I still remember I was memorized by Elena Zlokazova‘s works when I first saw her Dior F/W 2020 Haute Couture illustration for the open call. The illustration is like an advertisement for the brand. The composition is perfect and the story-telling element really captures the viewer’s attention. Since then I have become a fan of Elena’s works and she continues to produce some amazing fashion illustrations to wow the crowd! Today, I am very grateful I have this chance to feature this amazing artist on the site!
Elena, thank you so much for letting me feature you on Draw A Dot. The first question I have in mind for most illustrations is this – what made you want to become an illustrator? Was this your childhood dream?
I’ve been an artist since the moment I first held a pencil in my hand. I was super inspired by the world around me and wanted to share my feelings about it with other people. I started drawing every day, and it eventually became my profession.
Thank you for not stop drawing or else we would not be able to see your wonderful works! Let’s talk about your illustration style. In 3 words, how do you describe your illustration style?
Realism with a bit of cartoon mood and impressionism.
Yes! I can totally see the cartoon element in your works. Your works are also very animated too. Whenever I see your works, I can feel the movement of the characters. Aside from being an illustrator, I also know you are a designer and a photographer. How do you find these roles help you with your illustration works?
Having a degree in fashion design helps me a lot with fashion illustration because I can easily understand the structure of the collections and follow the idea of the designer. Photography also helps me to catch interesting compositions by looking at simple things. Sometimes a photo I’ve taken inspires me for a new illustration. I’ve found that it’s so easy for me to create an idea – all you need is to open your eyes to what is around you and look at this world like you have never been here before (like a child).
I love what you just said! We need to open our eyes and experience the world every day as if we have never been here before! Can you give us a short summary of how you create your illustrations?
Nature and different city landscapes are my main inspiration. Sometimes I can be inspired by art from the gallery.
Whenever I start to create my illustration I never know what it will be in the end. I just find any inspiration and start to draw and follow the process. This idea keeps me productive and excited because I don’t have any patience. I need to stay excited until the end. Music can also help me stay in the flow, especially if the music captures the mood of the piece that I am creating.
I always believe music can somehow trigger our creativity genes and help us to create something out of our comfort zone. Now I have a question regarding your works. Out of all the illustrations you have created to date, which piece is your favorite? Why?
This is quite a difficult question because every piece has a different story and different emotions. I do work in different styles and love to show different topics. I feel like I would never be stuck with only one idea. Maybe I would choose the cover for the Vogue magazine, which I did for the Vogue Challenge from Edward Enninful. The piece depicts a woman’s face. Her face is transparent like glass, revealing the vibrant scene behind her. It was about my feelings during the pandemic and reminding people of nature’s power.
This is a very cool image, especially the glass effect! As we all can see, there are so many talented illustrators we can discover on social media platforms right now. Which one do you recommend we keep an eye on?
I just discovered such an interesting illustration by Joshua K Marshall (@joshua.marshall.illustration [currently not available]). I love how this artist creates stories and compositions. Plus, if you look at the Instagram page you can see the way the artist has grown over time. It’s always an interesting process. One of my favorite illustrators/artists is Damien Cifelli (@damien_cifelli). His works are modern, stylish, colorful, and professional. He is my main inspiration. Hellen Downie (@unskilledworker) has incredible style and ideas in her art. I love how she promotes her art and how she works with designers. And I can’t forget Nono Da Costa (@nuno_da_costa_illustration) and Maxim Sergeev (@max_sergeev.draw) – they are just genius when it comes to fashion illustration.
The above people you mentioned are all talented artists and I highly recommend all my readers to look at their accounts. I am very thankful that you have created a special piece for Draw A Dot based on the orange dot. Can you let us know the inspiration behind this piece?
I have created a story about a couple at the gas station. We can see only a woman in the illustration but have an angle from which you can feel like you are a part of the story. Here you can play with your imagination and think about what she holds in her luggage and what she has on her neck. Her necklace is like a sun and it is filled with magic. The outfit which she is wearing is a look from the latest collection by Stella McCartney (Pre-Fall 2021).
I love the concept of this illustration! It is so cool and it really makes me think about the relationship between the two people. So let’s get back to your future plans. What is your main goal as a fashion illustrator? What kind of things do you want to achieve in the future?
I would love to work with Vogue and New Yorker magazine. Being a part of something big would confirm for me that I am headed in the right direction, and would allow me to reach a much broader audience.
I always like to know more about the artist’s taste so below are some short questions I have for Elena. After reading the answers, you should be able to know this amazing artist on a more personal level.
- Favourite season – summer
- Fashion brand you would want to collaborate – Alexander McQueen and Delpozo
- Favourite food – mango
- Favourite celebrity – Stephen Ridley
- Ready to Wear or Haute Couture – Haute Couture
- Dog or Cat – Dog
- Digital or Traditional Art – Traditional Art
- Coca Cola or Pepsi – I don’t drink soda at all 😉
I am glad that I now know more about Elena after this interview! I really love her works and cannot wait to see what she is going to create next!
You can visit Elena’s Instagram account to see more of her works! All illustrations in this feature are created by Elena Zlokazova unless stated otherwise.
Thank you Elena!