The Academy of Art University in San Francisco is brimming with students from around the globe aspiring to be fashion designers. One such student is Ugur Karaman from Istanbul, Turkey. Karaman, who wants to be a womenswear designer, is in his second year at the Academy and is pursuing a BFA in Fashion Design.
Although fashion design is a male driven industry, there can be a stigma for men who choose this field. Karaman says that some may feel a stigma but he does not and is happy to be working in arts and fashion. “The best thing ever would be to have someone wear my designs,” he says. “That reason will live down what someone thought about my major.”
Karaman was inspired to become a fashion designer while attending the University of Turkey. He was searching for a class to learn to speak English, figuring if he expanded his languages it would broaden his career opportunities. During the search he came across an advertisement for a fashion school on a wall. “That moment was carved in my head. I had forgotten about the English classes,” he recalls. “I had found my calling.”
On the recommendation of a friend who attends the Academy of Art University, Karaman who had never heard of the university decided to move to San Francisco and enroll in the fashion department of the art school.
Click on thumbnails to enlarge
Unlike many designers, Karaman doesn’t describe his designs in terms of classic, contemporary, or even futuristic. He concentrates more on how they will make a woman look and wants them to add to a woman’s attractivness. Karaman is excited to learn all he can about his field of study, but admits one of the biggest challenges is constructing the garments, explaining that he is still learning how to sew, knit, and apply other design techniques.
After graduation Karaman, who also models, wants to gain experience working for an established fashion brand, but in the future intends to start his own label. He wants to first design clothing for his sister, but if he could design for a celebrity he would like to work with Barbados-born songtress Rihanna. “I really like the color of her skin, I think every color would look perfect on her,” he says. Not only does he think his designs would look good on her, he thinks that she can make anything she wears look good.
(Image credits: Courtesy of Ugur Karaman)
The Chic Spy