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MOKSHINI


MOKSHINI ILLUSTRATION

TRAFFIC CREATIVE MANAGEMENT 135 EAST 15TH STREET NYC 10003 T. 1212 734 0041 E. INFO@TRAFFIC-NYC.COM


MOKSHINI

Nadeesha Godamunne, aka MOKSHINI, creates eccentric and humorous caricatures of the fashion world’s personalities. Her illustrations have been featured in V Magazine, Huffington Post, Fashion Unfiltered, and Afropunk. Mokshini is a regular fixture at New York Fashion Week where she illustrates live for cool brands like Prabal Gurung, Alice and Olivia, Brother Vellies and Tadashi Shoji. Immensely gifted, this New Zealand transplant has a masters in fashion illustration and a degree in fashion design from Auckland University of Technology. Mokshini gained quick recognition from her satirical portrayals of New Zealand Fashion Week, and her illustrated book created for her thesis, which won her the annual New Zealand Best Award. Soon after came features in Martin Dawber’s Great Big Book of Fashion Illustration, Sandra Burke’s Fashion Designer Series, The Fashion Quarterly, and Pro Design.

After graduating with first class honors, Mokshini was invited to instruct fashion illustration at Auckland University of Technology, and two years later transferred to the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. Her yearning for New York however remained. She finally made the big move in 2013, to work as a textile designer and illustrator for Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein.


How did you find yourself in New York? Two things, a BBC documentary on Andy Warhol and Bill Cunningham New York. The life of an artist in the Big Apple seemed so pure and romantic, even with all its struggles. As a 24-year-old from a small country, New York was a magical place where anything was possible. The move was not only an opportunity for me to test myself, but a way to constantly be stimulated and immersed in my craft. What a luxury!

Did you always want to be an artist? Not always, I knew

drawing was my escape and what made me happy, but I didn’t think it was a viable career path. I was tossing up between fashion design and graphics for my college degree, and eventually followed my gut and pursued fashion. I only then discovered the world of fashion illustration! Successful contemporary illustrators like Julie Verhoeven, Gladys Perint Palmer, and Jean-Philippe Delhomme inspired me to make drawing a way of life.

What is your earliest creative memory? I remember

visiting Sri Lanka as a child (where I’m originally from). Granddad was an avid art book collector. He would regularly sit me down and show me his favorite artists. Sri Lankan artist, George Keyt is one that continues to resonate with me. My grandparents lived in the hill country so seeing elephants, tropical birds and monkeys was the norm. Granddad in fact owned two elephants! I remember always drawing animals.

Tell us about your family and growing up in New Zealand.

New Zealand was a great place growing up! I get nostalgic thinking about my childhood because it now seems magical. Nature was abundant, I remember hiking and canoeing on camping trips as a teenager. Being connected to nature is a large part of the lifestyle there, and I try to maintain this balance living here in New York. As an only child my mother sent me to a million different classes, she figured she had to keep me busy. I did ballet, jazz, piano and netball, but art class was my favorite. This was when I really developed my love for drawing.

What inspires you the most? People! And I mean real

people that you cross paths with on a daily basis on the street or subway. My work is very much about

character. I love observing a person’s body language and mannerisms, and then capturing their energy. What I record in my daily drawing journal benefit my work tremendously.

Describe your creative process. I experiment with

most media, but I enjoy watercolor and ink the most. I love the serendipitous nature of them, they’ve definitely taught me to embrace and find beauty in my mistakes. Similarly, I enjoy applying direct line. I don’t believe in pencils, erasers or creating a perfect drawing. I much rather put pen to paper straight away and capture a moment in time.

Describe your work environment/studio. My studio

is a modern, bohemian mash up of everything that inspires me! I have accumulated a small collection of ceramics, rugs, tapestries, and art books. I like displaying them along side my other collection of hats, jewelry, and plants. I love ferns! My favorite part of the room is the large pin-board that covers my wall. On it I have journal pages, magazine tears, portraits of artists that I adore, like Rene Gruau, Henri Matisse, Egon Schiele and Kenneth Paul Block.

Tell us one thing about you that nobody knows.

I have about eight names I can’t remember, and I bet you I can’t spell them either!

If a Hollywood film were to be made about your life, who would play the lead roles? Someone passionate but nutty (good nutty) would play me, maybe Penelope Cruz.

What song would you chose as the soundtrack to your life? Wow. This is a tough one. If I had to pick, I would say anything Motown, Soul or ‘90s Hip Hop and R&B. You know, the old school beats!

What is your dream project? I’ve always daydreamed

about being flown to Paris to draw live at Paris Fashion Week. In my dream, I work with some of my favorite brands like Colette, Louis Vuitton and Dior, and sketch all day at events, fittings, and shows. I’d be like a live drawing reporter, with a beret of course.

If you were to share one piece of advice what would it be? It’s so simple; open your mind, take risks, and do what makes you happy.


“Fashion is a real sign of our times, its a visual expression of oneself, and has the ability to portray personality. I love that’s its always changing (though sometimes a bit too fast!), I always feel the need to evolve with it. As a fashion illustrator its exciting to know that your work is a part of this beautiful phenomenon!” —Nadeesha


“One of the main reasons I love live drawing, I like observing the nuances of facial expression and body language, it helps me capture their personality. Generally people get nervous being sketched, so I like talking to them while drawing, it’s a great way to put them at ease, but more importantly, engage and connect.�


“I love ILLUSTRATION, because it’s challenging, fast paced, and captures a moment in time.” —Nadeesha


PRABAL GARUNG


“A BBC documentary on Andy Warhol and Bill Cunningham inspired me to come to New York. The life of an artist in the Big Apple seemed so pure and romantic, even with all its struggles. As a 24-year-old from a small country, New York was a magical place where anything was possible. The move was not only an opportunity for me to test myself, but a way to constantly be stimulated and immersed in my craft. What a luxury!” —Nadeesha


AFROPUNK Mokshini teamed up with Life in Reverie Photography to create fun live illustrations from Afropunk, Brooklyn 2016. What inspires you the most? People! And I mean real people that you cross paths or connect with on the streets or the subway. My work is very much about character. I love observing ones body language and mannerisms, and then capturing their energy in a few lines. What I record in my daily drawing journal informs my work tremendously.


Shoe in... shoe out.


Make Up!


Journal


TRAFFIC CREATIVE MANAGEMENT 135 EAST 15TH STREET NYC 10003 T. 1212 734 0041 E. INFO@TRAFFIC-NYC.COM Copyright notice: This book and all of its contents/images is copyright of Nadeesha Godamune. © 2016. All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in any form is prohibited and punishable by law.


TRAFFIC

Mokshini— Illustration Portfolio 2017  

“A BBC documentary on Andy Warhol and Bill Cunningham inspired me to come to New York. The life of an artist in the Big Apple seemed so pure...

Mokshini— Illustration Portfolio 2017  

“A BBC documentary on Andy Warhol and Bill Cunningham inspired me to come to New York. The life of an artist in the Big Apple seemed so pure...