The Z-axis of Fashion and Virtual Experience

and Virtual Experience

Yatin Srivastava

The Virtual World of Fashion is one that keeps growing and evolving everyday, with new ideas being represented through an alternative lens that is rapidly changing the future of what we can expect from the industry and the creators and designers within it. But one important aspect that gets left behind, even though it is in our faces all the time is the design element of it all! Thus, in order to understand the relationship between Design and Virtual Fashion, we talked to Canberk Karakas, a Turkey based 3D Art Director and LookDev Artist, who is the Co-founder and Art Director at Cognoscenti Studio and lends his expertise to Nation Of Nowhere, a fashion brand that is changing the way we look at the composition of a Fashion brand and the relationship it has with its customers, all of it represented in this new context of Virtual Fashion and the Blockchain. A Coffee and Car fanatic who is keenly into Progressive Metal bands like Karnivool and the likes, Canberk gave us great insight into the entire working process and ethos behind Nation to Nowhere and his personal process for the same:

Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer
Image of the Designer

Yatin: How did the concept of Nation of Nowhere start?


Canberk: The Nation of Nowhere is an already existing fashion brand that are developing clothes and manufacturing designs, but this version of Nation To Nowhere the space where we’re trying to add our community as well - So that is why we say we’re building Streetwear into the blockchain i.e. a centralized organization where we will have people inside our Discord and Twitter. It’s a translation to a Decentralized Autonomous Organization from just another fashion brand.


Yatin: When the brand brought you in to work with them, were they particular about creating a 3D world or was it something that developed as the process continued?


Canberk: I have a Graphic Design background and I’ve been working with 3D for a while. But my basics were colors, textures - the old school basics. But I was also always intrigued by fashion and I wanted to get into it somehow. It was then when I found out how resourceful 3D is. That’s when I delved into the 3D world myself and I trained myself on my own for 2/3 years, to the point where I started building my eye and taste for 3D. I knew that clothes could be made in 3D because it’s been done for years in games, movies etc. so after I found the native software, I dived into it heavily. So when the founders noticed the examples of my work, they approached me with my 3D work in mind. It was also about doing things in a new way. Even though the clothes will be presented in real life, we wanted to present it in a new manner.


Yatin: It’s that entire world building process of Nation of Nowhere that struck out to me as opposed to other 3D creators and fashion brands. It’s the collective setup of 3D art and a Community/a Government. What was that entire concept about?


Canberk: I think this is the biggest contribution that Nation of Nowhere has given to the Fashion world. The community and its culture is at the core of its identity. Big brands tend to “have a community“, but it’s not really in-depth. It was also because of this lack of community that Nation of Nowhere was formed. Once the government is launched, we will let community members buy passports and if you have that passport, you will have a say in the brand - you will have your say on the designs and the clothes and so on. If you buy the NFT, you will also get the physical product. Along with that, our Discord and Twitter community is building strongly as well. The white paper on our website also gives a very good idea of the entire setup and the way it operates.


Yatin: Considering you touched upon NFT’s, what do you think is an effective way to use NFT’s to drive the focus of a brand? Because a lot of people are confused with the uses of an NFT beyond a piece of ownership.


Canberk: NFT’s are also sort of confusing to me, but the NFT that we will launch will be the passport, but other than that, we definitely have goals for
sustainability in fashion and we reduce that material waste using NFTs, so we only build the real physical garments that we will finalize with our community. That ensures that there is no waste other than immense computing power we use. Further, Nation to Nowhere strives for 100% transparency in our governance with our community, clear communications and the people being able to see their ideas come real via NFTs. Our NFTs are also the outcome of our community, which is something the fast-fashion industry lacks. NFT’s also allow the option of collaborations with other companies to create interesting items with skins or costumes and I think that is a very effective way to use NFT’s to drive the concept of a brand.


Yatin: I feel like there’s a very strong link between the 3D Modeling, the design and the language of Nation of Nowhere, how did you come up with the visual design identity for Nation of Nowhere?


Canberk: That’s a good point! We have a theme at Nation of Nowhere that is influenced by Timeless/Modern design that is influenced by Techwear and we are trying to blend these things together. Right now, me and the founders sit together and work together in a very seamless way. I’m really lucky that I get to work with them because we have a really good working relationship and work off of each other’s skill sets. I’m a 3D designer, they come from the fashion world and the meeting of two creates amazing things. Our tastes and ideas are very similar. And once we decide to do something, we do it from the ground up. It’s this entire process that makes the language clear - right from the garments to creating an environment and make that look good. In the future, we will also let our community members into this process, where they can decide the colors we choose, the designs, the mood boards etc. to inculcate that community driven culture into the design language in the future as well.


Yatin: That perfectly leads to the Nation of Nowhere Concert, where it builds this incredible world out of nothing. How was that process?


Canberk: Well I can say that i’m not doing them the easy way. I do them the hard way to ensure that it’s absolutely pristine, creating images takes me weeks and it’s a very slow process. First, I usually am making a 2D pattern and then I load that into Clo3D and I create the 3D model, then take that into Cinema 4D, which is the hardest way - but that ensures that the textures and the fabrics and the different elements are the best possible. It also looks good because I make all of my elements and layers from scratch - I take 4k/5K high resolution photos and then import those into my programs to ensure I get the best product. So even though it is easy to get into 3D modeling, it is definitely not easy at all. It is incredibly hard to make organic things look good in the virtual 3D space. It’s very easy to make something look fake.


Yatin: I know a lot of people who work in the fashion world and use a lot of programs to make mock-ups and ideas, but when I look at your work and what you make with Nation of Nowhere, the Graphic Design definitely makes that picture very clear. So how important of a role does Graphic Design have in portraying the identity of Fashion?


Canberk: That’s a very good question! Design consists of a lot of different expertises. In graphic design, you start with colors and textures that provide you with the basics. But graphic design also teaches you how to make a good composition - where to place something to make it look pleasing to the human eye. So all the elements like the terrain or the mountains or the terrain are a part of the design and create the identity of the brand along with the garment. It’s definitely useful in understanding the shift from 2D to 3D design as well! It’s important to understand how the dynamics of 3D work - how a light affects different materials and so on.


Yatin: That’s incredibly interesting, especially the shift from 2D to 3D. Was it daunting for you or was it natural?


Canberk: I adapted to 3D super quickly. But that was more of a personal endeavor. I was also really into computing and technology and animated movies really drew me towards it too! I was doing animations in After Effects or Premiere Pro but there were only the X and Y axis’ in a 2D space. Using 3D software allowed me the freedom to travel in the space of the design, going back and forth and traveling around all the sides of a garment/object rather than just rotating it on a 2D surface. Once I found that out, I started making all of my 2D animations into 3D. After that, I just kept practicing and it was good in separating myself from other designers in the field as well. Because I didn’t come from the Visual FX background, the graphic design background helped the change really well too.



The Nation of Nowhere project definitely seems to be a breath of fresh air in an industry where everyone seems to be trying to execute the same ideas in different ways. Even in the Virtual Fashion world, Nation of Nowhere has taken the unique route of actually having the physical garments first and then representing them virtually through their design language. Further, with the idea of an inclusive community that directly gets to decide on various aspects of the brand and the garments, Nation of Nowhere seems to embark on a brand new Anti-Fashion journey that is very much rooted in the classical cannons of Fashion. With the upcoming release of their Non-Passport NFT’s on the 5th of June 2022, with details on other NFT’s and the Community Passports coming in the future, the future of Nation of Nowhere seems incredibly promising and can be a future that provides us with a lot of answers on how the fashion world might evolve.