With 10.2K followers on Instagram, Lakshmi Sarkar knows a thing or two about getting her illustrations noticed. The attention is well warranted.

Using everything from watercolors, to markers, to pen, Sarkar has made her mark, quite literally, on the world of fashion illustration which we found particularly fascinating since her background is in architecture and not fashion.

 

Happy Pongal , Happy Lohri ,Happy Makarsankranti , Happy Bihu to all those who celebrate !! And to those who don’t, still sending you all happy vibes 😊 #makarsankranti #bihu #pongal #lohri #happypongal #indianfashion #whpmystyle #sareelove😍 #dancing #indianfestival #fashionart #fashionisart #fashionblogger #fashionillustrated #fashionsketch #sketchbook #sketch #outfitoftheday #illustration #acreativedc #illustrator #watercolorart #thatsdarling #saree #sareelove #art #fashionillustrator #desibeauty #kaipoche #keepcalmandsareeon

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By profession, Sarkar is an illustrator who works with companies like Vogue India, Bloomingdales, Saks Fifth Avenue and Armani.

She recently had a full spread in Vogue India where she drew designs from India’s top designers like Manish Malhotra, Tarun Tahiliani, Rohit Bal, Anita Dongre, and more.

Here’s something I’ve been wanting to share with you , my friends. Stick with me , it’s a bit long ! Recently I created illustrations for @vogueindia ‘s couture report for the November issue. Yes , it’s available in the stands in India 😎 I poured my heart into these illustrations and I’m so happy i can finally share them with you. The couture report highlights 14 of India’s leading designers. I’ll be sharing each of the illustrations over the next few days . Im still waiting on the hardcopy to get to me all the way from the motherland ! Thanks to the wonderful team at @vogueindia who were amazing to work with. I can never thank you enough for this opportunity. Thanks to each and every one of you who supports my work, writes to me , comments on it . Thank you for being on with me on this journey. I only set out to improve my sketching skills when I started illustrating fashion- little did i expect to make wonderful friends along the way and gain such wonderful experiences. The beautiful couture designs in this post are by @anitadongre @manishmalhotra05 The other features are in the next couple of posts .. #vogue #voguemagazine #vogueindia #vogueindia #vogueillustration #vogueillustrator #fashionart #FashionIsArt #fashionillustration #illustration #illustratorsoninstagram #indiancouture #indiancouture2017 #icw2017 #adecadeofcouture @thefdci #acreativedc #dcartist #dmvartist #couture #couturefashion #boredpanda #indianfashion #desibeauty #indiandesigner #indianfashionillustration #indiacoutureweek2017 #fashionsketch #fashiondrawing #anitadongre #manishmalhotra #instaart

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Here’s part 2 of the feature in @vogueindia … Recently I created illustrations for @vogueindia ‘s couture report for the November issue. Yes , it’s available in the stands in India 😎 I poured my heart into these illustrations and I’m so happy i can finally share them with you. The couture report highlights 14 of India’s leading designers. I’ll be sharing each of the illustrations over the next few days . Im still waiting on the hardcopy to get to me all the way from the motherland ! Thanks to the wonderful team at @vogueindia who were amazing to work with. I can never thank you enough for this opportunity. Thanks to each and every one of you who supports my work, writes to me , comments on it . Thank you for being on with me on this journey. I only set out to improve my sketching skills when I started illustrating fashion- little did i expect to make wonderful friends along the way and gain such wonderful experiences. The beautiful couture designs in this post are by @taruntahiliani @gauravguptaofficial @shyamalbhumika @anamikakhanna.in Scroll back for the first one .. The other features are in the next couple of posts .. #vogue #voguemagazine #vogueindia #vogueindia #vogueillustration #vogueillustrator #fashionart #FashionIsArt #fashionillustration #illustration #indiancouture2017 #icw2017 #adecadeofcouture @thefdci #acreativedc #dcartist #dmvartist #couture #couturefashion #boredpanda #indianfashion #desibeauty #indiandesigner #indianfashionillustration #indiacoutureweek2017 #fashionsketch #fashiondrawing #gauravgupta #anamikakhanna #taruntahiliani #shymalbhumika

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But how did someone with no formal training in fashion illustration come to work with publication juggernauts such as Vogue India and reputable designers Manish Malhotra and ilk? Spoiler alert: it wasn’t luck. Sarkar worked hard to hone her craft and had to overcome insecurities.

Sarkar’s background previous to fashion illustration was in architecture. It was in her architecture classes that she explored her drawing skills, especially in her basic design class where she was taught how to sketch very simple human figures for assignments. Still so, she wasn’t confident to jump into drawing detailed human anatomy on her own, though she was fascinated by the silhouettes and designs she found on the red carpet.

Her aha moment came in September 2015. She shares her journey in her blog LS Art and Illustrations and how she decided to give fashion illustration a go, wanting to take herself from fashion voyeurist to fashion illustrator. Sarkar said, “I decided to sketch the looks from New York Fashion Week – just that week to simply improve on my sketching skills. I thought if I could get over my fear and nervousness of sketching a human anatomy , I could do just about anything. I figured , even if I messed up , who really cared?”

Not only did she sketch but she made a focused practice of it.

“I sketched my ass off that week. I distinctly remember sketching 2-3 sketches per day during NYFW. Not only was I pleasantly surprised at what I had produced , I got  a few likes on them. they were shared on various fashion illustration accounts.”

You could say the rest is history, though, Sarkar still says she is learning on how to improve her illustrations. “I have no background in fashion nor any formal training in illustration/ art. So, I have had to improvise and try new techniques and investigate some things through trial and error,” she confesses in her blog. “Some were a hit, some were a miss. But, I stay hungry and I stay foolish–the only way I will be able to learn and get better at what I do.”

Sarkar’s advice to newbies is to practice, to “just start,” and not let their insecurities get the best of them. Her advice is to always ask questions, learn as you go, and don’t let fear of not being good enough stop you; wise words from a woman who has clearly followed her own advice and is a living testament to how practice makes perfect.

For all you future fashion illustrators out there, we suggest you start! Hungry for inspiration? Here, we share our 10 favorite illustrations from Sarkar.