An Ode to Alexander (Lee) McQueen (Ethereal Ballrooms)

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"McQueen Otherwordly Ballroom 19" Created using Midjourney v2
"McQueen Otherwordly Ballroom 19" Created using Midjourney v2

I always loved how sculptural and ethereal Lee McQueen’s work was – Incomplete yet completely figured out. Conceptual. Dream like.

As a young concept artist, capturing this essence in a frame was difficult. My compositions always felt like they lacked an extra layer of mood or depth. But prompting the AI with inspirations such as Mcqueen helps guide the composition so that you can more confidently lean into the heavy atmosphere. Even though these were early stage AI art, and everything was a big gooey, the early “AI Aesthetic” plays well into the ethereal mood. 

I watched as the AI takes my cues and runs wild, the power in these studies was more that they were sketches of what could be, glimpses into a world where fabric and flesh dance in a delicate, digital ballet. Every image is a conversation between McQueen’s iconic silhouettes and my own re-engineering of what I wish I could personally capture with him as an inspiration.

There’s a strange comfort in this collaboration. Sure, the AI’s early attempts are like watching a child learn to draw – lines unsure, proportions skewed – but isn’t there something pure about that? With every iteration, I’m nudging the AI “If Lee McQueen and I had a baby…”.

It’s not just creating art; it’s creating a feeling, a mood that echoes the endearing qualities of McQueen’s runway shows. And that’s what I’m after – that heartfelt nod to a designer who always knew how to leave us in awe.