Ashley Wood does fashion
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I've been a big fan of Ashley Wood for a long time. When I stumbled upon his site (check it out HERE), I immediately was drawn to his simplification of stylized shapes and forms coupled with his use of real paint (!) and photoshop techniques. I found a sort of kinship to his work, as he does things with the breaking down of characters -- with the way he draws the hair, the faces, the legs -- that I completely get. I love his work.
About a year and a half ago I was in a Borders checking out the art/design magazine section and came across the latest Luerzers Archive, a thick quarterly mag that focuses on a particular field of graphic design with each issue. The cover immediately grabbed my attention, as I recognized the expressive, painterly look with the stylized ink lines (the image I saw is featured above): they're doing a feature on Ashley Wood! Since I did not have about 20 bucks to slap down on the tome, I checked out the feature inside and saw that Ashley did some artwork for this cool/hip clothing company, 55dsl. I went online to find out that he did all these fantastic illos for a series of stories and poems that centered around a fictitious haunted college (it was for their fall line). The short little poetic stories were kinda dorky, with each one about a particular student who got killed in a bizarre and ominous way, or killed others in a bizarre and ominous way. I could care less about all that, but I had to go through the whole presentation to get to the Ashley Wood desktop wallpapers. It was worth it: great quality images in a large size. Couldn't beat that.
Well, good thing I saved them, as once 55dsl moved onto their spring line, the little creepy promotion was nixed from the site, never to return. I kept checking back on Ashley's site to see if maybe he would post any of the images, but no go there, either. So, here are the illustrations, posted for your inspiration, for your enjoyment. Some of the images are a bit risqué, so if you're not into that sort of thing, don't look. (In one of the illustrations, it looks like this dude is, ahem, with a girl, but it's actually a blow-up doll he's having fun with. Supposedly. Still, just a precaution.)
One thing I do want to say before you check out the gallery -- Ashley did something fascinating with this series of illustrations. He utilized real photos of models in 55dsl gear and manipulated them with paint, ink and scanned linework, still allowing some of the real cloth textures to show through the artwork. Even though these images are basically tweaked photos, they are still unequivocally Ashley Wood. A half-real, half-painted sorta world he's created. It's a great look for fashion illustration, and Ashley pulls it off flawlessly.
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