Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Preschool preparations



Cat on a chintz covered chair
acrylic on canvas
8 x 8 inches
acrylic on canvas
Barbara Muir © 2009

This fall is thick with things to do. I'm working on a couple of
commissions, painting my daily work, planning for a few shows,
and this week thinking about school -- that starts next week.
My youngest goes back to university this weekend, and the
house will empty out again for a little while.

Steven and I are pretty good at filling the spaces both actual
and metaphorical with our own busy lives. I will of course
feel sad, when Sam, who is a complete sweetheart, goes back
to his studies. But next week I will meet about 120 young
people his age and put all of the knowledge about late
teens that I get from being around Sam to use when I'm
helping a new set of students get their feet on the ground.

Tonight's little painting is of our cat Max. Max is not with
us anymore, but his photo leapt off the bulletin board in the
hallway and demanded to be painted. Did you know that
the reason there are so few pure black cats left today is
because so many of them were killed because they were
thought to be witches' cats in medieval times? A tiny bit
of white saved them, hence Max had the tuxedo suit. Silly
superstition. Plus as someone with a Halloween birthday, I
can't see getting all fussed up about witches. What they
really were was wise women -- the precursors of doctors.
If very few people in a community are wise, the wise are
probably viewed with suspicion. The people I know in the
blogging community are wise, creative and intelligent.
All good. We are all happier when subjected
to heaping helpings of wisdom.

Have an enjoying-your-wise-friends day.

15 comments:

LeSan said...

I am sorry to hear about Max. It is a lovely painting and he would be pleased you cared enough to paint it. I also have a black cat with the saving grace of a tiny fleck of white on his chest. His name is Spooky which has nothing to do with his coloring but rather due to the fact that he scared the pants off me the first time I saw him. He still sneaks up on me to this day. The name stays.

Barbara M. said...

Hi LeSan,

I really loved Maxi the cat. My cat Timbah tends to get underfoot too. I don't know he's there and then I hear a loud Meow as I step backwards onto him. I hope he'll learn with time. We were all devastated when we lost Max a few years ago, but he was almost 16, and had lead a very happy life with us.

Take care,

Barbara

laura said...

Sweet painting--I love the characteristic paws-tucked-under pose.
I have a black cat too, Smilla, and she has two bands of white--I call it her bikini.

Karen Bruson said...

Wow, love the contrast of black against the oranges. Great colors.

Barbara M. said...

Hi Laura,

It's surprising how each cat sits and lies down differently. When the painting was done, I thought -- that is so Max!

Our cat Timbah is black with a thin thread of white on his chest. Smilla is a nice name.

Take care,

Barbara

Barbara M. said...

Hi Karen,

Thanks so much.

I'm delighted that you like it. It's a bit odd, but I am pleased with how it turned out.

Take care,

Barbara

Gwen Bell said...

Love this painting of Max. The blues in his coat are terrific! What a sweet face. So sorry to hear he's gone.

Here's a little Black Cat tidbit that seems to hold true: Seal Point Siamese almost always have at least one solid black kitten in their litter. That original gene must be real strong. Rock On Black Kitties!

Barbara M. said...

Hi Gwen,

And I love seal point Siamese too. Glad you like my Maxi boy. He was the greatest cat. Walking my dog yesterday I heard about two great neighbourhood dogs that had died recently, and I felt so sad for the owners and the neighbourhood. Maybe that's why I painted Max, because I am long over the sadness now, but I remember and understand.

xoxoxoxoxoBarbara

eldon warren said...

My father would stop his car and turn around rather than cross the path of a black cat. He was a nice guy though. :)
EW

David Lobenberg said...

Love this black cat painting. Black cats are good luck!...especially if you throw salt over their back.

David Lobenberg said...

Or is it pepper?

Barbara M. said...

Hi David,

I can never remember that salt and pepper stuff. But I don't believe in bad luck. I don't mean I never have it, but I just don't believe in it.

You are funny. What a treat.

Take care,

Barbara

Liza Hirst said...

Love the shiny blue on his black coat! A very beautiful painting, Barbara!

Barbara M. said...

Hi Eldon,

Old ideas and superstitions die hard don't they? Too bad.

That's what stands in the way of people caring for each other too.

Take care,

Barbara

Barbara M. said...

Hi Liza,

My teaching job sometimes gets in the way of my artist job, so that I don't have time to respond. Please forgive me because I live for your comments.

You are so sweet.
Take care,

Barbara

Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at: barbara.muir@sympatico.ca
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!