YardEdge Talks To Joanna Francis, Jamaican Photographer

YardEdge: Why are you an artist?

Joanna: It’s a part of my existence…it’s an expression of who I am and my desires, thoughts and dreams.

YardEdge: When did you first become one or when did you first realize that you wanted to be one?

Joanna: From ever since I was a child. I have paintings in my archives from I was 4 years old. All throughout my schooling right up to high school taking CXC I decided to pursue art and went to The Edna Manley Art School, where I completed a certificate in Painting/Photography.

YardEdge: What other artists have influenced you?

Joanna: Royan Grey, Albert Huie, Patrick Waldemar, Jasper Johns, Shirin Neeshat, and soooo many more!!!

YardEdge: What other interests do you have outside of creating art?

Joanna: Art Education – The youth are the future!

YardEdge: What inspires you to create art and how do you keep motivated when things get tough?

Joanna: Art is an expression of me, so creating art is a way for me to express my moods, whether it be through painting, or photography (mainly).

YardEdge: How long does it take you to do one of your pieces?

Joanna: In terms of painting, a piece can take a while depending on what it is I’m painting and how long it takes for me to feel satisfied with the outcome and feel that the piece is FINISHED (which is never an easy decision considering we as artists are our own worst critics). In terms of photography, it’s not just point and shoot. Being that we are now in a digital age, a photograph taken digitally goes through rigorous work in photoshop before it is printed.

YardEdge: How do you describe yourself?

Joanna: I’m free-spirited, a lover of nature and the outdoors. I tend to be serious, but love to laugh and have a good time. I’m moody, and emotional. A good trust worthy friend, a good listener. Love to be around family and friends.

YardEdge: What makes you happy?

Joanna: Positive people and positive energy. Being able to help others. Being able to teach someone and share my knowledge.

YardEdge: What makes you sad?

Joanna: Negative people and negative energy. Poverty, and seeing persons suffer from it!

YardEdge: What was the last book you read? What was it about?

Joanna: It’s Kind Of A Funny Story- about a depressed teenage boy (age 15) who was about to commit suicide and checked himself into the psychiatric ward of a hospital where he had to live for 5 days with the adults on the ward because the childrens ward was “under renovation”. It’s about his journey to realizing his potentials in life and the funny encounters he has with all the characters that live on the ward, his encounters with love, friendship, understanding, forgiveness. It kind of is a funny story. lol

YardEdge: What’s your favourite movie & why?

Joanna: Apocolypto…Teaches one to have faith and it shows how in tune with nature and the Most High we as human beings are inclined to be. Badass movie! I’ve watched it a countless amount of times, and will never get tired of it!

YardEdge: What’s your favourite food?

Joanna: : Pizza

YardEdge: Tell us a secret….

Joanna: If I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret now would it ???

You can contact Joanna via email at

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  24. […] Wednesday, Feb 24, YardEdge and Brand New Machine presented the Exhibitionist “Picture This” which showcased the talents of three young up and coming Jamaican photographers: ┬áJoanna Francis, Julian Cresser and Neil E. Williams. Check out the YardEdge interviews with┬áNeil E. Williams and Joanna Francis. […]

  25. […] See photo and an insightful interview of photographer Joanna Francis at […]

  26. […] out YardEdge interview with Joanna Francis Photographer – Julian Cresser Photographer – Neil E. Williams Photographer – Joanna […]

  27. January 1, 2010 at 2:21 pm — Reply

    […] 5. ┬áYardedge Talks to Joanna Francis, Jamaican Photographer […]

  28. December 31, 2009 at 4:47 pm — Reply

    […] 5. ┬áYardedge Talks to Joanna Francis, Jamaican Photographer […]

  29. […] Joanna Francis is a past student of the Edna Manley […]

  30. March 5, 2009 at 8:18 pm — Reply

    Ahhh I always run out of words when I see fabulous photography of the country I love! And I adore photo’s of Jamaican children.

    Very nicely done!!

  31. November 8, 2008 at 2:39 am — Reply

    maaaaad. great work Jo…love the pic of the boys at the beach…so much character!!! keep it up!

  32. Narco
    October 31, 2008 at 10:52 am — Reply

    Di Pics MAD!!!!!Sickly, What has not been said that i could add…..worse everbody sound so sophisticated, i mean,i know most people who comment and no insult but unnu rowdy more time ….. every other word haffi beep out if unnu fi go pon radio or tv..yu nuh..obviously it is being in the presence of tru greatness that has calmed the storm and left everyone in awe. Respect Joji Urchin, Keep Doing Jah Works, To Di World!!

    *Naugh nuh change a change A so We Grow, A so We Grow*

  33. Joanna Francis
    October 30, 2008 at 3:10 pm — Reply

    The Artist is he who detects and applies the law from observation of the works of Genius, whether of man or Nature. The Artisan is he who merely applies the rules which others have detected.
    Henry David Thoreau

  34. Joanna Francis
    October 30, 2008 at 3:05 pm — Reply

    aww Thank you Rose =D I Hope i have been able to inspire many others through my work! It is all out of love what i have to share. Love for nature, and love for capturing moments in time. Thank you all for the wonderful support! i am in awe at the amount of you who took the time to view and share words of encouragement with me. Blessings and love to you all. And if anyone is interested in prints, please feel free to email me…
    Thanks again everyone!!! Much Love!!! <3

  35. Rose Tavares-Finson
    October 30, 2008 at 11:40 am — Reply

    your work is inspirational as well as your words….an example to the youths of today.Photograpghy as a career was one of my choices and still a love,you make me want to pick up that camera again!!!

  36. Tahira Redwood
    October 30, 2008 at 9:58 am — Reply

    Fabulous photos
    my favourite is the second to last one.
    You have alot of talent and hope you continue pursuing you dreams as they have already started to come through, it is for others to realise and respect.

    nuff love

  37. Ricardo Lawrence
    October 29, 2008 at 11:48 pm — Reply

    Keep up the good work, Joanna….those were some of the most articulate responses I’ve ever heard in an interview. Oh, yeah – your pictures are very narrative. Congrats and best wishes on your career path.

  38. Christina Hanson
    October 29, 2008 at 6:02 pm — Reply

    you’ve captured the essence of Jamaica beautifully, no cliche, just real life, the real beauty of it all.. great work.. so happy for you and roud of you……

  39. Lisa
    October 29, 2008 at 3:31 pm — Reply

    Hey Jo…really amazing pics!!! Great to see you are doing what you love…Congrats!!! xx

  40. sandor
    October 29, 2008 at 10:47 am — Reply

    wicked shots

  41. Joanna Francis
    October 29, 2008 at 10:11 am — Reply

    Thank you Jordy! =D Much Love!

  42. Jordan McClure
    October 28, 2008 at 9:23 pm — Reply

    Great Interview, wonderful pics, Beautiful person…Congrats on the progress Jo

  43. andrene
    October 28, 2008 at 5:45 pm — Reply

    Hey this was an interesting interview…I enjoyed it…love your pics…my favorite is the sunse..keep up the good work girl…nuff love and respect..

  44. Hebron Williams
    October 28, 2008 at 2:53 pm — Reply

    Onelove sis
    Righteous inspirations and what I love is that you are doing what you love best and that is the most important thing in life.

    Rasta everytime and keep up the great art work.

    Love It!!

  45. Oris Shaw
    October 28, 2008 at 2:52 pm — Reply

    Bless-up Jo. Goods Works and more owrks await you keep it up!
    More Love More Respect and Blessing.

  46. Joanna Francis
    October 28, 2008 at 2:42 pm — Reply

    Phillip ur words especially have touched me. Amelia, thanks so much. We been outta touch for a while, thought i’d share with you what i’m doing. Hopefully you and everyone else who took the time out to shower me with blessings and love will share this with your friends, family and colleagues. It is all an expression of me! Tessa, thank you! I miss u dearly!

  47. Tessa Talbot
    October 28, 2008 at 9:49 am — Reply

    Beautiful photos- I especially like the one with the boys who have just been swimming.

  48. Amelia Thompson
    October 28, 2008 at 6:40 am — Reply

    Your work is truly beautiful and I really am awed by your talent and drive. I hear you on the positive people and positive energy!!!! Keep on speaking, keep on creating!

  49. October 28, 2008 at 2:47 am — Reply

    “Success is not the key to happiness.
    Happiness is the key to success.
    If you love what you are doing,
    you will be successful”…

    A quote i admire, these photo’s are show passion for something more than point and click, it shows a love for capturing time, observing one’s environment, with appreciation for the things within that environment, these photographs are the beginning of what Joanna Francis will become – a great artist.


  50. Joanna Francis
    October 27, 2008 at 9:22 pm — Reply

    Thank you a million times to all for the wonderful love and support you have given me throughout my endeavours! Jah is great! Blessings and Love unto you all!!!

  51. Emily Elliott
    October 27, 2008 at 6:14 pm — Reply

    Jo! Your pictures are awesome! Keep up the good work….so proud of you babe!

  52. October 27, 2008 at 5:09 pm — Reply

    Joanna, love yu works. Just continue do Jah works & everything must seal up.. Bless up Soul Israel

  53. Jeni Francis
    October 27, 2008 at 4:03 pm — Reply

    I always knew you had it in you….you make me very proud. Keep it up , you are a true artist and a wonderful daughter.

  54. Mark Wilson
    October 27, 2008 at 1:55 pm — Reply

    Excellent pictures!!! Great interview.

  55. Brian-Paul Welsh
    October 27, 2008 at 11:14 am — Reply

    Excellent work Joanna! Photography is probably my favourite art medium because it captures a moment of time that most of us would have otherwise missed. A pregnant pause, a pensive frown, the right glimmer of light on a leaf… things we seldom notice in our daily grind but that add such beauty to our existence once we stop to take a look.

    Bless up!

  56. Norman Brown
    October 27, 2008 at 7:51 am — Reply

    Joanna is Joanna’s greatest piece! A keeper!!!

  57. aiesha
    October 26, 2008 at 10:56 pm — Reply

    AMAZING photos…proud of you!

  58. kimmypoo
    October 26, 2008 at 10:52 pm — Reply

    Big up to you Jo,I absolutely love your pics. keep doing your thing.

  59. Eshe Moncrieffe
    October 26, 2008 at 10:35 pm — Reply

    It is so refreshing to see a new artist with so much talent, creativity and potential. Your photographs capture nature and life from a dramatized moment in time.

  60. Dwayne J Pascoe
    October 26, 2008 at 9:25 pm — Reply

    Jo, loving the photos…loving the interview. Glad to see u doing what u love, enjoying it & getting recognized. Keep it up!!

  61. Martin Hinds
    October 26, 2008 at 7:52 pm — Reply

    I love the photos and it was a good interview. Keep up the good work and keep letting that talent shine thorugh. Art (whether photography, painting, sculpture,etc) is inspirational and your work inspires. to quote henry david thoreau “The world is but a canvas to the imagination” Love you, God bless and keep the creativity coming.

  62. Betty Wilson
    October 24, 2008 at 7:30 pm — Reply

    Beautiful photos from a talented young artist and an insightful interview.

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