A few weeks before her degree show, Cat Taylor, who was studying textile design at Chelsea College of Arts, decided to learn an entirely technique (yes, we are sweating as much as you after hearing that story). Abandoning physical design altogether, she took to the computer to teach herself 3D fashion design, a niche which now forms the basis of her practice. “[It] was very dangerous in terms of passing my degree,” she recalls. “However, I knew that I had to take a risk by changing my focus and creating something that would set my practice apart.”
Today, Cat’s work manifests as a series of somewhat ethereal bodies sporting big brands including Balenciaga and A Cold Wall as digital outfits. Often – but not always – animated, these digital outfits behave as if occupied by bodies, completing walk cycles as they strut down non-existent runways. They are at once recreations of real-life garments and visualisations of things that only exist in the digital realm. One thing is for sure, they’re entirely captivating.
“One of my favourite pieces of work is the wet look animated boob T-shirt. It is mesmerising and captivated a lot of people,” Cat tells us. “I recently created a similar T-shirt animation for friends at Pxssy Palace, I like that my work can validate all bodies whilst also supporting the queer community.”
It’s here that the techniques Cat employs really show their potential: free from the usual constraints applied to how bodies should look, especially within the fashion industry, Cat can instead represent all bodies, even those that don’t exist yet.
Based in London, at the Dazed x Design District studios, a large part of Cat’s work is channelled into directing the collective, Digi-Gal. A global community, Digi-Gal champions 3D animators and designers who identity as womxn, trans and non-binary while also offering members a support network. “We as a community offer each other technical software guidance, industry and business advice, and general creative support,” Cat explains. “We understand the importance of community through engaging in meet-ups, skill shares, and curate shows together. We have a range of Digi-Gal participants; from university students, professionals within the industry, to people who had never incorporated 3D within their practice, but feel that the community could inspire and support them to do so. We are working on some exciting commissions this year.”
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