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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Matthew Brookes for Hercules Magazine

I rarely look at men's magazines but it's exciting when I do because men's fashion and portraiture photography is so different than what is being produced for for womens magazines like Vogue and Vanity Fair. We see raw and gritty images with men who have clean, young, and very often feminine yet muscular faces.

This is a shoot that really stood out to me from the Hercules magazine September '08 issue and I really can't wait to set up an outdoor studio and get images like this with such gorgeous light. I really like how the photographer, Matthew Brookes, cropped the images and used some of the models as the focal point and then others as "props" in the background to fill in the frame. The layout is interesting too, switching from a full image to split images in a diptych. Posing groups of people isn't the easiest thing and I am going to be looking to him to inform some of my upcoming shoots.

Check out his website (the Matthew Brookes link above). The site is really well organized and his photography is incredible. It is a great treat to be able to look at consistently amazing images like the ones he produces.

Editorial: Excellence In Action
Magazine: Hercules Issue #5
Models: Philip Bierbaum, Stas Svetlichnyy, Gustaf McMahon, Kristian Akegren, Viggo, Anton
Photographer: Matthew Brookes

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Elle & Erdem

I wanted to share some recent favorites:

US Elle March 2010
model: keira knightly
photographer: carter smith
stylist: joe zee

Even though the Fall 2010 collections are being revealed literally as we speak, I always love going back to my old favorite collections.

Erdem Resort 2010 Collection:
Look at the entire collection at

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Marrakech Moment Harper's Baazar March 2010

This is my favorite editorial shoot from the Harper's Baazar March 2010 issue. The shoot is styled so that the prints and patterns reflect and blend in with the location. The entire issue is amazing so I would recommend buying it or at least taking a look at it in a bookstore or anywhere else that carries it. It is a thick issue which is seen less and less these days, so this issue definitely seems like a treat. Enjoy.

Model: Maryna Linchuk
Photographer: Lachlan Bailey
Fashion Editor: Alastair Mckimm

Monday, February 15, 2010

Collaboration with Cornell

A little while ago I was approached by a grad student in the Fiber Science and Apparel Design department at Cornell University to help photograph garments and collaborate on a movie for her thesis. We met once to talk about what she wanted to accomplish for her thesis and the second time we met I went to Cornell to see where she works and what equipment she works with.

I have never really been interested in apparel design and that aspect of the fashion industry. Aside from watching Project Runway reruns and making a pair of pj pants (when I was in 5th grade), I had never even thought about it. What was great about going to Cornell was that it opened my eyes to aspects of design that I had never heard of.

My friend at Cornell is interested in the technical aspect of apparel design. I had always thought that designers sketched preliminary designs for their garments by hand; that is the only part that is shown on TV. I was able to see the design spaces at Cornell which were more or less like I expected them to be. There were big tables to lay out fabric, mannequins and body form stands (I'm pretty sure this is what they were called. They were like mannequins but just a cloth bust used for tailoring). There were collections of old fashion magazines all over the tables of the rooms and thrown on chairs, shelves, and stuck in corners. It was definitely a place I would want to hang out.

From there I was shown into a special room that was home to the 3-D body scanner. This is one of the most interesting things that I was able to see and learn about. Technology is becoming an important part of the fashion design industry. Designers still sketch by hand but there are many aspects of the process that make more sense to do on a computer. The body scanner is being incorporated into the design and the construction of the garments. The scanner consists of four poles that make a square. On each pole is a different scanner or camera that takes an image of the subjects body. The scanners overlap so that all 360 degrees of the person's body are recorded. The end result of the scan is a 360 degree view of the body. This scan is then imported into a special design software that can specifically and accurately measure the body dimensions. Pattern and different designs can be manipulated in this software so that the designers can predict what a specific garment would look like before they invest their time and craft into producing the garment.

My friend helped me out and showed me what the machine did by using me as an example. Usually when designers use this machine they make their models wear skin tight clothes so that no part of the body is concealed. This makes some people uncomfortable but I would have gladly done that if someone wanted to make a garment that would fit me. You can check out my scan below. I didn't get all fancy with it (it was just a test to show me what it is like) so I was scanned with the clothes I was wearing that day.

If you are interested in any more information I would recommend checking out the department website:

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

New York, I Love You - Shekhar Kapur

Tonight I watched the film New York, I Love You, which is a collective work of eleven short films produced by the same man who also produced Paris Je t'aime. Each short features different directors and actors, and there are a lot of positives and negatives of making a film in this way. There is no continuing narrative throughout the films. In one way it brings many different directing and storytelling styles to the viewing experience but it also makes it feel as if the viewer is at a film festival or screening of films with the common theme of shooting whatever comes to mind in New York City. What was interesting is the mood that each short conveyed. Each short was about a relationship in the city and instead of focusing on the emotions one feels when in the city it was about the emotions of human life. You would think a director might want to capture the essential New York feeling of bustle, movement, energy, and people with places to go and things to do. Instead, the movement of the city is blurred into the background and the city serves only as a backdrop for the more intimate character interactions rather than as an inspiration for the film itself.

I would have to say that I enjoyed New York, I Love You more than the first film about Paris. Perhaps this is because the filming was a little more cohesive and the short films complimented each other by randomly featuring actors from other shorts in the background and being shot in a more similar style than in Paris Je t'aime where each short was so stylistically and visually different from one another that the only connecting thing between the films seemed to be the fact that it was filmed somewhere in Paris.

Here is my favorite segment from New York, I Love You by the brilliant director Shekhar Kapur. His filmography includes films such as Elizabeth and Elizabeth: The Golden Age, both featuring Cate Blanchett (I would highly recommend these films if you haven't seen them; stunning in every way).

I loved the light white tones of this short film by Kapur and the beautifully haunting story and characters. The cinematography is incredible and the motion and fluidity of the shots compliment the fluidity and ghost-like quality of the wind in the curtains and contrast the stiffness of Shia LeBeouf's character. The film is about movement. Movement of the camera, of the characters, of their interaction and their relationship. This short is the one that I actually remember and want to watch again once the film is over.

Monday, February 1, 2010

La Vie Romantique

Just a few recent things I've found that I've enjoyed:

  • The Woman Management Blog is a blog that has a lot of great postings on editorials, photography and fashion. A really great place to see great work and read inspired thoughts.

  • This girl (below) has a cute blog about fashion, food, and little musings that helped me pass some time. I found her on lookbook . Just a quick blog to scroll through and she has some great ideas for designing such as collecting old mirrors from antique stores and arranging them on a wall.

  • I absolutely love this video. Greg Kadel is an amazing fashion and celebrity photographer and is one of the photographers I really look up to and am inspired by. You can check out his website here: What I love about his website is that it is so organized. You can choose a publication and look at some sample images he has taken from that publication. It is so annoying to find a photographer whose work you love and then can't find any of your favorite images on their website because it is unorganized and chaotic.


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