bowie costume


Meet Fin Lee, a 29-year-old Aquarius and also the queer first generation korean american who’s responsible for the cosmic doodles all over Lady Gaga’s crew during her Bowie tribute at the Grammys.

We chatted with Fin to learn a bit more about how the heck she got to do such an awesome thing! Finn.. how did you get to do this awesome thing?

I have a fabulous friend (I’ve known since 2008) who works with [Gaga’s] stylists. He thought I would be a great fit for this project and asked me to submit my portfolio to his boss. As quickly as I sent the email I got a confirmation they liked my work! It literally felt like it was a “no big deal” moment cause it was so nonchalant… but then, it really was. My work spans from doodles, illustration, coffee bag designs, murals, and now, costumes!

Tell us about the design on the costumes:

So originally when I was confirmed to be the artist, I was given some reference photos to work off with. Then was given some direction in terms of various themes: mostly space, weird, odd, abstract, and basically, bowie! I did my own homage to Bowie (as well as his hero, Egon Schiele) with my portraits of his hands. 

Schiele was very expressive in his portraits and would contort his hands in seemingly “awkward” positions but it’s because he would mimic his own hero (who was a famous artist in the early 1900s known for his hand drawings). I basically got to have a lot of fun and, to be honest, just doodle. There was a lot of hustle as well: I had to finish 4 of those suits last minute the night before/morning of the Grammys.

What did this opportunity mean to you?

“I have never worked on a project that got media coverage beyond the internet, let alone the Grammys. It was super special to have that moment, especially with my mom. She’s been such an amazing supporter of my art and also of being queer. She’s always said that if I work hard, good things will happen. She was surely right. I never worked so hard in my life and the feelings was beyond cosmic. 

Check out more of Fin’s work here