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Tabby Cat Painting in pastel

tabby cat painting in pastel

Hope you like my latest tabby cat painting in pastel ‘Room with a View’.

I was braver than I usually am and decided to paint something more illustrative, what do you think?

Tabby cat painting stage 1

So here is the start of this cat painting. I used anthracite pastelmat (it was at the front of the store cupboard!) cut for an 8″x12″ painting with a small edge left to tape to my board. As you can see my framers tape arrived so all is well with the world. I had used masking tape but it really didn’t stick as well.

I made up the background as I went along, I felt like this cat was spying out of the window at something but as my imagination is very buried I kept it quite plain and simple – next time I intend to test my imaginary skills a lot further! I dug out a very old Derwent pastel pencil for the sky colour, it was just the perfect shade for the dark winter sky I wanted. I filled in the window frame and tree silhouette with a black pitt pastel, again keeping things very simple! By this time I realised I had to add some snow, it just had to be! I used the derwent white for that as it’s the brightest white in my pastel box.

Tabby cat painting

The background was rapidly put in, I did like that fact as I am so very slow usually, but this meant I could get to work on the fur quicker than I had hoped! I used faber castell pitt umber for the underlayer as it would have to show up between the lighter fur as I added more layers and I felt black would be too dark. For each area I worked I added the umber layer then add more lighter layers of other colours on top.

Tabby cat painting

I used a medium grey to create the lighter shades (faber castell) and although it looked dark, when gently added in very delicate layers it did give the right shade of lighter fur. I added peach, pink, several browns as well as the grey to build up the layers overall.

Tabby cat painting

Here you can see, the lovely tabby is starting to take shape, I think she has a very pretty face and her pose fits the window scene well. At this point I added the very dark bands of fur using derwent seal. I chose not to use black at this point just incase I needed to go darker somewhere else in the painting.

Tabby cat painting

Back to using the pitt grey to add the lighter fur. I sharpened the pastel (see how to sharpen pastel pencils here) to enable me to make very light but detailed strokes in the direction of the fur, you can see already it starting to build up. I used the peaches and browns to add warmer shades where needed and for the lightest coloured fluff I used a very pale grey from stabilo. Their pastels are great for final details but not so good for covering larger areas which the derwents and pitts are.


Almost there, just one leg and tummy fur to go. I decided to keep the window sill very plain, still wasn’t feeling very brave at this point!


And here she is, all done, my second tabby cat paintings, I feel a series coming on!


Thought I’d add a shot of a few of the pastels I used. The second from the left is the sky colour, I think derwent stopped making these about 10 years ago, I am such a hoarder! The middle pitt grey is the one I used for the hightlights, you can see it does actually look as though it’s darker than that, one reason to always have a scribble will all possible colours before you use them, just incase!

Tabby cat painting in pastel

Hope you like my tabby cat painting, this one has been added to my cat portraits gallery already where you can see here with some of my other cat artTortoiseshell cat painting or buy one of my original prints of cat paintings

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