How to become a Fashion Illustrator

Overview, Courses, Exam, Colleges, Pathways, Salary

Visual art & design


Who is Fashion Illustrator ?

Historically, a fashion illustrator was someone who sketched runway looks live for magazines, newspapers, or their respective fashion firms, since photography was not allowed in the fashion show. In present times, fashion illustrators are graphic designers who create fashion sketches and fashion drawings of apparel, shoes, and accessories for the catalogues of designers and apparel companies. In addition, fashion illustrators use their abilities in fashion sketching, graphics, and digital design to produce illustrations for fashion ads in magazines and newspapers.

Typical day at work

What does Fashion Illustrator do?

A fashion illustrator prepares fashion sketches and drawings, usually with paint, pencils, and other stationaries. One must also have technical knowledge of conceptualising and drawing clothing and accessories with the help of computer software such as Computer-Aided Design, Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.

  • Work for department stores, magazines, and ad agencies to draw what the client requires them to
  • Recreate the vision of the fashion designers and stylists to life through the illustration of the actual design plan by putting it on paper
  • Communicate fashion ideas and concepts through artistic means like sketches, layouts, drafts and drawings
  • Select and develop appropriate fabric patterns, colours, and designs that will be used for manufacturing garments that go well with the existing fashion concept
  • Maintain open communication with the fashion designers, art directors, and buyers
  • Use different drawing and illustrating methods to express fashion designs on point
  • Be well versed with photography and animation to analyse, edit and organise their work
  • Conduct market research on the fashion trends and products
  • Create illustrations and layouts for catalogues, periodicals, brochures, flyers, advertisements, and other promotional materials.

Abilities and Aptitude needed

What are the skills, abilities & aptitude needed to become Fashion Illustrator?

This career is suitable for those interested in fashion and has brilliant drawing skills. A successful fashion illustrator must possess the ability to visualise a concept, judge, and choose appropriate colours and designs that translate the designer’s ideas into illustrations. Aspiring persons must possess an extraordinary sense of style and an uncanny ability to pay attention to detail. It will need you to maximise your creative potential, inventiveness, and aesthetic expression since they will be required to solve challenges creatively and modify their style as necessary. One must also possess excellent computer skills, particularly with CAD software. They must also possess the abilities of self-promotion and self-motivation and the ability to work to deadlines. Lastly, one needs to know basic business know-how and be good at communicating and negotiating with clients and colleagues.

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How to become an Fashion Illustrator?

Entrance Exam

Entrance Exam for Fashion Illustrator ?


Which course I can pursue?


Which Industries are open for Fashion Illustrator?


Are there internships available for Fashion Illustrator?

Career outlook

What does the future look like for Fashion Illustrator?

The fashion industry is not likely to expand at the same rate as other sectors. Fashion illustrator jobs are expected to grow below average compared to other fashion careers. Photographers and other practitioners involved in the area of Arts and Design take on the roles of fashion illustration practitioners. Having said that, it is anticipated that fewer employment openings would be produced. However, there is a promising opportunity for independent freelancers who work on short-term contracts, working for individual designers or organisations.

Fashion illustrators could also anticipate full-time, permanent careers in fashion forecasting agencies, garment pattern companies, designer boutiques, and fashion studios. Fashion illustrators are required to draw for magazines, brochures, & other print material.