Introducing Doughnut Kitten 2017!

There’s a new Doughnut Kitten in town, and he’s turning the kawaii up to 11.

One year ago on this tasty National Doughnut Day, doughnutkitten.com burst onto the world stage in a sugary explosion of sprinkles and smiles. The original Doughnut Kitten, Nimbus, has loved every moment of her time spreading mouth-watering joy across screens in over 50 countries. But now she’s ready to retire, and let a new kitten climb aboard that frosted doughnut chariot.

I’m thrilled to introduce Mr. Smee, your 2017 Doughnut Kitten and heir to the rainbow-latticed Internet kingdom! Pose after pose, Mr. Smee’s cat model experience really shone through during his audition. Despite nearly being too tall for the part, his gorgeous ginger fur, big round eyes, and casual paw placement landed him right in the sweet spot.

Doughnut Kitten by Tania Hennessy

 

Doughnut Kitten continues to serve mindless digital pop art, ready to soothe your troubles through hypnotic pastel positivity. It’s an Internet retreat from the digital noise, where visitors can leave behind the frustrations of clickbait, comment trolls, pop-up ads, and forgotten passwords. But be forewarned: imbibing in this sweet, satisfying imagery can result in serious cravings!

When I created Doughnut Kitten in 2016, it was as a pointless-yet-pleasing piece of Internet culture. Doughnut emojis and kittens, what could be more fun than that? I had no idea that such a simple thing could bring delight to so many people, and to so many cats! It’s been featured in the pages of Modern Cat and Catster magazines, and online on I Have Cat and people.com. I was beyond proud when Doughnut Kitten became a hot collectible at Hot Art Wet City’s 2016 Hot One Inch Action show.  

After seeing what my scrumptious little single-serving creation could do, I started to dream of what it might become with new variations. How could I stop at just one kitten? It’s an incredible artistic challenge to capture an abundance of varied cuteness with strictly defined constraints just one simple prop! This year Mr. Smee is the first kitten to greet everyone at doughnutkitten.com, but click and you’ll discover that all of the auditioning kittens get time in the spotlight, too!

Doughnut Kitten auditions are always fun, even though they can be tough. The fun bit is having the kittens in my studio; this year’s contestants were all kittens that my husband and I had the pleasure of fostering in our home, so we got heaps of one-on-one time with them all. We were able to take our time and get to know their little quirks and mannerisms, and use those qualities to get the best photos.

Doughnut Kitten by Tania Hennessy

The hard part is choosing the winner! This year I called in a panel of judges. We gathered together to review the kittens’ audition photos, and weigh in on their star potential. After two intense rounds of votes on the 12 final contestants, Mr. Smee was officially announced this year’s winner. It was a close contest!  

2017 Doughnut Kitten Contestants by Tania Hennessy

The kittens come from such a diverse range of backgrounds, on top of being Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association fosters. Mr. Smee was found in a carport with his mum and six siblings at three weeks old. They were all malnourished and sick. Thankfully VOKRA was called, and the entire family of eight came to stay with us, soon to become the Pirate Litter. They all found wonderful forever homes, and Mr. Smee now lives a happy life with his sister Grace O’Malley.

While I love having so many rewarding foster experiences, and such adorable little stars in my studio, there shouldn’t be so many homeless cats and kittens in Vancouver. Like all of my work, Doughnut Kitten helps bring awareness to the amazing qualities of rescue animals, and promotes adoption.

Want to see sneak peeks at original pieces I’m working on, and behind-the-scenes kitten photos? Follow me on social media! You can follow my work on Facebook and Instagram — keep an eye out for my Instagram Stories, because that’s where I share all of the hilarious kitten outtakes! If you need more kittens in emojis right now, visit my Emoji Kittens collection.

Emoji Kittens

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography.

For far too long, fluffy feline starlets have been confined to garden flower pots and baskets. We’ve given them only balls of wool with which to pose, and expected them to light up with kittenish glee each time we place a googly-eyed goldfish in a bowl before their eyes. All of this for the slim chance of earning a coveted slot in an annual kitten wall calendar. 

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

 But we are living in a material world, and modern kittens are material creatures! Today’s frisky young feline has grown up chasing digital mice on mom’s iPad, his every waking moment immortalized on a popular Instagram account. He is as comfortable with cat breading as he is with cat bearding, and he’s no stranger to being memed.

Our hashtag-driven society is living in HD, yet kitten photography has remained trapped in the celluloid past. All of that will change with Emoji Kittens.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

Emojis are the ultimate piece of pop culture symbolism, and kittens are the stars of the Internet. I found myself wondering how the two had never been paired in digital art. It couldn’t be just any emojis, though; the kittens had to be able to engage with the emojis for the photos to have meaning, and that’s where the idea came to life.

Emoji Kittens is a playful new collection that blends studio photography with digital art to place kittens in an entirely new landscape. Classic cuddly kittens posing against soft, minimal pastel scenes take on a vibrant new meaning when juxtaposed with two-dimensional emoji embellishments. The images are fun-loving and irreverent, like the kittens themselves.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

A moustachioed tuxedo kitten takes on a comic flair as she nibbles on a slice of emoji pizza. The pampered white kitten looks absolutely fabulous as he stares down from under his emoji crown. The black kitten with her daring mohawk becomes too cool for school when she dons her emoji shades. And what kitten wouldn’t clutch his nose in wide-eyed surprise when confronted with an emoji poop?

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

My explorations in emoji art actually began with Doughnut Kitten, that pastel-frosted single-serving confection who first launched his tiny doughnut emoji across screens around the world back in June. In the grand tradition of Nyan Cat, Doughnut Kitten’s single purpose is to spread smiles as his hypnotic rainbow trail creates a portable, pointless-yet-pleasing piece of digital art.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

Billions of emojis are sent each day, and they’ve blossomed from social media fluff into a universal language understood around the world. Not since the pre-alphabetic origins of language have humans been so into pictographic script. Emojis enrich our communications in ways that were once impossible by conveying all the complexities of a sentiment in a simple symbol.

Kittens and emojis are each such brilliant elements of current pop culture, and I’m excited to be the one to bring them together in my collection. I hope that people will delight in seeing these adorable little furballs frolicking with fun new friends.

Follow me to experience all of the installments in the Emoji Kittens collection! In the coming months I’ll release more of these digital art images through my email list, Facebook page, and Instagram. Special thanks to Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association for letting these kittens be a part of the Emoji Kittens collection.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

It’s time for a new era of kitten photography! Cuddly kittens meet pop culture symbolism in the playful, fun-loving Emoji Kittens digital art collection by Tania Hennessy.

Doughnut Kitten 2016

Welcome to the kawaii world of Doughnut Kitten.

Feel yourself drift into a rainbow-coated state of bliss as a wide-eyed kitten, nestled in a scrumptious doughnut emoji, transforms your screen into ever-evolving work of modern art.

The Kawaii World of Doughnut Kitten

Doughnut Kitten invites you to sit back and relax, and experience the calm satisfaction that comes from hours of gazing into this tasty confection. Let the sugary pastel colours and hypnotic, unblinking kitten bring a smile to your face.

Like that other rainbow-trail-blazing Internet feline, Nyan Cat, Doughnut Kitten is a portable, pointless-yet-pleasing piece of pop art. Imbibe in Doughnut Kitten at work, at home, or on the go.

The Kawaii World of Doughnut Kitten

Single-serving digital art is both a product of and a reflection upon Internet culture, and I’m excited to be able to contribute to its landscape. Doughnut Kitten traces her rainbow path and creates endlessly overlapping lattice layers in the name of time-wasting Internet cats and the universal language of emoji. She is classic studio photography infused with computer animation to create a bubbly, mindless digital experience.

It takes a special sort of kitten to fill this particular emoji. Many hopefuls auditioned, but only one lucky lady landed the part. From the moment Nimbus glided into my studio, it was clear she was destined for doughnut-riding greatness.

Doughnut Kitten auditions

Will Doughnut Kitten ever fill that last little corner of the screen? Can you experience enlightenment if you watch Doughnut Kitten for two straight hours while slowly partaking in a mouthwateringly rich, velvety doughnut? The answers lie somewhere over the pastel-frosted rainbow…

If you haven’t already sampled every flavour of Doughnut Kitten, you should definitely return to experience each delicious frosting. Humans can switch flavours with the click of a mouse. Unsurprisingly – as they are cultural influencers themselves - cat love Doughnut Kitten, too! They love to express their choices through eager paw taps on a mobile screen.

Kick back with your best fur-friend, and delight in watching the rainbow trail slowly frost your screen.

Kitten playing with Doughnut Kitten on an iPad

Doughnut Kitten is just the beginning. On July 17th – International Emoji Day – a full collection of emoji kittens will be unleashed upon the Internet.

Follow me on Facebook or Instagram, or subscribe to my mailing list, and return to this website often to be among the first to see sneak previews of my next wave of smile-inducing art.

Special thanks to Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association (VOKRA) for letting Nimbus and co. be a part of Doughnut Kitten.

Forever Friends: Grandad and Switch

Writing a first blog post on a brand new website is a pretty intimidating thing to do and to be honest, I’ve been procrastinating on it for a while. Who or what do I share for my first post? I decided it should be a photo that is really special to me, an image of my Grandad and his cat Switch.

Switch wasn’t always my Grandad’s cat. Back in 2006, my Mum’s cat gave birth to four beautiful little kittens and I instantly fell in love with one cheeky little munchkin who had big blue eyes and striking tabby stripes. At the time, I knew that I would eventually be moving overseas so adopting a kitten wasn’t exactly the smart or responsible choice. However, my family assured me that no matter what, Switch would always have a home with them. When the time finally came for me to move to Canada, Switch went to live with my Nana and Grandad and they all became fast friends. 

After Nana passed away, it was comforting to know that Grandad still had a furry friend to keep him company. In summer, Switch hangs around outside while Grandad picks fresh tomatoes from the garden, or he supervises as Grandad works on his wood carvings in the workshop, exploring the wood piles and climbing around the rafters. On winter evenings, he sits on Grandad’s lap in the living room and they catch up on their favourite television shows together. When it’s time for lights out, Switch takes his place at the end of the bed each night. They are such a lovely pair—Grandad and Switch.