Interview with the Mastermind Behind KhanandKittens

Many of you have seen the hilarious movie stills that have replaced key characters, like the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park or villains from Star Wars, with cats and kittens. Those creations came from the creative mind of one super-talented gal named, Caetlyn Van Buren. So, being the curious sort, I reached out to Caetlyn to find out more. And gosh, there was a lot to learn.

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Caetlyn Khan
All photos courtesy of Khan&Kittens

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Many of you have seen the hilarious movie stills that have replaced key characters, like the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park or villains from Star Wars, with cats and kittens.  Those creations came from the creative mind of one super-talented gal named, Caetlyn Van Buren.  So, being the curious sort, I reached out to Caetlyn to find out more.  And gosh, there was a lot to learn.

Caetlyn 1
Caetlyn ready for action.  She’s the one on the right.

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Adrea:               Okay, Caetlyn.  Ready or not, here we go!  So, what was the inspiration for khanandkittens?

Caetlyn:             Short answer: My friend Sara.   Long answer: I got a new job as an arts administrator that required minimal graphic design skills, but I had only ever used the Microsoft suite. So I started practicing – just silly things, like photo shopping my friends with celebrities, or changing someone’s hair color. They were pretty bad. My best friend Sara was usually the victim subject, so I asked her if she had any requests – she asked for Benedict Cumberbatch with cats. The new Star Trek movie had just come out, and thus KhanandKittens was born. I had posted the pictures to her Facebook page, and within minutes I had gotten a bunch of texts/messages, even a phone call, all from different friends telling me that I should start a Tumblr page for it.

Caetlyn Jurrasic Kitten 1
Jurassic Kitten

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AG:               How long does it take you to create your images?

CVB:            Anywhere between an hour and five, usually. If I find the perfect image combination, where everything just kind of fits and I don’t have to do too many adjustments, then it goes pretty fast. If I am stubborn and try to keep make something work that clearly won’t, then it takes FOREVER. And still sucks.

Caetlyn Purrasic World 2
Purrassic World

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AG:               Has your learning curve, in terms of doing this kind of imaging, changed much?

CVB:            Goodness yes. I look at the first few and know exactly what I would have done differently. I don’t know as they’ve gotten all that much better, but I kind of know what I’m doing now so it is definitely faster.

Caetlyn Captain America The Winter Kitten

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AG:               What kind of feedback do you get to your work?

CVB:            People have been so kind! It’s fun to read comments and tags. It’s such a silly thing but it means a lot to me. I’ve been featured on a bunch of different websites now – the Buzzfeed ones usually have some pretty hilarious commentary.

Caetlyn Darth Kitten 1
Ride ’em, Skywalker.

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AG:               Do you do graphic work as your career?

CVB:            I wish! If I could go back in time and slap my 15 year old self and shout “GO INTO GRAPHIC DESIGN! DO IT! AND STAY AWAY FROM DORITOS”, I would. I do a lot of design work for non-profits and theatre companies (posters, programs, postcards, that sort of thing), but it’s mostly for fun.

Caetlyn Alien
In space no one can hear you purr.

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Adrea:               What do you think people should know about khanandkittens?

CVB:            I have a 9-5 job and two to three part time jobs at any one time, plus all of my singing/opera work, so I don’t have a lot of time for fun stuff like this anymore! If I don’t message you back, or haven’t done a suggested photoshop, it’s probably because I didn’t see it and haven’t slept in three days! I appreciate every comment and re-blog, and adore my followers *uncomfortably long hug*. ALSO I HAVE A CAT NAMED COPPER AND HE IS AWESOME.

Caetlyn Copper 1
This is Copper. Handsome, isn’t he?

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AG:               Have you thought about how you are going to move forward with this in the future?

Caetlyn:            If you look at the post dates, you can see that I’ve really slowed down a LOT. It’s a combination of lack of time and too many creative projects! In the last year I’ve started stage directing opera as well as performing it, I’ve been trying my hand at writing, I do sets/props painting…. ALL THE THINGS! If I get an idea for something that I think will be funny, I’ll put it up – but I’m not actively working at it like I used to. I would like to get back into posting more, because the Tumblr community is amazing and it’s something I love doing. I am trying to teach myself video editing (again, learning for a job!), so I might start posting some fan videos. What I would really love to start doing is posting comics/art that I’ve drawn… but I don’t know if I’ll ever be brave enough for that!

Caetlyn Sherlock
I’m still not sure about the hat, Sherlock.

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AG:               Is there anything else you would like to share, Caetlyn?

CVB:            Eat Cheetos with chopsticks. It sounds weird, but it saves your fingers from the orange cheeto-powder-leprosy.

Caetlyn not impressed

 

 

 

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