Posts tagged: Joe Zee

Joe Zee reflects on FIT’s graduating fashion design talent

By , May 4, 2014 7:20 pm

“These people…I don’t know who they are, but I know they’ve traveled from four corners of the world to come to FIT.



“They blow me away with their talent, and if that’s what they are doing at the school level…




I can’t wait to see what they do when they actually get out in the world and can do it for real. ”



Joe Zee, creative director Elle magazine, FIT fashion design alum


The 2012 Fashion Finale

By , May 4, 2012 8:50 pm

Coco Chanel said that when a woman is well dressed, “you notice the woman,” rather than the clothes.  At the BFA fashion show, when the winning designs came the runway, well, we noticed the clothes.

The procession begins. Photo: Greg Mario

And of course we noticed the models as tall as sky-scrapers, and whispered and pointed out the industry stars. “There’s Calvin.” “There’s Joe Zee.” “There’s Nanette Lepore.” “Ohhh – Sarah Wallace from Channel 7 is here!”

Designer Mariesa Lopes/Photo: Hana Cho

And we wondered where does all that imagination come from, how does it manifest, and can it really be taught? It sure is a long way from home ec class. 

Designer Joshua Schwartz/Photo: Greg Mario

Design by Kenneth Udemezue/Photo: Greg Mario

 “We were intrigued when we walked through that door into the Great Hall,” said student photographer Greg Mario. They created it into a whole different environment, because I know that room and it blew me away.”  Mario said that having press access gave him “the best seat in the house.”

Designer Whitney Bender/Photo: Greg Mario

“It’s about the movement” said Mario, who wants to become a sports photographer. “I’m still capturing that pivotal moment. When they come down the runway it’s like capturing an action shot.”

Designer Brianna Badolato/photo: Greg Mario

Designer Jordan Randolph/photo by Greg Mario

For BFA fashion student Jordan Randolph it’s not a long way from home ec class.  She’s only 22. She credits the fashion industry pros and FIT instructors who helped her with the black evening dress with a skeleton back that made it to the runway. Yet she also thinks back to her home ec teacher.  “I’m her success story,” she said of Katherine McCluskey.

Calvin Klein at the BFA fashion show. Photo: Greg Mario

Mario, ever-present, gave a shout out ” Hey, Calvin!” to get this parting shot.

Congratulations to all the BFA fashion seniors. It is all about the clothes!

l-r: Gerald, Dellova, Nelly Carbonell-Corujo, Alexandra Armillas, Rebeca Velez-San Andres, Barbara Segio, Alicia Cerrone, Barbara Kerin, Marlene Middlemiss, Lisa Donofrio, Asta Skocir - photo by: Patrick McMullen.

The crew:  The great look of Fashion Design faculty who taught 8th-semester FD students.

To see Sarah Wallace’s WABC coverage go to: FIT Fashion Show Segment

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

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