It’s an interesting fact that when I had started my independent career of an illustrator and artist and began building my fashion illustrations portfolio the first my clients were American magazines dedicated to African fashion and lifestyle.
I created a few illustrations for BHF Magazine promoting African fashion and lifestyle. This magazine helped me to discover the beauty of African women. No doubt, living in Ukraine I see a lot of beautiful women literally everywhere (this is what our country is famous for), but nevertheless it was nice to discover the exotic beauty of African women. The owner of BHF Magazine had shown me a lot of amazing pictures of African models and I was impressed with their outstanding charm and prettiness. I could not help but dedicating this blog post to my African fashion illustrations created for African fashion magazines. There are not a lot of them so far, but I believe I will get other orders for African fashion illustrations from BHF Magazine or similar fashion and lifestyle magazines. Anyway, I enjoyed drawing African models and their clothes because I love how their specific beauty matches African authentic national fashion designs, ornaments and accessories. And I love how editors of African fashion magazines like BHF Magazine and UZURI Magazine point out African spirit and folk individuality through fashion.

Here are my African fashion illustrations:

African fashion model illustration by Igor Lukyanov

African fashion illustration for BHF Magazine

African fashion illustration by Igor Lukyanov

Fashion illustration created exclusively for BHF Magazine

African fashion sketch by Igor Lukyanov

Another African fashion illustration for BHF Magazine

African fashion by Igor Lukyanov

Fashion logo created for UZURI Magazine


Most women want to feel how it is to be a famous fashion model or an actress and have thousands of admirers at least in their imagination. That is why I am sometimes asked to draw personalized glamorous gift illustrations. I am good in portraits drawing and that is why I can create some cool personalized gifts for women with a custom portrait. One of my recent commissions was a custom pin-up poster drawn from a photo.

Pin-up art is truly a symbol of glamor and female beauty admiration. Isn’t it cool to have your portrait drawn in a style which represents the roots of today’s fashion photography and classical female charm?
Here is the pin-up I have drawn with color pencils using a client’s photograph as a reference trying to imitate classical pin-up drawings adding a little of my drawing style. I hope it was a good gift.

Custom pin-up drawing by Igor Lukyanov

Personalized pin-up gift poster from a photo

If you want to know more, please, read more about this commission on my personal blog in the post dedicated to my personalized pin-up drawing assignment.

Here is another fashion illustration I have created. This time this is a serious fashion illustration of a model wearing clothing with a number of small details such as collar, pocket, belt, buttons etc. I prefer realistic, cool-looking fashion illustrations, that is why I do not only thoroughly draw each folder and button on a dress which is, no doubt, the most important element of illustration, but also draw a realistic, although somewhat simplified model. My personal thinking is that model must look like a real woman and have real woman’s forms. Frankly speaking, I do not like those fashion illustrations and sketches depicting exaggerated skinny figures. I understand that those sketches are purposed to focus all attention on clothing design, but I think that seeing the same elaborated design on a model that looks like a female is supposed to look like gives more chances to a fashion designer to represent the design in more advantageous light which is likely to lead to marketing success. However, it’s just my personal opinion which is unlikely to be supported by a lot of people as it seems that abstract, non-realistic fashion illustrations are predominant today.

Here I showed again (as in my previous stage) the drawing stages to demonstrate how I draw fashion sketches and high quality illustrations. Unlike last time, I have drawn this illustration directly on my PC using a Wacom Intuos 4 graphic tablet. I used Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator software to create the drawing. Look how I gradually dress the model. Drawing a naked model helps to “put on” a dress on her which will naturally fits the model’s body and impart realistic look to an illustration. All you should do is to erase unnecessary lines after you have drawn the cloths. Unfortunately, not a lot of fashion designers can draw well despite they are very talented in creating amazing fashion designs. I personally would be happy to help fashion designers to embody their ideas and assist in creating attractive fashion illustrations in order to turn technical sketches of fashion designers into decent graphic art.

Fashion sketch by Igor Lukyanov

Realistic fashion illustration

In this blog post I want to show you stages of my fashion model drawing. This will give you idea about how I create my fashion illustrations as I know that a lot of people wonder how to draw a fashion illustration, how to build a figure, poses, and eventually how to put clothing on a drawn model. Of course, my example here below is not very informative but I hope it will be useful for many people who are interested in fashion art and illustrations. As a rule, I make fashion illustrations in five stages which are shown on pictures below, beginning from figure building and pencil sketching to a fully colored illustration. This is, however, a little bit scrupulous approach to creating illustrations, a lot of professional illustrators would draw the below illustrations “a la prima”, i.e. without preliminary figure building. But this post is definitely created not for professional illustrators, but rather for those who start learning how to draw a model with clothes on. I personally like studying such drawing schemes and stages made by other artists and illustrators. I consider them to be rather useful for training illustrating skills.

I am not a fashion designer as many people seem to think about me. I am illustrator and some fashion designers as well as fashion and style magazines use me to represent their fashion designs or not yet implemented concepts and ideas by means of illustrations which is an unusual, attention-catching and unhackneyed way to show fashion to the world.

In this post I deliberately do not use illustrations of super-duper fashion models in luxury dresses as it is a New Year’s night and I want to make something down-to-earth and bring in a little fun. I think glamorous maids will be good models here to demonstrate process of illustrating fashion by Igor Lukyanov as I am myself a down-to-earth person whose heard is open to all good people regardless of whether they are simple “maids” or well known super models (I am using metaphor here 😉 ).

I wish you, guys, Happy New Year!!! I hope you enjoyed this post and it will be a little pleasant gift for you. And, of course, I hope some of the visitors of my blog will become my clients in this New Year. Cheers!!!

fashion illustrations by Igor Lukyanov

Illustration Stages Pic. 1

fashion illustrations by Igor Lukyanov

Illustration Stages Pic. 2

fashion illustrations by Igor Lukyanov

Illustration Stages Pic. 3

fashion illustrations by Igor Lukyanov

Full Color Illustrations by Igor Lukyanov

It is advisable to draw preliminary fashion sketches to determine which posture of a model demonstrates clothing best. When drawing fashion sketches many fashion illustrators do not care about body proportions and any other anatomy peculiarities. My personal thinking is that such fashion sketches make the image ugly and since I am a big fan of realistic portraiture and illustration I try to draw even preliminary fashion sketches close to how a real human being looks like.

fashion sketch by Igor Lukyanov

Sketching models' postures

fashion sketches by Igor Lukyanov

Sketching a walking model

fashion sketches

Sketches for men fashion, women fashion and children fashion

New faces for future fashion illustrations

New faces for future fashion illustrations


Clamorous red head

Clamorous red head

Experimenting with style

Experimenting with style