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You’ll love these big cat illustrations

Illustrator Owen Davey (opens in new tab) has created a new book full of every big cat you care to name, and it is gorgeous. For Crazy About Cats (opens in new tab), Davey turned his hand-drawn illustrations (opens in new tab) into modern, colour blocked graphics in a distinctive style that includes a restricted colour palette. 

"I sketched out all of the final images, scanned them, and then used a mouse and trackpad with shape and pen tools to create the finals all in Photoshop," says Davey of his creative process. "I know I should use Illustrator really, but I've been using Photoshop for over 15 years, so it's just second nature to me now."

Davey did a lot of research for the book – we love this scale chart

Davey did a lot of research for the book – we love this scale chart (Image credit: Owen Davey)

Crazy About Cats (opens in new tab) is Davey's seventh book. It's a mixture of infographics, text and illustrations – we particularly like the scale chart showing big cats side by side, and the page of weird and wonderful cats with some that we'd never heard of.

“I always start these non fiction books with the research. I spent a ridiculous amount of time rifling through books, watching documentaries, finding scientific charts, exploring the internet, and going to zoos in order to gain the knowledge to write the book," says Davey. 

"Once I'd found out the stuff that I found most interesting, I started working out section headers and how the book could be broken down into its 40 pages. This was then edited by the wonderful people over at Flying Eye Books, and I began to put pencil to paper, working out compositions for pages and what might go where."

If cats aren't your thing (because you're weird) then you might prefer Davey's Mad About Moneys (opens in new tab) or Smart About Sharks (opens in new tab), or any of the other illustrations on his website (opens in new tab). We wonder what's next... fingers crossed for Dotty About Dinos or Pretty Excited About Pandas!

Scroll through the gallery below to see the big cat illustrations.

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Ella Taylor
Ella is a writer/sub-editor on creative and photography titles. She tried teaching for a while, but her immune system couldn't cope!