Halloween and a Scary Cat who’s not scary at all.

Halloween Scary Cat

It’s been really difficult to get back to my desk and draw happy animals with all that’s happened lately. Autumn doesn’t really help my mood either. And I am not a big fan of scary stuff like Halloween. Especially not in this period of my life.

But the only way to beat darkness is by adding as much light as possible. The only way to fight sadness is by finding as many reasons to laugh as you can. And there is not really a way to fight death. But you still can laugh about it.

This is why I decided to draw a Scary Cat for Halloween. Who’s not really scary at all, by the way. I needed to mock death, and is there a better way to do it than draw a funny cat in a cemetery?

Since I haven’t touched pen and paper for more than a month, I’m super late with everything. So, I thought to draw digitally with Photoshop, this time. I have a Wacom Intuos Small which I have always used only to make small retouches while editing, and never to draw an entire painting. But it’s more than enough to make an illustration from the beginning to the end, and I have to admit, it’s also very fun.

I am not a big fan of digital. I love to look at other artist’s digital paintings, but I was never attracted by the idea of making some myself. I need to use my hands, I need to get dirty, smell the smell of the watercolors, watch the water change its shade every time I clean a brush. Also, I love that mistakes aren’t erasable just by deleting a layer or going back on the history panel.

But digital painting is really fun.

I am not completely happy with how the Halloween Scary Cat has turned out, but that’s me. I am never satisfied with the things I do. It was also my first digital painting, so I’m cutting myself some slack.

I don’t plan to leave my watercolors and my beloved Derwents Inktense, but I want to make another couple of Scary Cats for Halloween. Not having mush time ahead, drawing digitally is the best option.

In the meantime, the first Scary Cat is already up on a few things, and I have created an entire Halloween section for them. Something I have never thought I would have had in my shop, a Halloween section. Ah, the things you do to beat grief and sadness!

Continue Reading Halloween and a Scary Cat who’s not scary at all.

September 10th. Not my birthday anymore.

September 10th was my birthday. I was in a great mood, not much because of my birthday but because I was really putting myself in the position of being as happy as I could every day.

But that evening, my beloved cat Susanna, my baby, has died.

She had turned eighteen in May but she looked like a much younger cat. She was healthy, happy, and cuddly as ever. So it has been totally unexpected. She didn’t die of illness. A terrible, stupid accident that I don’t even want to mention, took her away from me forever. She is the cat who’s on my desk while I paint in the video on the homepage.

We were always together. She looked and acted like a very young cat. Still super playful and lively, she could still jump so high… her nickname was “flying squirrel” because she had a big fluffy tail and even if she was super tiny she could jump incredibly high. She was funny, smart, sweet. I miss her incredibly.

As if this wasn’t enough, less than three days later my dog Amelia has died too. Amelia had a series of health problems that were under control but she went downhill in the space of a night. She had been born with a heart condition which actually had improved lately, and always had issues with her liver. I had rescued her from a brutal home when she was about four, in 2013. She was about 11 now, so not a super old doggie. But her liver, which seemed to be working as usual – not perfectly, but enough – decided to shut down completely.

Since my other dog Pammy passed in September of last year, Amelia suffered from depression. Pammy had been her guide. She was 17 when she passed and had been with Amelia for 6 years. Amelia had learned a lot from her. Ever since she passed Amelia had lost her eyesight almost completely and you could see how sad she was. I tried everything but nothing worked. Maybe only another dog would have worked.

While I can accept Amelia’s death even if I miss her like crazy, it’s really hard to accept Susanna’s. Amelia had a number of health issues, Susanna was perfectly healthy. Amelia, during the last few hours, was very much in pain, putting her to sleep, and seeing her turning calm and quiet was actually a relief. Susanna was running around the house one minute and the next she was gone.

My pets are my family and my reason for all. It may sound pathetic but I don’t care. They saved me from depression many times. So it’s hard to have to say goodby to two of my babies in such a short time and in such a violent way.

I had to take time form everything, From work, from drawing. I couldn’t even read, or watch a movie. I felt froze.

A month has gone by and I didn’t even notice.

It’s time for me to react. My babies were loved. They had a wonderful life. Even when Amelia was depressed she still enjoyed her naps on my chest. She felt loved, I know it. Susanna slept close to me until the last night and spent her day playing until the last minute.

They had great lives, no matter how abruptly they ended. Maybe it was their time to go.

I’m catching my breath and getting slowly back at my desk. Life goes on.

Susanna’s video is staying on my homepage for now. She still alive, somewhere, they both are.

Spirit never dies.

Continue Reading September 10th. Not my birthday anymore.