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Brief Published: 13 May 2020

Fashion Illustration Regains Popularity

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From ad campaigns to Vogue covers, the art of illustration has returned to the forefront of fashion media as sustainable and socially distanced alternatives to photoshoots become necessities.

Following Vogue Italia’s illustration-only January 2020 issue and American Vogue’s illustrations of musician Billie Eilish for its March 2020 issue, Greek fashion designer Mary Katrantzou has turned to illustration to promote her latest resort collection. The ad campaign features no photographed imagery and is instead comprised of a series of illustrated postage stamps from exotic, far-flung locations, mirroring the stamp prints on the garments themselves.

In a similar vein, Schiaparelli’s creative director Daniel Roseberry has created a series of collaged images for the Italian house’s most recent couture collection, which were then published across the brand’s social media channels. The mashed-up images that incorporate both illustration and digital image manipulation were intended to showcase the craft and design process behind designing the pieces.

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Mary Katrantzou
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Schiaparelli
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Schiaparelli
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Mary Katrantzou
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Vogue Italia
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Vogue Italia
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US Vogue
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Vogue Taiwan

In addition to these more traditional forms of illustration, digitally rendered fashion images are also becoming a popular alternative to photography. The cover of Vogue Taiwan’s May 2020 ‘Future in Transit’ issue boasts a 100% CGI cover, wherein a digitally designed version of model Jolie Chang appears wearing a similarly rendered recreation of a look from Chanel’s 2020 Pre-Fall collection. This cover came in the wake of Vogue Italia’s March 2020 issue which features a CGI model on the cover.

Not only does illustration and digital design ensure that brands and publications can continue to produce creative content during the current Covid-19 lockdowns, but it also provides a sustainable alternative to photoshoots, which require a substantial amount of energy consumption and transportation. Additionally, it highlights the need for brands to embrace the changing face of the industry and the types of roles that are becoming increasingly important as a result.

For more on emerging roles in the fashion industry, see New Rules, New Roles, and see How to Make a Fashion Editorial Remotely for other innovative ways to create fashion content.

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