I do my art in an art studio from home. After years of pilfering space wherever I could find it (including doing full-sized pastel works on an uneven carpeted floor between university homework and the latest ten books I was reading), we decided that we’d dedicate a room to my art/computing/writing/shenanigans.
I have two desks in the art studio. One is for the computer, scanner, speakers, tissue box, Buffy box set, spray and wipe, a perfume, the most twee desk calendar on the face of the planet, Butter Menthols, a sketch pad, a ledger, headphones, modem, and basically anything else I can fit on there. Which is a lot.
The other desk is for my art, paints, pigments, watercolour pencils, supplies, a *second* tissue box (plain, cheap tissues which are excellent for blending, but not so good for blowing your nose during cold season), teatowel, packaging supplies, paintbrushes, the paint-water glass (which is more commonly known as ‘honestly, cats, why do you have to drink from that all the time?’), a faux leather wallet, tape measure, some of my younger brother’s to-be-painted Warhammer figurines and not much else. Mostly empty space for my next project.
I use a rolley chair (you know, one of those faux-ergonomic chairs with wheels) to move back and forth between both desks, which I do a lot. Mostly because I am surgically or at least psychically attached to my computer.
Recently, we acquired a kitten who shows no fear of the bone crushing powers of the rolley chair. Nope. I tried rolling it into her gently to show her that the rolley chair should be feared. Do you know what she did? She stretched out and meowed at it plaintively. In that single meow was the expression; ‘oh but I’m so comfortable, don’t hurt me rolley chair.’ I nudged her a bit. I nudged her a bit more. Finally I rolled the chair back and decided that while my four year old champagne tabby Moet (gettit?) understands the bone crushing powers of the rolley chair, it’s going to take a while for a four month old bengal cross to understand.
Her name is Maybe. Because for a while it was ‘Maybe we’re getting her, maybe we’re not.’ She’s a rescue kitten who was saved from euthanasia and originally had the name Lady. The vet said she had one of the sweetest temperaments he’d ever seen. I bit my tongue and said nothing about her playing acrobatic Xtreme sports on my belly at night-time.
This tiny four month old kitten has temporarily changed the way I do my art. Firstly, I can’t zoom back and forth between my desks without looking down in fervent and thorough paranoia anymore, so I need to decide which desk I’m going to be spending more time at. Secondly, Maybe has taken it upon herself to decide I need breaks while I’m sketching. These breaks come in the form of:
The ‘I’m going to sit on the keyboard while you’re typing,’ break.
The ‘I’m going to attack the cursor / mouse wires / etc.’ break.
The ‘oh look, a pencil, and you’re *drawing* with it, what happens if I throw my full body weight at the pencil! Did I leave a mark? YAY!’ break.
The ‘I am an adorable princess kitten and if I sit on your lap and purr loudly you will be powerless to resist me,’ break.
The ‘I’m hungry and I want to suck on your face,’ break.
And so on.
Most of these breaks end after ten seconds with me going ‘NO,’ and placing her gently back on the floor. Some of them end with me powerless to resist, staring longingly at the keyboard or pencil or pen that I can no longer reach because my hands are filled with fluffy, purring, face-biting kitten.
Moet accepts this all with quiet, patient resignation.
That said, I have been drawing lately. Honest.
Anyway, cats and art, do not always mix. They do when it’s a cat like this:
And not so much when it’s a cat like this:
Here endeth the lesson.