blog - 'The Girl in the Wild' by Gwen Vanderstraeten

'The Girl in the Wild' by Gwen Vanderstraeten
Aug 23, 2019

Yugen collaborates with local illustrators to capture and visualize the Yugen essence. Their creations conceptualize how they interpret this Ancient Japanese concept. It's their personal homage to the beauty of the natural world and the limitless creativity of the mind to capture the subtle details of life.

In this ongoing series, we ask every illustrator the same questions, who are they, what is the story behind the design, and what holds the future. Let's dive deep into their minds and join them in their imaginary world of wonders.

Who is Gwen Vanderstraeten?

Gwen Vanderstraeten, aka Mellon, is an illustrator living and working in Antwerp. She works for clients in the editorial, cultural and commercial sector. For Yugen, she illustrated the Cherry-Thyme flavour.

Mellons illustrations always include a lot of detail, colour and little elements. Tropical jungle plants, music and human portraits are recurring elements. She starts off with pencil on paper, but most of the work is coloured digitally. She finds it liberating to try new ways of drawing and to experiment with techniques, nonetheless striving to keep a recognizable Mellon feel to it all.

In her personal work, she pushes this experimental desire even further, trying to break free from known techniques.

What is the story behind the design?

She wanted to incorporate a lot of fine details in this illustration, emphasizing the delicate beauty of nature. The woman submerges herself fully in the abundance of detailed plants. Becoming one with nature. As it should be. Especially in these times, where nature is suffering, it's essential to remind people about the beauty of nature and the respect for mother earth we all should have.

What does the future hold?

At the moment she is working towards an exhibition with a series of charcoal drawings, and really enjoys spending her time painting.