Visit Portugal

The creative look of

Charline Moreau

Charline Moreau made her debut on a Portuguese island with this visit to Madeira.

She studied Space Design and Landscape Architecture in Nantes and Bordeaux. She works as a freelance illustrator and paints with watercolours.

Charline discovered urban sketching while studying abroad and created her first sketchbook in Italy in 2016. She especially enjoys drawing architecture, but cannot resist using elements from trees and plants. She is the author of “Nantes croquée, visitaz la ville en dessin” (2020), a travel sketchbook about her hometown.

Madeira’s constantly spring hues are always visible in Charline’s illustrations. Marvel at its vibrant colours.

What was the biggest challenge and the biggest reward of this experience?

The biggest challenge was choosing what I would or wouldn't draw. Everything was so beautiful that the act of choosing meant giving up another beautiful object. It would take decades to draw all the wonders of this island! It is to return, no doubt.

Was there a particular meal that stuck in your memory?

Limpets! We ate them every day and I can still taste it in my mouth. Don't forget to try it when you go there, especially with bolo do caco. It's just delicious. The island is full of fresh produce (mainly vegetables and fruits) grown throughout the year.

Did you have any previously created ideas about the island and how this experience changed it?

I had some relatives and friends who had already visited Madeira and had told me it was fantastic: lots of flowers, lush vegetation, beautiful landscapes. But I would say that until we set foot on the island, we cannot imagine the scale of all these things. I felt so small in Madeira, the natural elements are gigantic. And the most beautiful thing about all this is that everything is very well preserved and arranged. I hope it stays that way!

What was your favourite moment of this trip?

It was the visit to Bordal, the Madeira Embroidery factory (founded in 1962). The store was so small that I would never have found had I traveled alone. I made a sketch in the small workshop of the designer Dina when she was working, perforating a new pattern point by point on a piece of tracing paper before reproducing it on a fabric with blue pigment. It was a very beautiful moment of sharing, each of us drawing in our own way.