Instructor Spotlight: Eileen Karp

Eileen Karp has a broad background in fashion. After earning her BS degree in Textiles and Clothing at North Dakota State University and an AAS degree in fashion design from the Fashion Institute of Technology, her fashion design career began as a creative designer of loungewear and sportswear. She founded a business designing an exclusive maternity line for an upper east side NYC boutique; the designs were also sold to Bloomingdale’s and Saks Fifth Avenue. Her entrepreneurial background led her to a variety of freelance and consulting opportunities for a broad range of companies. She moved into various aspects of creative design and related positions primarily in the cut & sewn knitted and woven sportswear areas. Concurrently, she began teaching as adjunct at FIT–SUNY and became a full-time professor in the Fashion Design Department in 2007. In 2008, she completed a Master’s Degree in Education from California State University East Bay. She developed a new interdisciplinary Bachelor of Science program in Technical Design at FIT that has grown steadily. In January 2014, Eileen became the Chairperson of the Fashion Design Department in FIT’s School of Art and Design.

Prof. Karp teaches:
HAP 026 Sewing for Fashion Designers
HAP 017 Introduction to Draping for Fashion Design (Level 2)

Teaching Philosophy:
In my role as teacher, I am charged to inspire my students through example and guide them to embrace learning. Lifetime learning is critically important for professional and personal growth. The practice of fashion design constantly evolves and advances through exposure, exploration, and experimentation. Heraclitus said, “The only thing that is constant is change.” To prepare my students for success in this creative field and for life, it is incumbent upon me to develop in them a strong foundation that they know how to tap when, occasionally, the creative well runs dry. I have an obligation to weave into students the ability to be adaptable, flexible and open. As an educator, I commit to encourage their ability for conceptual development with the power to problem solve through the continuous asking of “Why?” “How?” and “What If?” as they seek and discover answers.

Industry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:
Over 30 years of experience in creative design, patternmaking, fashion business, technical design at all price points and types of industry experiences.
2016/2017, showed two original works in the annual “New Views” FIT Art & Design School Faculty Exhibit.

Childhood Dreaming Becomes a Reality

My substitute professor taught us how to draw a basic blouse and skirt. I’ve always liked drawing but I never know how to fit it on a body and make it look real.

My experience with FIT so far is amazing. I love getting out of bed every Saturday and knowing I’m going to a class for my dream school. Prof. Cutting is a wonderful teacher and he helps everyone as much as he can.

I also entered a contest for pockets and purses. I designed a bathing suit and a backpack with little pockets in it, to keep wax for your surfboard or sunscreen sticks. It is so fascinating seeing your sketch on tracing paper and transferring it to marker paper, watching it come alive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This contest was introduced March 17th. Three students from the  who run the program took the class down to the museum to see how pockets and purses have evolved through the years.

Here are some photos:

~Bella Basile

FIT for the Talented

We are currently learning how to make outfits using a denim, stripe pattern and a floral. As the designer, you have to be very specific and show where the body is and where the folds of the garnmet are.

The last 20 minutes of class, we went to the gallery to see the student’s mood board’s and outfits they made. The students are very talented, they make their croquis look alive.

Have you ever wondered how to make your drawings look more realistic? Shading is KEY!

Here is a look at the talented work of people who were accepted into FIT:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

~Bella Basile

Instructor Spotlight: Michael Kaye

Professor Michael Kaye comes to teaching with 29 years experience in New York’s Garment Industry.  A graduate of FIT Professor Kaye has taught both lower and upper division classes as well as Precollege courses since 2016.  An award-winning designer, he has been featured in numerous fashion publications and his designs are in the
permanent collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute, the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology as well as  Museums in Canada his native country.  Professor Kaye’s early years upon graduating were spent
working in various design positions from draper to assistant designer to designer of his
own bridge dress line.  For the past 18 years, he has had his own Couture company where he privately dresses some of the international set most fashionable women. He also has a line of Men’s accessories including shirts, ties, bowties, pocket squares, and cufflinks.

Prof. Kaye teaches:
HAP 026 Sewing for Fashion Designers (11 & 12 grades only)
HAP 017 Introduction to Draping for Fashion Design (Level 2)

Teaching Philosophy:
I try to make the students realize that Fashion is first and foremost a business.  There
are bottom lines and expectations that must be met.  I impart my students with the
knowledge they will need in order to be successful in this ever-changing industry.  I try to enlighten the students with practical knowledge and insightful stories from my vast
history in the garment center. And guide them to successful outcomes in the various
class projects we complete.

 

Most recent exhibitions:
FIT Staff exhibition -NEW VIEWS- March 2018 World Peace Tartan Gown…….
This Tartan was sanctioned by his Holiness The Dali Lama and I was commissioned to design a gown in the tartan. The plan is for this gown to be donated to Victoria and
Albert Museum in London England.

 

Get Out Of the “Dark” About Darkroom Photography

Traditional film and darkroom processes have been undeniably dying out over the past several decades with the invention of the digital camera. The new generation of photographers is following an interesting trend, though, with a sudden enthusiasm for the film medium. It’s a craze led by the likes of Gucci muse Petra Collins that can be compared to the record player: trend in music, people seem to believe that film is more “raw,” “real,” and creative.

Sheets of rolls of film.

Last class, when had my second experience with traditional black and white manual photography, I worked on developing film. If you aren’t familiar with this, there’s an entire process including working in the darkroom, that allows photos that are taken on a roll of film to be accessed. The whole process of development is multilayered and can be stressful for a beginner, especially in the darkrooms; a pitch-black environment that is essential for the photos to not be ruined because they are light-sensitive materials. After processing the roll of film, it is soaked in chemical baths and left to dry. This process allows you to access only 36 photos that one cannot see until the end, meaning that there is no way to tell if the shots will appear until you take out the photos and set them to dry. This is the risqué nature of the medium that some people reference as more artful than digital.

I interviewed photography instructor Cornelia Hediger to create an exposé on the ins and outs of traditional darkroom film, in comparison to digital photography.

Q: Do you prefer digital or film photography, and why?

A: Overall, I prefer the look and quality of a darkroom print vs a digital print. A traditional printed image, shot on film, has grain. I love the look of grain printed on fiber based paper. You cannot beat that look. It is absolutely stunning.

Q: What are some of the advantages of darkroom photography? What are some of the disadvantages?

A: The advantage of darkroom photography is that you have a negative to work from, versus a digital file. Each image is unique as the prints are done by a person and not a machine. A darkroom print still looks superior to me than a digital file printed in black and white. There are some very nice papers out there that mimic the look of a traditional fiber based print. Definitely, the paper and technology have come a long way and prints, produced with digital files, are starting to look better. The ‘disadvantage’ of a darkroom print is the time factor. It takes longer to produce a darkroom print versus a digital print.

Q: What is your favorite aspect of black and white film photography?

A: My favorite aspect of black and white film photography is that I absolutely love the process. I love to develop film and I love printing in the darkroom. I find it magical to watch an image come up in the developer and I like the slower process of producing an image. In the end, I also prefer the look of a black and white image printed on fiber based paper vs. a digitally produced image.

Q: For young photographers, do you recommend that they learn how to use both film and digital cameras? Do you consider film photography an essential for photographers?

A: I think it is a good idea for young photographers to learn shooting with film and at least experience the process in the darkroom. Film ‘forces’ you to slow down and perhaps be more responsible when taking an image. Each image is recorded on a negative and cannot be deleted like you would delete a digital image. Personally, I find the experience of learning how to take images with film/print in the darkroom essential when learning photography. To some people, it opens up a whole new world whereas others will find the process a slow and tedious one.

Q: Do you think darkroom photography will ever go “extinct”?

A: I do not know if darkroom photography will ever go extinct. In the fine arts, it seems to be making a comeback. The masses and everyday household will not turn around and go back to film. It seems that film and traditional darkroom printing is perhaps surviving through the arts. I have no idea, however, how photography will develop over the next decades.
-End of Interview

Chloe Abidi