So you create an Instagram account. You get some followers. You get some likes. Maybe you're pretty pleased that your sunset picture got a lot of love. But how would you react if Sarah Jessica Parker reposted your Insta, and subsequently tons of outlets and brands took notice of you, including Prada? Yeah, then
you're officially living the Instagram dream.
That's how Los Angeles-based illustrator Carly Kuhn — a.k.a. The Cartorialist
— got her foot in the door. When the gigs kept rolling in, Kuhn was bold enough to pull a complete 180 and quit her TV job (she was an associate producer on Chelsea Lately
) to become a full-time artist and illustrator. "That's what I think is great about Los Angeles," she told us. "It's a city that allows you to pursue your passion and then switch paths altogether. I think L.A. is a growing culture hub."
So far, she's been commissioned by Elle
, L'Officiel Italia
, and jewelry brand Alexis Bittar, and can count Rachel Zoe and Jeremy Scott as fans, in addition to SJP. She was even chosen as one of five illustrators for Prada's Raw Avenue eyewear campaign
. "I knew it was going to be a lot of work, but I was up for the challenge because, well, it's Prada," she told us. Who can argue with that?
For Kuhn, part of the appeal of drawing is being able to immerse herself in the fashion world — sans expensive credit card bills. "While I may not get to wear a white Chanel suit, I can draw it," she said.
Ahead, peek nine of our favorite illustrations and get the inside scoop behind the drawings, straight from Kuhn herself.