Jourdanton native Edward Miranda is loving life and demonstrating that art comes in many forms.
The 2003 Jourdanton High School graduate and ongoing student at Schreiner University in Kerrville has found a passion for decorating pallets with patriotic themes.
Using spray paint, Edward can be seen at his home in Jourdanton transforming plain pallets into brightly-colored American and Texas flags.
“I love doing this. This is fun. I like it when people wave, smile and honk,” said Miranda.
He described one passer-by with POW badges and an American flag on his jacket. He saw what Edward was creating and saluted him.
“I’m not a veteran. I’ve never been in the military, but when he saluted it, that made me feel a sense of American pride.”
He explained that it was only supposed to be a one-time deal. He only planned on making one for himself, but then his excitement grew. His father saw the spray paint cans and asked if he was doing graffiti, but later when he saw his son’s work he wanted to have one for himself.
While attending college in Kerrville, Miranda was fortunate enough to meet famous artisan and Texan jewelry maker James Avery.
“I had met him awhile back, a couple of years ago. I met him in town, he was kind of a popular guy. He recently passed away. To me, he was a genius . . . a living Picasso. He really was. He lived an impressive life. Living in Kerrville, you cannot miss what influence he made.”
Mr. Avery told Miranda, “You know what, Edward, people laughed at me.”
People who questioned what Avery knew about jewelry with his military background and others who thought men shouldn’t be making jewelry were later apologizing and asking, “Hey, can you make my wife something?”
Said Miranda, “He was an inspiration. I didn’t know him super well. I just remember that one conversation in particular and it sticks out to me.”
He added, “Even if people don’t buy them, the fact that they are out there and I’m still saying, ‘I live in the greatest country of all time.’ I really do. I am proud to be an American and proud to be a Texan.”
Miranda enjoys meeting business owners and is grateful for the oil field companies, restaurants, etc. who help him out with pallets. They could charge him if they wanted to, but they have not.
“I love local art. I think there are a lot of local artists out here that are inspiring and they don’t get the recognition they deserve, but there is some great talent out there. There’s some great talent in small towns.”
He describes his artwork as something he does in his down time, a labor of love. He did not really think of ever selling any until, by coincidence, someone asked if they could buy one.
“I’ll be out here and then some people will come on by and say, ‘Hey, are you just doing that to make your property look nice?’ Then I say, ‘If you want to buy one, you are more than welcome to.’ I’m not charging an arm and a leg, I’m not trying to make a million dollars. I love it and it makes me happy. Fresh air, sunshine, freedom. I’ll have the barbecue grill going on while I’m out here.”
He has given some out and sold others.
“I’m just really a big fan of local artists and I want to show that not everyone who has a spray paint can in their hand is a troublemaker or criminal. Some people are making some very beautiful things.”
He is excited about what the future brings and is grateful for every day.
“I have gone through some personal hell and have lost some great people, but I know there is a reason for all of this. I think we all have something awesome to share.”
“I don’t want to be the next James Avery, Keith Haring or Bansky, I just want to be me. It’s about being able to make something and putting it in someone’s yard or their property and say, I am proud to be an American.”