Monday, January 14, 2013

Katie Henderson

Fashion illustration by Katie Henderson - detailed description in caption follows
Fashion illustration by Katie Henderson. [Image: a full-body semi-realistic drawing of a Black woman wearing a vanilla-beige dress, strappy heels (possibly espadrilles), gloves, scarf, hat and umbrella, carrying a matching purse (?) and wearing matching sunglasses, sporting a swipe of cherry-red lipstick. She is in mid-stride, a side- or three-quarter view, turning to look at the viewer. Even as her limbs are quite thin her neck, head and torso are widened to produce a flattened image in a general triangular shape. The linework and shapes are the crystallized, woven style I describe in the caption for the picture below. The outfit, drawing and subject altogether create a mature desert-chic look that mixes the "Hollywood star incognito on vacation in the late 40s in Greece" look with the pre-Arab-Spring perpetual-1980s confidence of Muammar Qaddafi, with the timeless art of Black women in the American South who dress for church and don't take it lightly.]
Hayley Phelan has a piece up at Fashionista.com about Katie Henderson, a woman with Downs Syndrome who taught herself fashion illustration and now has a business selling her prints. There's a slide show at the end of the two-page article; you'll definitely want to click through.

This detail from an illustration reminded me of another portrait I'd posted recently:

Detail of fashion illustration by Katie Henderson - more detailed description follows in caption
Detail of a fashion illustration by Katie Henderson. [Image: A drawing in fine-tipped marker or colored pencil of a blonde white woman wearing a brown dress, hat and gloves. The outfit is strikingly similar to the one described in the picture below. The woman faces the viewer with one hand on her hip, looking slightly down at the viewer with lowered eyelids and a pursed mouth. She leans to the right of the frame. She's drawn in a pencil or thin ink outline and the folds or incidental texture of the cloth is made of perpendicular patches of linework which gives the image a flattened, woven effect similar to a Jean Dubuffet piece, but a little more realistic.]

 Portrait painting of Olga Orlova by Valentin Serov - detailed description can be found in caption
Detail, Portrait of Princess Olga Orlova by Valentin Serov. 1911. [Image: head, shoulders and torso of a middle aged white woman wearing an enormous Gilded Age / My Fair Lady black hat with an off-the-shoulder brown fur stole, a strand of pearls and some rings. She is pictured in profile with her face turned three quarters toward the viewer, leaning slightly forward and clasping the fur stole languidly to her chest. The hat and its translucent bits contrast lusciously with the pale pinkish background, the wall of an elegant paneled room. A painting in a big gold frame is in the top right corner. She leans from the bottom left hand corner to the center of the cropped image, her face marking slightly above center. The dark fur stole, tilted hat and dark painting create a diagonal thick dark line from bottom left to upper right. The oil painting is realistic and fluidly applied.]

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