Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you became interested in fashion design and illustration?
My name is Saikhantsetseg Tserendorj. I’m from Mongolia. I'm a fashion illustrator and designer currently living in New York. I have liked drawing ever since I was a child. My favorite subject in elementary school was drawing. I drew all kinds of things like animals, flowers, and landscapes. But it wasn’t until high school that I decided I wanted to pursue a career in the fashion industry. My high school was Art specialized and I would draw a lot of still lives, life drawings, and geometric shapes. And I felt like it was a little repetitive and could be a bit boring. Also, the drawings would take a long time to be completed. One drawing would take 10-15 hours at times. But fashion illustration on the other hand was fun, expressive and can be completed in a short period of time and was never boring to me. I love working fast and exploring different mediums and styles.
What motivated you to move to New York and pursue a career in the fashion industry?
I used to watch a lot of American tv shows and always wanted to learn English. Also, I would watch hours and hours of Fashion TV on cable. I loved looking at all the designs the fashion designers made. It felt like such an amazing career to have. Especially sketching and developing part of the fashion design. I told my parents that I wanted to go to college in the States and they supported me to move to New York and pursue a career in the fashion industry.
How did your education at the Fashion Institute of Technology contribute to your development as a fashion designer and illustrator?
My education at the Fashion Institute of Technology contributed a lot to my development as a fashion designer and illustrator. FIT covers everything from concept to designing to fabric sourcing to pattern making/draping to sewing and everything in between to be needed for the design to complete garments. After learning all these skills, designing becomes so much easier and more efficient.
When did you first realize your passion for drawing people and fashion? Was there a specific moment or experience that sparked this interest?
When I was about eight or nine my mom bought me a set of gouache paint tubes as a gift. I loved those paintings so much! I always used them so carefully and I loved how bright they were and how I could use water to thin them. After school, I was so excited to go home and draw new things so that I could use my gouache paints. I think it was around that time something sparked in me that I wanted to do something creative.
Could you describe the type of dresses you enjoy designing the most? What unique elements or features do you like to incorporate into your designs?
I love designing shorter dresses with interesting cutouts. I love playing with textures, layers, and also colors. The dress design I love designing the most is to accentuate women’s bodies, especially the legs, and shoulders. So usually shorter dresses with open shoulders with lace tops etc.
As a fashion illustrator, what aspects of the job do you find most fulfilling and enjoyable?
That every project is different because of that it’s never boring. Also, fashion illustrating is fun, playful, and expressive. I can test and explore different mediums and tools whenever I want to. It doesn’t feel strict or stressful.
How would you define your artistic style? What sets your work apart from others in the industry?
I would define my style as expressive, unique, and intriguing.
What are your preferred mediums for fashion illustration, and why do you find them particularly effective in expressing your ideas?
For fashion illustration, I love traditional illustrations. I love working with a black pen, markers, watercolor, and acrylic. I find expressive, messy, spontaneous fashion illustrations cool and more interesting. It shows so much character and personality. Pen, marker, and watercolors are the perfect medium for me to express that spontaneous side of my fashion illustration.
Could you share some insight into your creative process? How do you approach developing a new design or illustrating a concept?
I usually start by putting together a mood board. Moodboard consists of the inspirations for the design, feel & aesthetic, color, fabric swatches, etc. From there I sketch some initial designs. These illustrations are usually fast and not very neat. Then I pick the ones I want to finalize and modify and illustrate them neatly for a final presentation.
Are there any specific artists or designers who have influenced your work or served as sources of inspiration throughout your career?
Yes, Donald Robertson! I love everything he creates. He is a huge inspiration to me. Whenever I look at his works it energizes me, makes me laugh and often happy, and inspires me to grab a brush and start creating. I love how he combines fashion and humor. Also, I love how he is not boxed in in any way or form. He would illustrate on cardboard, silk fabric, cereal box, and kitchen dishes and everything came about masterpieces. His confidence in his works is what I aspire to achieve.
Do you have any favorite projects or collaborations that you have worked on so far? If yes, could you tell us more about them?
Yes, one of my favorite projects I’ve recently worked on is designing dresses that were inspired by everyday objects such as deodorant, shampoo bottles, sneakers, and perfume bottles. It was a super fun project to work on and challenged me to design faster and more efficiently.
What are your future aspirations and goals as a fashion designer and illustrator? Is there something specific you hope to achieve or a direction you want to explore?
Yes, I would love to have my own clothing line in the future. Also, I would like to create bigger-scale original fashion illustrations and want to hold an art exhibition in Nyc.
How do you stay updated with current trends and industry developments?
Mostly through social media.
Are there any resources or platforms that you find particularly helpful in this regard?
Yes, I find Instagram and Linkedin particularly helpful.
What role do you believe social media platforms like Instagram play in promoting your work and connecting with a wider audience?
Social media is very powerful. Especially Instagram is the perfect tool for illustrators and creators. Just by posting my works and optimizing my bio I had tons of companies and individuals reaching me out and wanting to work or collaborate with me. I’ve made a lot of connections and landed on a lot of freelancing opportunities thanks to social media.
Lastly, where can we find more of your work, and how can interested individuals get in touch with you?
You can find my work @inkfizz on Instagram. You can DM me or email me if you’re interested in working with me.
Fashion Designer: Bella Tserendorj @inkfizz