Category: Uncategorized

Donovan @ The St. Regis Dior Suite

By , October 7, 2011 2:19 pm

“Dear fashion illustration aficionados—I have been waiting for this renovation,” announced Illustration professor Bil Donovan via email.  The “renovation” just happened to be the Dior Suite at the New York St. Regis. “I was ecstatic to have the opportunity to do a fashion illustration in watercolor representing  a historical timeline of Dior Couture,” said Donovan, the resident Dior painter for cosmetics.

Donovan’s  5-by-9 foot watercolor on canvas for the living room of four women wearing Dior, received mention in The St. Regis Magazine.

“Long Live Fashion Illustration!” said Donovan, who is no doubt off and running to his next great fashion adventure.

photo & illustration supplied by Bil Donovan

Suprema Jusil!

By , September 9, 2011 5:40 pm

Jusil Carroll,  newly minted FIT fashion design grad, won the Supima Design Competition yesterday with a collection the department’s Assistant Chair Steven Stipelman called “simply breathtaking.”

Supima, an organization that promotes American Prima cotton, teamed up the leading design schools, which in turn nominated graduating seniors to be finalists in the competition.

Jusil Carroll and Rachel Zoe, photo: Giovanni Giannoni, WWD

“This was my first fashion show, I can’t believe it. This was an amazing experience,” says Carroll quoted in Women’s Wear Daily. The event was covered widely by fashion publications, blogs and news organizations.

Upon return from the competition professors Stipelman and Christopher Uvenio related that FIT finalist Amy Bittner opened the show for Supima  and Jusil closed it. “They did an outstanding collection–superb,” said Stipelman, of Fashion Design Art. “These are names to watch for in the future.”


Three days at the Digital Spa

By , July 11, 2011 2:41 pm

What better place to mention the evolving faculty emphasis on social media skills than on the Art & Design blog.  From June 6 – 8, two dozen Art & Design faculty members attended the 4th annual Digital Spa, initiated by Prof. Sandra Markus from the Fashion Design Department.

Digital Spa attendees. Photo by Suzanne Baer

The workshop on social media was taught by Kurt Vega, industry professional and adjunct in the Computer Graphics Department. 

Faculty spent three sessions learning about social media sites and activities like Linkedin, Twitter and blogging. They discussed ways to integrate social media with their teaching, to enhance students’ coursework, and to improve knowledge transfer.

Fashion illustrators meet-up @ the Society of Illustrators

By , May 31, 2011 4:13 pm

On May 21 at the Society of Illustrators, FIT Illustration profs. Bil Donovan, John Jay Cabuay and Carlos Aponte went on a motion-filled painting and drawing spree and provided commentary of their work. As an engaged audience of fellow FIT faculty, students from FIT, Parsons and SUV, as well as curious fashionistas looked on, the artists employed an array of formats and techniques capturing the “looks” of three live fashion models.

Bil Dononvan

Donovan talked about his unique combinations of inks and gouaches used for special effects. “A myriad of techniques flew from his fingers,” says FIT faculty member Karen Santry. “He used various drawing tools and unorthodox techniques that created stunning results…He painted and drew, switching instruments and brushes to the awe of the audience.”

FIT Illustration professors John Jay Cabuay & Carlos Aponte

Attendees walked amongst the illustrators, eyeing the models as they took fabulous poses. John Jay Cabuay drew on tinted paper at astonishing speed emphasizing shapes and textures. He used an exacto blade to cut from a board bought at Ikea a template matching the skirt of his drawing. He reached for a printmaking brayer and loaded it with a textural light dark grey that had a striated effect. He rolled it over the dress and quickly removed the template. He went on the make more templates for the shadow of the face, embellishing the hair texture, adding red lips and combining the models high heels as a single shape.

finished work

Carlos Aponte used a technique he is known for and difficult to master. He also used an exacto to refine shapes and areas. “Carlos Aponte was delivering at warp speed drawing with tape,” said Santry.

Director, Society of Illustrators, Anelle Miller, President, Society of Illustrators, Dennis Dittrich & FIT's Karen Santry

“It was a wonderful afternoon,” said Santry. I counted 32 FIT grads’ cards who were doing very well in the field of fashion illustration. This was one of the most favorite afternoons of my life! We were so happy to see these talented artists create such amazing art so fast and to pour forth such knowledge, information and inspiration!”

The Society of Illustrators is located at: 128 East 63rd Street; Tel: 212- 838-2560,

How to become a creative director? Hint: “Don’t take ‘no’ for an answer” says Joe Zee

By , April 8, 2011 5:33 pm

Andrea Linett, Liza Deyrmenjian, Joe Zee & Joshua Williams

On April 5th, three creative directors and proud FIT grads, spoke to a packed  house.  “What Makes a Good Creative Director?” was a School of Art & Design Town Hall Event moderated by Prof. Joshua Williams.

Topics ranged from what to accept (an entry level job) to what not to accept (“No” for an answer!) Issues of technology, editing content, working in teams, and creative expression were also addressed.

Liza Deyrmenjian, Prof. Joshua Williams, Andrea Linett & Joe Zee

Breaking into the magazine field with no prior experience, Joe Zee from El magazine said the “nos” along the way were opportunities to “figure out why” and try again.

The impact of technology has changed the role of the creative director, panelists agreed–but not so fast–good editing is still key.  With technology comes more content. The need for a strong vision and an editing eye are critical.

“There’s so much more information out there that you have to know what meets your vision,” said Prof. Joshua Williams in summarizing panalists’ comments.

Joe Zee with FIT student

Being at FIT said panelists, was a place to try test run ideas.  “Try a photo shoot, work on the school paper, help a student market their line,” were specific suggestions from Prof. Williams.  The more things you try and even fail at, the better. “And good to do it early, than when you have a job in the real world. Take advantage of learning,” said Prof. Williams.

Liza Deyrmenjian with FIT student

“Are magazines going to die?” was an anticipated question by Zee. Online should be different information, and a different interaction or experience, he said. But an online magazine should go hand-in-hand with the hard copy. “One should not be a pdf of the other, but its own entity,” said Zee.

Andrea Linett with FIT students

It’s important for a creative director to know different mediums, said Audrey Linett.  “My job is to tell a story. The more they know the more they can push their vision online.”

photos by:  Smiljana Peros

Black History Month–photos, controversy, conversation

By , June 24, 2010 6:20 pm

“Discussions about ‘blackness’ continue to be provocative,” noted Dr. Erika Massaquoi, Assistant Dean of the School of Art & Design in opening remarks at Spring 2010 Dean’s Dialog,  “Beyond Black History: Multicultural Trends in Photo Documentary Practice.”

blog1-scarville-053photo: Keisha Scarville

The title was chosen to reflect on conversations of recent topics such as the film “Precious,” the play “Fela,” and anti-abortion messages of black children as “endangered species.”


Photo: Ozier Muhammad

The work of five photographers were presented, whose work embodies social and cultural complexities of difference.

use-candidate_obama_ohioPhoto: Ozier Muhammad

Discussion pertained to documentary works that present political, social, or historical subject matter in an informative manner.

essayOM19Photo: Ozier Muhammad

“Current conversations about ‘difference’ include the cultural impact of globalization, sexuality, nationhood, gender, freedom of expression, and social justice,” said Dr. Massaquoi.


Photo: Nan Goldin

amato0032Photo: Brassai

“I was able to identify one connecting visual theme,” said Dr. Massaquoi “and that is the use of the body—which is used creatively–to seek cultural autonomy, and to advance and raise consciousness.”

clifford_owens1Photo: Clifford Owens

use-scarville_keisha072photo: Keisha Scarville


Photo: Ozier Muhammad

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