video – Artist’s Portrait by Andrea Martín

ARTIST´S PORTRAIT from Andrea Martín on Vimeo.

I recently had the opportunity to work with a young videographer, Andrea Martín, on a client project, and after we had completed that work, she did me the great favour of creating a mini-documentary with me as the subject.

Besides immortalizing a spot on my chin, I talk about what I do, share some thoughts on art, and reveal some dreams I have for the future, as Andrea captured some choice shots of how I illustrate.

Thanks so much Andrea!

click click – 28-06-11

Welcome to click click, the sporadic review of what I find worth clicking on the internet.

The Face September 1982 – a classic example of double denim. With a very appropriate tagline – Hard Times – for a theme I’ve been thinking about, the aesthetics of scarcity. It is just a coincidence this issue is from the month I was born.

Additional linkage in kind karma –

five ways to end your fashion design career

Christobel Balenciaga chose when to retire, saying “it’s a dog’s life”. It is a rare designer who can exit so gracefully. From history, here are five more ways to drop out as a fashion designer.

1. Sell Out.

Halston had genuine talent, sublime taste, and a compelling personality. But his career ended prematurely, and he lived out the end of his days in gilded isolation, designer no more. How?

  1. Sell your company for an outrageous amount of money.
  2. Party like no party animal has ever partied before, because you can. After all, your glamourous lifestyle in no small part defines your brand.
  3. Be the “consummate professional” by refusing to delegate anything.
  4. Why be satisfied with mere millions of dollars? License your name until it loses its lustre. Forget you said “you’re only as good as the people you dress.”

2. Fade Out.

Christian Lacroix is an expert colourist who revels in embellishment, celebrating the history and craft of French couture with signature verve.  Lacroix’s star never manifested in a way that matched his considerable talent. Why?

  1. Start your career with a one-hit-wonder (the pouf skirt) which is a pure trend item. Little-girl inspired clothing at prices only rich old ladies can afford.
  2. Nurture an over-the-top design style which appeals only to a small niche and is difficult to translate into accessories or ready-to-wear.
  3. Earn the faith and support of businessmen who should know better. Launch a business which fails to profit, ever, over the course of a decade.
  4. Produce your final collection on a shoestring, destined never to be delivered anywhere, and receive applause for belonging to an era of fashion which was ending just as you began your career.

3. Fall Out.

Ossie Clark was a designer whose designs not only resonate with fashion, but were created using masterful techniques. Clark never managed, and maybe never even really tried, to translate design genius into an empire. How?

  1. Be impractical, especially when it comes to money. Disregard dull matters of business.
  2. Live in the present moment, fully. Hang with rock stars. Work manically. Party hedonistically.
  3. Get bailed out by a high-street shop. Chafe at the restrictions of designing for mass production.
  4. Be difficult. Meet your Waterloo in the form of a complex, unmanufacturable sleeve inspired by shells. Get fired.

4. Flame Out.

John Galliano is a devourer of inspiration who produced transgressive, hyperactive runway fantasies that resurrected that sleeping giant of a couture house, Christian Dior. But his career is ending in disgrace. How?

  1. Enter a five+ year design funk. Raising the bar on past transgressions using the same techniques you always have delivers diminishing returns.
  2. Deal with your fading fortunes by turning to drink and drugs. Surround yourself with famous, sympathetic sycophants who shrug off your dependencies as if they are adorable quirks.
  3. Drink alone in public places, and wait for provocation. And then say the most provocative, illegal things you can think of, because you deeply crave some kind of reaction, any reaction.
  4. Become a victim of modern surveillance culture, and receive career-destroying blowback beyond your wildest expectations.

5. Eat Out.

Rudi Gernreich was a true fashion innovator with a keen ability to cook publicity into his designs, pushing the envelope of modernity and taste. His various attempts to sell out never came to any lasting fruition. In a bizarre branding derailment, his final venture lent his name to a line of soup. How?

  1. Generate large amounts of publicity. Be better at spreading ideas than selling clothes.
  2. Stay resolutely West Coast. Location matters – even more so half a century ago than it does today.
  3. Design yourself into a corner – deconstruct swimwear to the point that it barely exists, push androgyny to the level where tension between gender conventions is a moot point.
  4. Never mind fashion, make soup. Soup is more nutritious than fashion.


my Scottish Fashion Awards

Here is lovely Glaswegian born Gail Mcinnes of Magnet Creative, arriving at the Scottish Fashion Awards in Glasgow where she received a well-deserved nomination for communicator of the year. She invited me to come along, and this is a brief scrapbook of what I saw.

First off was a champagne reception where I busted out my watercolour kit… I scribbled this version of International Designer of the Year winner Henry Holland and he liked it well enough to blog it – on!

Scottish people are so delightful – they have a wicked sense of humour and a friendly approachability. It was easy to make friends and have fun.

More guests including Gail in her gorgeous Lucian Matis dress.

I had a media pass, so I didn’t get to see the awards ceremony… however I did get to see the late evening sun glittering off of the Clyde.

During the awards, the media were corralled to the red carpet area to shoot the winners just after they received their awards.

I found a nice sunny spot on the floor from which to observe the action.

I did my best to sketch the winners as they came along – the Best New Designer (above left and below) and the Best Textile Designer (above right) both happily holding their trophies.

My little studio.

The late evening sun up in Glasgow was quite beautiful, and I managed to capture the best of it in this one shot of a Scottish socialite or star, I’m afraid I don’t know anything about her.

I did manage to get a good drawing of her too. And a somewhat awkward drawing of the fashion icon of the year, a young television star, above right.

At the end of the show, a photo op with all of the judges.

And me, wearing the dress Anita picked for me.

A couple shots from toe to head of me and Gail. It was wonderful to spend some quality time with Gail at such a significant moment. Thank you Gail xoxo

paper doll – Pink Martini Collection

This is my first ever watercolour paper doll, commissioned by Pink Martini Collection, a cute Canadian label with a vintage vibe, based in Toronto and available worldwide. There’s another element to this which I look forward to revealing soon. Thanks Pink Martini Collection! It feels great to return to paper dolls after a bit of a break, and with the twist of a different medium.

final fashion 2011 media kit

Want to know more about Final Fashion, and me? Download my first bonafide media kit.

Heartfelt thanks to Annching Wang, who made this kit happen. Putting together a package all about how rad you are is a difficult task to take on without help – which is why having a sharp eye like Annching is so valuable.

Annching is a Vancouver based fashion blogger I feel true affinity with – she’s interested in theory and entrepreneurship, she’s bright and inquisitive and ambitious. She offers writing, marketing and communications consultation, and after working with her, I wholeheartedly recommend her services.

click click – 07-06-11

Welcome to click click, the sporadic review of what I find worth clicking on the internet.

These candid photos in American malls in the 1980s by Michael Galinsky are transporting, and the fashions of ordinary people seem incredibly exotic now.

  • Just Goods – is a blog by a reader, Ryan, that’s really beginning to hit its stride. Mostly featuring images of “just goods”, and recently expanding to include commentary and content about how goods are crafted, its well worth an extended look. Here’s a highlight – a video of Roy of Roy’s Jeans.
  • Gucci Gucci – Kreayshawn’s video is a fashion earworm with some killer lines like “why you looking bitter, I be looking better, the kind of bitch you wish you never met her” – but what really clinches it for me is the uncanny similarity to the classic Canadian stoner comedy Wayne’s World.
  • I DON’T GET ART – Yeah. Me too.
  • And I Should Know – fascinating memoir by Roseanne Barr about authorship, and power grabs, when creating within a corporation.
  • Jeans for deep pockets – the Financial Times surveys that indigo oxymoron, the couture jean.
  • Peep Show – I just discovered this excruciating, hilarious British comedy, and I’ve already decided it’s one of the best TV shows I’ve ever seen – best, you can watch it online in the UK.

Karma for magnificent linkers and commenters…