Voyage x Marie Burke Interview P2
Marie Burke’s dramatic and delightful designs are the source of our new collection: Voyage x Marie Burke. We were enchanted by Marie's unique approach to watercolour and to plantlife; her botanical paintings are intricate, powerful, and novel. It was brilliant to spend time with Marie, and to get a behind the scenes perspective on the new collection.
Marie said: ‘These pieces are really exciting to see as Voyage have played about with the colours and have been really creative. We had discussed the fact they might digitally manipulate the images during their creative process, and I’m thrilled with the result - I’m jealous I can’t do it myself, it would be a lot quicker than painting them!’
Marie said: ‘In this image you can see my blue iris design, which was one of my first pieces. I got a bit fixated on blue irises for a while, but they really inspired me.
‘The middle cushion on the sofa has one of my sunflower paintings on it. They were really spikey sunflowers which completely fascinated me. I found them in the middle of my dad’s allotment and they just seem to grow wild. They’re incredibly dramatic!
‘I tend to sketch a lot on site and do a colour match, and then once I’m home I’ll work from my sketches. I always feel that if you work with a live subject you get a much more three-dimensional drawing; you can see where things are going, and how they’re twisting and tucking.
Marie said: ‘I love seeing my peonies on these items, I really love them. The peonies I worked from were all dying, but I found that’s where you get the really interesting colours and shapes. As they die new colours emerge like rust and deep yellows. I’ve approached them from an underneath angle, because I find that’s where all the interesting stuff is going on.
‘I actually don’t do washes, or follow traditional watercolour techniques. I go straight in with the dark colours and create the shapes and form with that. I come in afterwards with the lighter washes, working a bit back to front. For me it works because it gives you contrast to begin with, it gives you a bit of structure to hang everything off first.
Marie said: ‘I’ve had an amazing response to this armchair. It’s also a really good example of how Voyage and I have collaborated, because they’ve taken my original painting and added another one to it. I think this is a really lovely scene, really classic, and the styling is a real source of inspiration. Even though they’re my paintings, I would never think to style it like this, which is what makes the collaboration so special.’
Marie said: ‘I love seeing my work on soft furnishings and furniture. In the early days I did make my own cushions and some soft-furnishings, but it was very labour intensive. Voyage, however, is set up for this, and I think it’s amazing. To see that big footstool with the sunflowers on is really impressive, I never could have created that by myself.
‘It’s been really motivating to work with Voyage. Most of the time I work on my own, you work-away, put yourself out there, and to get something back like this is a really big pat on the back. This is the most exciting collaboration I’ve been part of, and I’ve felt really involved. It’s all very gratifying and brilliant to see.’
Love what you see? You can now shop the entire Voyage x Marie Burke Collection here.