Marijke Buurlage’s illustrations are a feast for the eyes. Her work – vibrant, light-hearted, playful and feminine – mostly centers around animals and botanicals (two subjects she likes to draw best). So it comes as no surprise that when it comes to her inspiration – nature takes the cake.
“I think what mostly inspires me is nature,” she reflected in an interview with the Hidden Hipsters. “All the colors, patterns and shapes that you can find in nature are so amazing and beautiful!” she gushed. According to Buurlage, she often feels the need to sketch when she’s outside. These little doodles of animals and botanicals will often reappear in her illustrations as decorative elements. “My work often contains ornaments that are inspired by nature,” she stressed, “I don’t think I could create anything that is really ‘me’ without these botanical decorations.”
Based in the Netherlands, Buurlage grew up in a small village where nature was prevalent. Having graduated from Minerva Academy Groningen in 2013, she has been working as a freelance illustrator ever since, working on editorial illustrations for magazines, children’s books, book covers, posters, apps, and e-books.
“Children’s books from the fifties, sixties, and seventies really inspire me,” she notes. “I often go to second-hand stores to look through all the beautifully illustrated covers of these books for inspiration. I love the use of color and shapes in these picture books and the characters are always so adorable. My vintage children’s book collection is growing every week!”
Aside from her editorial work, Buurlage also runs an Etsy shop, where you can find illustrated goodies, such as posters, pins, and postcards. But you can also enjoy her work from afar, via Instagram.