"Their Faces in the Sun", watercolor and ink, 5" x 7" © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

April Featured Feline Artwork and Desktop Calendar: Their Faces to the Sun

"Their Faces in the Sun", watercolor and ink, 5" x 7" © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

“Their Faces in the Sun”, watercolor and ink, 5″ x 7″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Mimi and Mewsette settled in the sun from the window on the landing, both of them enjoying the wash of the warm light on their faces as the shadows crept up over their backs.

Often, big soft Mewsette settles somewhere and soon I see little Mimi tucked up against her, two girls enjoying some girl time. So they are, here.

And I changed the title from the original which was “Their Faces in the Sun” to “Their Faces to the Sun” because of the context of the saying, either “Keep your face always toward the sun and the shadows will fall behind you” or “Keep your face always toward the sunshine and you will not see the shadows”. This saying is variously attributed to both Walt Whitman and Helen Keller, both authors and people whose works I have read and admire them both, but this quote nor any variation has not been found in any of eithers’ works. Nonetheless I love the sentiment, especially when applied to rescued cats.

Here is what I had to say about the artwork when I painted this little sketch.

I wanted to exploit the variations in their coat colors and just play with shadows and highlights here. Mimi is quite the cocoa kitty, while Mewsette is a much cooler black, tending toward blue. In this brilliant yellow sunlight, the deepest shadows were a complementary purple, secondary shadows behind them were not necessarily green but that little experiment worked anyway, and the minor shadows where the yellow tones down and begins to shade to orange were just areas where I felt orange was needed.

Ink lines went in last, unlike the usual technique of drawing the cats then painting in. I sketched them, literally, with a broad brush and let the colors flow together. There is one area I am unhappy with, and I need to manage the flow on the paper a little better, on Mewsette down near the floor, that floating edge has no context and should be softer. I didn’t realize how dry the paper was already. I’ll need to be more careful. If I hadn’t said anything probably most people would not have noticed it, but for the sake of the artists who follow me—be more aware than me!

I still love this little painting, and I remember the days when I aspired to sketch like this in ink, and apply and blend watercolors so freely. A few years ago I would have either produced a rather insecure much more detailed sketch with more realistic colors, or total mud. Practice makes perfect, even if perfection is loosening up rather than tightening details. I’m so happy with my daily sketch practice; even when I don’t post a new one, as today, I am still working on other artwork, so in a way I’m still practicing!

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framed sketch of cats

“Their Faces to the Sun”, ink and watercolor.

Where to find this art

I sold the original of this sketch to a regular collector from Winnipeg, but I still offer prints on paper and canvas.You can find these in the listing on Portraits of Animals.

I’ll be glad to mat and frame your print, or mount it on a wood block, just let me know.

I’m also planning a few new keepsake boxes with this sketch, and a few other ideas too. We’ll see what happens!

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And a New Member Thank You

You can get get a free matted print when you register for an account on Portraits of Animals.

Register for an account on Portraits of Animals and get a free matted print of this sketch or choose from several other sketches, paintings or photos of cats and other subjects.

I offer it as an 5 x 7 print double matted to fit an 8 x 10 frame.

This print is only available as a new member gift during this month while it’s the featured artwork and desktop calendar, so make sure you sign up before the end of the month!


This month’s desktop calendar

If these sizes don’t work for your device, or if you have problems, please let me know. Often I can troubleshoot the reason an image won’t download or won’t load on your device, but if I just can’t figure it out I can just email it to you and hope that works.

How to download and use your desktop calendar

  1. Click on one of the images below that matches the dimensions of your monitor to open the image in a new page.
  2. For desktop computers and laptops, right-click on that image and on a desktop computer choose “save as desktop wallpaper” or “save as background” or whichever option your operating system gives you to be able to do this. You may also simply save it to your hard drive and set it as your background from there.
  3. For mobile devices, download the image to your gallery then choose it as your wallpaper—this is slightly different on all devices.

Horizontal and HD monitors and screens

 Desktop calendar 2560 x 1440 for HD and wide screens.

Desktop calendar 2560 x 1440 for HD and wide screens.

. . .

Square monitors and screens

 Desktop calendar, 1280 x 1024 for square and laptop monitors.

Desktop calendar, 1280 x 1024 for square and laptop monitors.

. . .

Small Mobile Devices and Tablets

 Desktop calendar, 600 x 800 for iPad, Kindle and other readers.

Desktop calendar, 600 x 800 for iPad, Kindle and other readers.

. . .

Cell Phones and Smartphones

Desktop calendar, for 400 x 712 for mobile phones.

Desktop calendar, for 400 x 712 for mobile phones.


Take a look at other featured artwork and desktop calendar posts.

Each month I feature a piece of feline artwork from the archives to the present day, discuss its history and process, and set it up as a free downloadable desktop calendar for just about every electronic device available.


Click here to see daily sketches, click here to see daily photographs

click here to see other artwork featured on The Creative Cat

or visit Fine Art and Portraiture on my main website.


"Feline Style Sampler" book of sketches and portraits.

A collection of 34 images of feline artwork

Feline Style Sampler

Daily sketches, illustrations, commissioned portraits all in a small coil-bound gift book.

Click here or on the image to read more or find it on Portraits of Animals.

Flourish-darkgray-100Don’t miss any new items or opportunities!

“Follow” the Portraits of Animals blog with the link in the upper left. Sign up to receive posts in email, or in your favorite reader using the links in the right-hand column.

Sign up for e-newsletters

You can also sign up for my monthly e-newsletters to receive special discounts and find out where I’ll be with my artwork.

Click here for the Creative Cat Preview E-newsletter, for feline and animal-specific products and information.

Click here for the Art & Merchandise E-newsletter, for landscapes, nature, urban scenes and more.

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© 2017 | www.PortraitsOfAnimals.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

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 to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.

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