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Top 5 things I do as a London Fashion Illustrator

A blog by London Fashion Illustrator Elyse Blackshaw


Welcome to my first blog post!


I am often contacted by many aspiring fashion illustrators with questions about my role as a fashion illustrator. So here is a space to answer many of these questions and to share with you a little bit more about my work and process.


So, first things first - What are the top 5 things I do as a fashion illustrator?


1. Fashion Illustrations for London Fashion Week coverage


London Fashion Illustrator Elyse Blackshaw draws live at SABIRAH London Fashion Week show 2024
Image of model holding live fashion sketch from SABIRAH London Fashion Week 2024 show by Elyse Blackshaw

The main focus as a Fashion Illustrator is drawing and sketching at fashion week. As a UK based illustrator and someone with an affinity to the iconic London fashion scene, I primarily focus on London Fashion Week (LFW). Around the same time, Milan, Paris and New York host their designer shows too. You can view my fashion illustrations here.


2. Live Event Illustration


Live event illustrator Elyse Blackshaw draws live at Selfridges London
Image of live event sketch from Selfridges x Loanhood event by live event illustrator Elyse Blackshaw 2023

The second role as a fashion illustrator is specialising in live event illustration. As a live event illustrator, I apply my fashion illustration style to portraits and create bespoke artwork for guests. The event attendees become my artistic muse for around 10 minutes whilst I create stylised interpretations of them. Whilst drawing the client, I always try to connect with them on a deeper level, asking them questions about their life to ensure they feel valued and to give them a unique personal experience. Take a look at my other portraits here.


3. Brand Collaborations


Fashion illustrator Elyse Blackshaw collaborates with Selfridges
Image of decorative illustration at Selfridges by Elyse Blackshaw 2024

A really fun aspect of fashion illustration is applying my style to a range of products from branded bags and product packaging to bespoke prints for fashion. It's really fun bringing illustrations to life through a 3D form. See the different decorative illustrations I have created here.


4. Installations on location


Westfield London graphic hoarding / illustrated mural by Elyse Blackshaw
Image of installation at Westfield London by illustrator Elyse Blackshaw 2022

The next step up from a 3D form is an installation! Through graphic hoarding and window vitrines, a whole world can be created from illustrations that really immerse the customer in a location. You can view my other mural that is up to 60 meters wide here.


 5. Hosting talks & workshops


Image of  Elyse Blackshaw hosting a talk for Graduate Fashion Foundation in the Samsung KX space
Image of Elyse Blackshaw hosting a talk for Graduate Fashion Foundation in the Samsung KX space 2020

Being in person and in a physical space also transcends into being invited to host talks and workshops. Here I discuss and share my expertise in contemporary fashion illustration to a live audience or to online participants. You can see some behind the scenes of my workshops here.


Up next - What are my methods of working through a creative block?

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