Her work, created using both hand-drawn and digital techniques, is influenced by fashion, cinema, literature, landscapes and old maps. Abi regularly does book illustrations, and works for a range of editorial and advertising clients.

Fashion illustration is often done to very tight deadlines and the artist can be required to work from life, with very little time in which to detail the figure and his or her surroundings fully.

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Here, Abi Daker shows how to balance a fashion composition while working at a snappy pace. You’ll place the figure on a grid of thirds to help you loosen up a bit with the sketching, and learn how to design a background that can be quickly and easily coloured. She also shows you how to colour around a complex hand-drawn shape and how to edit the drawing in preparation for colouring.

The techniques here are especially pertinent to fashion illustration, but they can be used with any subject matter and will help anyone wanting to work on a hand sketch in the digital realm.

Abi worked from a photo taken at London Fashion Week 2011, but she says you can use a catwalk photo of your choice to follow the tutorial.

Time to complete

One full day


Photoshop 7 or above

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