Mei-Li Nieuwland Illustration. Editorial | Business & Science | Graphic Journalism | Personal Work

"I'm convinced that any topic, no matter how complex, can be explained with an illustration. In my work I look for opportunities that allow me to prove this claim."

WHY • You want to communicate something in a way that will engage your audience and be remembered.

WHAT • Whether you are preparing a presentation, a training or a brainstorming session, the information design and use of metaphors in a functional illustration can help you get the message across.

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functional process

HOW • In close collaboration we create a refined story, test it with your target audience, and translate this into a visual tool you'll be happy to use.

"Extremely pleasant to work with"

"Smooth collaboration"

"A very professional experience"

In editorial illustration the ideation phase is crucial. To come up with great concepts and smooth out the collaboration, I ask critical questions during the briefing and provide options at each intersection. I always validate an idea before continuing with it, and aim for easy to read images that are beautiful, fun and smart.

I have a special interest in illustrating technical and scientific topics, as well as subjects about psychology and the mind.

Got a job for me? Please contact me through or one of the social networks below. Thank you!

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As a cultural anthropologist I am interested in making sense of a social environment through independent research and analysis. I approach graphic journalism in a similar way, with the added benefit of the visual medium to present my findings to the reader in a much more compelling way.

I have done both visual essays (based on literature research) and graphic journalism (based on fieldwork). While my stories are always grounded in reality, I like to tell them from a personal perspective that gives readers something to agree or disagree with, to help them sharpen their own opinion.

In a time of 'fake news' and a growing distrust of mainstream media, alternative forms of journalism like this are both refreshing and necessary in order to stand out and involve today's audiences in the myriad global challenges we face.

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While my client work is very cerebral and intentional, my personal work tends to be more intuitive and emergent, sometimes with more of a design focus. I enjoy exploring new media ranging from ink and paper paintings to wood and fabrics.

These projects are a place for me to experiment, try, fail, and learn new things. In recent years my interested in terms of medium has shifted from illustration to bigger, physical objects with a practical or decorative function such as furniture.

High quality prints and sometimes originals of my personal work can be found through my shop.

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Mei-Li Nieuwland (鄭美麗)

I am a Dutch illustrator based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

My passion is to create images that are both “good to see” and “good to think”: to translate great ideas into visuals that are aesthetic and meaningful.

I am a self-taught artist with an academic background in artificial intelligence and cultural anthropology. I still rely on the fieldwork methods and analytical thinking cultivated there when illustrating complex concepts. I aim to translate these into accessible, visual stories that anyone can understand.

Topics of special interest include: science and technology, the relation between man and machine, privacy, protest, and work in the age of automation.

I work with a mix of digital and traditional media, using a Wacom tablet and sometimes integrating textures made with ink.

When I am not drawing I like to practice recurve archery and learn new languages.





I published my first book! “Destination: Canada” (Scratch, 2022) tells ten different stories about moving from The Netherlands to Canada, as envisioned by ten different artists. I was honored to be one of them, sitting alongside a cast of some real Dutch illustration legends. Available in Dutch and English through Scratch, or wherever you buy your comics in the Netherlands.



The graphic journalism platform Drawing The Times launched the comic special “VIRAL”. I contributed a partially motion graphic story on synthetic virology. Read the story or learn more about the project.



The pandemic wiped out all the plans I had for the year, so I was very happy when Nesta and Storythings approached me during this time to do two comics. They are part of a special series on the impact that AI and CI (collective intelligence) will have on our societies in the not-so-distant future. Learn more about the project here.


I am currently available for new freelance projects. Let’s work together!

Interested but not sure where to start? No worries, I would love to think along. Drop me an email at: