Written by Garrick Webster
In this age of the selfie, it’s such special feeling when someone takes the time to paint your portrait. That’s the kind of experience Bulgari wanted to give to its exclusive clientele when treating them to an event celebrating 100 years of jewellery and watchmaking in St Moritz at the end of August. To achieve this, Bulgari called on the services of Jacqueline Bissett and Katharine Asher, two leading fashion illustrators who also specialise in live event drawing.
The Jewellery Watches Masterclass took place in a deluxe suite at the historic Badrutt’s Palace Hotel, overlooking a stunning alpine lake. Over 40 guests were received with food, drink and a behind the scenes look at the intricacy of Bulgari’s jewellery and watchmaking process. The fascinating presentation also discussed the snake, a recurring theme in Bulgari jewellery, and how the creature symbolises both seduction and immortality.
During the event, Jacqueline and Katharine captured unique images of the guests in elegant line work using inks, brushes and a rough waterpaper stock with a pre-printed image of one of the new watches, pendants or bracelets on each sheet. “That way the client could take the watch home with them,” explains Jacqueline Bissett.
She continues: “Kathy and I spent time preparing poses prior to the event so the jewellery could be placed in the correct positions, so in effect we were drawing around the photos.”
The client would then sit in the ideal pose for the piece of jewellery they loved most, and Jacqueline or Katharine would render their form with deft strokes of their brushes, adding in highlights for lip colour and a touch of shading here and there.
“They were pleased to bits,” says Katharine. “In this era of selfies the exclusiveness of a painted portrait carries a magical quality. The illustrations were given to each client in a presentation folder as a souvenir of the occasion.”
With complementary styles, Jacqueline and Katharine worked together as a team at the event, each bringing an individual touch to the artwork they created. Both work for leading fashion brands and publications and are experienced at bringing their skills into a live setting where there’s little room for error. They have a natural ability to make their subjects feel comfortable and relaxed by chatting to them, turning the portrait into a positive and empowering experience.
“I love working with Kathy,” says Jacqueline. “She’s great fun, easy to get along with and at the same time incredibly professional.”
To find out more about Jacqueline Bissett and Katharine Asher’s live event drawing either individually or as a team, contact one of agenting team HERE