Meow you doing, cat lovers? We’ve got something purr-fect just for you! Leandro Francisca is here with his charming cat artworks that will melt your furry hearts. In this week’s On The Spot, the Brazilian illustrator tells us more about his feline inspirations, his beloved cat Pudim, and his mission to capture the mysterious and magical cat rituals.
Where do you live and what does your workspace look like?
I live in the south of Brazil, in a place of exuberant nature that’s surrounded by beautiful beaches. My workspace mostly consists of my computer and graphics tablet and is a part of the house where I spend long hours imagining and creating my illustrations.
What has your journey to become an artist looked like so far?
I had been craving a taste for art for a long time. I loved drawing ever since I was a child and throughout the years, I tried to improve my skills and develop new techniques. Today, I’m a full-time illustrator, working with children’s book authors and publishers from various parts of the world.
How did you develop your current art style?
Over the years, I have developed my own artistic identity through testing different techniques and observing other artists.
As for the cat artworks, I only started working on them about a year ago. However, this story began much earlier, more precisely in 2019, when we adopted our pet kitten Pudim. Living with him, I started to observe feline habits which inspired me to work on my cat illustrations.
What does your artistic process look like?
I usually start with a quick and simple sketch, just to convey the idea. Then I polish and refine it until it finally looks like what I initially had in mind. Once that’s done, I transfer the sketch to my computer and bring it to life by adding colors in Photoshop. I often use some additional materials like cardboard to enrich the textures in my works.
Which of your artworks is your favorite and why?
It’s one I created recently, titled Cats in the Moonlight. I like it simply because it captures a lovely moment that these two cats share under the shining moon. I also like the contrasting colors in this piece – they have always attracted me and inspired my work.
What are your biggest inspirations?
They mostly come from good family moments with our cat. It’s those funny everyday situations that lead me to realize that cats are mystical beings with their peculiar feline behaviors and rituals. This is something I try to express in some of my illustrations, creating an imaginary world full of mystery and magic that all the fellow cat lovers can enjoy.
If you could choose one artist to grab a coffee with – who would it be?
It would be nice to share a cup with Adolfo Serra, I love the way he illustrates!
What are your other passions?
When I’m not drawing, I’m a family person. I spend time with my children Caroline and Lucas, and my dear wife Alessandra. They are my passion.
What are your plans for the future?
I want to keep doing the two things I love the most – working on my illustrations and spending quality time with my family!