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Fashion Illustration and Drawing Awards names its top illustrators of 2021

By Jackie Mallon


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Fida submission by Katrin Funcke

Fida has announced the winners of the 4th Fashion Illustration Drawing Awards live on Instagram after evaluating over 1000 entries from across the globe. The panel of judges included master classical fashion illustrator, David Downton; Selfridges Art Director, Shawn Davey; leading contemporary fashion illustrator, Stina Persson; fashion illustrator and all round creative, John Booth; fashion couture illustrator/social media sensation, Eris Tran, and senior designer for Adidas, Shivangi Bhardwaj among others.

Fida was founded by husband-wife team Patrick and Diane Morgan on a shared vision to promote best practice among fashion illustrators and artists, and it has, in just a couple of years, created a community for fashion artists that had previously not existed. In recent months Fida members have collaborated with Bulgari, Alberta Ferretti, Lacoste and London Fashion Week.

Fida submission by Betty Southerland

There were 4 categories in this year’s awards. The Classical Award winner demonstrated skills using traditional methods or media and the submitted artwork could be based on any inspiration from runway, ad campaigns, photography, or personal fashion inspiration. The Avant Garde Award recognized an artist using mixed media, or combining traditional and new technology. The Nouveau Award rewards creatives using exclusively new technologies or software in this as-yet minimally charted territory, and the Fashion Show Award was open to the creative using any technique or media to best represent a runway show of the past or present or a behind-the-scenes moment at a fashion show.

Fashion illustration experiences palpable surge in interest, says Downton

Each category winner receives a year’s Fida membership and gains a place in the Fible, Fida’s Fashion Illustration Bible, which showcases the best of contemporary talent and which is sent to luxury brands and industry leaders, while the overall winner also wins 2000 pounds.

Fida submission by Kate Nastas

“Fashion illustration today has few rules. There is great energy and excitement and a palpable surge in interest everywhere,” commented Downton in a statement. “Social media has democratized the process and leveled the playing field (while not always raising standards). But some things never change. Drawing is still paramount and at the heart of every successful image.”

The winner of the Classical Award is Betty Southerland. The Avant Garde prize went to Katrin Funcke for her expressive and painterly composition. The Nouveau category was claimed by Kate Nastas for her elegant interpretation of a Miu Miu editorial image and the Fashion Show award was won by Nadia Coolrista for her striking artwork using color pencil on black ground. Coolrista was also Fida’s Fashion Faces winner in 2020. This year’s overall winner was Katrin Funcke.

Fida submission by Nadia Coolrista

“I found the standard to be very high, with some great examples of individual and imaginative work,” said John Booth. “It’s really great to see that so many people still feel really passionate about fashion illustration as an exciting and important form of communication.”

Fashion editor Jackie Mallon is also an educator and author of Silk for the Feed Dogs, a novel set in the international fashion industry

David Downton
Fashion illustration