Zoe, Art Critic (Sort Of)
Greetings to all my friends of the feline, canine, and humanine persuasion. As most of you know and others will now learn, I usually write about my own adventures. Sometimes I slip in a little something about my human, but mostly, my stories are about moi. However, this story is about my human. Still, it is MY adventure, too, and I hope you will enjoy my perspective on this subject. Which is art . . . sort of.
My name is Zoe. I’m a Fabulous Feline who lives with a human named Emily, who fancies herself an artist. Of sorts. This is a story about her latest creation, which was inspired by a photo taken of an abandoned railroad track by a lake, under a starry night, way up there somewhere in Maine. I’ve seen the photo and it is beautiful! Her rendition of it? Not so much. But this story is really more about the process of painting a’la Emily.
Emily was mesmerized by this photo; she said “I think I can paint that!” (She says that a lot.) I think she learned—the hard way—that this particular landscape was not the easy-peasy painting she expected it to be.
The fun started early on when she dipped one of her paint-loaded brushes into her cup of tea instead of the jar of water which was adjacent to her cup of tea. “Truck!” (I think that is what she yelled, but I didn’t really understand that; there was not a truck in sight.)
So, back to the painting process. She was muttering under her breath how the paint was drying too fast for her to work with. That I understood . . . of course it had nothing to do with her skills. Or lack thereof. Even though she had wet the canvas and put some stuff in the paint to slow down the drying time, it was still a problem. She worked faster. I heard time and again, sometimes whispered, other times quite loud, “Truck . . . TRUCK!” I ran to the window and jumped up on the sill. I looked up and down the street. Still no truck.
Anyhoo, the truck is not important. So, let me cut to the chase. The funniest thing happened when she was just about done with the painting; all that was left was to paint the stars in the sky. She chose a brush she thought was the perfect size for painting little stars. Wrong! She tried another; no better. She picked another brush and loaded it with white paint and then flicked it at the canvas. My guess is she hoped the result would be little splashes that might resemble stars across the sky. Except there was no splash. She flicked the brush again, a little bit harder; still nothing. She got the bright idea that the paint needed to be further thinned and that maybe she needed to flick the brush at the canvas a bit more aggressively, as well.
Now, personally, I think one action (more water) or the other (a more aggressive flick of the brush) was called for, but what do I know? I’m just a cat.
Long story short, using a brush overloaded with a very watery white paint, she flicked hard at the canvas. She did indeed get splashes on the canvas this time, but she got something else, too–blow-back! The look on her face was priceless. White paint on her face, in her hair, on her BLACK dress. It was hilarious! (Who paints in a LBD anyway?) Now, I may be just a cat, but as you all know, I’m mostly black. However, I was still on the windowsill looking for that truck, so I was well out of reach of her spla—I mean, painting—arm. Fortunately for her, because a cat such as moi splashed with that sticky white paint on her shiny, smooth black coat would have been one unhappy cat. And I would have had to pay her back. And I so could have. I have ways, you know.
Emily quickly grabbed a paper towel and made an almost-successful correction by blotting off the drips of white water. I think, though, even she would agree that today’s creation is just “okay.” But she would also think that the best is yet to come. How do I know this? Because just before she went to clean herself up, she said, “I will have to try this one again. With oils.”
Oils? I can hardly wait. Oh, sometimes it is so fun to live with my human!
BTW – Here’s the painting!