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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.