Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Cats on Wednesday -- Authors, Illustrators and Cats

I’m starting a new regular feature about cats, because I lost my 17 year old cat, Sophie, last year and greatly miss her. I know I could get another kitty – and don’t anyone dare offer me one. It’s not the right time yet, for many reasons. So in honor of Sophie and my many past cat muses, here goes.

Note: muse – a source of inspiration; esp. a guiding genius

The author/illustrator/cat connection has been written about often. Apparently many people believe it’s a natural combination. Mark Twain, Edward Lear, Sir Walter Scott, Charles Dickens, (etc., etc.) were devoted to their cats. Leonardo da Vinci appreciated cats. Countless cats have appeared in paintings and books from antiquity to present day.

What is the appeal to writers and artists, then and now? I’ve made a list of possibilities:

  1. Cats are usually quite independent, like most writers and artists
  2. They offer unconditional love and are totally non-judgmental
  3. Cats keep us grounded, focused, centered – they’re so sensible
  4. For artists, they are natural subjects for life drawings and quite enjoy posing, but not for long unless it’s time to space out, sleep or meditate
  5. Cats like to meditate, and will quietly and readily join you
  6. They emanate relaxation and their presence is a great stress-reliever – they will sit for long periods of time enjoying a handy lap
  7. They will keep you company while you’re working in the middle of the night
  8. We share an insatiable curiosity
  9. They offer sympathy when you’re frustrated
  10. They’re always ready to join you when you head for the kitchen for a break and a snack
  11. Except for your feeding them and letting them sit on you, your computer, your notes, your books, your art paper and your illustrations, they pretty much fend for themselves
  12. They don’t care if you neglect yourself, as long as you don’t neglect them. 
  13. Cats are magic.  That's the appeal.
  14. See... magic!  This is Sophie, too.  Her baby picture!
So do you agree there is a connection between the creative and the feline personality?  Please share your comments on the appeal/connection/likeness.  Do you have a story of your own muse?  Email me!

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