Figures that are moving have a more dynamic feel. Watch how the body shifts when a model walks. Easy to see in videos from Fashion Week. Learn how the body is put together first. Then notice how in a standing pose, the shoulder that dips goes down to meet the hip and leg that the weight is on. More on that later.
So does it really matter if you don’t add line? Of course not…. shape is so fabulous. Fashion is all about SILHOUETTE. Think of the endless seasons of fashion and the silhouette that spoke for that season. Shape is seasonless. Especially in drawings for fashion - your fashion design drawings need very little detail. But they absolutely need SHAPE.
Well, this is more about clients, than drawing… but it ties in… sometimes you have to be willing - if you are illustrating fashion for a living - to bow to the needs, desires (whims!) of the client.
In this case, Diane von Furstenberg, with whom I worked directly, had a specific woman in mind. “Make her independent, powerful, sexy, with a big ass.” Many drawings later, she was satisfied. She insisted on keeping all the drawings I did which is unheard of, actually. Clients buy the rights to use a drawing, not the actual drawing. For the actual artwork that’s a separate price. But she told my agent she always keeps the originals (really? No one else does or they negotiate that up front) and was actually quite nasty. I was discouraged, as I had thought she was a brilliant designer and businesswoman and if you read her tweets, an especially warm and loving person. Shattered illusions. Lost drawings. There’s more, but I’ll save it for another time. Onward!
I love the little trick of making a limb (arm or leg) go back in space to give the figure some depth and definition of form. This also gives the illusion of that limb - leg or arm - being farther away from the eye. This will give your figures more of a 3 dimension - not so flat. Here’s an example - in the leg.
Also notice how the texture of the skirt is only in the shadow area, not all over the skirt shape. All you need to do is indicate - not plaster it all over… use the shadow area to define your print or texture on a garment, but you’ll have to know the form of the underlying body to get this right. More on that later…
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This was done for Fairchild Publications, a book on being a fashion designer… they publish a lot of fashion books as well as W Magazine, and Women’s Wear Daily. This depicts a fashion designer/student gathering inspiration on a mood board, editing her inspiration into a theme for a collection, and then presenting her portfolio.