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I have always had a dream to blur the lines of floral and fashion. Alexander McQueen, the iconic fashion designer, brought us the introduction on the concept of floral as wearable fashion. This project for Sask Fashion Week was something that I never thought possible so young in my career and I am thrilled to have been given this opportunity to push myself and the boundaries of my industry.
When meeting for the first time with the dynamic Sask Fashion Week leaders, they met my enthusiasm to see this project come to light. Taking our floral designing ability and pushing it further to illustrate how live floral can be shifted into structural art is a process I have thoroughly enjoyed and one that continues to evolve. Currently this project is sitting in my basement drying and turning into a entirely different creation before my very eyes.
The base structure of the dress was made out of wire and was built as a hard armour to hold the delicate blossoms that would soon follow. Trial and error, 100 bandages, a few thousand gallons of blood later - I had a form to work with to begin the transformation. It was time to share my vision with my talented Wascana Flower Shoppe co-workers and embark on our collaboration.
We fought, we screamed, we pushed, and we proved each other wrong - but together we got there. The central concept we developed revolved around the earth birthing creation. Elements from nature including antlers, fur, dirt, moss, leaves, twigs, and dried goods accented the main statement of floral. David Austin roses, hanging amaranthus, sahara roses, antiqued hydrangeas, large cymbidium orchids, juniper berries, bear grass and magnolia leaves, to name a few, created the floral centerpiece for the dramatic, almost gothic, color palette. Have a look on set....
The collaboration between myself and the truly gifted individuals that made the ad campaign come together to express our story was truly a inspirational experience. Countless creative meetings, late nights, long days, endless text messages, and phone calls led to our solidified concept.
Working along side Chris Pritchard, Dan Pritchard, Sara Lindsay, Kiriako Latridis, the team from Play Creative, and the amazing models (Edge Agency: Hannah, Ian, and Agum) was a gift in its self. Any time I have the opportunity to work with talented artists in their respected fields is a opportunity to learn and grow. Each and every one of these people have inspired me to push limits, stretch boundaries, and continue to develop with my creativity!
The finished ad campaign's story came together on the inspiration from many mood boards contributed by all parties involved. It is a expression of art and fashion, and the fact that there are no limits or boundaries between a multitude of creative and artistic fields.
We came together telling our story and blending our fields through color, texture, and a multitude of elements. It really is so beautiful to me how hair, make-up, floral, photography, and film can blend and build together to produce such a dramatic outcome. So much energy and heart was put into this project from everyone involved. To describe it best would be to say it became like a child to us, and the studio became our home.
The finished images and video campaigns hauntingly captivate any one who views them enticing their senses and emotions. Some might even say controversial, however great things come from taking risks and chances.
The best moment of the process was when we got THE shot, and we all could not believe what we had actually achieved together. Inspiration and creating with other artists and fields can be such a fulfilling and humbling experience, with some of the most stunning outcomes. Art supporting art....after all the lines of creative industries always tend to blur.
It all started with a dream and the dream came true. Thank you to everyone involved in Sask Fashion Week who took a chance on myself and this wardrobe idea. Thank you also for the incredible creative journey we took together to collaborate and tell this amazing story through so many artistic mediums.
The final images are all attached to view, and you can watch the campaign video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Li6vbbVzwRI
Written by Ryley Koma