I am attending the program Drexel in England at the London College of Fashion. I am taking 6 classes while I am there for the next 2 months. I have been attending these classes for awhile and while I love all the classes I do have a favorite.
One of my favorite class I really enjoy taking is Styling with Joe Toronka. In his class, we get to learn exactly what it is like to be a working stylist. Exactly how to style clothing from concept to on set. Joe is a working stylist so while the study abroad program was 8 weeks long, we only had his class for around 5 times because he had to still had to work and attend his shoots. So we had to make up the time we didn’t have with him outside of class so everything went smoothly by the end of class. I have learned so much by the end of this class that has truly expanded by perspective on my future career and academic interests.
What is a Stylist?
There are different type of stylists in the creative industry like the hairstylist, but the one I am particularly am taking about is a fashion stylist. A fashion stylist selects clothing and accessories for published editorial features, advertisements, concerts and more for their clients. They have to stay up on the latest fashion trends, constantly maintain relationships, look through magazines, social media and so much more. Being a stylist is not an easy and fun job that every assumes.
Concept to Shoot
How do they create styles for their clients? Well, fashion stylists look through the latest magazines and runways shows and the create mood boards of the latest trends they find. The group I was in searched through a magazine and created a mood board of the trends we found.
The trends we found in the magazine were tailoring, lots of layering, a play with textures, oversized pieces, the mixture of hard and soft pieces, and bright colors. And we wanted to showcase that in the mood board which I feel we did well on showcasing.
“The best way to understand styling is to look at images.”– Joe Toronka
From this mood board we created, we had to create 8 different looks and then styling them for our own shoot. We had to look for photographers, the model, the hair and makeup artists, the location of the shoot, and find and buy the clothing. Thankful we did not have to find a photographer because Joe had some contacts who wanted to shoot with us. But for finding the rest it was really challenging. It came down to the wire for everything to come together.
In this class, I was able to use some the skills and talents to help push my group and project along. For example, while I am a rising senior at Drexel University, I am also a signed amateur model. I have been modeling since last December which is why I say amateur. I am very comfortable with talking to modeling agencies, so looking for the model was up to me. And we were having a lot of trouble since we did not know who our photographer was. So my professor allowed me to be the model of the shoot. I was super grateful to have this opportunity not only learn how to be a stylist but also add to not only for my art portfolio but my modeling portfolio as well.
While I am not able to show the actual photos yet from the shoot, I am able to show the behind of the scenes.
My whole perspective on my career and academic interests has changed since taking this class. It helped me reaffirm that this is the industry that I want to be in. I am a very creative person, so doing anything creative makes me the happiest. Learning what it is like to style clothes for an editorial shoot was so much fun. So for the remaining electives I have remaining I will be focusing on being creative. This fall I am excited to take the media merchandising class to focus on magazine design. I have been wanting to do magazine design for the longest time and now I am excited to use the skills I have learned from styling into this next class.
For my future career, I am really to have the experience to model for an editorial shoot. I was having so much fun modeling for my friends. They had the experience much more fun and exciting. I really felt natural when posing and shooting for them. I was nervous shooting in front of hundreds of people but I was getting used to the attention being on me. This experience further pushed me to move into modeling as a part-time career. Modeling isn’t a career that will last forever. But I am going to take the chance now to make my mark in the industry one heel stomp at a time.
A Message from the Office of Global Engagement:
The safety and security of Drexel students is a priority for the University. As part of the efforts to support Drexel students that are studying abroad during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Global Engagement has conducted a rigorous review of programming and provided additional support to participating students with customized pre-departure orientations and regular check-ins during the required self-isolation period and the term.