Meagan's Guide to West Village NYC

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Best Coffee at Jack's (138 W 10th St)

Tomo Goes to Paris

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Me in Paris below...

More specifically, the Palais Royal!!

I met my beautiful friend Tomo when she began modeling for FIT's fashion illustration block last semester. With a mutual love of art and fashion, and our birthday's being three days apart, it's no wonder we clicked instantly. She has always been so supportive of my artwork. Her suggestion that I start a blog led to Travel Write Draw's inception. This summer, while discussing our travel plans, she mentioned her longing to see Paris for the first time. This homework assignment for Bil Donovan's class proved to be the perfect opportunity to send her there.

Once again we were asked to take class drawings of Tomo and integrate them into a graphic background. The focus of the illustrations were her striped shirt. For me, stripes are synonymous with Paris. I decided to reference my pictures of Paris from a trip a few summers ago. I was immediately struck by Daniel Buren's striped columns in the Palais Royal's courtyard. What better way to counter her horizontal stripes with their graphic verticals?! Since I can't afford to buy her plane ticket, this piece of art will have to do. I adore reminiscing about the city of love. Enjoy!!

Cherry Blossoms

Friday, October 22, 2010

YAY it's finally here!! I promised the completed poster design for Joe Denaro's class in the Harajuku Girl post et voila!! We just submitted them this morning and our classroom is exploding with Tokyo fashion, print, and color. The final is 18 x 24 in gouache and colored pencil. I must mention that many of my references were found on which turned out to be an amazing resource. I'm such a lover of street style fashion forecasting.

I thought it would be fun to include images of a time when I was photographed. It was for Insert Magazine, a "Toronto Chinese urban lifestyle magazine" and I just so happened to be stopped on my walk home from work at Lida Baday. I'm forever flattered and love that there is such an appreciation of different styles from all over the world. Have a great weekend everyone and enjoy!!

Jagged Little Pill

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Our latest assignment for Bil Donovan required us to conceptualize an illustration for an article titled Mood-Altering Scarves. The text was pulled from New York Times Fashion Magazine. Julien David, a designer who apprenticed with the likes of Narciso Rodriguez, was about to debut his scarf collection for fall. The theme this season was artificial growth and all about gigantism. We had to showcase his pill scarf in an 'au courant' sort of way while managing to grab the viewers attention. Furthermore, we were limited to a monochromatic color scheme reflecting the fall season.

I've included in this post the final illustration painted in gouache, the rough rendered in colored pencil, and an image of my workspace during the creation of this project. Thought my readers might be interested to see where the creative process takes place. Never imagined I could get so much work done in such a small space :) I just submitted the project this morning and was absolutely blown away by my classmates work. I go to school with some of the most talented young illustrators around!! Too bad the scarf pills are fake, I could use a cold remedy. Hope you're all well and enjoy!!

Here is the link to the actual article from this summer:

Femme Fatale

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I've included four photographs of the 20 x 30 illustration board to indicate the process I underwent to complete it. We started with an overlay of newsprint with the figures drawn loosely on it. They were then transferred to the board with led. After which we had to construct the figures with sharpie markers, by using our magazine references, and finding only circles, squares, and triangles in their shadows. It took 3 boxes of sharpie markers to complete this project. I don't think I stopped seeing geometric shapes in everything I looked at for days after it was completed. This was the first major project I did at FIT. Nice to see how far I've come. Enjoy!!

Harajuku Girls...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

you got the wicked style. I like the way that you are, I am your biggest fan. - Gwen Stefani

For the last three weeks, my fashion illustration block has been preparing a poster design for an upcoming Japanese fashion show. Since the show will be featuring both the traditional Yukata kimono fashion, alongside the contemporary subculture Harajuku style, so too must our posters. Our incredible professor, Joe Denaro, has been coaxing our models every Friday into wearing the most outrageous ensembles (wigs, tutus, you name it) in order to inspire our class with ideas.

Coincidentally, the Museum at FIT happens to be showcasing an exhibit titled Japanese Fashion Now. We were brought there for further creative reference. I thought this post would be a fun opportunity to showcase the process of a typical assignment in our program. So much work goes on behind the scenes of each final piece you see here. If you happen to live in New York, or are visiting the city, the Japanese Fashion Now show is a must see. Stay tuned for the final poster and enjoy!!

Museum at FIT
27th and 7th
Manhattan, NY

Blue Mosque

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Topkapi Palace Tile References

Turkish Carpet References

Blue Mosque References

Class Drawings

Standing in front of Blue Mosque, I suddenly realize how many places I have yet to see, how many things I have yet to do. I've only just begun my journey...

I would like to use today's post as an opportunity to introduce my readers to a bit of my creative process. So far on Travel Write Draw I've only displayed my finished works. For me, however, the most exhilarating part of the creative process are all the steps leading up to completion. Generating ideas, pulling from my own travel experiences, is the real challenge. I have the tendency to use a lot of my own photographic references to make my work organic and true to me. The piece you see above was a homework assignment given to us by Bil Donovan. About a week ago, we were asked to draw several models in box compositions. We weren't told how many figures to include in each box. We also weren't told what we would do with them once they were drawn.

As it turns out, we were asked to compose them together in a photoshop file, incorporate a background environment, and pop the piece with no more than three neon colors. While drawing my model friend Tomo's headpiece, all I could think about was placing her in Istanbul. I visited Istanbul and other parts of Turkey in May 2009. Thus I had the perfect background, textile, and mosaic references to make this piece work. I drew directly from my photos of Blue Mosque and incorporated the prevalent blue and red color combination you see in several Turkish textiles and mosaics. A process that began deliberately with no direction ended in a piece that was true to me and to the beautiful city I visited. I hope this entry offers a little insight into the method behind my madness. Enjoy!!

Doll Factory

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Alone she sat, waiting and wondering, when would she ever have the chance to become a real girl...

The painting you see here is one I completed for my color theory class. The dimensions are 20 x 30 and it was rendered in acrylic from my professor's fashion reference. Without question, no other painting has ever challenged me more than this one. It took over one month to complete and a lot of sweat and tears. It began with a simple sketch on illustration board, which was followed by undertones starting with blue in the background, purple in the middle-ground, and green in the foreground. This was done in order to produce depth.

We were then asked to paint from back to front beginning with blue tones and ending in true color. Every color had to be mixed with its complement. I felt like I was painting with Michelangelo during the Renaissance lol. In the end I feel a real sense of closeness with it. Something about the expression on her face and the lighting I find to be quite haunting. She reminds me of a porcelain doll with life in her eyes. It was such a pleasant surprise to find it hanging in the FIT illustration cabinet at the start of this semester. Sort of makes all the effort worth it. Enjoy!!

The Seven Year Itch

Monday, October 4, 2010

Bil Donovan, Dior Beauty's artist-in-residence and my brilliant professor at FIT, assigned us a spot illustration for an article titled All Smiles. The premise of the article was that ballet companies are suffering from an epidemic of flirtatious dancers. They simply cannot contain themselves. Our job was to render a conceptualized illustration that conveyed this message and captured the viewers attention (hence spot illustration).

When it came to referencing, I immediately began searching for images of the most iconic flirt imaginable Miss Marilyn Monroe. I wanted to integrate her now infamous skirt-blowing pose above the grate with a traditional ballet figure. The end result is what you see above. I really feel like the Marilyn reference came through. Sort of makes me want to run through the streets of New York in a white dress. Have a great day everyone!!

Manish Arora Spring 2011

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Manish Arora Revised

Fall may very well be in the air, but the only season that matters right now in fashion is Spring. For the last three weeks or so, designers have been sending their Spring 2011 collections down the runway. I've spent the greater part of this week scanning through them on For those of you who have ever worked in the industry, you already know the torture of selling and promoting beautiful garments that won't become accessible to you for almost another year. That was pretty much the story of my life when I worked for Canadian women's wear designer Lida Baday. Fortunately, I can turn my lust into art which proves to be much more productive.

This post is dedicated to my favorite look from the Spring 2011 collections by designer Manish Arora. I absolutely loved his saturated fruity-color palette and "futuristic baroque" designs. The Mumbai-born designer clearly let his heritage shine through the lavishly crafted garments. Now if only I could manage to both visit India and purchase one of these garments, I think I would be on cloud 9, or rather cloud 11!! Speaking of clouds, doesn't my drawing sort of resemble one? I'm interested to get more feedback from my readers. What does everyone think about my interpretation of the look? Good, bad, or ugly, I would love to hear your thoughts.

By the way, I entered this piece into Jane's Sea of Shoes Spring Fashion Art Contest!! You can view the gallery of entries by clicking on the link. Thanks again Jane for the amazing opportunity.

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