Benjamin West was born with an extraordinary gift---the gift of creating paintings of people, animals, and landscapes so true to life they 'took one's breath away.' But Benjamin is part of a deeply religious Quaker family, and Quaker beliefs forbid the creation of images. Because Benjamin's family didn't approve of his art, he had to make his own painting supplies. The local Native Americans taught him how to mix paints from earth, clay, and plants. And his cat, Grimalkin, sacrificed hair from his tail for Ben's brushes.