I’ve been focusing of late on cat cartoon sketches. My inspiration, of course, is my mom’s little Siamese cat. When he’s not pushing his favorite green pipe cleaner under the bedroom door to me (hours of hide and seek style fun for us!) he’s been assisting at my impromptu drafting table on the porch.

Last night’s pen and ink cat cartoon sketches were given the once-over today.

Photo of cat cartoon ink doodles by Joana Miranda

We also discussed the merits of working with a dip pen and India ink…

Photo of cute Siamese cat looking at artist's dip pen, taken by Joana Miranda

And painting with a limited primary watercolor palette.

(As you can see, it’s exhausting being an art critic.)


Meanwhile, since I felt like I was on the right track – but not yet quite where I wanted to be – I then moved on to doodling some cat cartoons in pencil. After all, if you’ve got nine lives, why not spend them cartooning and illustrating?!

Here are the cat cartoon sketches that emerged…


Going with simpler shapes for the head and body is proving to be key. I am excited to see the cat cartoon illustrations start to really come to life now.

(And soon they’ll be getting into mischief for sure!)


What’s next? I plan to study some classic cat animations to learn how to incorporate even more movement and humor into my illustrations. I’ll admit that sometimes it feels like two paws forward, one paw back. Suffice to say, I know I’m only just beginning to scratch the surface of what’s possible…

Stay tooned!


  1. Helen Reich says:

    Puck is sooooo darling, and I’m looking forward to seeing the progress you’re making with cat cartoons. The cat mags won’t know what hit them. I’m working on some new stuff too, today……a very fine occupation for a humid July 4th.

    • Joana says:

      Hi Helen,

      We’ve got your humidity now…and my mom even turned on the AC in the cottage. (My dad would be scandalized.) Puck is like a limp dish rag. All he wants to do is sleep during the day; then, of course, he’s up at 5 a.m. wanting to play. Sigh.

      I’ve been working on cartoons of my mom today (a different beast entirely. Hee-hee!)
      xox – Joana

  2. Amy Samin says:

    These are fabulous, Joana! I’m loving browsing around your blog.

    • Joana says:

      Thanks so much, Amy! The next frontier for me is figuring out which of my watercolors are transparent and which are opaque and then how to use them better. The more I learn, the less I know. Sigh. I hope you are doing well and that you have a wonderful August! 🙂 Joana

  3. Piet Frans says:

    Dear Joana, I really like the simplicity of your lines and images. I agree with you- the more you learn about art, the less you know! Piet Frans (iginoramos.com)

    • Joana says:

      Hi Piet, Thanks so much for your nice comment! Yes, these days as I illustrate I almost feel like I’m trying to forget all that I’ve learned (though of course I know the knowledge I’ve gained along the way is invaluable.) Now I’m off to tackle some more cat illustrations…and try to see if I can get the expressions I want with a minimum of lines!
      🙂 Joana

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