LEONARDO da Vinci
(b. 1452, Vinci, d. 1519, Cloux, near Amboise)
Study of a child with a cat (facsimile)c. 1478
Pen and ink on paper, 206 x 143 mm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence
A child and a cat are captured in the characteristic moments of their play together. As neither a child nor a cat are usually unmoving models, Leonardo here proved to have good powers of observation and the ability to recognize characteristic moments and sketch them swiftly. The studies demonstrate the manner in which Leonardo was working towards greater vividness and naturalness in his paintings and sharpening his observational skills.