@DRAWBERTSON FOLLOWERS: 182,000
Robertson’s daughter, Drue, convinced him to show his sketches on social; he’s now referred to as Instagram’s Andy Warhol.
STARTING POINT “I worked for M.A.C Cosmetics as its original creative director in the ’80s.” (Robertson is from Toronto.) SKETCH STYLE “I let the medium I’m working with rule. If it’s drippy ink, I let it drip. I used to be controlling and careful; now it’s whatever happens, I’m happy.” HOME BASE “I like to spend most of my time sketching on the beach in California.” COLOUR CODE “Neon pink and orange. Gucci green to get things rolling.” INSTA LOVES @unskilledworker, @vincentmoustache and @margaret__zhang.
@BLAIRZ FOLLOWERS: 91,600
The New York-based artist’s signature exaggerated, feminine drawings have made her one of the most coveted illustrators in the biz.
SKETCH STYLE “Loose. I don’t really pay attention to proportions or accuracy. I typically create mixed-media drawings in watercolour, marker and pastel. Sketches can take anywhere from 10 minutes to two hours depending on how inspired I am.” EXPERT ADVICE “Consumers are fed so much content. It’s not enough to be just good or consistent; you have to be unique.” THROWING SHADES “I love baby blue; it’s an unexpected alternative to using white.”
@BILDONOVAN FOLLOWERS: 40,400
When Philadelphia native Billy moved to NYC to pursue illustrating, he changed his name to Bil – with one “l.” “I wanted a moniker that fit with my work – something simple, clean and different.”
OG INSPO “As a child, I loved the episodes of Popeye where Olive Oyl spun around and her skirt would move. I always tried to capture that moment. My epiphany to become a fashion illustrator was Audrey Hepburn in Sabrina gliding across a ballroom in Givenchy.” REAL TALK “Get a strong foundation – drawing, painting, graphic design. Then think – and draw – outside the box.”
@TRAVELWRITEDRAW FOLLOWERS: 139,000
A trip to Dubai inspired the Queensville, Ont., native to start her blog, Travel Write Draw, in 2010. “The name is the process of creation for me. When I travel, I’m moved by the people, places and things I see; I ultimately draw from that.”
CLIENT LIST M Missoni, Rebecca Minkoff and Calvin Klein. SKETCH STYLE “Whimsical, colourful, feminine and high fashion. I’m a traditional illustrator. I use coloured pencils and paints. Nothing brings me greater joy than putting paint to paper.” INSTA LOVES “Solange; she is creating her own visual language. Lena Perminova is a fashion goddess who takes the most lust-worthy trips around the globe.”
@UNSKILLEDWORKER FOLLOWERS: 231,000
This self-taught illustrator (who started painting at 47) is Sia levels of guarded about her personal life, but you’ll recognize her Picasso-esque drawings. She’s the go-to artist for Gucci and the U.K. edition of Harper’s Bazaar.
MIXED MEDIA “I use chalk, pens, ink, charcoal and sometimes glitter glue.” ADVICE COLUMN “At the point when a painting is almost ruined, the magic happens. Also, get your hashtags right – creative directors are watching.” FAVE ACCOUNTS @buttonfruit (“Love her painterly faces”), @krisknight (“Love the magical, ether-eal quality of his work”) and @antonymicallef (“He’s a genius at pulling faces out of chaos”).
@MEGANHESS_OFFICIAL FOLLOWERS: 302,000
Hess’ big break was designing the covers for the reissue of a book turned TV series you may have heard of: Sex and the City.
UNDER PRESSURE “At runway shows, you don’t get long to see any one outfit, so you have to work fast!” COLOUR PALETTE “Black and white. I also love blush, pinks and salmon tones. And the most perfect shade is Tiffany blue – it’s the colour of optimism.” CARRY ON “Keep drawing and drawing, and eventually your own style will find you.”
For the latest in fashion, beauty and culture, sign up to receive ELLE's daily newsletter.