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Artist Matt McCarthy Makes Surreal Cats Come To Life

by Modi Ramos
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I might be a creative writer, but I do not have an artistic bone in my body. And because of it, this might be why I’m always so blown away by true artistry. I was surfing the internet for some cool cat finds and happened to land on a purrfect gem in the form of surrealist artist Mr. Matt McCarthy.

And something tells me if you’re crazy about cats and have a vivid imagination, then his mind-bending cat-tastic creations are going to be right up your alley.

I reached out to Matt because I was eager to feature him here on CattitudeDaily, and thankfully he agreed! So, keep reading to learn about Matt, get a peek inside his creative genius mind, and, of course, feast your eyes over his surreal cat creations for the discerning cat lover. 

You must have cats of your own. Can you tell me about them?

Yes! My wife and I are parents/servants to a senior black cat named Atticus. He’s easily one of the best creatures I’ve ever met. Atticus is a big fan of running water and heated beds. He enjoys watching the birds and squirrels in the backyard during the day, and settles for birds on the TV at night. He’s an all around great guy and gives the best cuddles in the business. 

Mr. Atticus McCarthy, proud owner of two humans

How do you brainstorm ideas to create these cool creations?

I try to consume as many images as I can, whether they be from public domain images websites, magazines, old postcards, or cat books. I think the more images I’m exposed to the better chance my brain will make a connection between two that will work in harmony. I also draw a lot of inspiration from the world around me, and I keep a running document of ideas on my phone so that I can record them all. You never know when you’ll need some inspiration from your past self. 

This might be a no-brainer….but is your cat your muse?

Totally. I started making the giant cat pieces after observing our cats at the time and how they interacted with the insect intruders in our home. I also find feline personalities very similar to those of humans, and I try to convey that through my art. One of the benefits of amplifying the size of the cats in my pieces is that it amplifies all their personality traits.

Do people ever request you to create surreal cat artwork for them of their own cats?

I’m always flattered that people ask me to do that. I open up small groups of commissions periodically throughout the year. You can follow me on Instagram for an announcement on when I’ll be opening them up again. I work with people to choose a location that they’d like their cat in or what type of trippy transformation they’d like their cat to undergo. In the end they receive a fine art print of the final piece. 

Tell me about some of the products you have on your Etsy shop. What are your best sellers?

My shop features a wide range of giant cat prints, trippy cat stickers, and other unique cat-centric art. I print all my own prints in my studio using fine art paper and archival inks. I want them to be a fun and vibrant part of your life forever. My best selling print at the moment features a massive white cat asleep on a sunny beach called ”Snowy will be spending the rest of winter at the beach.” I have a print of it in my studio so I can daydream about future beach trips. That picture is also available as the summer part of a four seasons postcard set.

I’m a postcard collector and love sending to friends and family during these socially distant times. I’ve recently expanded my sticker section and added some really fun ones. Stickers are great because they’re an inexpensive and easy way to add art into your daily life. My best selling sticker is an AstroCat in a space helmet that’s printed on this awesome holographic vinyl. Turns out both cats and cat people like shiny things!

Can’t get enough of these super cool cat creations? Follow Matt on Instagram—or gift yourself or a lucky cat lover in your life some cat prints or stickers from his awesome Etsy shop!

I’d also like to give a special “thank you” to Matt from taking time away from his cat servant duties to answer my questions and allowing me to share his work on my page.

All Images Courtesy of Mr. Matt McCarthy

 

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