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Potted Cat

This is a figurine that I made for me Mum as a Mother's Day gift. It's based on an illustration of an orange tabby cat, popping out of a pot with a flower on its head, that's on the cover of a notepaper booklet that she's kept next to her telephone for years.

Speaking of which, the last time I tried growing plants in the house, one of the cats jumped up onto the window sill, laid down, stretched out, and then, staring directly at me, kicked my ceramic geisha-shaped planter out of the window with her back legs, and, of course, it fell down onto the floor and shattered. Said feline then gave me the old, "I'm a cat and I'll do what I want, what are you going to do about it?" look and that was that.

Anyway, here are some photos of the construction process. I started out by making the basic, football-like shape of the cat's head. This was accomplished by bunching up some tissue paper into the approximate dimensions that I wanted and covering that wad with glue-coated strips of newsprint to keep it in that shape.

Next, I built up the details of the face with additional simple papier-mâché forms (spheres, snakes, wedges, etc.) and then fabricated the pot by carefully wrapping dozens of layers of straight and angled newsprint strips around the cylindrical shaft of a permanent marker.

The construction of the flower and body/paws/tail followed, made with similar techniques. At this stage, I also added irises/pupils and a neck peg (the connection point for the corresponding hole in the body) to the head.

Pictured is the unpainted figurine fully assembled to test the fit of the parts (everything was A-ok). While I later tweaked some things here-and-there, it was more-or-less ready for painting at this point.

Finally, here's the finished product. The fishing line whiskers were the last addition, after the figure was completely painted and sealed, because otherwise they would have constantly gotten in the way, making things needlessly difficult and frustrating.

And because lolcats are the bestest thing ever (my kitty pidgin could probably use some work though):

Newsprint, tissue paper, cardboard from a potato chip box, white paper from an envelope, white glue, a wire twist tie (flower stem), fishing line (whiskers), and acrylic paint.

[Excluding whiskers] 4.8 cm (1.9") wide x 6.5 cm (2.6") tall.

The neck rotates and the flower stem is bendable.

Four days: May 3rd, 4th, 6th, and 7th 2015.

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