Fashion Files: V.MK Studio
We delve deeper into the creative spheres of the west and get to know some of the neatest fashion labels popping up this side of the bridge.
Hey Viv! What’s good? Tell us about your brand V.MK Studio!
Yo Yo! So V.MK Studio is an interpretation of my body of work in a commercial sense but also using it creatively as my art handle. I cover a range of medium in art, illustration and slow fashion which is designed, illustrated or patterned and sewn all single-handedly. The brand was generated through my passion for slow and sustainable fashion while being eager to share my illustrations as my pieces connect heavily with my personal expression & experiences. I love to share my perspective, some pieces being direct and some more subjective, but all have meaning to me and focus on human experience in some way.
So you create all of the designs and graphics on your clothing, what are your main sources of inspiration?
Absolutely! I'm glad to be able to put into the entire process of creating a piece, I believe it's so valuable to learn about what you are creating and its methodology, such as screen-printing which was what I started V.MK Studio off with.
A lot of my graphic illustrations are influenced by what I see and hear day-to-day on the street or in social gatherings, Graffiti along the backs of factory walls on the Werribee line and at skate parks, the music I consume daily and how the vibrations make me feel. But without a doubt the cartoons I watched as a kid, especially with super exaggerated and ‘grotesque’ animation styles such as Oggy and the cockroaches and Spongebob. Oh, also one of my all-time favorite artists, Salvador Dali. Most of the work I've created for the public speaks a lot about my own mental health and is usually birthed from some of my darker times, such as the '2020 hood' I released limited for last year which included wording such as 'everybody is somebody' and 'here to stay.' which was almost my way of pushing myself forward in such strange times we all experienced last year on top of personal struggles. I wanted to share that as we all deserve to hear and create a positive mantra for ourselves. Everybody IS somebody, baby!
We’ve heard a lot about slow fashion, especially in the last year or so, can you give us a rundown on what slow fashion is and why it’s so important to V.MK Studio?
So slow fashion is basically creating garments but 'slow' as it focuses on creating sustainable and ethical processes of creation in comparison to fast fashion which a lot of cheap online 'boutiques' stock or manufacture through to generate high profit in such a short amount of time. Usually, if its price seems too good to be true then you can be sure one of those processes are exploited to accommodate high demand and ever-changing trends which also leads to a higher amount of waste as fast fashion already contributes to the second-highest leading pollution on earth, Oil being first.
Slow-fashion is beneficial as artists or brands would have majority control over the manufacturing or minimum full transparency with the company they supply from so the workers are paid fair wages and the quality isn't compromised. Not only that but it creates more of a purpose and connection with pieces made, especially on a smaller scale since I create pieces in limited quantity, aside from being a one-man-band and only being able to manage smaller loads at one time - each piece is intentional and has my energy connected with it, almost like being filthy rich and having a closet entirely bespoke or vintage deadstock, something truly special.
You operate your business out of the west, do you think your environment has an impact on your creative processes?
Totally, I was born and raised in good old Werribee so spending most of my years among the suburban area and having the pressures of successful artists with unlimited resources at their disposal being based in the city or internationally made me push for what more I can achieve in a smaller community, especially being in touch with childhood friends who inspire me and influenced my experience through the people I surrounded myself with.
The scene in the west is such an amazing mix of culture and hearing experiences from friends families and their personal stories has been such a privilege to be involved with. Being social and meeting new people is so exciting as everyone has a story to tell and there is always something to take away from the people of the west, its great for working on my social anxiety as-well haha, I go out with intention and the purpose to understand others rather than try to be understood myself, the energy and conversation just flows from there.