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February 16, 2010

I’ve been obsessed with fashion illustration for a long time I guess mostly because the right criteria for being really good is really rare.

There’s something about the pencil marks and even more so about those who can actually draw fabric, body shape and expression so accurately.

This one is by an old friend of mine who sent it to me in a letter many years ago, but I’m still in love with it like the  moment I first opened the envelop. The detailing in the knee’s, the roundness of the toes of the shoes, the way the heel looks exactly like the one on your favorite pair of black pumps.

I die of jealousy every time I look at this drawing wishing that I could be even half as good.

It’s really astonishing to me how many people are incredible at drawing and painting but choose to instead do several degrees in artistic yet realistic fields, while those who aren’t exactly incredible go on to get BA’s in fine arts because they feel like art is their true calling…

(random bitter tangent?)


I’ve been trying really hard to read local (being Vancouver) slash Canadian magazines and was rather pleased to see a piece on fashion illustration in the February issue of Fashion.

It essentially talks about how as the market becomes over saturated with photographers, who barely even “take” real pictures anymore because so much editing is done in post production, fashion illustration is slowly starting to make it’s way back into the fashion scene and those who have been doing it for years are finally getting more work and a little well deserved recognition. Photography is predominantly digital these days, anyone who has any real interest in the matter knows very well that to make your photos look a certain way you don’t need all that much real skill anymore, you just need an editing program. Sad but true, this has been the main appeal behind the revival of illustration, when we look at a drawing, like i said above, we’re filled with a new sense of envy, something those of us in the field of art and fashion interest have long since forgotten. Very few of us can look at a drawing and say, “Oh I could do that,” and with that, we’re pulled in.

this tit bit is by Norway based Esra Roise, a freelance illustrator whose work can be found in Nylon and Vice magazines. The former being the place I first fell in love with illustration since Nylon has featured drawings in the “beauty queen . counter culture”  monthly section of their magazine since they first hit the shelves in 1999. I no longer read Nylon, I guess because after so many years of being faithful I grew out of their target market soon after the day Avril Lavigne was on the cover for the second time. With that said, my archives of the magazine date back to around 2001 or ’02 so i dove in to see what kind of wicked illustrations I could dig up from Nylon days of yore.

this piece..woah random huge text ..out of no where…

This piece is by Rebecca Wetzler and was in the September 2007 issue of Nylon.

quick side bar: as anyone that’s friends with me knows very well, I don’t really know how to “blog” properly, I’m not an html wiz but I find ways to get around and generally make things appear the way I’d like them to. However, when things like that huge text above randomly appear I get secretly kind of excited, even though I have no idea how it happened, I usually just leave it or try to use it because it’s like this little cyber gift my computer has decided to give me. I’m never sure what the meaning of such gifts really is but you know what they say, one should never check the sole of a beautiful gifted shoe.

anyways, take a peak into her work, it’s not out of this world but it’s still worlds away from anything I could do with a pencil and some water colors.

the other little treat I found from Nylon in 2007 is Jenny Mortsell.

Regarded as one of the movers and shakers in illustration coming out of Stockholm in the past few years, she’s known for her hand drawn portraits.

The article also mentioned Danny Roberts who’s made it to internet fame through his blog of illustrations and stop motion video’s of the drawing process, as well as Blue Logan who’s lucky enough to sit front row at shows (due to his art royalty ancestry) and sketch and water paint fashion as it’s happening right before his eye.

They did however leave a few of my favorites out…the first being Mercedes Helnwein, daughter of Gottfriend Helnwein, who was interviewed in the last issue of Lula magazine. More art royalty; she actually grew up in a castle in Vienna and spent a lot of her childhood traveling with her father. Mercedes’ drawings are so emotional, you feel them through the screen or the paper and they often have a very eerie Hitchcockien feel to them. You can almost feel the anger or the sadness or the disgust on the subjects face and understand the meaning behind the motion of their body and their limbs.

These are three that i really love, all from different years and shows, her work is more then worth peaking into. One thing that I’ve noticed is that a lot of her girls wear masks…but I’ve yet to figure out what masks mean to her…

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