Way back in 1998, I was a film school freshman living in New York City. My boyfriend at the time was a well-known drag queen/performance artist (Stop laughing, dude. Seriously.). We were just about the quirkiest things to ever set foot in the tri-state area. That is until we saw the movie trailer for a new film called Rushmore.

Directed by Wes Anderson, Rushmore was the tale of a precocious prep school brat named Max Fischer, his middle-aged freak show of a best friend, Herman, and their misplaced longings for a teacher at Max’s school named Rosemary Cross. It was genius. So genius that my tranny boyfriend and I saw that damn movie seven times during its theatrical run; we just couldn’t get enough.

Since then, Anderson has branded himself the king of eccentric cinematic coolness. From his debut feature Bottle Rocket to Fantastic Mr. Fox, this director is adept at meshing awesome camera tricks with offbeat characters, setting both to a stellar soundtrack steeped in the past. In my mind, Anderson was this mythical creature – a modern-day Wizard of Oz in vintage tees and Chuck Taylors.

When I interviewed him in 2007, the man did not disappoint. Not only is he a great artist, but his personal style is pretty damn fly as well. He sat across from me wearing a blazer with patches on the elbows, his sandy blonde hair tucked behind either ear. Around his neck was an ascot tucked into a bus-yellow T-shirt. He sat with his legs crossed and spoke in a slow, deliberate manner which felt more like an impersonation of actor Owen Wilson than a Q&A about a movie. It quickly became evident that life quite often imitates art.

In this world of wannabes, it’s so hard to find a true designer original. Everybody wants to co-opt everybody else’s style. So I figure, if you’ve got to bite somebody’s scene, it might as well be Anderson’s.

If the stop-motion characters of Fantastic Mr. Fox drive you wild and fire off your inspiration, why not bring the essence of those lovable characters home with you? Artist Ryan Berkley has created a trio of hilarious animal portraits that are the 21st century answer to “Dogs Playing Poker.” While his art isn’t directly affiliated with Anderson or his work, it immediately reminded me of some bizarre throwback character from The Royal Tenenbaums or The Darjeeling Limited. Choose from the suit-wearing polar bear, the billy goat in Sunday dress or Lord Garland Jenkins, the stately cheetah with an eye-patch. I have these in my house and they really crack me up. Each is approximately $40 and available at Urbanoutfitters.com.

Fashion plays a huge part in the Anderson filmography. If you love the classic chic of Margaret Yang (Rushmore), her look is easy to put together. Snag her style at the eastside boutique, Una Mae’s (4651 Kingswell Ave., Los Feliz; unamaesclothing.com). From berets to A-line coats, you’ll be looking like the lovelorn muse in no time. If you’re a guy with a laid-back, casual vibe like Anthony’s and Dignan’s from Bottle Rocket, shop American Apparel (americanapparel.net). With locations all over the city, you’ll find amazing classic sweaters, t-shirts and polos to make your timeless style absolutely effortless. Also, by supporting this company, you support the economy since American Apparel’s wares are made locally, downtown.

Maybe your favorite of Anderson’s films is The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. If so, I don’t blame you. This gem starring Bill Murray chronicles the misadventures of a deep-sea diving expert and his backwards team of followers. For those who melted at the notion of exotic oceanic life, you can now be a part of it by joining the Hollywood Divers (hollywooddivers.com). This club takes its members on underwater field trips so that aquababies can take pictures of everything ranging from coral reefs to sharks to schools of vibrant fish. Now, fun this unique isn’t free: the course fee plus textbook comes in at just under $300. But for this price, you get two dives at Catalina, one evening class and one review class. You’ll be photographing the elusive “jaguar shark” in no time.