Tag Archives: playful

My Favorite Things – Having the Time to “Play” at My Drafting Table

Although I went back to teaching today (I’m fortunate to be blessed with great students!), I still had the better part of the day to play work on my illustrations.  My goal was to experiment with India ink and my nib pen for the illustration outline.  I was also going for more freedom in my coloring approach.  In the pencil sketch (which I worked on yesterday) I focused on elongating the figure even more than I usually do since I wanted to emphasize her grace and bring out the overall glamour in the composition.

What a luxury to be able to experiment and even REDO an illustration – in this case, the version below is my 2nd attempt…

Valentine Rose final

I’m fired up to do more illustrations using the techniques above, but first I’ll be turning my attention to finishing a 5-illustration custom project.

See you back here soon!



Filed under Art, Drawing, marker and ink illustration, materials, motivation, My Favorite Things, New work, techniques, Tool Box

Jo’s Journey – A Somewhat Irreverent Guide to Doing Anything Better (Accessorizing a Pixie ‘Do)

I’ve been so busy recently that there’s been no time to schedule a haircut, let alone take much time to make myself presentable.  So I turned to Josephine for some inspiration.

Being a “Josephine,” her first suggestion naturally was to go retro – like REALLY retro (circa 1800 to be precise)…

Josesphine with Laurel Headband

When I went searching online for a headband similar to the one she suggested, I found exactly what I was looking for here.

I was about to buy it, but since headbands sometimes pinch the sides of my head, I asked Josephine for more hair accessory ideas.  She showed me this look which I thought was darling…

Fancy Josephine

An online search for purple rose clip brought me to a very similar-looking product here.  I immediately bought the clip but realized I might need something less sumptuous for every day.

Josephine suggested something sunny, playful and fun like this small bobby pin flower.

Winking Josephine

Imagine my surprise when I learned all three lovely hair accessories are made by a friend and violist colleague from my Milwaukee Symphony Days!

(Coincidence?  Hmmm…)


Filed under Art, Josephine, marker and ink illustration

The Belle of the Beach – New Marker and Ink Illustration by Joana Miranda

Even though the back-to-school ads are already starting, in my opinion the best part of summer is now before us.  August is a time to cherish each warm and sunny day, to enjoy the sun without (hopefully) the mid-summer scorching heat, and to celebrate free time before schedules resume their hectic pace in the fall.

My latest illustration is an ode to making the most of every moment of the remaining days of summer!

Belle of the Beach cropped blog

(8.5 x 11 print now available at Joana Miranda Studio at Etsy)


Filed under A Talent for Design Shop, Art, Drawing, Josephine, marker and ink illustration

Drawing Inspiration from the Far East and the Masters of Shin Hanga Woodblock Prints

When a prospective client recently asked if I could create an illustration with Josephine on the beach, I was stumped.  Somehow, all that came to mind was wide swaths of yellow sand and blue water – nice if you’re experiencing it, but not so interesting in an illustration.

Then, last week, I had the good fortune to see the Women of Shin Hanga exhibit at Dartmouth’s Hood Museum.  While my illustrations don’t originate from wood block carvings like the Japanese prints that made up the exhibit, my concept is still similar in that I always start from a clean line drawing.  Like the Shin Hanga prints, the outlines remain visible in my finished artwork.  The elegant sense of line in these artworks is perfectly balanced with the use of sparse and contrasting colors which create visual geometry and a unifying sense of composition.

Although I wasn’t able to find an online reproduction of one of my favorite prints from the exhibit (a print that featured a lady in a black and white striped kimono), I did find reproductions of some of the other prints online.  Drawing from my memory of the black and white kimono striped print and this Shin Hanga print…

Shin Hanga snow fall print

I created this new illustration.

beach going babe

She might not be a geisha, but she’ll be the belle of the (beach) ball!


Filed under Art, Influences, Joana Miranda Studio, New work, print

News Travels Fast…Whimsical Marker and Ink Illustration by Joana Miranda

news travels fast cropped blog

(5×7 Congratulations card now available at Joana Miranda Studio at Etsy)

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Filed under Art, Drawing, Joana Miranda Studio, Joana Miranda Studio at Etsy, Josephine, marker and ink illustration, New work

An Illustration in Process (Step 2)

This past week I was caught up in a whirlwind of work – this time music related. Six performances (4 different programs), 2 rehearsals, and 3 students later, I’m ready to see the work week end!  But before I curl up on the couch with my husband, a movie, and some chewy candy, I’m posting the newly outlined (and fleshed out) version of the sketch I posted on Monday.  The next step will be the coloring…a step I’ve really come to look forward to ever since I got my new Copic Sketch markers.

Caution to the Wind

I’m still mulling over the greeting.  But perhaps that will work itself out after I’ve had a little more sleep!  Stay tuned…

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Filed under Art, illustration, Joana Miranda Studio, Josephine, New work, photography

Surprise! Whimsical Marker and Ink Illustration by Joana Miranda

Surprise! for blog

(5×7 birthday card now available at Joana Miranda Studio at Etsy)


Filed under Andre, Art, Drawing, Influences, Josephine, marker and ink illustration, New work