Good morning friends, I am excited to share this interview with you! Dominic is a very talented artist and fashion illustrator. He volunteers much of his time to advancing the fashion industry here in Seattle.
I met him at Seattle Fashion Week last year, and have become a huge fan of his work. He is on the board of directors for this amazing fashion extravaganza, and does a great job marketing the show. I am really excited for this year's event. It's coming up March 10-12: if you are in the area- get your tickets now, they go fast!
Now grab your coffee, sit back and learn about a day in the life of a fashion illustrator!
1) Tell us about yourself and 2) How did you become a fashion illustrator?
I've been drawing people for as long as I can remember, either making them up or copying super heroes from comic books. My interests in design and the human body could have led me to become an architect or a doctor, but I went with fine art. I learned advertising art skills from some of the best professionals in the business at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, where I'm from originally. One of these classes was Fashion Drawing, with Justine Limpus Parish (presently associate professor at Art Center College of Design).
This type of illustration is rarely used today. Photography is almost exclusively the choice by the major fashion glossies. But drawing is more my forte, so I maintain a portfolio that shows my best paintings and drawings to prospective art buyers.
3) How do your sketches (pieces) come together? and 4) What techniques do you use?
I start with a pencil drawing on an 18" x 24" piece of paper of a model wearing a designer outfit. I prefer to draw from life but can draw from photographs (either my own or those of photographer friends, or from magazine shoots) if that's not an option. I make several sketches of different poses and select one that best shows the unique features of the garment. (This is important if the outfit has a particular silhouette, line or movement that the designer has incorporated into the piece.)
I can then add a little color or background, or scan the line drawing and print it out on a material that I can use wet media on. Currently I use pen and ink and watercolors highlighted with color pencils.
5 )Which designers are your favorite to illustrate?
I don't have any favorite designers at the moment, but I like the work of Valentino and Oscar de la Renta. There's something about their understanding and appreciation of the female form that goes well with the way I draw. The main thing is how a model's attitude and pose combine with an interesting or sexy garment.
6 )What qualities do fashion illustrations have that photographs or film don't?
A drawn or painted image has the potential to take viewers to a whole other level than a photograph. Photographs do have the ability to instantly capture a fleeting moment (the two-second "vogue" on the runway), but an illustration can extend that moment in time and in one's imagination, like a short story or a captivating movie.
7) Where do you get your inspiration?
I get my inspiration from people I observe around me, as well as from the work of photo stylists working in conjunction with photographers in forward fashion magazines. I also keep looking at the work of other illustrators, past and present.
8) Which other image makers do you admire?
I admire the work of a couple of current fashion illustrators: David Downton and Mats Gustafson, who seem to work on opposite ends of the picture-making spectrum. Illustrators from the past that I admire are Antonio Lopez, Renee Gruau, George Stavrinos. I also like the visual concepts Diana Vreeland came up with when she was with Vogue, as well as the many fashion photographers such as Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, etc.
9) What advice would you give to any upcoming fashion illustrators?
My advice would be to continue drawing and painting on a daily basis, even if you only have a short amount of time to do it. Also, look at a lot of fashion imagery, especially those in large print magazines. And keep in mind that illustration, especially fashion illustration, may not provide total financial security. You may have to keep your day job for a while as well as learn and nurture other skills pertinent to the fashion industry. Drawing is seeing, and seeing in itself is the basis for that sense of aesthetics that drives fashion.
Isn't his talent amazing!?! The sketch of the Seattle dude is my fav, which one is yours? I appreciate Dominic taking the time for this interview and sharing his art with us. You can view more of Dominic's work on his Blog,Facebook, Twitter , and LinkedIn.
Thank you for visiting, have a great week. Thanks for your patience and continued support.
I 'm excited for my upcoming trip, to a fashion tradeshow down south. Stay tuned ! I'll be back soon to share exciting info from the show! If you would like to receive my updates to your inbox, you can subscribe in the box the right sidebar.
Until Next Time,