2.2 Everyday Fashion

The Task: Everyday fashion

Draw a range of people in different clothes. In some of the drawings try and describe their whole outfit; in others, focus on specific elements, such as different types of hat. You can take a reportage approach and draw people out on the street, or use yourself, friends or family as models.

Focus on describing the clothes through your drawing, but don’t forget the people themselves. Try and capture something of the wearer’s physical shape, posture and character as well as the clothes they’re wearing.

Work some of your drawings into illustrations which perhaps exaggerate what you’ve observed. You might want to bring in more colour, simplify your lines or create images that are much more stylised to do this.

This project focuses on the reportage side of fashion illustration, drawing people and their clothing.

General assessment.

I did not expect to enjoy this so much, as I am really not interested in fashion. But when I started researching different styles of fashion photography I discovered many contemporary approaches that I want to explore further for my other work (See Fashion Illustration: Western contemporary). I was less interested in older styles (See Fashion Illustration 1900-1980s: London and Paris) I also started to study techniques and figure drawing through You Tube (See Fashion Illustration Techniques: Zoe Hong and books by Laird Borelli, Naoki Wtanabe and Michele Wesen Bryant).

My source material for this project is ongoing from sketches at airports while I am travelling. I find that as with Project 2.2 On Location, I am better doing quick pencil sketches but in a very small pocket-size sketchbook. Then working up these pencil sketches afterwards. Taking quick pictures on my iPhone or making short notes. However I spent too long on the research, and did not then have enough time to work through to the illustration beyond the quick pencil sketches with simple digital colouring on my iPad.

My final pieces I want to do in analogue media looking at different styles and approaches for the same subject (I am particularly interested in work by Choonfai, Zandra Rhodes, Richard Haines, Alec Strang,  Howard Tangye and possibilities of adapting styles of artists like Egon Schiele, Basquiat and Herakut). Also adapting Islamic, Japanese and other calligraphy styles.

What follows therefore should just be seen as some ideas for further development, following through on some of the illustration styles in particular during ideas I have for Assignments 4 and 5.


Heathrow to Hong Kong

These images are quite vibrant. Possibly following style of Zandra Rhodes or Alec Strang.

Istanbul to Bishkek

These images are more Asian – Japanese woodcuts or Chinese painting. Possibly Bernard Blossac’s quite delicate Watercolour. A bolder Herakut style might also be interesting.


These images I think would very much lend themselves to a style like that of Richard Haines and Howard Tangye – like Egon Schiele. Maybe a mix of Basquiat and/or Herakut.

Islamic fashion – some ideas

Sitting in airports in Nairobi and other African countries with large muslim populations I have always been fascinated by the big variation in the ways that women have adapted Islamic dress.  I researched Islamic fashion illustration, and found a few styles I liked, but nothing really innovative. See Islamic fashion illustration post).


I want to do some very stylised calligraphic ink and watercolour versions of these sketches of muslim women in different types of headdress. The images I would like to do would reflect the dignity and liveliness of the women in their often very colourful and artfully constructed scarves over what are often quite elaborate hairstyles. The closest to what I have in mind are the watercolour calligraphy of artists like Hassan Massoudy. I will be doing a lot more work on Islamic calligraphy as I finish my Book Design course.

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