Biography

Edgardo Miranda Rodriguez’s first comic book was Spidey Super Stories #17 – adorned with a John Romita, Sr. cover commemorating the bicentennial with a Spider Man/Captain America team-up – and he’s been hooked ever since. Even as he’s founded his own studios Somos Arte and Studio Edgardo, worked on campaigns for notable brands including Olay, Pantene, COVERGIRL, and Fruit of the Loom, nonprofits such as El Puente, Downtown Urban Theater Festival and ASPIRA of
New York
, and prestigious institutions like Columbia University, comic books have been a constant in his life. 
 
“We didn’t have the money to go downtown to see art shows in museums and galleries,” he says, “so I collected cans and bottles to make enough money to buy my comic books. I’d take them home, study the line art, then tried to recreate the pieces myself and expand upon them with my own unique renditions.” 
 
In his early 20s, Edgardo was sought out to be the Artistic Director of Palante Siempre Palante, part of PBS’ acclaimed POV Documentary Series. The film received the Silver Apple Award from the National Educational Media Alliance.
 
Prior to opening up his own studios, Edgardo worked at Williamsburg’s El Puente, an organization devoted to improving lives and promoting social justice by preparing and encouraging youth to take leadership roles in their communities and the world. Through producing and promoting events such as poetry slams and the annual Three Kings Day Celebration, Edgardo gained experience organizing culturally and socially conscious work. Edgardo made it his mission to teach hip-hop culture in the classroom, and supplemented his work by bringing in legendary artists guest speakers like Crazy Legs, Rosie Perez, Q-Tip, Tony Touch and Bobbito Garcia. This trailblazing work earned Edgardo a personal invitation by philosopher Maxine Greene to present to her graduate students at Teachers College. Recently Edgardo was invited by the Tribeca Film Institute to join their roster of teaching artists. It was also at El Puente that Edgardo honed his skills as a graphic designer and taught himself desktop publishing. His graphic design work could be seen all over New York City on billboards for the 2000 U.S. Census. As a senior designer for one of the first popular social networking websites, MiGente.com, Edgardo designed microsites for the Watcha Tour and Hispanic Heritage Month. Along the way Edgardo was picking up art curation, web design, advertorial and video production skills.
 
Of his style, Edgardo says: “I’m a Nuyorican, so I already have that aesthetic engrained in my DNA. I see, create and imagine art from that perspective. I grew up in poor neighborhoods in the South Bronx exposed to beautifully rendered graffiti murals in my school’s playground walls and on the subway cars.  […] I find inspiration in many places. Comic book shops in Manhattan;  street art in Santurce, Puerto Rico; graffiti in the South Bronx; art galleries in Chelsea and toy stores in Seoul, South Korea. I am inspired my big tentpole blockbuster films and small indepent art house films. I listen to Beethoven, Hector Lavoe and Run-DMC and I love mofongo con fricase de pollo hecho en Café Molini’s on Calle Loiza in Santurce, Puerto Rico. Well written stories draw me in. Stories that evoke fantasy, imagination, struggle for justice, youth and comedy inspire me. I’m also inspired to work with many of my friends because I believe and respect their work as artists and producers. I’m very blessed to know so many artists that I have the chance to grow and work with.”
 
It all paid off when things came full circle. In 2009, Edgardo finally had a chance to work with Marvel Entertainment curating and providing key visuals for the art exhibit Marvelous Color at the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, and exhibit focusing on Marvel’s African-American superheroes. He was also called upon to curate comic book editor and artist Joe Quesada’s first solo art show, Santerians, focusing on the eponymous all-Latino super-team.
 
Edgardo’s most recent work includes the rebranding and redesign the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Columbia
University
’s website; he is also the in-house graphic designer for Columbia’s Institute for Research in African-American Studies. There he worked directly under the late Dr. Manning Marable, designing the website for Marable’s posthumously published, Pulitzer prize winning Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention. In 2012, he launched his another business: Studio Edgardo. In addition to branding and web design, Studio Edgardo naturally also provides art direction for graphic novels.
 
Edgardo earned his Bachelor of Arts from Colgate University. He resides with his son in Brooklyn, NY. “The relationship between me and my son is the most important to me,” says Edgardo. “If I can work on a project that he is excited and wants to be a part of, then I know I’m still in touch with that child that was reading Spider-Man and drawing comic books for his friends.”