Dancer, the Gecko Cat
Size (Unframed) 24" x 18"
Finished April 2002

When I lived in Kona Paradise, before I installed a cat door for Dancer, which allows him to go in and out, he used to leap at my windows whenever he saw a gecko. With the steep rocky terrain outside my house and the two to three story drop below, I was afraid that he might go sailing through a window, screen and all, and get hurt on the rocks below. After the cat door was installed, he didn'tt leap at windows quite as much. He still stalks geckos, whether outside or inside.

The layout for this painting is taken from several sources. I have numerous photos of Dancer and I used one of him crouching for this scene. I almost made a mistake concerning his markings. The only photos I had were of him crouching, facing to the left (as seen in a picture). I used Corel Photopaint to "flip" one of these photos horizonatally so that he was facing the way I wanted for the painting. But I almost forgot that, since the photo is of his left side, even though it was flipped to be his right side, the markings are wrong. So I used some other photos of him, which showed his right side markings. To make it even more confusing, his head was turned so that the left side of his face was showing. This required the use of even more photos for reference. The flowers are from an old photo I had of lilies, taken in a co-worker's office years ago. I just put them in a pot out of my imagination. The table also is from my imagination, though I'm sure there is one like it somewhere. I changed the design of the windows so that they are more "pleasing" to the eye than the metal sliding glass windows that are in my house.

I did not use any special techniques for this painting. I used both blending and detail painting for Dancer's fur. The hardest part was getting the windows and background, seen through the panes, to show clearly without losing the fact that the window frames are white.

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