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  • Andrea Book

How I Stumbled Upon Being an Art Director

It started with a large stack of scratch and dent magazines. When I was 12, my dad brought home a stack of magazines that were deemed unfit for a Barnes & Noble shelf. My access to editorial publications up to that moment was Girls Life magazine with puff pieces about flirting with boys sandwiched by ads for Lip Smackers. The stack of magazines my dad brought to me opened up a world I didn’t know existed. From Vogue, to Elle, to Harpers Bazaar, I ravenously pored over those fragrant, glossy pages for hours.


I was enthralled by the stylized shoots, spreads and articles that all seamlessly wove the aspirational narrative of high fashion. For a young girl that wore a tartan skirt to a midwestern Catholic school 5 out of 7 days of the week, this outlet of self-expression was thrilling. I started tearing out pages and craftily arranging them on the bright pink walls of my childhood bedroom. Grouping them by texture, color and thematic relevance was incredibly satisfying.


Time went on and I took a slew of art classes in high school and then obtained a BFA in graphic design. All of these interests inched me closer to doing what I was meant to do. All of the pieces clicked when I was tasked to create a pre-production document for my first shoot. It brought me such immense joy to tap into the tenacity of that 12-year-old with the beat up stack of magazines.


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