Curious Books Saved a Cat

…is the name of today’s story on Fictive Dream.

Throughout the month of February 2021 I will be showing you illustrations I did for Flash Fiction February 2021 at Fictive Dream, an online short-story magazine. For more information about FFF21 and my artwork process, look here.

Here’s the image editor Laura Black chose for this story, Curious Books Saved a Cat, by Todd Mercer.

And here is the artwork with the banner. Take a look at this image. And then…

Read the story at Fictive Dream.

8 thoughts on “Curious Books Saved a Cat

  1. Laura (PA Pict)

    Terrific artwork. I love the visual texture and the layering over and scraping back. That method seems to apply to the idea of secret identities being potentially revealed. I also like that the intersecting lines could be book shelves – or even the pages in stacked books – or a map of clandestine trenches in the desert.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. You know how I like the technique of scraping through paint, and there is a lot of know how, but also serendipity, to the results. And then you add in the grid factor and this picture was done. Another one where it was best to know when to stop. I love all your interpretations. It shows you how ubiquitous the grid is as a symbol, I think, that these ideas could come from just one story. In another context, think of the possibilities! Abstract art really can do some evoking all right.

  2. Laura Black

    This is another illustration that I hoped could be used in the February stories. As it turns out, it encompasses the themes and tone of Curious Books Saved a Cat by Todd Mercer very well. On the face of it the narrator seems to have security and freedom in his life and the pale background reflects this. On the other hand, the lines remind us that for the narrator’s security to be maintained he will be trapped forever more. I must say that the idea of the lines representing bookshelves, from Laura above, did cross my mind. Or even a prison. A fantastic illustration, Claudia, thank you very much.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. I liked the look of this one as soon as I put in the lines – another example of not ruining a simple but effective composition by continuing to add. I mentioned to Laura PA Pict about how the grid evokes so many ideas, depending on the context – it is a flexible geometry all right – and then there is the color as you mention. The effect would be very different if this image had been done in black, for instance.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      I liked this story and I think the art fits in well with it. To me it also has suggestions of a cat’s fur – even though the cat is just in the title!

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