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The Boy Who Drew Cats
By whimsycatcher   |   Watch
104 19 2K (1 Today)
Published: March 2, 2012
© 2012 - 2019 whimsycatcher
This piece was inspired by a Japanese folktale called "The Boy Who Drew Cats". Basically, the cats that he draw come to life and help him kill a monster rat. Awesome, eh? Here is a link to one version: [link] : ]

The goal of this assignment was to give my piece a clearly classical or traditional look. Instead of making this look like a Japanese ink painting, I decided to try and emanate some of the qualities of a Baroque painting.

I'm quite happy with how this turned out, as well as how quickly I managed to finish it (the night before it was due, yikes).

Paint Tool Sai
Image size
655x982px 602.96 KB
Adobe Photoshop CS5.1 Windows
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SillyRabbit00's avatar
SillyRabbit00Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It's a beautiful piece of art that you made! It looks very serene, and I like that you only used earth-toned colors.
When I was a kid I had a collection of fairytales on audiobook, but got so scared when reading this story, that my mother taped something else over it (lol good ol' times). But still curious and internet being what it is nowadays, I found it again and I love it now Giggle .
Is it okay if I use the image as a thumbnail for a (One Piece) fanfic that I'm writing? I'll give credit, of course! (If not, that's okay too, of course ;) )
KurobanoKaitou's avatar
KurobanoKaitouHobbyist Writer
Amazing art! To me this really befits the story. The cats seem really insubstantial in contrast with the boy who is painting them, which makes them a little eerie, as though they are not all there. Love the spilled drops of ink, too - clearly the cats are more important to the boy than keeping the temple or his clothes clean...

... also sorry for all the comments I'm posting. I recently learned of this story and fell in love with it, and as your art befits it really well I got a bit enthusiastic <3
saiyuri-dahlia's avatar
saiyuri-dahliaHobbyist Writer

God, I love this story and I was surprised to see a few pictures of it on here and found out how popular the story was. I have an old book of cat tales with this story in it and I never knew it was really all that well known. It's my favorite story in the whole book and is the reason I kept that book since I was little. Fact, I'll probably read it tonight after seeing this.

The picture is amazing and the cats are so cute. They're so cute that it's hard to imagine that they'll kill anything. Great job!

whimsycatcher's avatar
It's great to hear that you enjoy this piece so much, thank you! I actually didn't come across this story until I was in art school - college. For a lot of my illustration projects I found inspiration from old tales from different cultures - and this one really caught my fancy! I actually applied it to three different assignments, lol. Well thank you again for the wonderful comment! ^^
angelonwestside's avatar
I like the softness this haves.
praesenti's avatar
Amazing! I saw the other paintings earlier, and can't say which one I like more.

I really love the beautiful colour palette you used for this one, it gives a lovely atmosphere to the painting.
whimsycatcher's avatar
Thank you again for taking the time to share your thoughts, I really appreciate it! Haha, well I'm just happy you like them both! I definitely used this story as a renewable bit of inspiration. XD
MegaWarriorCatLove's avatar
Oh my gosh! I read this before! And right as I saw your picture I knew! :3
whimsycatcher's avatar
Yay, glad you could tell! ^^
WildflowerTheWarrior's avatar
WildflowerTheWarriorHobbyist General Artist
A beautiful story and a beautiful painting!
KellyGirl1's avatar
KellyGirl1Professional Traditional Artist
This is just so cute! :) I love the style.
whimsycatcher's avatar
Thank you very much! : ]
MissxCatastrophe's avatar
I love the stylized cats, and that little boy is so cute!
whimsycatcher's avatar
Glad you think so, thanks so much! ^^
Katie-chatterbox's avatar
Katie-chatterboxHobbyist Photographer
wow... beautiful. Really, magnificent.
Katie-chatterbox's avatar
Katie-chatterboxHobbyist Photographer
you're welcome :)
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