Meet Elemenopeo, a chubby black-and-white cat who takes pride in being able to come and go as he pleases, but discovers a hidden talent when his cat door is closed for repairs. Forced to roam indoors, he comes upon a box of paints and a blank easel and--voila!--""Portrait of the Artist as a Young Bird."" Time for a nap, and a soaring dream. Saaf lays out Elemenopeo's world with thickly brushed gouaches, surrounding his self-satisfied feline with birds to tease and other comforts. Though perhaps not up to Thatcher Hurd's Art Dog (1996), this cat displays a promising imagination, and young readers, whatever their artistic proclivities, will enjoy making his acquaintance.