Uses This

A collection of nerdy interviews asking people from all walks of life what they use to get the job done.

A picture of Miranda Harmon

Miranda Harmon

Cartoonist, illustrator

Posted in cartoonist, illustrator

Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Miranda Harmon. I'm a cartoonist and illustrator. My work covers many genres but recently I've been focused mainly on autobio comics. I self publish online and riso print my comics into zines to sell at comics festivals. The most recent big comic I finished is called Harmontown, a true story about my experience with a podcast of the same name. A big theme in my work is technology, connection, and how the two intertwine in modern times. I tend to blend fantastical elements into my journal comics. I enjoy drawing a lot of plants and animals where they aren't actually supposed to be. I draw a lot of monsters, strange creatures, tropical plants, and stars.

Last year I graduated from the full year program at the Sequential Artists Workshop in Gainesville, Florida. I went straight there from undergrad and it was the best decision I ever made. I still live in Gainesville, so I still get to reap the benefits of being a part of that community.

What hardware do you use?

Sometimes I use bristol board or watercolor paper, but lately I often use regular sketchbook paper when drawing comics. I use a brush/nib and ink, or a pentel brush pen. I love to paint with watercolors (any kind, from a tube or in a cake). I have this big pack of cake watercolors that was gifted to me as a child by a family friend. Somehow, all these years later, it's still usable! The brand is unrecognizable - I call it my "magic watercolor set." Lately my work has been mostly analog inking and digital color. I feel like I have so much to learn about color, both digital and analog.

For printing, I'm lucky enough to have had access to a risograph printer for the past couple of years. I prefer riso printing because it's fast and the colored ink has so much possibility. Sometimes riso printing can be problematic because the machines I use are old, buggy, and nobody knows how to fix them when things go wrong! But overall I think riso printed comics are very charming. There's an inconsistency to the print quality that I love. It's never an exact science.

And what software?

The software I use the most is Photoshop. I usually scan in inked drawings or pages and color in Photoshop. Sometimes I ink there too, but rarely do I completely digitally ink a piece. Lately I've been experimenting with other programs such as Manga Studio and Flash, and I recently started using Twine to make a game.

What would be your dream setup?

I would love to work in a studio with lots of other people. As much as I like my space, the thing I miss most about school is being around other artists constantly. Otherwise it would be nice to somewhere easily accessible to nature, and somehow also a big city! I like to daydream about going off into the mountains and painting for months but I know I would miss civilization.