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Create a Minimal Look in Your Fashion Drawings

Sketching a fashion illustration can take hours when you pay attention to every little detail. On the other hand, drawing can take a couple of minutes if you go with the minimal look and simply focus on the garment design, giving little thought to the body, face, arms, or legs.

The main rule of the minimal look is to use the fewest number of lines possible. In other words, draw in such a way that those who look at your illustration have to use their imaginations to fill in the missing pieces.

Not every line and body part has to be drawn and filled in to make a fashion statement. The point of fashion illustration is to show a design on a body. It’s okay if the body is missing some shading or a leg or the details of a design hardly show up; as long as the main idea of the design is there, you’re golden.

To practice drawing a woman in an evening gown in the minimal look, follow these steps:

1

Start with a posed stick figure. Add the trapezoids and cylinder shapes for the body.

Lay tracing paper over the drawing and use the body as your reference point for drawing your evening gown.

2

Draw a slightly curved line across the chest for the top of the dress. Follow along both sides of the torso, with one side ending mid calf and the other ending slightly below the mid calf.

This dress is form fitting, so follow the body closely until you approach the hem.

3

Using thick and thin lines, draw the hem of the dress with large loopy swirls to show movement.

Extend lines up from the loops to add dimension.

4

Add a few loose lines to suggest the placement of the arms, neck, head, and feet.

Add as few details as possible.

5

Compare the two styles of drawing of the same garment.

Both have the needed information for the dress and shoes, but each has an individual way of communicating that information.

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