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Live Painting at Bloomingdale’s – Valentine’s Day

veronica marche live painting bloomingdale's

Painting on some of my favorite things for Bloomingdale’s.

So much love in the air this weekend! This past Saturday I had the pleasure of live painting for Bloomingdale’s in King of Prussia, PA, for the Valentine’s Day event.

I spent the afternoon custom painting gifts-with-purchase in the cosmetics and fragrance department. Quite a few people dropped in to buy fragrances and other lovely things for their significant others, and were able to take home a little something extra to boot.

The compacts were painted with sweet and shimmering fashion- and beauty-related items — lipsticks, roses, and red bottom shoes were some of the more popular designs. I kept the color palette romantic and luxe, focusing on reds, pinks and metallic golds, which created a great contrast with the satin finish of the black compacts.

Live painting by Veronica Marche at Bloomingdale's

A few fun designs for Valentine’s Day.

veronica marche live painting bloomingdale's

Concentrating on painting a pair of gold red-bottom heels. This was the most popular design of the day

Veronica Marche live painting Bloomingdale's

This lace boot is a personal fave. Going to paint another one just like it, just for me.

I can’t go without mentioning — the ladies of Bloomingdale’s are a blast to be around! The cosmetics and fragrance department has such a fun and friendly energy, and some of the ladies even brainstormed ideas for thing more things that I could paint on the compacts. They made the day so fun, and the afternoon flew by before I even knew it.

This is my second time working with Bloomingdale’s King of Prussia (the first was an event with Free People during the Christmas season) and I have such a great time every time I’m there. Thanks you guys for bringing me out again!

You can check video of me painting during this event over on Instagram. And if you’re interested in having me live-sketch for your next event, please contact me here.

Now Teaching – Fashion Illustration Class at MADE Studio in Philadelphia

Super excited to share this update!

Starting in March, I’ll be teaching Illustration 101 at the beautiful MADE Studios in Old City, Philadelphia.

Fashion Illustration 101 course at Made Studios Philadelphia starts on March 5th.

What’s MADE? It’s a gorgeous design studio in Old City Philadelphia where students can take classes in all aspects of the fashion design process, from design to sewing to couture techniques to (of course!) illustration. The owner, Rachel Ford, is a fellow alum of Drexel’s fashion design program and incredibly dedicated to growing the fashion talent here in Philadelphia. I’m so stoked to be joining the team there.

I’ll be the instructor for Fashion Illustration 101, teaching students how to draw the fashion figure by hand. The class is designed to teach anyone how to sketch, even if you have no previous drawing experience. I’ll be teaching all my techniques for developing poses, drawing the correct body proportions and communicating design ideas.

If you’re around Philly and are interested in fashion, I highly encourage you to check out the course offerings at MADE. You can find more information about my course and register here. And if you’re not in Philly, no worries! I’ll still be sharing my tutorials and tips here on the blog.

Live Sketching – Cosmo Mag’s Fun Fearless Life with Actually She Can

Live Sketching at Cosmo Mag's Fun Fearless Life

This past weekend I had the opportunity to live-sketch during Cosmopolitan Magazine’s annual Fun Fearless Life conference in Manhattan. I cannot tell a lie — it was a blast! Fun Fearless Life brings together influential female speakers, thinkers, activists and entrepreneurs to teach young women how to live exceptional, exciting lives. I was in the same building at Gabrielle Bernstien, Aliza Licht, Alicia Quarles, Laverne Cox (!!!) and scores of young women hungry to live life in the most fearless, most fun way possible.

I was stationed at the live-sketching booth sponsored by Actually She Can, a new movement to help young women build confidence and positivity. The best part was illustrating alongside my buddy and fellow illustrator Denise El Najjar. We spent the day not only sketching, but also gabbing with guests, sharing supplies and squealing over the amazing outfits we saw throughout the day.

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There’s something so exciting and electrifying about seeing young women at their most confident and stylish. Seeing the way the guests expressed their personal style made me so excited to draw them. There were pleated midi skirts, suede rompers, all-white ensembles and even a pair of gnome shoes! I asked every guest to tell me about the favorite part of their outfit, and made sure the highlight those faves in each sketch.

Also of note: At one point while I was sketching, I felt someone standing over my shoulder, observing, and then heard her exclaim, “Are you drawing her while she’s standing right there? Amazing!” I looked up and it was Joanna Coles, editor-in-chief of Cosmo and fashion magazine industry legend. NO BIG DEAL OR ANYTHING. I may have had a fan girl moment. Don’t judge me.

It turns out, the illustration booth was the most popular feature of the day! Denise and I were still sketching well after the lights came up and the music went down, wanting to make sure every fun, fearless girl got her very own personal sketch. I mean, how could we say no? Afterward, I created an illustration highlighting one of the most popular looks of the day — cool tights with super-cute ankle booties.

Live sketching for Cosmo Mag's Fun Fearless Life

Trend-spotting at Fun Fearless Life 2015.

I can’t overstate how much fun we had at Fun Fearless Life 2015. Thank you to Cosmo for creating such a fun event, and to Actually She Can for making fashion illustration such a major part of it. You can see more photos from the event below, and also by searching #funfearlesslife and #actuallyshecan on Instagram.

If you’re interested in having me live-sketch for your next conference or fashion event, contact me here.

Illustration Tutorial: Color With Tombow Pens

So I love drawing, but (shhhhh, don’t tell anyone!) I may possibly love teaching even more. So a couple of weeks ago I posted my first Instagram tutorial, showing my process of working with Tombow marker pens, and the technique I use to put color into many of my illustrations. Want to learn? Let’s get started!


STEP 1: I always start with inspiration and a pencil sketch to capture the gesture (pose). This look comes from the super-chic Wendy’s Look Book. Sometimes I ink first, other times I make inking my last step, depending on how jiggy I’m feeling at the moment. This one, I went ink-first, using my Sakura fine brush Pigma pen, which I looooove.


STEP 2: Color! I usually start with skintone, then move on the garment. Here, I’m using my Tombow brush pen to lay down a hot red tone. You could stop here and it would be a perfectly fine way to indicate color in your sketch. (General rule of thumb: use the color in the shadows, and leave the highlights white.) But I’m going to continue withy favorite way of using Tombow pens… with a waterbrush!

STEP 3: Now for my favorite part. After laying down the color with the Tombow pen, I activate the ink with a waterbrush to create a bright, vibrant wash of color. I love this step, and I try to keep the variation in color by keeping the ink more opaque in thr shadows and making it more transparent in the highlight areas. It’s still good to keep some white showing through if you can. But sometimes it’s easy to get excited and let the ink get away from you.


STEP 4: After laying down the base layer of color, I like to add more texture with a little colored pencil, and deepen the shadows with Copic markers.


STEP 5: Last step! Adding a splash of color for the background, using the same marker pen/waterbrush combo that I used to lay color down in the figure. The red-and-leopard print combo made me instinctively choose a vibrant orange for the background.

And here’s the final product. Loads of color, just how I like it.

What do you think? Will you give marker pens and waterbrushes a spin? What other tutorials would you like to see?

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