Donald Robertson's election illustration for PaperCity captures election insanity.
Donald Robertson (Photo by Shayna Fontana)
Donald Robertson's D-shirts, from $50
During a recent lunch with Bag Snob Tina Craig, we were discussing the election. My dilemma as an editor: How to acknowledge the political insanity that has captivated (and alarmed) the world over the course of the last year?
We aren’t, after all, The Grey Lady — you won’t find a single endorsement or snub on these pages. My thought was to explore a visual representation of the “I’m With Her” vs. “Make America Great Again” battle for the White House. The always-clever Craig suggested I reach out to artist, designer, and illustrator Donald Robertson — a friend of hers, and a Dallas devotee.
A week later, I was on the phone with a much different Donald than the one running for office. “I’m obsessed with Dallas,” enthused Robertson. “I love it!” We chatted illustrations and how he would capture the 2017 presidential race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in a work of art exclusively for PaperCity. “Is Texas a red or blue state?” he asked. Then, an epiphany: “I know exactly what I’m going to do!”
That was that, and the conversation turned to something more fashionable: Robertson’s new collection of T-shirts, which he is appropriately calling D-Shirts, and launching at Forty Five Ten in perfect timing with its opening downtown this month.
“I could launch this collection anywhere,” he said. “New York. LA. Paris. But I chose Dallas. I tell people all the time that they should launch their products here.”
Those are powerful words coming from the artist who has exploded on the fashion and social media scenes. He launched American Marie Claire, redesigned Glamour, created ad campaigns for MAC Cosmetics starring RuPaul, worked in creative development with Estée Lauder Companies, and is perhaps most known for his Instagram @drawbertson, which is nearing 200,000 followers.
The CFDA nominated him as Instagrammer of the Year; even Beyoncé gave him a social-media shout-out, posting a photo of herself with a handbag he had painted. As of late? Yale invited Robertson to give a talk, and he collaborated on a line of bags with designer Clare Vivier.
D-Shirts by Donald Robertson, from $50, at Forty Five Ten on Main in Dallas, and Forty Five Ten in Houston.