Hello! My name is Miriam Figueras, I’m 33 and I’m an illustrator and graphic designer from Barcelona, Spain, where I currently live (follow me on Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter and visit my website!). Although I had been drawing and illustrating from a very early age, I didn’t fully pursue this passion until this year when everything seemed to finally fall into place.
Besides art, cinema has been very close to my heart and especially classic films. My childhood heroes were Gene Kelly, Cary Grant and Errol Flynn. English wasn’t obviously my main language but because of those movies I adored, I felt compelled to learn it, also at a very early age.
So after finishing high school and facing the dreaded decision of choosing a career, I opted for Audiovisual Communication which, at that time, I thought was the closest to cinema I could get. I hadn’t yet considered an artistic career as a profession and I soon found out that the path I had taken was not the one for me.
I dropped after one year and then started Multimedia Engineering but, again, I felt the move wasn’t right. I explored my options at that point and decided to study Graphic Design which I eventually completed. Looking back I can see now that the classes I loved the most where the ones including drawing sessions and illustrating techniques. Art had been there the whole time, I just didn’t realize.
After I finished my studies, I started working at a small comics publishing company focusing on editorial design. Although I liked it, the job didn’t last long and then I shifted to agencies, working as a multidisciplinary graphic designer. A few years later, it dawned on me that the professional life I was living wasn’t still the one that fulfilled me. It was high time that I finally took the step of a lifetime and that’s when I became a freelance illustrator and self-proclaimed artist, at last.
Having finally found my place and this amazing creative community through Instagram, I can say without a doubt that I couldn’t be happier. Mine has been a long journey to discovering the artist I always longed to be.
I also delved into watercolors after watching the amazing creations online and bought a new set of new materials, in addition to the ones I already used, like Kuretake’s Watercolor Palette or Winsor & Newton professional watercolors. I love illustrating food, plants and meaningful objects. I’m hugely inspired by traditional British botanical scientific art, vintage cookbooks and contemporary illustrators I keep on bumping into. There’s so much amazing creativity out there. Despite my obvious international influences, I also try to give more visibility to products and wonderful dishes of Catalan and Spanish gastronomy.
My creative process begins with a pencil sketch, as detailed as possible in order to capture the light and different hues of the object I’m painting. I normally continue with a very light and transparent first layer of watercolor. Then I gradually add more and more pigment until I have reached the desired saturation. I either finish my illustrations using Prismacolor Colored Pencils for more definition or just my trusty Graphite 2B Pencil with which I love giving emphasis on shadows and object juxtaposition. Depending on the subject, specially when I do client work, I use Copper Gouache or Finetec Pearl Watercolors for detail. I’m nuts for that metallic effect!
At the moment, I’m also working on my new website which will also include a blog where I will further explain my process, influences and projects. Sharing my passion and connecting with other artists has meant the world to me. That is what makes me want to improve and pursue a happier life which, for me, has to be filled with art and creativity. By being my better self, I can improve the lives of those around me. This has been my journey.
Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!