'The Complete Cat' – artist biographies part 5

Here at iCatCare we are very excited about the upcoming art exhibition ‘The Complete Cat’, held in collaboration with the Society of Feline Artists (SOFA).
The exhibition will be held 24th November – 8th December 2018 in the beautiful Rook Lane gallery in Frome, Somerset.
SOFA is a federation of talented professional artists working in a wide range of media and styles but united by their interest in the feline form.
In the build-up to the exhibition, we will be bringing you biographies of the artists involved and examples of their stunning work. To see all of the biographies and examples we have shared so far click here.
A very generous 25% of the sales of all the artwork will be committed to our work for cats around the world.
We really hope to see you there!

Lois Sykes

Lois Sykes was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As an art student in the states, she painted in a figurative style, then at Atelier Goetz in Paris her exposure to abstract painting led her in a different direction. Today, she combines the elements of figurative and abstract with animal subjects in a contemporary setting.

Sykes has said, "I often create a scene in my mind that pushes me further than just painting a dog or cat. There is a narrative lurking somewhere, a suggestion of a story." Colour also features prominently in Sykes' work as a signifier of mood and vitality. She aims to capture the idiosyncratic nature of the animal, usually with gentle humour.

Sykes has always been interested in animals and has drawn and painted them since childhood. Currently she lives on a smallholding in Surrey, England, with her husband and a special cat, as well as a plethora of chickens, ducks, horses, and ponies. They have all featured in her paintings as well as her neighbours' sheep, pigs, and cattle.

Let's Play A Game by Lois Sykes

Marian Forster

I live in Emsworth on the south coast, near the sea, and endeavour to bring humour and an eye for the unusual to my paintings of the region, its people and wildlife. I specialise in feline, wildlife and maritime subjects and have won the award for best watercolour at two consecutive exhibitions of the Royal Society of Marine Artists at the Mall Gallery London.

I began my artistic career working on the Mary Rose project, drawing a wide range of objects recovered from the ship but specialising in illustrating, researching and making replicas of the leather jerkins found on board the ship. A few years ago I completed further research on the clothing. The resulting report is included in volume four of the definitive publication on the Mary Rose titled “Before the Mast – Life and Death aboard the Mary Rose.

Archaeological illustration involves precise pen and ink drawing and it was not until 1990 when I took up painting that my world exploded into colour!

I like to combine my artistic gift with quirky scenarios and humour to capture light hearted observations of cats, especially Siamese. I usually work in watercolour and pen, but also love the colours, effects and excitement produced in reduction lino printing. Over the past 2 years I have been enjoying all aspects of printing especially etching.

One of my first cat paintings ‘Excellent pedigree but loose morals’ was inspired by our own Chocolate Point Siamese. Although surprisingly dim for a Siamese she was of excellent lineage and we thought she might be a perfect candidate to produce a litter of pedigree kittens. Lucy however, had her own ideas about that and the resulting 8 kittens were black and white, just like their father but with their Mother’s blue eyes, vocal range and volume. When the time came, it was not difficult to sell them. Our advert in the local paper read ‘Half Siamese kittens for sale. Mother cat of excellent pedigree but loose morals!’

‘Excellent pedigree but loose morals!’  features in my first feline series of 18 greetings cards available via my website www.scratchingaliving.co.uk.

Thoroughly modern Millie, Molly and Polly! by Marian Forster

Natalie Mascall

I am a self-taught, professional, award winning wildlife artist with a huge passion for wildlife and helping to preserve them. Wildlife is what inspires me. 

Even from an early age I wanted to help animals as I was looking to be a vet, so for me, its quite a special thing that I now have the opportunity to give back to what has and continues to give me, through my art.  

2001 is when my journey as a professional artist begun specialising in Wildlife/Animal Fine Art, taking on commissions such as any wildlife/animals, nature and pet portraits.

I have always loved drawing eyes, they intrigue me as are so fascinating and expressive, speaking volumes without words, windows to the soul.

I am inspired and driven to draw from my love and passion for wildlife, nature, animals and the outdoors. I couldn’t live without wildlife and birdlife as it is what has made me me. 

I believe that us artists drawing wildlife have a duty to raise awareness in any way that we can.

I have had the privilege in seeing various species in the wild which always captivates me and inspires me even more.

I love Africa but one place in which captivated me in the same way as Africa did, was Nepal, a prize I won from winning the overall competition title ‘BBC Wildlife Artist of the year 2010’ with ‘Tigers at Play’, an incredible experience, including night safari’s where we were so lucky to encounter a fishing cat and jungle cat. The Nepalese people were so welcoming and educational bringing us into their culture. Very memorable.

I have been lucky to have been featured in several magazines including Artists & Illustrators, Your cat, BBC Wildlife and Wildlife art.

I have had the privilege in having my artwork published in a couple books; Cats in Art by Desmond Morris and Doggeral by Angela Patmore.

One will notice my love of cats, worldly felines from the big cats, wild cats and our beloved domestic. 

Many of my artworks has featured my own black panthers also including visitors to my garden as well as my friends beloved felines.

I also feature a lot of endangered species including the Geoffroy’s cat, serval, caracal, rusty spotted wild cat, asian golden cats, tigers, snow leopard to the sleek like velvet black jaguar! To name a few!

My love of any feline has definitely been dominant in my artworks and print collection. 

So I was delighted when I was accepted as a full member of The Society of Feline Artists which enables one to include the initials after my name.

I work in various mediums but specialise in Pastel and Charcoal due to the beautiful colours available and the softness one can achieve from the lovely mediums in which I taught myself to use.

I welcome any commissions and enjoy capturing your beloved animals and pride myself on doing so. 

Handsome by Natalie Mascall

Patricia Clements

Patricia was influenced by Bruce Barnden, Art Master at school, then by Lesley Cole, Head of Painting at The Central School of Art and lastly by the French Impressionists. Patricia gained a scholarship to The West Sussex College of Arts and Crafts and went on to study painting and life painting at The Central School of Art.

Working in oils and letterly pastels, producing still lifes, landscapes and cat paintings, Patricia's resulting work reflects the vibrant colours and brilliant light of the South of France where she visited, NY and her still life and cat paintings. Patricia was recently made a member of the Society of Women Artists.

"I paint because it's there. I look at a scene, building, still life or whatever and see the patterns and colours. I try to reflect this in the beauty and colours of the Cote D'Azure. The shapes of a still life, and of New York where I see buildings with unusual shapes. And of course with paintings cats which quite often creep into my still life.

The Visitor on the Dresser by Patricia Clements

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