Meet Meredith Miotke, the artist who created the cover illustration for this week's MT

click to enlarge Self portrait of the artist. - Meredith Miotke
Meredith Miotke
Self portrait of the artist.
We first learned about illustrator Meredith Miotke's work from the College for Creative Studies annual student exhibition a few years ago, when we saw her maps of Detroit project. We weren't the first publication to appreciate her work — since then, she's created illustrations for Crain's and Loveland Technologies. We spoke to Miotke, who now lives in Boston, by phone to learn more. 

Metro Times: Thanks again for your hard work on that illustration. You really went the extra mile!

Meredith Miotke: No problem. Sorry, I get really involved with things when I draw them! It was a lot of fun.

MT: How did you create that image?

Miotke: I drew it out in ink first, like all the streets and houses. Then I scanned it in, and colored it with a Wacom tablet in Photoshop.

MT: Is that how you typically work — pen and ink, and then finish it digitally?

Miotke: Yeah, always. I can't really go straight into it digitally. My lines are kind of shaky, and it doesn't get that texture to it. I like being able to move the paper around, and the surface of the paper is better than the surface of the tablet. 

MT: I remember seeing your Corktown stuff at the student show.

Miotke: It was for my senior thesis with Dave Chow. I was having a really hard time figuring out what I wanted to do for that. I like Detroit, and I like travelling, and I like history, and I like food. When I navigate places, it's always based on what places there is to get something to eat, or some kind of landmark like that! So I thought I'd make a map of that! (Laughs)

click to enlarge Meet Meredith Miotke, the artist who created the cover illustration for this week's MT
Meredith Miotke

MT: Did you do a lot of other map stuff after that?

Miotke: Actually, I hated — well, I didn't hate, but I really didn't like perspective or the thought of buildings before I did that project. Since then I've done a Belle Isle map, Midtown, Eastern Market, and a couple for a couple other clients like the Skillman Foundation, Loveland, and Crain's. I know Detroit pretty well now. (Laughs)

MT: You live in Boston now, right? So you're like, vicariously living in Detroit through these maps.

Miotke: I miss Detroit a lot! So it's kind of nice to get these projects.

MT: Are you from the metro Detroit area originally?

Miotke: I grew up in Dearborn.

Meet Meredith Miotke, the artist who created the cover illustration for this week's MT
Meredith Miotke

MT: What other kinds of freelance work have you done?

Most of it is in Detroit, which kind of surprises me. I'm trying to get some stuff outside of Detroit. I like freelancing. 

MT: You have a day job working at Converse in Boston, right? What do you do there?

Miotke: Graphics. So I'm actually drawing pictures all day. We do patterns and things like that.

MT: We met your co-worker Victor "Marka27" Quiñonez painting a mural in Southwest Detroit last weekend.

Miotke: I'm so jealous that he got to go to Detroit for that! He was like, "Have you ever been to the Bronx bar?" I'm like, "Of course I have! I've drank, um, way too many soft drinks there!" 

Check out Miotke's work in this week's Metro Times, or see more on her website

About The Author

Lee DeVito

Leyland "Lee" DeVito grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, where he read Metro Times religiously due to teenaged-induced boredom. He became a contributing writer for Metro Times in 2009, and Editor in Chief in 2016. In addition to writing, he also supplies occasional illustrations. His writing has been published...
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