Nealis began practicing drawing cats in between her jobs at The Shire Pub and freelance work.
“I studied cats and watched Mary Jane’s cat, Al,” Nealis said. “Then, I took the pictures we’d been given by the authors and started drawing with pencil before adding watercolor and colored pencil.”
Henderson professes no art skills whatsoever and gives all artistic credit to Nealis. However, the active retiree researched the mechanics of creating “Cat’s Whiskers.”
“Loretta Foster, from the Walton Historical Society helped me understand Bess Hughes Burns better,” Henderson said. “Aubrynn and I wanted to honor her work in this project.”
Henderson and Nealis even included one of her stories in “Cat’s Whiskers.”
Having been able to preview “Cat’s Whiskers,” Deb Crute, director of Heart of the Catskills, said: “What a cool book. We appreciate the generosity of its creators.”
Heart of the Catskills will use the funds to help care for and feed the cats and dogs awaiting adoption. For more information, visit www.heartofthecatskills.org or call 746-3080.
(This story has been updated to include the date of the event.)