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.