Recent work for OneTwo Agency for an event celebrating the first birthday of fashion retailer, The New Trend, which specialises in bringing luxury International designers to the racks of Australian consumers. The brief was to incorporate this stunning Philosophy Di Lorenzo Serafini polka-dot dress. Engulfed in a cloud of wisteria, this girl was used on invitations and coffee cups for the event.
Some brand new work for Vogue Japan!
Excuse me for one second while I gush about something...
Aside from the obvious – my intense love for Japan itself – this edition of Vogue has always been one of my favourites. Mainly for their unique take on fashion, but also for their unwavering support of illustration. It's something of a rarity these days to find illustration used frequently throughout any one issue of a magazine, yet Vogue Japan do it EVERY MONTH.
I love – and applaud – it!
I was so thrilled to work on these beauty illustrations for the September issue – on stands now.
Featuring a bevvy of beauties taking the appropriate steps toward flawless skin; nutritious smoothies, gentle massage and face creams.
There were also additional illustrations on the following pages, covering four different face shapes and the best skin care routine for each.
If you want to get your hands on a copy, Vogue Japan can be purchased via this link to Amazon JP HERE. I very frequently purchase my fave Japanese titles (of which there are many) this way.
Can we take a moment to appreciate this insane cover? Original noughties Supers dressed head to toe in Prada = ICONIC.
I could not have fluked a more flawless issue to be asked work on.
I just had to share some of my faves from the shoot by Luigi & Iango below:
Photographer: Luigi & Iango
Styling: Anna Dello Russo
Models: Anna Ewers, Doutzen Kroes, Joan Smalls, Lara Stone, Natasha Poly & Vittoria Ceretti
Hair: Luigi Murenu
Make Up: Yumi Lee
Nails: Sara Alaimo
It felt quite fitting after re-watching 'Black Swan' this past weekend, drooling over those stunning Rodarte costumes, that I should wake up on Monday morning to see images from their debut show at Paris' Couture Fashion Week (their first away from their native NYFW).
There were so many stand-out moments, it was hard to choose which images to include in this post. But, all I can say is, if ever there was a collection that embodied everything I love about fashion, it's this one. Feathers, florals, bows and tulle. I love it all! Ethereal beauties adorned with babies breath, floating through a garden in full bloom.
I did choose one of the softer options to illustrate (No pink! Shocking!) as I wanted to focus on colours closer to nature.
Rodarte Spring 2018 photographs © Kelly Taub + Giovanni Giannoni / WWD
It's come to the point in my fairy tale collection where I've started saving the best for last.
While it's so hard for me to play favourites, as so many different stories appeal to me for different reasons, 'Beauty and the Beast' is one of those stories that just gives me butterflies.
Admittedly, it's a tale that I never connected with until I saw the Disney adaptation in 1992. Prior to that, I think I had seen an 80s soap-style version that starred Linda Hamilton – which didn't exactly grip me. Of course, we can never forget Shelley Duvall's 'Faerie Tale Theatre.'
However, from the very first moment I laid eyes on that shiny, big screen and listened to a host of villagers sing 'Bonjour!' to each other I was hooked. I still vividly remember turning to my Mum half-way through 'Be Our Guest' and requesting we 'buy this on video as SOON as it comes out!'
It was love.
Over the past 25 (gulp!) years I have devoured other editions of the story - most notably the French live-action film starring Léa Seydoux as Belle and Vincent Cassell as the Beast.
This version is much more in keeping with the original tale and I highly recommend watching it. It's visually stunning.
I also have to make mention of Disney's current live-action remake. I admit - I've already seen it three times. On first viewing I wasn't sure what I thought of it, having already seen (and loved) such a high quality live-action version of the story, but also being so familiar with the original 1992 version.
However, on subsequent viewings, I was able to take it in without any pre–conceived ideas and just enjoy it for what it was.
I digress! Back to the illustration. I started my interpretation of this story almost a year ago!
I had some initial ideas of how I wanted to capture it in illustrated format, but I kept putting it off, wanting the idea to have time to grow if needed - and I was never entirely happy with what I was doing. To try to encapsulate such a delicately beautiful and layered story into just one image is not as easy as it sounds. There are so many themes within 'Beauty and the Beast' - not just the love story between Belle and the Beast, but also those of jealousy, greed, materialism and the superficial manner in which we can judge each other. There was also the symbolic nature of the rose.
Some interpretations of the original tale by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve are quite grotesque. Others are beautiful, and opulent. I think we all tend to associate fairy tales with the fantasy of royalty and beauty. However, they always hark back to darker roots; stories created to scare children into making good moral choices. Which is why it can be so hard to truly depict each story.
But, strip it all back and no matter which way you look at it, this story is ultimately about love; lost, platonic, coveted, and deep, true love. Which is why I decided to focus my illustration on the enigmatic rose at the heart of the story - with a side of couture as always.
Depending on which version you want to read into, the rose symbolises the Beast's love for his previous wife; his grief and guilt at her death which was (inadvertently) caused by his own callous and beastly nature, but also the love that Belle's father feels for his daughter, as it is this rose that he plucks from the Beast's garden to give to Belle when he returns home. A rose is what Belle covets most, when all of her sisters crave jewels and finery. In the Disney version, the rose is a physical reminder of the Beast's curse, representing the time he has in which to break the curse that befalls him, before the last petal falls.
One of my favourite parts of researching this tale was seeing how their relationship is depicted in different variations of the story. I wanted to focus on the progression of their relationship, and in doing so fell back into the original tale. Belle, having taken the place of her father, sits down to an opulent dinner with the Beast each night. After every meal he asks her to marry him, a proposal she refuses. However, gradually, as she begins to know him, and to feel empathy and gratitude toward him for the kindness that he shows to her, she starts to see his true character beneath the beastly guise, and falls in love with him.
Chic as ever, dressed in Chanel-inspired lace, Belle and a Versace-clad Beast are ensconced inside the glass cloche, standing amongst opulent candelabras and the peony roses that represent their budding love affair.
The latest in the collection, 'Beauty and the Beast,' is available in my store now in limited A3 + A2 editions until sold out.
SHOP HERE: www.birdyandme.com.au/shop
More Beauty and the Beast inspiration below:
It's that time of the year again! The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Costume Institute Gala, where the best (and worst) of fashion and celebrity circles come together to raise money and unveil the newest exhibition at the Costume Institute - as well as, let's be honest, strutting their stuff on the ONLY red carpet that leaves room for self-expression and a bit of theatricality.
This year's exhibit “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between" set the night's theme of avant-garde, and while some attendees nailed the brief (looking at you Solange Knowles, Rihanna, Stella Tennant, Ruth Negga and Katy Perry) many opted for the traditional, yet slightly edgy, designs that we've come to expect from the Met Gala.
In my opinion, this year's theme was going to be hard for a lot of the celebrity guests to truly nail. Avant-garde calls for risky, daring, experimental looks - it's wearable art. But most celebrities and their stylists will always stick to their own personal style, trying to incorporate the theme where they can.
On that note, I wanted to share some of my favourites from the night.
I, personally, prefer structural, elegant, pretty gowns. So it should be no surprise that some of my faves didn't necessarily nail the brief! But here we go, in no particular order:
Let me know your faves in the comments!
Images via Vogue.Com
The latest in my fairy tale series, and perhaps one of the most widely treasured - 'Cinderella'!
For so many of us, 'Cinderella' (told by the Brothers Grimm and, perhaps most famously, Charles Perrault) is synonymous with Walt Disney's classic animated film. Along with 'Snow White' it was one of the studio's very first in a long line of fairy tales.
We're so familiar with that 'Bibbity Bobbity Boo' scene, the stunning score, and that beautiful scenery (envisioned by the wonderful concept art of Mary Blair).
While Disney's version is so vivid in our memories, I wanted to focus less on the ball and the Prince, and more on Cinderella herself.
Of course those shoes makes a precious cameo, but it's all about that glorious gown and the transformation from rags to ravishing beauty. The birds and mice are getting her dressed and she's just about to throw that god-damned broom away.
In true fashionista style, our Cinderella proves that sometimes all it takes to improve your day is a killer pair of heels and a beautiful dress! Sure, you might have to sweep a few floors, but you'll feel pretty darn good doing it.
'Cinderella' is available now in a limited edition of 40 A3 prints, and 15 A2 prints, in my store here:
I hope I've done her justice!
View some of Disney's original 'Cinderella' concept art by Mary Blair (because I love it so much!) and a gif of THAT transformation below.
I recently had the honour of working with the incredibly luxurious Grand Hyatt Melbourne on their Spring fashion campaign, HYFASHION, in collaboration with Australian designer, Con Ilio;
celebrating the iconic beauty of the 'Paris' end of Collins St, Melbourne's premiere shopping precinct, and home of the hotel.
Incorporating the stunning pink 'Charlotte' gown with its hand embroidery and signature camouflage print designed by Con himself, we wanted to create the image of a bold and confident woman; the personification of Melbourne's celebrated fashion and design scene.
As a huge fan and admirer of Haute Couture, working with a designer championing the very specific and intricate methods of creating such gowns was a dream.
During the course of the promotion, guests can book a very special 'HY FASHION' package which includes, with a luxury stay at this beautiful hotel, an exclusive stationery suite (designed by me), High Tea for two in Collins Kitchen, and a one-on-one consultation with Con Ilio.
To book a stay at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne visit the website HERE.
I recently had the pleasure of illustrating the cover of a screenplay for an in-development film!
While I can't reveal too much about the film itself just yet, I can share with you the illustration, and fawn over its subject a little bit.
Fashion enthusiasts might recognise this beautiful vintage Dior gown from 1952 - Christian Dior's famous 'Palmyre' design.
The film centers around many such precious gowns, and I've got my fingers crossed that we will see it on our screens in the not-too-distant future.
For a film-obsessed gal like me, this is probably one of the most interesting and exciting commissions I've had to date.
(To learn a little more about the process of script to screen, and also get a little couture illustration in on the side, is my idea of the perfect project!)
I hope you enjoy this peek at the process of draft to final...we wanted to keep the figure quite simplistic so as to draw all of the attention to that glorious gown!
Given my love of Lewis Carroll's Alice, there was no question I would have to continue the series with her adventures 'Through the Looking Glass.'
The chief inspiration behind this piece was this incredible Gucci gown.
As soon as I saw it I immediately pictured it on our Queen of Curiosity. I mean, if ever a dress was made for its subject...
Taking place after she fell down the rabbit hole, 'Through the Looking Glass' sees Alice pulled into the 'other' room, where everything is back-to-front and the inhabitants have a flair for poetry!
While Wonderland was all about flamingos, rabbits and mad tea parties, the looking glass takes us into a giant game of chess and Alice's determination to become a Queen.
Those familiar with the tale, will also remember that the Tweedles first appear in 'Through the Looking Glass', and not 'Wonderland' as is commonly believed, so I had to include them in my version.
If you've not read the book, you can A) DO IT! NOW! or B) catch one of the many film adaptations, including this one from the BBC starring Kate Beckinsale and a whole lot of mad British fashions (take particular note of the supermodel flower bed.)
I also hope you enjoy some of these looking glass inspired images!
'The Looking Glass' is available to order now in my shop in both A3 + A2 sizes here: www.birdyandme.bigcartel.com
(Limited to a quantity of 40 + 15 respectively.)
I had originally intended this post to be something of a re-cap of my visit to the Christian Dior museum in Granville. The museum displays pieces from its archives, along with rotating exhibits - the current being 'Femmes en Dior' which includes 49 gowns and photographs of loyal, royal and celebrity clients and spokes models of the fashion house.
I was due to take an early train this morning, however the current transport strikes in Paris meant that it was cancelled, which was more than a disappointment.
So imagine my surprise, upon visiting instead the original Dior flagship store on Avenue Montaigne, to find a very special 'open house' at the Maison next door as part of the LVMH Journées Particulières event. Opening their doors to small groups for one weekend only, the beautiful spiral staircase led to rooms and rooms set up with displays from each area of the design house; couture, jewellery, accessories and parfums.
I can't even describe how incredible it was to see - and hear - each worker explain his or her process. I don't even speak French, but it was clear for everyone to see how each individual piece is created. I'm still pinching myself that I was able to have such an up-close experience with such a special design house and to see so many iconic pieces IRL.
It definitely more than made up for that missed train to Granville...
The illustration above is based on Christian Dior's Lady Dior Pre-Fall campaign from 2014, photographed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino. One of my all-time favourites.