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RICHARD HAINES

Who said photography killed art? Richard Haines would say otherwise. The Brooklyn-based American illustrator is one of fashion’s most sought out sartorial artist today. Commissioned by publications like InStyle, GQ, to the New York Times, Haines’ work can be seen anywhere and everywhere. His most recent collaboration was with San Francisco brand Unionmade; also see the adoring personal father-daughter photoshoot he did for the brand.

“All newspaper ads until the mid-70s were illustrations, until it all started switching to photography. So by the time I got here, there were less and less illustration jobs, so I just parlayed into design,” says Haines, who went to work for big Seventh Avenue names like Calvin Klein, Bill Blass, Perry Ellis and Sean P. Diddy Combs. “Sean P. Diddy is no different than Calvin – in a sense of being driven and building an empire and knowing what people want,” explains Haines. “His way of starting was music and Calvin’s way of starting was pushing a rolling rack. And he, people like Calvin, surround themselves with really good people. Really devoted, dedicated people.”

The charcoal (and sometimes acrylic-based) illustrator, typically seen sitting front row at Prada to Rad Hourani, finds inspiration from the everyday. “Walking down the street inspires me. Walking and just catching how someone puts himself together is really inspiring,” explains Haines. “There’s inspiration everywhere – that sounds really corny,” admits Haines. “Once I found myself on a block – where I haven’t been for years – and it must have been one of those first real apartment buildings, probably built in the 1890s, like post-civil war, dark red brick and ornamental, five-stories high, and it was breathtaking,” describes Haines. “You know, inspiration is everywhere.”

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Writer. CARMEN LAM

Published on September 18th, 2012

by Carmen Lam

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