Painting Irina The Cat With A San Bernardino Mountain Backdrop

I used oil paints to create an illustration of Irina the cat.
I used oil paints to create an illustration of Irina the cat.

Today I finished painting a picture of Irina the cat with a San Bernardino Mountains backdrop. I decided to place large boulders next to Irina, and the mountains behind her because this is a very iconic Southern California image. Irina has never ventured out near large boulders, but I like to imagine that she has taken nature hikes, just like I did when I drew a picture of her out at the Pinnacles back in August of 2014. Growing up my cats used to love to hike with me on a trail near my house, so I have never been able to stop envisioning domestic cats in nature.

So how did I create the current painting of Irina the cat? First, I created an outline drawing of Irina on the canvas board.

I used a pencil to make the transferred outline drawing of Irina the cat stand out.
I used a pencil to make the transferred outline drawing of Irina the cat stand out.
I used black and grey paints to begin painting in Irina the cat.
I used black and grey paints to begin painting in Irina the cat.
I finished painting in Irina's body and then proceeded to paint in the San Bernardino Mountains behind her.
I finished painting in Irina’s body and then proceeded to paint in the San Bernardino Mountains behind her.
I painted boulders surrounding Irina the cat. She has never been on a hike, but my childhood cats used to go on hikes with me. Thus, I liked to imagine Irina the cat out in nature enjoy the California dream, which for me is about nature.
I painted boulders surrounding Irina the cat. She has never been on a hike, but my childhood cats used to go on nature walks with me. Thus, I enjoy imagining that Irina the cat is basking in the sun and enjoy her California dream, which for me is about nature.
The completed painting of Irina the cat reflect my vision of the California dream.
The completed painting of Irina the cat reflects my vision of the California dream.

Our four legged friends also enjoy spending time in nature, and why not create imagery that reflect the beauty of a feline and Southern California. Irina the cat and nature continue to inspire me every day.

4 Replies to “Painting Irina The Cat With A San Bernardino Mountain Backdrop”

  1. I really like how this painting came out. I think it may be your best work so far! I was wondering why at one point you had Irina’s eyes each a different color. It seemed that you didn’t start out that way and it did not end up that way, but it was an intermediate stage. It is interesting to explore the process.

    1. Oh the eye thing is because someone said something to me, and the pupil got bunged up. Then I had to go back in and cover the mistake with white paint, so I had to wait a couple of days before I could add the coppery hue back to her eyes. I do feel like this painting is one of my better ones, and I was comparing how my painting technique is evolving. I still love colored pencils more than painting, but those fade over time, and oil paintings seem to last longer. I just wish the paint was not so messy.

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