carnet de voyage

about the life and work of merlijne marell

Details from the printmaking studio. The printing process continues…

1. The drying rack with some pages and printed book cloth.
2. Some positive films for screen printing and the first print run (in woodblock) of a goat.
3. The pile of woodcuts is still growing :-) 


lucycookgraphics asked: I'm studying graphics in college and hoping to achieve and go uni so came across your blog as I was doing a little research on my college blog. Your work is brilliant, I really like your style! Cool blog :)

Thank you so much :-)
And good luck with your studies!


blog hop

What am I working on?
At the moment I spend most of my time on finishing my book. I started two years ago with realising an idea and a dream: writing, illustrating and printing a picture book with my own fairy tale about a grandmother, seven goats and a villain. Most of the work is already done: the story is written and printed in letterpress; the main part of the illustrations has been sketched, converted into wood block or screen printing and printed; the book design is determined. Yet there are some very intense weeks to come in which the final artwork will be printed and the books have to be bound.

imageHow does my work differs from others in it’s genre?
It depends on what you want to compare ;-) But overall I think my work can be recognized by the visual language and the use of colour. I like to pay attention to shapes and attitude when I draw a character. The lines have to be simple and balanced. I really love colour and enjoy the use of various materials and techniques. Therefore, the execution plays a major role in the character and appearance of my work.

Why do I create what I do?
First of all I create to give birth to my ideas. Secondly I create because it gives pleasure to my hands and eyes. I think stories are very important to humans and secretly I hope to make the world just a little bit more beautiful with my (visual) stories…



How does my creative process work?
The best part of starting a new project is thinking about it, getting my ideas in line. Everything is possible in this stage! I get a lot of inspiration by thinking about the colours I want to use, and collecting images that help me to define my idea, my ‘world’. I find it useful to designate one nice (selfmade) sketchbook to collect my visual and textual notes. After a period of collecting and defining the new world of the story I want to tell, it is time for all the fleeting images in my head to turn into concrete sketches. That proves the hardest part of my creative process. When it’s time for the practical execution, I work best when my hands take over the work of my head. Although it’s impossible for me to switch off my thoughts completely. I hope one day I’ll find the perfect balance between my hands, eyes and thoughts…

imageThank you Patrice Aarts for inviting me to this blog hop. It’s the first time that I spend so many words in a blogpost. Usually I prefer to let the images speak for me :-) But every now and then it is good to put my work and creative process into words… I want to ask textile designer Hermine van Dijck and illustrator Julie van Wezemael to answer this questions too, when this bloghop hops to their blogs…

A brief introduction: I met Hermines work for the first time during her graduation show at KASK (the same art school where I studied). At home, still impressed by her beautiful textiles, I discovered her blog. During summer I read all the blogposts she had written so far. Meanwhile, we also met each other in real life. Julie I met back in 2008, when I was an exchange student at KASK and we attended the same class. Three years ago we met again (and better) when we both became master students in illustration. I really like her illustrations, and I think our work is related somehow. But on the other hand it’s quite different, and sometimes I can be surprised by it.

I hope you’ll enjoy their blogs!



NEW in the shop
silkscreen ‘hare’

I made this design as birth announcement for Warre and printed a few copies without his name and personal details. So more people can enjoy this sweet little piece of art! Suits the living room as well as the children’s, or write someones name on it for a personalized card in case of a special occasion…


It keeps amazing me in which colors and shapes nature appears to us…

1. Rhipsalis in handmade plant hanger.
2. Dried leaf of a fern with spores.
3. The Calathea Triostar, with it’s beautiful ‘painted’ leafs.

It’s appropriate to draw a portrait of Nattiggeit on this rainy day.Nattiggeit stonknaar een natte wollen jas, opgezwollen door de regen.Nattiggeit was permanent vochtig en opgezwollen,maar meestal kwam dat niet door de neerslag buiten.Het waren de buien in haar kopdie maar niet wilden overwaaienen haar neerslachtig maakten.(fragment uit: ‘Schobbejacques en de 7 geiten’, door Merlijne Marell)

It’s appropriate to draw a portrait of Nattiggeit on this rainy day.

Nattiggeit stonk
naar een natte wollen jas, opgezwollen door de regen.
Nattiggeit was permanent vochtig en opgezwollen,
maar meestal kwam dat niet door de neerslag buiten.
Het waren de buien in haar kop
die maar niet wilden overwaaien
en haar neerslachtig maakten.

(fragment uit: ‘Schobbejacques en de 7 geiten’, door Merlijne Marell)


I went picking flowers again and I love the color explosion I brought home! I especially like the red panicles, leaves and stems in this bouquet. And the tiny little spots that the rain gave to some flowers.

Only one ‘fox and raven’ silkscreen left!
If you order today, I will fill your package with a few extra foxes (on postcards)…
‘vos en raaf’ (fox and raven) silkscreen on stiff grey board 205 x 150 x 1,2 mm☛

Only one ‘fox and raven’ silkscreen left!

If you order today, I will fill your package with a few extra foxes (on postcards)…

‘vos en raaf’ (fox and raven) 
silkscreen on stiff grey board 
205 x 150 x 1,2 mm



Printing an illustration!

1. ink supply
2. mixing just the right color
3. inked woodcut at the right spot at the press (using a wooden template)
4. and than the paper in exactly the right place, thanks to the registration marks on the template
5. the second layer is printed!
6. cutting the third layer is a lot of work…
7. the third plate - I love the bare carved wood
8. the third plated inked - I love the inked woodcut too, it’s always a surprise!
9. the drying rack will be filled with printed pages
10. the result so far, I think I’ll add another layer in silkscreen…


My mother wanted to celebrate her birthday with picking flowers at nursery garden Overhagen. They have a piece of land sown with flowers, which you are allowed to pick at a small fee. Picking flowers is one of my favorite summer activities, so I couldn’t wish for a better party. Thank you mom for inviting me :-)