My name is Marloes De Vries and I’m a visual storyteller.

I mainly work as an illustrator, writer and artist. Partly from my studio near Rotterdam (the Netherlands) and partly from the United Kingdom, where I love being most. I work with book publishers, magazines and create landscape paintings. The narrative element in my work is key.

It’s important to me to incorporate sensitivity, with a big dollop of humour. Honest and clear lines, without fuss.

Over twenty years ago I started as a freelance web designer. I was only 14 years old but I loved the technical aspect of creating websites and I loved graphic design. After graduating from art school with a Bdes in Visual Communication in 2007, I worked as a graphic designer and art director at advertising agencies. A bit later I started working as a freelancer, both as a designer and photographer. In 2010 I decided to take the leap and become a (children’s book) illustrator.

That is over ten years ago (time flies) and I got the opportunity to illustrate over 35 books and hundreds of magazines. I write my own books and write scenarios and paint landscapes in my spare time.
More and more I’m pursuing an autonomous creative career instead of being a visual translator.

RANDOM FACTS

I was born and raised in the countryside of the Netherlands, near the German border, but I’ve been living in Rotterdam for almost 10 years.
My grandfather used to run a printshop in his garage. As a little girl I wandered around a lot and still love the sound of a Heidelberg printing press.
I knew very early on I wanted to do something creative although I’m not from a creative family. I was 4 when I said I wanted to be a painter.
I’ve illustrated almost 40 books. It’s even a miracle to me how it’s possible to have done that in 10 years time!
Whenever I can I travel to the United Kingdom. That country feels like my true home.
I get extremely excited by pink skies!
Hiking boots on and grab a backpack: I love hiking in the hills of Great Britain.
It’s no secret anymore that I love Tunnocks Teacakes. Still waiting for my sponsor deal.
Before I work in illustration, I worked as an art director, graphic designer and (wedding) photographer.

What I love

Collecting books and reading (in that order), pink skies, walking for hours in nature (preferably without traffic noise), the United Kingdom, sea air, krentenbollen with cheese, old yellowed paper and notebooks to write on and in, grocery stores in other countries, pandas, sharpening pencils, neon pink paint and pencils, reading novels in bed during daytime, walks in the woods in Autumn, pancakes with syrup, British detective series, chocolate with caramel and sea salt, freshly washed bedding, wearing jumpers that are way too big, walking barefoot on freshly mowed grass, chickens and sheep, practising philosophy whilst in the shower, philosophy in general, car rides with Bram so I can look at the passing landscape, books and magazines on psychology, spending hours browsing in book shops, wearing mittens in winter, collecting old photos of people I don’t know and tea with milk and sugar.

Education

2022 | Social psychology: the science of well-being | Yale University (online)
2016 – 2021 | Several courses painting techniques and picture book writing
2015 | Masterclass picture book illustration | Chris Haughton, Benji Davies and Alexis Deacon, Atapuerca (Spain)
2012 | Course picture book illustration | Anglia Ruskin, Cambridge (UK)
2011 | Course writing children’s books | Tjibbe Veldkamp, Groningen (NL)
2007 | Visual Communication BDes | AKI (Academy for visual arts and design), Enschede (NL)
2003 | VWO-diploma | Emmen (NL)

Clients

Wieden + Kennedy, Flow Magazine, Ohh Deer, 3D Total, Leopold Uitgevers, Süddeutsche Zeitung, BNO, Teylers Museum, Island Press, Lannoo, NTR/NPO/3FM, NRC, Tina, Drents Museum, TEDx, Lev. Publisher, Flair, Ravensburger, Bibliotheek Rotterdam, Viking Direct, Luitingh-Sijthoff, American Greetings, Uitgeverij Loopvis, Uitgeverij Rubinstein, Uitgeverij Snor, Usborne Publishers, Provincie Drenthe, Memisa, Blossom Books, Van Halewyck Uitgeverij, Gallery Nucleus, Workman Publishers New York, Zwijssen, Lev., Hautekiet Uitgevers, A.W. Bruna Uitgevers.