We chat to Kerrie Hess, a renowned Australian fashion illustrator on forging an artistic career and her top dress picks of the season. 

During Hess's illustrative career she has worked on illustrations for Cartier, Louis Vuitton and Net-a-Porter and has had her works featured in Vogue and Harpers Bazaar. 

How did you first get into illustrating?

I realised that I loved drawing and painting at around 5 years old.  And started doing weekend art classes each weekend from around 7.  I went on to study Graphic Design for two years but decided to save up and try being a full time artist at 19.  Which is what I have been doing since.

What do you love most about sketching? Do you have a favourite material you like to use?

 I think if you love what you do, it's such a lucky thing!  I love working in watercolour paint most.  It's quite volatile and sometimes doesn't work out but that's the beauty of it!  I prefer paint to working on computers any day. 

How long does it take sketch one look? 

Oh it really depends!  I am generally quicker when working on something for myself that is quite organic than something very specific for a client.  Then of course large pieces in acrylic and oil can take a number of weeks depending on the subject.

Do you have a favourite illustration?

Probably one that I did of a very close up face 'The Eyes.'  It's black and white and very simple.  I did it originally for my own lounge room not thinking it would translate as a print but so many people emailed me about it  (when images of my apartment in Paris were printed in a magazine) that I did end up releasing it.  It's sold out now at every size, to my surprise... 


What is it about fashion that draws you in?

 I personally love a vintage look in paintings.  I feel like it doesn't date which is what I want for those who invest in my prints and original pieces. I want them to still love the image in 10, 15 years time.  I think too with art as opposed to a photograph you can also leave as much information out as you like in a painting. I love the mystery of that!

Do you have any advice for people who want to pursue illustration?

Find what is unique to you.  Put it out there for people to discover (Instagram is a great platform for this) and expect that it may take some time to get to where you want to be.  My journey as an artist has been for around 20 years now but in that time I have become a better artist along the way and learned what to say yes to and what to politely turn down.  Love what you do and be as authentic as possible.   

What pieces are you loving from Talulah at the moment ? Why do you love the brand?

I am loving the midi length dresses in florals and pale pinks. I generally prefer clothing that flows when worn than anything too structured.

See more of Kerrie's work here.