Psychedelic Rainbow Black Cat Pet Portrait Painting

My latest pet portrait is of a long haired black cat named Felix. This painting was completed on August 5, 2020.  It was created with acrylic paints on a 12″ x 16″ stretched canvas. The reference photo features a long haired black cat laying down in the sun on the carpet in front of a couch. I sought to replicate the dramatic back lighting while still striving to make it as colorful as possible, and used a palette of full saturation rainbow colors for this cat portrait. A larger version of this drawing can be seen in my portfolio here: Colorful Pet Portrait – Felix.

felix photo and painting

Felix rainbow cat photo and painting comparison

Above you can see the reference photo, on the left, compared to the painting, on the right. Most long haired cats are a lighter color on the areas that have the longest fur, usually the neck, chest, belly, and rear end. This is more pronounced on long haired black cats, who can also develop “bronzing” on their longer fur, creating a brownish tint. You can see in the photo reference that Felix has lighter fur in his neck ruff and belly, and so I sought to represent that in the painting by using lighter colors and a warmer color palette.  The darker black areas of his face and arms are painted with a palette of mostly cool colors, such as purple, blue, and some green, with a bit of magenta. Though the carpet is white, I decided to use yellows, oranges and greens for the carpet in the painting.  This provides some contrast with the colors used in his portrait.

Above are some close up views of the painting, showing the details and bright colors that I used.  Click on each one to see a larger version. I use Liquitex Basics and Liquitex Heavy Body acrylic paints. I work in layers, which means I “block in” areas of color and then layer details on top.  The base colors I used on the face, for example, are Dioxazine Purple for the darker areas, and Light Blue Permanent for the light areas.  Then I add various shades of blues, purples, and greens on top of that, including some Fluorescent Pink to make the colors pop. This results in a really dynamic rainbow cat painting!

If you really like this painting of Felix, and would like to commission one of your own pet, please visit my Pet Portraits page to learn more.

This image is available for purchase as a fine art print and other products for sale in my online stores. Visit my Pixels Store for high quality art prints and other home decor products. Also check out my RedBubble Store for additional products such as stickers and jigsaw puzzles!


Mockup in the header provided by Mucahit Gayiran on