Sketch night with Bil Donovan

One rainy Thursday of April 26th, the esteemed Society of Illustrators hosted Sketch Night, with the celebrated Bil Donovan as master of ceremonies. Bil is the quintessential New York artist everyone aspires to be. His high-fashion illustrations are to die for, which is why he is Christian Dior’s beauty first-artist-in-residence; he is also a teacher and mentor for generations of fashion students at the Fashion Institute of Technology. I met him at his studio – a wonderland of genius illustrations and happy vibes.

Amongst a full house of talented illustrators, Bil demonstrated on how to see and communicate a figure in three to five shapes.

In drawing fashion figures, three fashion models posed for the enthralled  audience; I was one of them. It was fascinating to stand before such impressive attendees, focused on shaping the human figure while unquestioningly employing Bil’s teachings. The force and energy that represents Bil Donovan made for an exquisite night.

A lovely tête-à-tête followed, sipping cocktails and admiring the framed original artwork hanging on the walls – including an imposing original Norman Rockwell gracing the classy bar  area.

The dining room, the remarkable piano and the secluded vast library took me back in a past world of grace, intellect and elegance, still preserved and cherished today.

A stunning 5-story townhouse, the Society is a world in itself. Undoubtedly the most important institution for illustration, it hosts 1,800 original pieces, including fashion, editorial, science fiction and children’s books.

Thank you Bil for having us and to Todashi Shoji for our beautiful gowns. 

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