Social media and networking is a growing platform which gives artists, fashionistas, photographers, and many other people from around the world a direct voice and line of interaction to millions of other social media users who are either near, or far away. It is becoming an outlet of instant expression, communication and opportunity. It allows users to instantly vent, share, and update the online community with their life experiences and what is going on around them at any given moment.
I love to use Instagram because I feel personally connected with many people I admire in the industry and I feel included when I get to see people like international fashion figure Carine Roitfeld or some of my favorite fashion designers Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy, Oliver Rousteing for Balmain, or Stefano Gabbana post what they are currently up to, or what upcoming projects they are working on. Lately, I have not been able to help but just obsess over the quirky, whimsical, humorous, and adorable feed of Donald “Drawbertson” Robertson. He is a frequent user of the app, and streams fabulous photos of the fashion illustrations/art he has created as well as other pieces that are relevant to today’s culture. Each piece is complete and utter eye candy, and always fun to look at; he can basically create, draw, sketch, tape, or build from anything, making each creation adventurous and sheer genius!
I have been keeping up with him and his phenomenal work for quite sometime, and one night felt the need to reach out to him for a possible interview for The Chicago Chic. I simply commented on one of his Instagram photos, expressing my interest and was not expecting a response by any means. I understood his page was gaining lots of popularity, with a growing follower base, and I did not think my comment would ever catch his attention. To my surprise, only three minutes after I pressed the send button, he responded and was thrilled to answer some questions!
Although he may be gaining lots of recognition for his very bright and entertaining Instagram page, Donald has a strong business background in which he is involved in many of our favorite brands and companies. He is one of the three main founders for MAC Cosmetics, where he helped launch the Viva Glam! campaign, which raised over $260 million globally to help fight and find a cure against AIDS. He is the Creative Director for Bobbi Brown Cosmetics, and has held the Creative Director title for top magazines including, Glamour, Marie Claire and Cosmopolitan.
With features in many great fashion publications such as Style.com and Vanity Fair, I am very honored to have had the opportunity to speak with Donald myself and have a deeper understanding of the man behind the amazing illustrations and what goes on in his world.
Where do you find inspirations?
I get my inspiration from everywhere. I’m like a human sponge. Walking to work in NYC for example I will be bombarded by a thousand ideas. And then there is Instagram which can almost make me explode! It’s so inspiring in so many ways.
Have you always wanted to be an illustrator/artist?
You don’t really decide. It just sort of happens. Your hands start twitching and wham there is a doodle on your tax return! You know? I have it bad I will admit.
Where did you learn your study/skill?
Most kids have the ability in them , I have five so I can say this officially . It’s all about holding on to your childlike approach to painting something you see. Picasso said he spent his whole life learning to paint like a child.
What is something you cannot live without as an artist?
My iPhone. It’s my archive.
What is your favorite piece you have made?
The classic portrait of Louis the Fifth on a box of Captain Crunch. And the Flamingos that British designer Giles Deacon based his latest collection on.
Who is your personal favorite artist?
I love John Currin. I love Pharrell. I want to be the Pharrell of art! Happy!
What kind of music do you listen to?
I listen to my kids playlists! And they are incredible! What suburban Fifty year old dad do you know listening to Asher Roth?
Who influenced you while growing up?
My Grandfather Donald was an advertising executive and pretty much singled me out of a large pack of grand kids and taught me the marketing game.
Have you ever been to Chicago? If so, what was the experience like?
I love Chicago! I am a Creative Director at Estée Lauder Corporation so lets start on Michigan Avenue ! I renovated six Bobbi Brown counters there in the last year! The whole strip is brand new now! I love running down by the sandy bottom lake! And then up through the city! I love Lake Forest ! My wife is from Libertyville and Lake Forest – I love her! Alot! I love the Adler houses on Lake Road-I love decorator Allesandra Abranca, clothing designer Lisa Perry , Bobbi Brown, Oprah -All great Chicago chicks! My list is endless. I love the movie Ordinary People!! Chicago is the best! Oh, and I love Vince Vahn!
Any advice on upcoming/growing artists?
Sell your work on @trendablapp !! If and when u decide to sell out!
If you haven’t already, be sure to follow Donald on Instagram , @donalddrawbertson. If you enjoy his work, you may purchase your favorite, must-have pieces on Trendabl!