20-Year-Old Fashion Illustrator Nicole Augustina Talks How She Discovered Her Passion

When Nicole’s best friend was terminally ill, she needed an outlet. Fashion illustrating became her outlet. Her outlet quickly turned into a hobby, and now has evolved into a business.

Nicole is a 20-year-old fashion and beauty illustrator with hopes of sketching for Vogue and many fashion designers. She’s learning, growing, and practicing as she perfect her craft each sketch of the way. Read her story on how she started and her plans for 2017.

When did you decide to become a fashion and beauty illustrator?

I've been interested in the fashion world since I was six years old; the art of embroidery, colors, and designs has always caught my eye. At thirteen, I made my first fashion illustration. I was trying to create and decide what kind of dress I would wear at my sister's sweet 16 birthday party. I liked sketching and it immediately turned to a hobby.

However, I was too young and didn’t stand out. Five years later, my best friend had a serious illness and I needed to channel my emotions. Drawing was my outlet. I started fashion illustrating again, posted the first ones on Instagram, people liked them, and so began my journey. The recognition from strangers motivated me and it felt good.

Where does your artistic influence come from?

My artistic influence doesn't come from the other illustrators but from fashion designers that I consider memorable artists.

Alessandro Michelle (Gucci), Peter Dundas (Roberto Cavalli), Karl Lagerfeld (Fendi). Those designers literally create pieces of art, especially on the runway. The models, the lavish hairstyles, makeup and clothes are mind-blowing. The Milan Fashion shows to me, are comparable to Renaissance paintings or baroque architecture. 

What has been your most memorable challenge?

My challenges are directly connected to recognition. When I upload each illustration, I hope the supermodel or the famous brand will love my art. It happens most times and it makes me feel that he or she felt represented by my work. 

How do you balance creativity with business?

I have obligations, other interests that have nothing to do with the fashion world. In addition, sometimes I might draw something because it's the current trend and is fundamental to keep my social media page growing. I handle balancing my creativity and balance very well because it's something I love.

Who is your ideal client?

My ideal client would be, without a shadow of a doubt, Vogue. If my illustrations were acquired by the most recognized fashion magazine in the world, I'd end up feeling like a part of history.

Plus, I'd love making the sketches that later come to life at the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show. Being hired for something like that would be a dream come true because I really want to be a part of the creation process. 

What advice do you have for aspiring fashion and beauty illustrators?

First, anyone can draw. I don't consider myself an artist. When I started, my drawings were terrible, and I've never attended an art school. So I tell all aspiring illustrators, don't allow fear to prevent you from your true potential, just try. Also practice, because it's extremely fundamental.

Don’t be discouraged by a "Plan B." People can have more than one passion, you can learn more than one thing, so don't alienate yourself. In my case, I want to be a scientific journalist, I want to dedicate myself to studies related to physics.

Don’t be discouraged by a “Plan B.” People can have more than one passion, you can learn more than one thing, so don’t alienate yourself

I also love sports. I can spend full days watching a tennis tournament, the NBA, or soccer. And yes, I fashion illustrate too. I discovered it all with freedom and years. Some may find their passions earlier and others with a little more time, but the big deal is to never lose the heart of learning. Today, the internet is the biggest door of free knowledge. We must seize that opportunity.

What are your plans for the future?

My plans for the future are to continue learning and growing professionally. I'm 20 so studying is a big part of my life these years. I also push myself to continue illustrating each day. I want to look back in a year and see progress and I want to make it a lucrative business.

I plan on moving from Buenos Aires to NY. Finally, I plan on fighting for animal rights (closure of zoos) and human rights such as free education and health. The only way to differentiate ourselves, to evolve, is with the highest education. It's essential for underprivileged children to have the same resources as the rest and without free education, it's often impossible. I certainly believe there are very valuable young people and perhaps they'll never know that because of exclusion.


Keep up with Nicole’s journey by following her on Instagram, @Tinicole27.