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Fashion Illustrator Renaldo Barnette Visits Moore

Famed fashion illustrator Renaldo Barnette entertained and informed Moore's Fashion Design students with stories of of how he came to be in the business.

"I got into fashion because of my love of fashion and history," he told the students.

Barnette, a professor at the Fashion Institute of Technology, came at the invitation of Moore Fashion Design faculty member and longtime friend Lamont O'Neal.

"He has done everything for everybody," O'Neal told the class. "He has a strong foundation in drawing and an understanding of fashion and is always looking at outside influences to keep his work relevant."

Early in his career, Barnette worked as a model for fashion illustrator Antonio Lopez ("I was cute back then," he laughed). Later, he worked for Vogue Patterns, Ralph Lauren, Badgely Mischka and Patrick Kelly, among others.

"I met Patrick in spring 1986 and it was lifechanging," he said. "Patrick Kelly told me to come to New York to hang out. And 'hang out' meant working yourself to death and having the best time of your life," noting that during that time he met celebrities like Jerry Hall, Mick Jagger and Iman.

"I was backstage with every famous and up-and-coming fashion model, stuffing their feet into shoes and all that stuff. I would not trade those experiences for the world."

He also told them never to say no to opportunity -- the students groaned when he told them about turning down a job with a new designer named Carolina Herrera because he didn't want to move to New York at that time.

Barnette encouraged the students to listen to their creative voices and act on it.

"Listen to that thought and creativity," he said. "That's why you're here."



Published on January 24th, 2018