Bartelby, My Award Winning Cat (RP)

Bartelby was a very athletic cat. One way you can read this sentence is that he often got into very weird places. For instance, once when he was a very small kitten we were woken up in the middle of the night by the sounds of meowing. Turning the lights on we found Bartelby sitting on a curtain rod maybe eight feet (about two and half meters) off of the floor.

Another time I found Bartelby on top of a cabinet. He stood there proudly, head pressed firmly against the ceiling, staring into the light. I grabbed a camera (an Olympus 2020 with its groundbreaking 2 mp sensor) and took a quick picture.

Bartelby - ceilingI liked this photo quite a bit. In fact, I used it as the basis for several drawings and paintings. Here is a charcoal drawing I did using the photo as a source of inspiration.

Bartelby - CharcoalThe last painting I made based on the picture was my favorite. The people in my painting class, who all tried for a decorative version of Impressionism, hated the bright colors, but these colors all existed in the original photo. I didn’t care, I liked it. The eyes seem to glow as if from an inner fire.

In fact, I liked it so much I decided to enter it into a contest for the “Wilton Arts and Film Festival” several years back. I was quite pleased when it won 2nd place for animal pictures.

Bartelby - PaintI was happily congratulating myself on getting an award for the first painting I ever submitted to a contest when I noticed something. All of the local newspapers used photos of this painting when doing write ups about the festival. I think the bright colors stood out more than the more traditional pictures in the show.

Not to stop there, Bartelby ended up winning the “People’s Choice Award”. Festival attendees were allowed to vote for their favorite painting and Bartelby proved to be the favorite.

After the festival ended I gave the painting to my mom. I had given her another painting earlier that year. I hated the first painting so I wanted her to replace it with something better. Unfortunately both paintings are on display in her house, plus a third which I like even less than the second.

My mom used to call me to tell me every time she had a visitor comment on the painting. Now she just gives me a generic, “everyone comments on it,” whenever I visit.

Bartelby passed away a little over two years ago. He was 14, which is on the young end of old age for a cat but not shockingly young.

Bartelby the cat may be gone, but his memory and painting live on.

As always you can see more detail if you click on the pictures.

This was originally posted on June 14, 2014.  Some small revisions were made.

28 thoughts on “Bartelby, My Award Winning Cat (RP)

  1. Pingback: The Angels in the Tree | Trent's World (the Blog)

  2. Pingback: Cat’s Eye – Throwback Thursday | Trent's World (the Blog)

  3. yprior1

    you are really unique because you have the left and right sides of your brain that seem to be so strong -good at math and art and all in between – :)


    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Thanks : ) Sometimes I feel I have a little left side, a little right side and all in between is empty vacuum. But I guess we all feel that way sometimes.

      A weird thing – I know you’ve commented here before but WP asked me to moderate your comments. Did you change users again?

      And a silly question – I guess I realized in one of your Florida posts, the one were the person not related to Bob Barker confirmed you’re not related to Richard Pryor, that I always call you by your last name. When I direct something to you should I call you ‘Y’?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. yprior1

        well I love P or prior too – so you call me whatever comes natural – and thanks for asking my friend – :)
        oh – and I changed my email again – so that is why comments need to be approved –
        and you are funny about the vacuum – but wow – you are really talented –

        Liked by 1 person

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      I don’t really like Renee much. I’m talking the painting, not your daughter : ) It’s very cartoony or something. The other painting I mention is the mountain with ski-tracks.



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