Thursday, February 07, 2013

"That was pure wild animal craziness."

With collections in full swing at school there hasn't been much time to think any farther into the future than the next pattern due and rendering the illustrations for our portfolio but I can't help always having at least wheel in my brain turning towards what I want to do next. Seeing one of my fellow classmates dive head first into menswear has definitely sparked my interest in that aspect of the industry. Construction wise menswear is much more involved than women's wear and incredibly challenging when it comes down to fit and placement of all the little details. It's also an area of the market where it doesn't seem like many designers are pushing boundaries or trying to innovate.

That being said I would love to do a menswear collection inspired by the Wes Andersen film 'The Fantastic Mr. Fox.' Not only is the film an absolute delight but the color pallet and textures used throughout are very rich and incredibly inspirational.

Although this project is still in the research stage of development I've been finding out more and more about the film's production has got me sourcing all sorts of different textiles and materials to use. It’s been widely known that the director insisted on using the actual materials (i.e. real wood, real stones, the same fabric these clothes would be made of in the human world etc.), especially the controversially discussed real fur for the fox puppets. To what extent this has finally been achieved I do not know, but a lot of the materials lend a strange kind of realism and unique texture to the film.

Colour wise, initially Wes Anderson wanted the whole film to be in mud and dirt colors but eventually settled for a limited palette of autumn leaf colors like yellow, orange, red and brown. At the same time the golden hour lighting and overall warm colors of The Royal Tenenbaums and The Darjeeling Limited evoke the 1970s. This is even taken a step further in this animated film because the autumn color palette is heavily associated with that decade that wasn't shy of combining dark wooden textures with patterned wallpapers in orange and yellow. Although Fantastic Mr. Fox deliberately isn't set in a specific period of time, many elements (songs, the time the book came out, cars, costume and interior design) suggest that the story takes place in a parallel version of England in the 1970s. It’s not just about a family being stuck in the past like the Tenenbaums, Mr. Fox seems to be rather a trend-setting kind of guy.  Although there are no large blue or green areas (at least in the daytime), all the hues of the spectrum are present in the movie, even purple. But as expected, these only serve as tiny spots of color to contrast and balance the dominating warm hues.

At this point I'm not sure how far I'm going to take this idea. Hopefully I'll have some preliminary sketches to show soon!

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