Happy New Year my friends! Over the past week I haven’t spent much time on my computer because I’ve been busy at my drafting table. Recently, I put the finishing touches on 3 brand new cartoons for a December 31st magazine submission deadline. Since then, I’ve been focusing on cat sketches for a new cat cartoon commission. Because I want to “cartoonify” my client’s cat but still keep the cat recognizable, I’ve been spending some time studying and comparing different cat breed pictures and creating various cat sketches.

Creating cat sketches is the first step in my cartooning process:

Cat sketches of different cat breeds for cartooning reference.  Pencil sketches by Joana Miranda

As you can see above, the breeds I chose for my pencil cat sketches have distinctly different face shapes and characteristics. Comparing and contrasting face shapes and body types – and simplifying both – is the key to creating interesting cartoons.

(My favorite breed currently, of course, is the Siamese since we have one in the family. But if I had a magic wand – and if we could have a cat in our apartment! – I might opt to get a Singapura.)

Cartooning a cat…

Is a lot easier if you know the breed well and have observed it in action. For fun, I did this quick ball-point pen Siamese cat cartoon after finishing the pencil sketches above.

Who knew cats could be so entertained by a coiled up fuzzy pipe cleaner! (If you haven’t tried it with your cat, make haste! Hours of fun await…)

P.S. If you want to see more of my cat illustrations, please visit my shop at Etsy.


  1. Mehmeh says:

    You should also mention that if you give kitty a pipe cleaner you will need a stick to dig it out from under the fridge or sofa every day…☺️

    • Joana says:

      Yah, I thought of mentioning the “seamy underbelly” of pipe-cleaner toys, but decided against it. Little Pucky is going to be so happy to have you fetching his pipe cleaners for him again!

      xox – J

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