December 30, 2009

Best of 2009

The last year of the “Oughts” has been a significant one, so for the first time, I’m going to treat my faithful readers to some highlights!

My close friends know that I love music.  My busy schedule combined with my tightened purse strings has resulted in a reduction of live music in my life, but fortunately I made it to one of my “Must See” shows – WILCO.  I saw them at the Wiltern back in June and it was everything I hoped it to be.  A very close second was the intimate performance by Vampire Weekend at a small theater in Long Beach.  If I hadn't already seen them a couple times, it could have been #1!  Both were incredible shows. 

I got to do quite a bit of traveling this year.  I rang in the new year on a cruise ship somewhere between Jamaica and the Grand Caymans, I got to see family and friends on a long trip to Nashville, Louisville and DC, and we took many small trips around California to Santa Barbara, San Diego and Monterey.  But the highlight of the year came after a flight to Silver Bay was cancelled: Jason and I decided to cancel the whole trip and we took a spontaneous trip to Yosemite. It’s quite possibly the most beautiful place I have ever been.

I moved in with My Biggest Fan, Jason, in March.  He’s an excellent roommate and the reason I finally got my ass in gear to start marketing myself.  He also doesn’t seem to mind too much that I commandeered the dining room table as my studio.

Speaking of reigniting my marketing, this was a big year for that. I redesigned my website, sent out mailers, and started blogging regularly again (you’re welcome).  I still have a lot of work to do, and I have been doing some soul searching in terms of style and markets I'm interested in, so 2010 could be a big transitional year too.

My favorite job of 2009 was the piece I created for Louisville Magazine’s article on Spaghetti Junction.  It had never occurred to me to do a finished illustration in my “sketchbook style,” so I was thrilled to create one for them, and I love the way it turned out.  It has a raw energy that my “polished” pieces lack.  I want to have more of that raw energy in my newly evolving style.  Here's my original blog post about it.

My favorite sketchbook piece of 2009 was the sketch I did of Jason while we sipped a couple of brewskies at LAX before our trip to Nashville.  I enjoy drawing people in life, but have too much anxiety and self-awareness to draw any stranger that might see me (how do I overcome that?).  Therefore, Jason makes an excellent model.  He has been using it as his Facebook photo since May, and I’m flattered because of that J

It isn’t all about me, though, as I have tried to relay with my introduction of Tuesday Coolsday.  I’m always looking at blogs and other illustrators' sites, and sometimes I get sick when I see some of the brilliant work that is being done out there.  My favorite Tuesday Coolsday feature of the year has been Zina Saunders. Her work and dedication has been very inspiring for me.

Back to me J  Since “Print is dying,” I decided that I should teach myself XHTML and CSS from a couple books recommended by  my brilliant web developer brother, Phil.  With my newfound knowledge, I built my first “From Scratch” website,  I think it's a good sign that people are amazed I built it all on my own.  The Illustrated Babies project in and of itself has been received well and is a lot of fun.  I like having it as a part of my greater “Cat Scott Art” concept.

Some goals for 2010:
  • Finish my new “From Scratch” portfolio site.  It’s a beaut.  It even has a contact form!
  • Separate my graphic design work as a separate entity with it’s own site, and help the illustration work stand out on its own.
  • Create a new portfolio of work in a new sketchier style – probably celebrity portraits (back to my college roots!)
  • Create some illustrations for the children’s market and send samples out to publishers and magazines in that genre
  • Double my income from freelance work*
  • Get at least 3 new clients*
 *A girl can dream, right?

And with that I bid you adieu.  A very happy new year to you all, faithful readers (especially those of you who made it this far!)



December 21, 2009

Chama - Illustrated Babies

Chama, originally uploaded by Gato81.

Puppies are babies, too! This cute little guy was commissioned by a friend as a Christmas present for her sister. I really enjoyed drawing the puppy and all of the little curls and would be happy to do more dog drawings in the future!

See more at

December 18, 2009

Unicorn for Sarah

Unicorn for Sarah, originally uploaded by Gato81.

Sarah wanted a Unicorn, preferably with wings, for Christmas. So this is what she's getting. You can't tell in the scan but all the pen marks are done with glittery gel pens - this thing sparkles like crazy! Just like a Unicorn drawing should.

Speaking of crazy, it's been a hectic couple of weeks. I am back in Louisville next week for some much needed relaxation!

Thanks for stopping by,


December 9, 2009


Here's a sheet of Bristol paper that has survived a few experiments and tests, and turned out pretty interesting in the end.

December 7, 2009

Dream Holiday

I had an illustration in mind for my holiday card this year. I had even collected reference materials and started on the preliminary sketches.

Then, I woke up last Sunday morning from a weird dream: I found myself in a storage room for an apparel company with someone who was showing me all of their old marketing materials. This one piece I stumbled upon, which I think was a jeans hang tag, really struck me. I turned it over and studied it and thought to my Dream Self, "I could totally do this!" I woke up shortly thereafter, grabbed a post-it and jotted down what I could remember.

In the dream, it was double sided, so I sketched what I could remember about both sides. But since I don't really need a jeans hang tag, and I was in need of a Christmas card design, I changed some things around. I gotta say I'm pretty proud of my Dream Self. I wish I could always work out a solution to an image while sleeping - that would be Ultimate Multi Tasking!

December 3, 2009

Old Painting: Jeff

12" x 24" - Jeff's Tattoo

Sometimes I forget about the old canvases I have back in my closet; some of them are kind of interesting. Here's one from a few years ago of my best friend's husband, Jeff. The subject was triggered by the Illustration Friday subject of "tattoo" - he has a lot of them.   The painting isn't half bad. I feel inspired to try more large format pieces instead of the works on paper. Get loose. Get messy.

In the meantime, I'll be practicing drawing horses - another illustration from Louisville Magazine is in the works. Hooray for busy-ness!

Have a great weekend.

December 1, 2009

Tuesday Coolsday: Bruce Scott

Will Rogers Park - 11.25.09 - by Bruce Scott

This is a little cheesy, but this Tuesday I would like to give props to my dad, Bruce.

My dad wasn't an artist, but he was always doing something creative with his time.  When I was little, he taught himself how to watercolor in our basement.  He worked on plans for the never-ending landscaping project that was our tiny backyard while I worked on long division.  The blueprint to the left shows some of his sketches for the white picket fence he built in our backyard (click for larger view).

He's been retired for several years, and since then, he has been a cello player for the Lexington Community Orchestra, written a book, hiked hundreds - thousands? - of miles, and still has time to garden and work on little projects here and there.

Additionally, without all the boxes and boxes of Crayola and Mr. Sketch markers that he bought me as a kid, I may not be doing this art thing.

So dad, thanks for all the markers, thanks for inspiring productivity, thanks for letting me major in art, and thanks for coming to visit me over Thanksgiving!