter who can’t make it to the open house, I’ll also extend the discount to items in my Etsy shop! I’ll apply the discount after your purchase.

Enter “HOLIDAY10MERCHANDISE” in your shopping cart and it will automatically deduct the 10%.

Enjoy! Perhaps I’ll see you at one of my events this holiday season.


Two More Favorite Photos

cat looking out a window

Kelly Birdwatching

Kelly patiently watches the birds perched on the top of the open casement window.

These two images hail from the days of my film camera, but are two of the images I’ve truly loved all these years.

cat looking out the window

Kelly Birdwatching

My little tortoiseshell kitty Kelly has a very full schedule every day involving looking out of every window and door and remarking on what she sees.

This 3″ x 3″ print is framed in a 9″ x 9″ mahogany finish frame with a 1″ forest green bottom mat and a 2″ natural white top mat with v-groove.

I also have unmatted, unframed prints as well as small matted prints.

You can see and purchase this framed print in “Favorite Photos” on Etsy.

silhouette of white cat

Sally Silhouette

Sally is in reverse silhouette in this black and white print, the light filling her white fur from behind, leaving her face in delicate shadow.

A Turkish Angora, Sally had the look of a kitten all her life, and her silky white fur was an inspiration for many a photo and painting.

white cat

Sally Silhouette

When I purchased my first camera, a Pentax K-1000, I shot only black and white film for the first few months until I felt I had some understanding of the manual controls. This was a shot from that time; two decades later I’d be making part of my living selling my paintings and photos of my cats.

This 3″ x 3″ print is framed in a 9″ x 9″ black frame with a 1-1/2″ black bottom mat and a 1-1/2″ white top mat.

I have other unmatted and unframed prints of this photo as well.

You can find this photo in my Etsy shop.

You can see other photos as well in the Favorite Photos section of my Etsy shop.


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