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Luis Coelho is an artist from Portugal who describes himself as a “slow art illustrator and sweetness sorcerer”. He creates beautiful and intricate ink illustrations of cats that will surprise you with their incredible level of detail.
The artist has been drawing from a very young age: “I remember that my brother, which is a few years older than me, would bring some Superhero comics into the house and I would absolutely destroy them by drawing on top of those fantastic images with any pen that I could find,” says Luis. “After generating many frustrating moments for my brother, I eventually understood that it was not a cool thing to do and so I started drawing in blank sheets of paper like everyone else.”
However, cats weren’t the first things that the artist began drawing. “The first drawing I am conscious about being honestly proud to do, was Superman. I don’t know what age I had, I just know that I still could not read. Nevertheless, this does not mean that I’ve been drawing all my life in a continuous way. Two times in my life I stopped drawing for several years.”
When asked why he chose cats for most of his drawing, Luis said it’s because there are a lot of cats living on the streets in his homeland. “They will seem to pick a spot and always return there. That happens simply because in that place, people feed them,” says the artist. “Cats also have done that with my art. They found a place where people feeds them. The first cat I drew when I was already exploring this hatching technique was because my brother in law was always asking me to draw cats. One day, after hearing his request so many times, I decided that I would finally draw one.”
“When I posted it on Instagram I noticed an unusual amount of excitement around that drawing. With time I eventually understood that if I had a chance to earn my life as an artist, I would need to embrace my cat spot. And that’s what I’m doing.”
The drawings usually take the artist hours to complete and he says he tends to go into a meditative state when creating them. Luis even says that he probably wouldn’t be able to draw these kinds of drawings if it were not for this state.
Luis says that drawings in A4 sheets take him between 10 and 60 hours to complete. “Lately, I think I’m managing to always stay under 20 hours but I definitely still need to get better at this time control thing,” says the artist.
Of course, cats aren’t the only animals the artist likes to draw.
Check out more of Luis’ works in the gallery below!