When I was at University in Argentina, my classmates and I used to do our research wherever we could. The internet was just starting, and downloading an image could take ages. Sometimes a student or a teacher would bring an inspiring catalogue or book about graphic design or advertising from their trips to America or Europe and we would be allowed to have a look.
Many things happened after uni. I won a scholarship to Europe as a graphic designer. I travelled a lot. And on my way back to Argentina someone I met gave me a present. An art book. It was Fashion Illustration Now by Laird Borrelli. A collection of top illustrators from around the world. I remember thinking... I would love to do this. I want to draw for a living. l left London that year as a graphic designer and I came back a few months later as an illustrator. A new role that I had zero idea about how to start, but I felt hopeful.
I started working soon after my decision but it took me more than two years and a few printed editorials to finally feel safe to say I'm an illustrator. Some stuff could be part of the day job, but for me being invited to participate in Illustration Now! Fashion by Taschen is literally a wish come true. Ax Illustration Now! Fashion: Featuring 90 Contemporary Fashion Illustrators Styled by hand, this title features the many incarnations of illustration in the world of fashion. Every dress begins with a drawing, every skirt with a sketch. Illustration is integral to fashion design not only as a means of expression, and the starting point of every design, but also for patterns and prints as well as magazine editorial illustrations. Often, artists will even illustrate the newest looks directly from the catwalks. It's high time we celebrated fashion illustration in our Illustration Now! series: here you'll find new work from over 90 artists around the globe, including Ruben Toledo, Aurore de La Morinerie, Bil Donovan, Tanya Ling, and Jean-Philippe Delhomme. The book features quotes by experts from the fashion world: Valentino compliments the work of Gladys Perint Palmer; voices out of the studios of Maison Martin Margiela, Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, and H&M add their praise for the talents in the book. Following an introduction by illustration expert Steven Heller, the historical essay by art and fashion historian Adelheid Rasche provides an in-depth exploration of the subject. Looking back to the 17th century, she draws a timeline of fashion illustration until today, accompanied by images such as an early etching by Francois Watteau, a drawing by Paul Iribe for the book of the famous Parisian couturier Paul Poiret, and illustrations by the highly acclaimed masters of modern fashion illustration Rene Gruau and Antonio Lopez as well as, from the later generation, Mats Gustafson, Francois Berthoud and me. More illustrations atwww.adrianvalencia.com Follow me on Twitter,Facebook and Tumblr for updates Now I'm also on Pinterest!