In honor of it being New Year’s Eve, I wanted to pull out all the stops and create an extra festive design:

Watercolor and Gouache Erté-Inspired Rendering by Joana Miranda

My inspiration for this design was none other than Erté, the Russian-born French Art Deco designer and artist.  Born Romain de Tirtoff in St. Petersburg in 1892, Tirtoff adopted the pseudonym Erté  (the pronunciation of his initials in French) to avoid causing his family embarrassment when, against his father’s wishes, he chose to pursue a career as a designer instead of going into the navy.  His successful, long and diverse career in fashion, jewelry, costume/set design (theatre, opera and film), graphic arts and interior design, has continued to influence fashion and design in this century.  I’ve always been drawn to his prints for their elegance, glamour, sophisticated style and nostalgia for a bygone era.  To be half the artist that Erté was would be an honor indeed.  At least we share one trait in common:

Erté said, “Look at me, I’m in another world – a dream world that invites oblivion. People take drugs to achieve such freedom from their daily cares. I’ve never taken drugs. I’ve never needed them. I achieve a high through work.”

(For those of you observant readers, you may have noticed that I signed this rendering “Gem”.   My pseudonym of choice, the English pronunciation of my initials, is coincidentally apropos for someone who loves jewelry design as much as I do.)

Happy New Year!

Joana Miranda


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