Twenty-something: Q&A with a freelance stylist


twentysomethingTwentysomething profiles recent graduates who are beginning their journey into the real world, following their chosen career paths.

Patricia Rubino is a freelance junior stylist with The Artist Group. She’s a graduate of the Media, Information and Technoculture program at the University of Western Ontario and the Fashion Co-ordination and Styling certificate program at Ryerson University.

Q. What was your first job and how did it prepare you for what you are doing now?

A. My first ever retail position was at the Gap and from there I went to BCBG, and ultimately Holt Renfrew. Working at Holts gave me the chance to get to know various different designers and their aesthetics. I became familiar with brands and took that with me to Flare, where I was surrounded by tons of designer labels. My knowledge from Holts helped me to be more familiar with my environment at the magazine.

Q. What kind of internship experiences have you had?

A. After I finished my degree I interned at Flare Magazine for a year and The Artist Group for four months. I found both experiences very helpful in defining what I wanted to do with my career. Also, I was able to meet and work with some of the top photographers, editors and stylists within the Toronto fashion industry.

Q. What drew you towards the fashion industry?

A. I always knew fashion would be my ultimate destination – I just took a different path to get there. It’s such a creative field that allows you to do something that is tons of fun with an artistic twist.

Q. What obstacles have you encountered along the way?

A. I definitely found it difficult to do unpaid internships, but I was lucky that I finished my degree early so I just considered it an extra year of school.

"Intern at as many places as you can, it will connect you with great industry people." —Patricia Rubino

Q. What are three attributes or skills someone would need to do your job?

A.Creativity, passion and great people skills (you work with so many different clients, photographers, models and artists all the time!)

Q. The best part of your job is…

A. …working with amazing teams on photoshoots and developing an image in my mind and seeing the final outcome.

Q. The worst part of your job is…

A. …having the patience for paid jobs to come along!

Q. Describe one notable experience you’ve had on the job.

A. The most exciting experience I’ve ever had on the job was my first day interning at Flare. I was so nervous about what it would be like and ended up being taken on a photo shoot that day. It was such a surreal experience to be in that environment on my first day.

Q. Where do you hope to be (professionally) in 10 years?

A. To be honest, I would love to still be freelancing with The Artist Group. Once you have made a name for yourself within the industry, the possibilities with styling are endless. I would also love to do some work in fashion editing at a top Canadian magazine along the way.

Q. What are three pieces of advice you’d give to someone who wants to work in fashion, or a related creative industry?

A. Intern at as many places as you can, it will connect you with great industry people. Know which sector of the industry you want to work within, whether its styling, writing, marketing etc. – its so important to know where you want to end up. Be persistent – talk to as many people as you can within the industry and do not burn any bridges.

About the author

Kristina Loschiavo is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario, where she specialized in Media, Information and Technoculture. She recently completed the post-graduate Public Relations program at Humber College. Kristina is an avid reader of fashion and design magazines, a pop culture enthusiast and a social media multitasker. Find her on Twitter or sharing PR tips on Tumblr.