Joana Avillez is a Manhattan based illustrator whose witty, original illustrations have become an unsuspected hit in the fashion world. On her blog she describes herself as ‘a self-confessed lover of drawing, writing, and making comics and cartoons’.
Joana recently collaborated with fashion and culture website, Refinery 29, to create a set of illustrations depicting some of the most iconic and formidable fashion figures in our world today; the ‘llustrated Guide to Fashion’s Biggest Icons’. She sums up their style in an alarmingly precise drawing style, whilst surrounding her images with concise, flowery italics informing us of their quirkiest personality traits. Her clever use of quotation such as ‘If these were not comfortable, I wouldn’t be wearing them’ placed directly next to Daphne Guinness’ (decidedly uncomfortable looking) heel-less shoes are a delightfully inventive concept. Facts such as Anna Wintour being Obama’s 4th biggest fundraiser help us to see these icons in ways unknown to us previously, and these facts settle alongside the more fitting, eccentric ones, such as the revelation that ex- Vogue Editor-At-Large, Andre Leon Talley owns 13 custom made capes inspired by 17th century Edo samurai tunic coats. These snippets of information make her illustrations a fun way of introducing fashion newbies to these influential figures, and for established fashion lovers to find out new facts about their idols. Among her chosen fashionistas to illustrate are Anna Dello Russo, Tom Ford, Rei Kawakubo, Bill Cunningham, and Susie Bubble, with Grace Coddington herself posting Avillez’ depictions of herself and Anna Wintour on her Facebook page.
Avillez has also recently illustrated a cookbook of Easter European recipes called ‘OMA & BELLA: The Cookbook’ which has been published in both English and German, as well as a book of illustrations called ‘Life Dressing: The Idiosyncratic Fashionistas’.