By Steve Waldner – Penticton Western News
Published: August 30, 2012 2:00 PM
Updated: August 30, 2012 3:38 PM
Cats sleeping, cats jumping at laser-pointers on the wall, even cats staring adorably at the viewer — as anyone who’s been to the website Reddit will tell you, these images are gold mines for attention.
One local group is taking this mentality and putting an artistic spin on it, in hopes to raise awareness, generate funds for local feline friends and create support for their cause.
The AlleyCATS Alliance, a cat support group has opened a call for artists to submit electronic images of some of their cat-based artwork, which will then be voted on online. The top 12 will be put into the 2013 AlleyCATS calender.
The cause has garnered the support of a number of artists in the Okanagan region who have already submitted to the calender. One such artist is wildlife artist Terry Isaac, who has been painting professionally for 25 years.
“I’ve always loved animals since I was a little kid, and I’ve had several pet cats along the years,” said Terry Isaac, one of the contributors to the calender.
“I just think cats are particularly beautiful. I’m inspired by their beauty and I think they’re intriguing,” he added.
Isaac has high hopes that the support of artists will bring attention to the AlleyCATS’ cause.
“I think more people need t be aware that cats need to be neutered and spayed, and every cat needs to have a nice home,” he said, adding that feral cats in the area are likely to fall prey to various predators in the region, like coyotes.
The calenders will be on sale throughout the area, with all funds going to help with the care of the strays the alliance brings in.
With spaying or neutering costing between $50 and $100, plus the cost of vaccinations and deworming, taking care of these cats can be costly.
December Foster, the president of the AlleyCATS Alliance, which started last month, said while the funds raised by the calender are important, building a foundation for her newly-founded organization is another key goal of the project.
‘What we’re trying to do is get the support of a network of amazing artists behind us and create this calender of not only cute cats but beautiful art by well-known artists and some not-so-well-known that should be, and use that as a way to support our group.”