Many of us know the feeling when you just terribly miss a pet you used to have. I sure do, even got a tattoo of my cat! However, 75-year-old Richard Saunders took it to a whole new level. The artist decided to express love for his cat, who died 5 years ago, by creating extremely surprising surreal images. In these images, plants from real places are replaced by giant bushes in the shape of his adorable cat Tolly.

Richard Saunders exclusively told Bored Panda the story behind his project named “The Topiary Cat”: “Initially I created these images just for fun. I had taken a photograph, in the grounds of a historic house, of a huge cloud topiary, and it occurred to me that I could fairly easily photograph Tolly in a position to match the shape of the bushes.”

More info: Facebook | thetopiarycat.co.uk

#1

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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bookshellf
Community Member
7 months ago (edited)

i thought this was real. I am going to believe it is.

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Richard claims that after making the first image and posting it on Flickr, it was stolen and his name was removed without any approval. The image ended up going viral on Facebook and people believed it to be a real topiary! Later, BBC did a story for their page and revealed Richard to be the real creator of these manipulations as he made more and more of them.

#2

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R Carson
Community Member
7 months ago

Beautiful

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#3

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R Carson
Community Member
7 months ago

love it.

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Richard has been a surrealist painter since he was a teenager and learned to use Photoshop over two decades ago in his job as an advertising Creative Director. He says: “The idea of creating The Topiary Cat, over eight years ago, while Tolly was still alive, was easily accomplished with skills I already knew. The images have become more complicated since, many taking days to produce, with tailor-made photos taken especially for them.”

#4

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

What a wonderful backyard! Nice job, Mr. Saunders.

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#5

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Hermione
Community Member
7 months ago (edited)

Cannot be real....Oh pays to read the blurb first. Thought the first few were real. 😂

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After Tolly died in 2016, Richard was too upset to consider continuing with The Topiary Cat, but his 40,000 followers on Facebook persuaded him to carry on. Richard believes that it helps them when their own furry companions pass on.

#6

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Your kitty is looking down at you and smiling (and purring) from the Rainbow Bridge.

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#7

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

I hope the gray kitty gives and gets lots of love ♥️

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The Topiary Cat has grown into quite the enterprise. Richard now also creates puzzles, 3D images, and a novel, of which he has done a reading on YouTube, chapter by chapter. So The Topiary Cat’s adventures continue, Tolly is now accompanied by another Russian Blue named Georgi.

#8

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Awesome!

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#9

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Sarah Warren
Community Member
7 months ago

"Now go into the hoomans house and return with all the meat from the cold box."

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When asked, which of his creations is his personal favorite, Richard says it’s usually the latest one. As for general inspiration, Richard says he is influenced by many other artists. Some of his all-time favorites are Dalí followed by Max Ernst, then the Pre-Raphaelites.

#10

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Elektra Holt
Community Member
7 months ago

How do you even do that? The cat is so big

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#11

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

How does he do the eyes?

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Creator admitted to Bored Panda that most people he meets love The Topiary Cat, initially disappointed the creations aren't “real”, then they convert quickly to devotees of the continuing story. The future of the project depends on the reception to the book “The Topiary Cat” which is being produced in very limited quantities at first as a test of the market.

#12

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R Carson
Community Member
7 months ago

Always on my mind

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#13

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Archer Harris
Community Member
7 months ago

Those bunnies better watch out. Rawr!

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#14

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Is this place out of a Henry James novel + cats?

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#15

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Elektra Holt
Community Member
7 months ago

Lol the cows

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#16

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

The real kitty is nearly microscopic compared with the topiary cat!

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#17

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Timing is EVERYTHING

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#18

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Dude’s got hair topiary!

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#19

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Sarah Warren
Community Member
7 months ago

Beans!

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#20

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

You can almost hear the sleeping kitty's purr.

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#21

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mr.lazy
Community Member
6 months ago

REMEBER GUYS DRIED CARRITS ARE LITERALY BUN BUN DRUGS

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#22

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

This is going to make the morning commute a real challenge!

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#23

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Elektra Holt
Community Member
7 months ago

All cats sleep like this in the sun

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#24

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Real Kitty stalking Plant Kitty

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#25

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Bunnies and clover!

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#26

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Ball of Yarn?

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#27

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PeachPossum
Community Member
7 months ago

Swan Lake meets Catzilla

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#28

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Inspecting the troops.

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#29

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Little gray kitty in lower right provides some perspective

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#30

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Tee Witt
Community Member
7 months ago

Beautiful but I am finding these pictures rather poignant

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#31

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Gotcha!

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#32

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Jan Vaccaro
Community Member
6 months ago

Love how the dappled sunlight settles on Tolly & the tiny Russian Blue.

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#33

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Suzanne Clark
Community Member
7 months ago

Yikes, whale sized koi.

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#34

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Aaaaahhhhhh. So refreshing.

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#35

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Little kitty coming to check it out

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#36

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Pam Pallett
Community Member
7 months ago

He even got their reflections!!

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#37

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Ana Garfield
Community Member
6 months ago

Kitty is a work of art.

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#38

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Shirley Sibthorpe
Community Member
6 months ago

You are a wonderful artist

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#39

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Ava Gunn
Community Member
6 months ago

All creatures, great and small...

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#40

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Cute little diorama

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#41

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Toe beans...

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#42

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Lucca Wenner
Community Member
7 months ago

Reminds me of Clifford.

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#43

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TheresaJason Leal
Community Member
6 months ago

Standing guard! So gallant!

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#44

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TheAnimalLady
Community Member
6 months ago

Dejá vu?

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#45

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Humans are right these flowers do have a nice smell!

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#46

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Mary Rose Kent
Community Member
7 months ago

Little kitty in foreground ♥️

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#47

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

"and that is how I met your Dad."

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#48

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Cecilia Herrera
Community Member
7 months ago

Bastet.

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#49

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

This is what as known as Treedom!

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#50

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

I like to see the birds but I think the wires spoil the ambiance!

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#51

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Now that's what I call a new roof!

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#52

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

A dozing cat - is knowing cat!

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#53

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Vasha
Community Member
7 months ago

my favorite

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#54

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Walk right in sit right down!

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#55

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

An I don't care for cars cat!

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#56

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Boy my nose itches today - hope I'm non-allergic!

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#57

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

My cats just slap the hell out of it then lick it off the floor!

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#58

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

You know I really get tired of people and horses tramping around spoils my tranquility!

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#59

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Cat in the mist and one in the tree!

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#60

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Tee Witt
Community Member
7 months ago

The tongue !

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#61

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Pam Pallett
Community Member
7 months ago

Kitty looks unimpressed

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#62

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Suzanne Clark
Community Member
7 months ago

Ooooh, I want the car!

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#63

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Ana Garfield
Community Member
6 months ago

Upvote each picture. Absolutely beautiful. Dedication and love for fur baby brings tears to my eyes as I think of the sadness felt.. And makes me think of my own that passed away. It hurts for so long..

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#64

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Tee Witt
Community Member
7 months ago

Oow I want that house, plus the cats

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#65

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Interesting - A cat Guarding a Goat!

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#66

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Lora Moore
Community Member
6 months ago

Chillin

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#67

The 75-Year-Old Artist Has Been Creating Giant And Surreal Bushes In Honor Of The Deceased Cat For 5 Years (73 Pics)-Interview

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Brian Bennett
Community Member
6 months ago

Hey Mom! I'm gonna stay over here Okay!

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