Featured Image above is by Paul Keng Fashion Illustration on their Pinterest Board.
Hi friends! So…. I once had a dream. In my youth I seriously wanted to design fashion. Without going into the utterly boring why’s and why nots, it never happened.
Now, in my autumnal years, purely for theoretical purposes (since I’m not about to pursue a new career at this stage) I’m getting a pretty good idea what that career would have entailed – I mean, all the nitty gritty details of a fashion career. Most of it is not glamorous. I’m following a series of YouTube video channels and podcasts by actual fashion designers (not the big name famous ones, but those who work to clothe most of us) to learn about the realities of the fashion industry. Some of them have their own line of clothing, while another is a former university fashion design professor. They have good solid advice (fat lot of good it can do me now), warn against the pitfalls, and all love their professions. If I had built a career in the fashion industry, I would love it too, despite the non-glamorous aspects. Plus, these ladies offer tutorials on design software (Adobe Illustrator), garment construction and fashion illustration. So, if you are a design student right now, go watch Zoe, Heidi and Emily.
What? You thought fashion designers play around with beautiful fabrics every day? Or sketch inspiring illustrations of gorgeous clothing all the time in a light filled art studio with all white décor? (The studio above — I have no words.) Nope, it doesn’t happen that way.
First, I discovered Zoe Hong, a former professor of fashion design. She left that tenure to work on her YouTube channel; who does that? Zoe did, and has 129,000+ strong YouTube following which seems to grow exponentially. I love watching her fashion illustration videos, where she goes into no-nonsense detail on how to achieve certain effects in drawings, and informs where to use the 8, 9 and 10-head fashion croquis (blank fashion figure) and places where you can use the 11 head figure (didn’t know there was such a thing as an 11 head fashion figure). Did I say, Zoe has croquis’ and other fashion design aids for sale in her Etsy store? For the drawing challenged design student, this is a boon.
I discovered Heidi (her social media handle is SewHeidi) because she was once a guest on Zoe Hong’s videos, demonstrating how to translate a hand sketch into a digital fashion illustration in Adobe Illustrator. Once I checked out Heidi’s channel, I was hooked to the information she had about the “real” fashion industry. Those videos and podcasts are no-nonsense real-world business oriented info and advice to students, which is never taught in fashion schools. In addition, she interviews fashion designers and people who are contributors to the fashion industry (not necessarily design) such as pattern makers and cutters; I’m hoping she will interview a seamstress sometime. Heidi has prepared a masterclass where she teaches using Adobe Illustrator for creating fashion “flats” and sketches; this is a class for purchase, not a free video. Oh, and Heidi has a set of croquis (fashion figures) for the viewer, which is a free download.
Then, I found Emily Keller’s channel called The Fashion Run-Up, which contains short and informative videos. Emily is a knitwear designer, and I discovered her channel through a video where she explains the reasons why there are no pockets (or smaller pockets) on women’s wear. I’ll have to watch that one again.
One more thing! Read this blog post from Skillshare by designer Daniel Vosovic – remember him? One of the better contestants in the early days of Project Runway.
Disclaimer: No affiliation with any of the above. I am a subscriber to their respective channels.
Do you have unrealized career dreams of your youth? What are they? Please share!