Squares, Triangles & Cats

Comic spread of four images. First panel reads, "Squares, Triangles, and Cats" by Asuka Ohsawa. Second panel shows a line drawing of a cat wearing a polka-dotted scarf around its neck and looking at the viewer, and reads, "Hi, I am a cat." Third panel shows an image of same cat with eyes closed, and reads, "I know the year 2020 has been a tumultuous year, filled with anxiety, anguish, and uncertainty . . .” The fourth panel shows the same cat with its eyes open again and reads, "Especially at a time like this, we have to make the effort to take care of ourselves,"
Comic spread of four images. First panel shows same image of cat with eyes closed, and reads, "to cultivate the time for creativity, to eat well, to get enough sleep.” Second panel shows same image of cat with eyes open, and reads, "As a cat, I may know a thing or two about rest and relaxation.” Third panel shows same open-eyed image of cat, and reads, "Please allow me to share with you my favorite relaxation strategy, which can be easily done at home." Fourth panel shows same cat looking toward the right in profile, with no additional text.
Comic spread of two images. An image of the cat curled up underneath a quilt, which is covered in a pattern of red squares and triangles, spans both panels. The first panel’s text reads: “When I feel overwhelmed with anxiety, I lie down on my favorite quilt in a sunny room. I am going to rest my eyes just for a few minutes, I tell myself. I close my eyes and stretch out my legs to absorb the warmth of the sun. I breathe slowly, in and out, to calm my fast-beating heart.” Second panel reads, “Then I imagine that the warm orange glow of the sun begins to fill my brain, melting away the dark swirl of worry and uncertainty. The knots of my muscles begin to relax. My legs twitch. / I drift into sleep. / I float in the ocean of squares and triangles.”
Left side of image reads, “Let’s Design a Quilt of Your Dreams and Relax Like a Cat. Right side of image shows an illustration of a human hand coloring in a quilt pattern line drawing, with an image of the cat peering over the top of the drawing. Text reads, “INSTRUCTIONS: Download and print the Right-handed Cat or Left-handed Cat, or both. Make as many copies as you need. / Turn off the news and turn on your favorite music. / Using colored pencils, crayons, or markers, design and color in your own quilt patterns. Have a cup of tea, if you wish.”

Download and print the Left-Handed Cat (here) or Right-Handed Cat (here)

Four different quilt images are shown as examples of what you can do with your own coloring page – for instance, one has all the triangles in the pattern colored red, and in one someone has drawn faces in red over the coloring-page pattern. The text reads, “You can color within the lines / Or over the lines / Or do your own thing. Possibilities are endless.”
Full-color drawing of six cats sitting around a red-patterned quilt, quilting-bee style. Text reads, “Focus on the task at hand. The repetitive action of coloring geometric shapes has therapeutic and hypnotic benefits. / Color in the cats. Draw or make a collage with additional objects if you wish. / Put multiple sheets together to create your own cat quilting bee. / This can be a solitary or group activity. Suitable for all ages and genders. No previous art-making experience necessary. Enjoy. (Artwork © Asuka Ohsawa)

Asuka Ohsawa is a Brooklyn-based visual storyteller who works in the medium of printmaking, artist’s books, and drawing. Her graphic works fuse elements of popular culture, found images, and comics to reveal personal narratives that mine the wonders and worries of her world. She is a lecturer at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University.