Miki Mottes is an illustrator whose recent work has featured a clumsy cat with a knack for resting in places that inconvenience her human owner. You can see the brown beast in all her goofy glory below.
Digging through Miki’s online footprint, it turns out there’s a pleasing cat-centric angle to the illustrator’s work. You can check out some of Miki’s latest drawings on Facebook, while he also runs an Etsy store that includes a cat-themed height chart that I’m trying to kid myself that my own cat, Mimosa, really needs. You know, for official stretching world record purposes.
Anyway, once you’ve looked over some of the illustrations, read on to learn about Miki’s early feline etchings, the most ridiculous places cats choose to nap, and how his own feline companions inspire his work.
Catster: Can you remember the first cat you illustrated?
Miki: I used to draw my second cat named Allegra when I was eight years old. When I opened my Facebook page, I searched for drawings from past years and actually found it. The style has changed dramatically with me growing: The old drawings used to be very innocent and trying to be realistic, and the more I grew the more cynical I became and the more the drawings became full of humor, focusing on how funny cats can be, and less realistic.
Were there any cat illustrators you looked up to?
I really love Gemma Correll’s A Cat’s Life, Simon’s Cat and of course Jim Davis’ Garfield.
What’s the trickiest part about drawing a cat?
Actually, the trickiest part is to draw them while they’re resting on my arms, not allowing me to move and treating me as their bed!
Cartoonists often only draw four fingers on a human hand. Does this rule also apply to cat paws? I noticed you seem to only draw three claws per paw.
Yes, three fingers look funnier, more childish and stupid, and goes perfectly with a cat’s behavior. Funny that you mentioned it — even I never noticed I’m doing it.
Your website features a picture of a cat sniffing a bunch of pin badges. Who was that cat?
His name was Zion. He was a street cat — they’re very common in Israel — in my previous apartment who used to come for food, petting and sniffing things every time I opened the living room’s front door.
Who is the brown cat you’ve been illustrating a lot, like in the keyboard scene?
I think she’s a female. It’s a combination of both my cats, Yehiam (female, 14) and her baby called Hatinok (which is “Baby" in Hebrew, a male, 13). They’re both black with a bit of brown. They are hard workers, love each other but fight a lot especially when it comes to food. Hatinok can jump on the toilet seat and meow for hours until I come to play with him.
So what’s more annoying, a cat getting in the way of reading a book or a cat getting in the way of typing on a computer?
I think a cat getting in the way of reading a book is more annoying, because holding the book above him is very difficult for more than 30 seconds. When a cat hides my computer, I try moving the windows to the side, but sometimes he hides everything and there’s nothing I can do about it so I take a break. Which is a good thing.
You’ve produced a poster with the cat saying, “If it fits, I sit.” Where’s the strangest place you’ve seen a cat sit?
Nothing further to add than this picture …
Finally, I noticed you also made an iOS app game based around some of your non-cat characters called Stop The Vom. Any plans for a cat-based game?
I didn’t have any plans but if one day I do then the brown cat will be the main character, for sure. Actually, I want to check if cats do their funny voices when they see a video of a bird — if they do it must be the next iPad app for them!
Read more on cats and art:
About Phillip Mlynar: The self-appointed world’s foremost expert on rappers’ cats. When not penning posts on rap music, he can be found building DIY cat towers for his adopted domestic shorthair, Mimosa, and collecting Le Creuset cookware (in red). He has also invented cat sushi, but it’s not quite what you think it is.
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