The London based artist Marie Err summarises her work as illustrations, screen prints, comics and stupidity… And indeed, she doesn’t make the usual ‘soft girlie drawings’ ; her work has obviously some playful graffiti influences. Besides her nice drawings, she also makes great illustrative typography.
Are you from a family of creatives?
No, not at all really, my family is super random profession-wise from police officers to teachers, I’m pretty much the only one who took the stupid decision of attempting at a drawing/painting career and trying to make a living out of it.
Did anyone have an impact on you and you career choice?
I had a couple of friends that used to draw all the time and I used to love their stuff. I kinda started because I liked other people’s drawings so much that I wanted to learn to how do some of my own. So that’s kinda how it started. Apart from that, I was never the kid who drew all the time, on the contrary.
If you were not a print artist, where do you think you would be now?
Argh, I’ve always wanted to be a surgeon and put my hands inside people’s bodies, holding tasty organs and seeing nasty diseases/mutations. I’d never know if I had the brains for it tho, but I quite like to fantasise about my life as an awesome doctor. Anatomy is cool.
Did you have a specific goal to achieve in you career? Have you achieved it yet?
Not yet, I’m just rolling around doing stuff that I like up until now. I get super excited about cool commissions so I’m feeling quite pleased and lucky to do what I like the most and get payed for it, such a fulfilling feeling.
Can you take us through the evolution of your work and style.
I’ve actually started as super digital based illustrator. On the other hand, now I try to spend the less time I can working on the computer, the process is not as nice and I don’t really feel like it’s me. I feel like I’m much more myself when I use pens and brushes than with digital tools. Then I feel like the more I explore hand techniques the more my style evolves. It already has changed kind of a lot over the years, for better I suppose, and I’m feeling pretty confident and comfortable with the style I have now.
What is it about the process of screen print that you love?
Oh man, you gotta love the sweet smell of the ink.
Tell us how you developed this love.
It all started only last year when I started my MA Illustration down in Camberwell, the printmaking facilities there are super cool and I fell in love with it straight away. It’s super time consuming and it gets to your nerves in the beginning, but once you get used to it it’s amazing. I also did a bit at Nobrow when I had my internship there and learnt some cool and super useful tricks!
Take us through a typical day in the life of Marie ERR.
I try to wake up everyday around 7am, but I’ve been rather lazy lately, have my cup of tea and start drawing till 10.30 because then I head to the office of a gallery I work for. And if it’s Thursday there’s gotta be some sweet opening around and you know then it’s party, party, party.
Tell us about your workspace.
Pretty much just my room, big table by the window, loads of markers and sketch pads around and silly cat sleeping and throwing stuff to the floor.
Are you clean and tidy or do you like a creative mess?
I freak out loads with my working table! I really try to keep it tidy so I don’t distract myself too much with random stuff. But at the end of the day it’s always a big mess. I’ve just realised I got nail polishers and hand creams mixed with brushes and markers.
How would you describe your style?
Cartoony, colourful and stupid.
How do you feel about artists adapting their personal style for a paid commission?
I guess it depends on what you want to achieve for your career as an illustrator. In my personal case people usually come to me cause they like my style, and that’s what I’m happy doing.
What are you working on at the moment?
Pretty much books, t-shirts and music related stuff. But I’ve got some pretty cool projects about to pop out real soon!