Since we first featured her as part of our 2010 Graduate Series, here, Graphic Design major and illustrator Mieke van der Merwe has been teaching English in South Korea.
Her travels have not been restricted to Asia though and over the last two years Mieke has visited the UK, Europe and America, and she has been drawing all she sees along the way. Mieke fills journals with her hand drawn snapshots and says, “To me a journal is a place where I can capture the essence and spirit of a country through a way of expression that a photograph often fails to capture.” Only teaching half day, Mieke has time to sketch on a regular basis to update her page, A doodle a day.
In March last year she was part of the 5 man exhibition, ‘Radar’, at Salon91. She says, “In this exhibition I exhibited works of my European and Asian travels and was well received by the South African public. In November of 2012 I had a solo exhibition in South Korea to showcase my work which also consisted of my travel styled illustrations. People found the drawings quite interesting because I was drawing Korea from a ‘foreigner’s’ point of view in a ‘South African’ based style. It was a true privilege to have been able to exhibit in two countries, and seeing different responses and feedback on the style and content of the work.”
Mieke describes her work as loose and expressive, portraying more the feeling of her surroundings than a perfect realistic representation. For her, the process of making the picture is very important, and she is quick to work mistakes into her images feeling they contribute to the end result.
Mieke moves back home next month to pursue a freelance career. Find more of her work at www.behance.net/mieke.