The Cat Put It There!

And what did the cat do this time? Just the other day, I noticed a lone seashell lying in the middle of our flower-bed. We don’t even live near the sea so how can that be? A bird perhaps or it somehow got mixed in the soil during transport. Who knows. “Maybe the cat put it there”, joked my boyfriend. “Cats like fish, right? So the cat put the shell there!” Interesting logic. Yet cute. And here I began imagining how these naughty cats could possibly be mischievely placing a lone seashell in our garden. Then of course followed a little art journal doodle…

Sumie Ink Sketch

The journal took up a two-page spread but split into left and right. First on the right hand side, I made a drawing in pencil which was to be painted in later in gouache (to be shared later), and then I later decided to use up the empty space on the left hand side and doodled away with a sumie ink (Kuretake ZIG Sumie Ink) and bamboo pen. Very simple.

Beautiful Mistake

I was going to leave this doodle on its own but after halfway in the middle of the gouache painting on the opposite page, I thought it needed some color to help balance the page spread although they need not matched together. The background was initially filled in a wash of leftover watercolor or gouache paint from another past painting, but I realised I got confused with the ink I had used for the doodle; Kuretake ZIG sumie ink is not the same as the Kuretake ZIG black ink! Consequently, the ink smudged as it was not water-resistant I had thought. I tried to gesso over it but it made it worse. Oops. So what did I do? First I paint a layer of acrylic ink in naples yellow to disguise the gesso (which resists watercolor). Then I grabbed a sticker from a gift wrap which I was intending to use on anothr painting but thought, maybe this would work better. It’s called a “beautiful mistake” for a reason!

The Rest Followed

Following the catastrophe I had managed to solve, I figured introducing more collage on the page would help balance and fill in the empty space below. Some bits of wrapping paper were then added on the bottom. So as not to repeat the same mistake, I was careful with filling in the color of the cat and the fish with leftover paint. The scribble in the cat’s bubble was covered with two small stickers. Another way of solving mistakes! Finally, the shell was filled in with some white glitter glue instead of paint which worked rather well. And here is my little page!

Another fun art journal session! Always wonderful to get inspired by small things that happen around us and develop creative ideas. Though frustrated when it happened, I was somewhat proud of myself for finding ways to resolve accidents and continuing on. All went well in the end, and here I have another kawaii piece depicting naughty cats!


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