Friday, 29 April 2011

Friend Friday: Fitness and Fashion

This week at #FBFF we're talking about fitness and how it plays into the fashion industry. We already know that fashion puts a heavy emphasis on the physical form, but we don't often talk about how healthy living can tie into  that.

1. Do you keep some kind of fitness routine? Why?
I do not. I should... but I don't. I used to dance in high school and I was a senior member of my company, so dancing for 4+ hours everyday, i didn't really need a separate routine. now that i've stopped dancing, being in Boston, i don't have a regular routine to fall back on. and trust me, it's hard to start one in college when you're adjusting to everything else that's new around you. it sucks, especially once late night study sessions start to take their toll on your body.

2. Has working out, maybe training for a marathon or something of that nature, helped with your own perception of body image?

Well I don't work out often enough, but on the occasions that I manage to get myself to the gym, I feel really good and accomplished. I've never had a problem going to the gym, I just have a problem getting to the gym. At this university, the gym is on the other end of campus (a mile and half away) and public transport is reliable but not timely. So my only other option is to walk. and I could do that, but then by the time I get there I don't want to work out anymore.  

the thing is though that I actually love working out! i love how exhilarating it feels when i get off a treadmill and my heart is racing. i love being active. i love knowing that I can do more sit-ups today than i could do the day before. working out is fun and i think that the biggest mistake that people make is to try to be gym rats rather than consistently live an active lifestyle.

3. When you are hitting the gym or just going out for a long walk what do you wear? Is it about functionality or fashion?
For me I just wear a sports bra, loose t-shirt and leggings. I think everyone wants to look good while working out, but let's be real... my need to be comfortable is more dire than my need to find a husband  (while sweating). When it comes to the gym, function over fashion any day.

4. Do you feel there is a cultural perception of what you ‘should’ be doing for your own physical fitness?
I guess? I think that everyone definitely has their own ideas of fitness, but as far as a general perception? I'm not sure. I think culturally people think you need to be skinny, but as to how you get there, I'm not sure that people have latched onto specific ways to do that just yet.

5.  Dream big… what would be your ultimate fitness goal.

Ultimately, I think, my fitness goal would be to get down to my pre-college weight and maintain it. I'm not obese, and I know that, but the extra weight does get me down sometimes. I think that everyone should be trying to be the healthiest that they can be, and keeping fit is the best way to do that. Hypertension and diabetes runs in my family, and those are both preventable, lifestyle diseases. I want to make sure that I live a healthy lifestyle that allows me to steer clear of health problems later in life.

Sorry I don't have more to say on the topic, but I'd definitely like to hear from you. Let me know in the comments what you do to stay active and fit, and how you think you can make improvements.

Fashion Beauty Friend Friday is the brainchild of Katy Rose of ModlyChic. If you want to get in on the action, join the FBFF google group to join in on all the behind the scenes discussions.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Photo of the Day: Johnny Cupcakes

via PLola

johnny cupcakes came to BU today to speak and the freep sent me to cover the event. he was kind enough to let me take a portrait, and i think it came out great. he's a hilarious guy and thoroughly amusing to listen to. plus... he happens to have a super successful clothing line.
no big deal.
whenever you have the time you need to read the story of how he got started. it will blow you away.
also, he's just a super cool guy. that's always a plus :)

Sound Off: Cinemagraphs as the Future for Fashion Photography

For me personally, the allure of photography has always the been an image's ability to truthfully and magically capture a single moment in time. I always say that I know I love a photograph when I want to touch it; when the desire to experience that specific moment overwhelms me to the point where I must place my fingers to the frame. 

I can honestly say that I have never been more entranced with a photograph that I am with the amazing "cinemagraphs" of Jamie Beck. Beck, a fashion photographer works in tandem with web designer and videographer Kevin Burg, to create beautiful images that replay a single moment in time, bringing the experience of that instant, just a little closer to reality.

I'm not sure how Jamie creates these images, (and frankly I feel like finding out might remove some of the magic) but I can honestly say that they are exquisite works of art all on their own, and I think that they may be the future of fashion photography.

In the last few years, fashion has slowly been transitioning to film. Every season there is another "motion editorial" meant to transfix and allure. Designers have often complained that static photographs do not do justice to the ease and dynamics of their gowns, Jamie and Kevin may well have found the solution. Could you imagine runway photographs that capture the very essence of what a designer was trying to portray?

A recent collaboration with supermodel Coco Rocha has made Jamie's creations more popular, and her work has been featured in The Atlantic, Refinery29 and Modelina. Her work is swiftly gaining steam, and I'm sure that we'll be seeing more of her soon.

I'm rambling, but essentially I'm saying this: These cinemagraphs are amazing. I am literally in awe. Jamie has managed to elevate the GIF to high art, and I like it. Check out Jamie's work on her tumblr blog From Me to You, and gawk (because trust me, you will be gawking) at my favourite cinemagraphs after the jump.

all Cinemagraphs copyright Jaime Beck & Kevin Burg

Photo of the Day: Diane Arbus

i've mentioned this already but I'm writing a paper on photographer diane arbus and i was struck by how beautiful she was. she ended up committing suicide in her late 40's and was apparently severely depressed. tortured artist she was, but definitely brilliant.

after this paper is written and submitted, i will dedicate a post to some of my favourite work by her.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Photojournalism in Review: Photographers in Peril

Fighters board a bus to be carried east away form approaching government forces in Brega, Libya March 12. (Tyler Hicks/The New York Times)

Readers and picture editors view the pictures of conflict in safety and comfort. But for the soldiers fighting the wars, and the civilians caught up in them, conflict is anything but safe and comfortable. We are witness to their stories and tragedies thanks to people who willingly put themselves into the same lines of fire as the protagonists - photographers. 

Covering conflict has always been dangerous, and many famous photojournalists have given their lives doing it. Robert Capa, Larry Burrows - the list is awful and endless. But lately several incidents have made it seem like the dangers have increased. Land mines have seriously wounded photographers in the past few years. Two photographers for the New York Times, Lynsey Addario and Tyler Hicks, were taken prisoner with their writing colleagues for several days in Libya, and were beaten and abused. Other photographers have gone missing as well, such as Khaled al-Hariri, Roberto Schmidt, Joe Raedle, and Altaf Qadri. All are safe now. The same cannot be said for Sabah al-Bazee, who was killed in in an attack on a government building in Tikrit, Iraq. 

The Big Picture relies on the willingness of these photographers and others to place themselves in harm's way for our benefit, and I'd like to thank them here for that. Knowing too well that there are others like them, I've assembled a few photographs of recent work (where possible) by the above-mentioned photographers. -- Lane Turner

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Soundtrack Saturday: Till The World Ends Remix- Brtiney Spears ft. Nicki Minaj and Ke$ha

Soundtrack Saturday: Till the World Ends Remix
another soundtrack saturday! and i'm so excited because i'm obsessed with this song :) 

i loved the original version of this song when it first premiered, and when i heard that the remix would feature my girl nicki and ke$ha, i pretty much fainted! the remix is amazing and it's a great track.

 i wasn't too hot on the S&M rhimix that was released a little while back, because i felt that britney didn't add anything to the track. but here, nicki and ke$ha (who wrote the song btw) add a fun flavour that the song didn't have before. it's an amazing mash up of three of the biggest stars right now. in any case, i knew it had to be this week's SS track. 

i really loved putting this set together. i tried to envision what i thought each celeb might wear if they were just jamming backstage to the song. and weirdly enough i think i got it right!

for nicki i picked leggings and a bustier because that tends to be her uniform if she isn't wearing anything specifically crazy. the pink wig is a staple of course, and leopard print is a big part of her wardrobe. the barbie chain i found completely by accident, and it was just the icing on the cake. the leggings are my favourite part though, because in the song, nicki has a line that goes "chimpanzees is hating but i take it all in stride // put her in the jungle with bananas on the side". can you say perfection?

for ke-$-ha, (pronounced key-dollar sign-ha!) i stuck to her grunge chic basics. honest to goodness i used to think this girl was ridiculous, but she has won me OVER. i love her. i adore her. i appreciate her genius. but that aside, for her i chose the fur essentials with a big fur stole, plus a black embellished crop top and denim shorts. i also added in her signature blue lipstick, heavy liner and feather earrings. i think she'd look amazeballs.

for britney i tried to go more for what i thought she might be dressing like now if she hadn't had that unfortunate mental breakdown a few years ago. i love the cropped bustier and blue high waisted shorts for her, and the floral pumps i think are perfect. the chunky ring is just a fun embellishment. every diva should have a statement piece. but i suppose the mcqueen clutch might be competing in that department!

i love this song, and i really had fun with this set. but what did you think? do you like this song? do you think i did a good job representing each celebrity? what would you have put them in?

i'm not sure if the track has been released on itunes yet, so here it is below:

Soundtrack Saturday: Till the World Ends Remix by inkblot*photography featuring crop tops

Friday, 22 April 2011

MTV Staying Alive: Tribes

today, was a great day. at this afternoon's coffee and conversation, dean elmore along with 100 other students and myself were exposed to a great project called staying alive, which is under the mtv banner. it's all about sexual responsibility and hiv/aids prevention and education. before the conversation, we watched an amazing drama set in kenya called 'Shuga' that dealt with these themes. we also hosted the executive producer and one of the principal actresses as special guests. (it was AMAZING to hear their first hand perspectives) I also managed to get a portrait of Lupita (the actress) who is absolutely stunning, and I will probably post that tomorrow.

but anyway, imagine my surprise when i discovered that there was also a 3 part series set in my own beautiful homeland of trinidad, originally broadcast about 2 years ago! you can check out all three episodes and enjoy a fun glimpse into trinidad. the language and dialogue is a little contrived and inauthentic, (and if we're being completely honest, the acting is pretty poor) but it basically hits the mark all round, and the drama of the show is very enjoyable. i'm so glad that something like this happened at home, and i only wish i'd known about it sooner. watch the trailer for Tribes below, and then don't forget to check out the episodes of Shuga.

Friend Friday: Inspiration/Aspiration

This week at #FBFF we're talking about the things that inspire us. Fashion is fun, but in such a big world, there are bound to be other things that influence our fashion and personal choices. do enjoy my answers, and tell me what inspires you in the comments below.

1. Which celebrity (celebrities) do you look to for fashion inspiration?
I've never been a person who closely mimics celebrity style, but there are definitely many celebs whose style I greatly admire.  I could probably go on for days, but below are the celebrities whose style really inspires me to step up my game!
  • I think primarily I'd have to name Blake Lively (even though the fashion world seems to be sick of her for some reason) I just love the way that she always seems to be beautifully put together and classic. She always look so elegant and never overdone, and I think that that's something that a lot of other celebrities still need to learn.
  • I also love Solange Knowles's style. Since she had her son and chopped her hair off and gone natural, she's got this whole casual, ethnic, urban bohemian thing going on, and I think that if I could I would duplicate her style wholesale. It's beautiful, age appropriate and so versatile. She's stunning and I can't get enough of her.
  • Rihanna is of course a favourite. What I love about her best is that she is not only not afraid to take chances with her fashion choices, but she doesn't apologize for them. Sometimes people think she's missed the mark, but she doesn't care. I also really admire that she isn't afraid to rebrand herself for the different stages of her life. For every album, she's had a different signature look, and I think it's cool that in the future she's probably going to be able to identify her milestones by what colour her hair was at the time!
  • I hate to say it, but I LOVE the Kardashians, and I genuinely think that Kim Kardashian is a fashion icon. I think that regardless of how she got her fame, she's a beautiful girl who's managed to build an empire by carefully managing her brand. She dresses impeccably, and I love that she tries really hard to dress for her body type and flaunt her curves without drifting into the hoochie mama field. She's expertly found a niche style that suits her. 
  • Janelle Monae's style is amazing and I cannot get enough. I absolutely ADORE that she is always in suits and bow ties and refuses to go the traditional glam route. I think it's empowering that she's adopted the menswear style and continually wears it with so much grace. From the hair and the ties to the shoes, Janelle Monae is squarely on my fashion icon list. Her fashion sense also complements her music exquisitely.
  • Regardless of how you feel about him as a person, you HAVE to admit that Kanye West can dress. And personally, I really appreciate that there are rappers who don't feel the need to run around promoting the 'thug life'. He dresses like a boss no matter what he's doing and he's not afraid to advocate for impeccable taste and style. I like a man who can acknowledge that taking a vested interest in the way that they dress doesn't make them 'gay'. Especially in such a testosterone driven field. 

2. When it comes to your own personal style, what inspires you?
Oh boy, TONS. when it come to personal style I'm definitely a dabbler. There is no one look that I love more than another, and  if I had the finances, I would definitely explore a lot of the different styles that I see reflected in the people I see everyday and the trends I see on the street. I think that the amazing thing about personal style is that it's dynamic, and the people who are open to changing their aesthetic with the times are the ones who will permanently be chic.

3. How do you hope to inspire your readers?

I hope to inspire my readers by continuing to capture beautiful moments with my camera and sharing it with them. I hope to inspire them by sharing an alternative view of what beautiful is and can be, and by providing a different perspective on how to view the things in their everyday lives. There are alternative opinions on this, but I think that there is an inherent beauty in everything, and for me, identifying that beauty and capturing it, is important. We have to step out of the perception that everything is mundane and embrace the vast profundity of the world.

4. Outside the realm of fashion who/what inspires you?

Photography inspire me. Music inspires me. Literature inspires me. Profundity inspires me.

5. And since Idol is ending… Which songs inspire you?

Well I've never been a fan of American Idol (i've literally never seen an episode, and it baffles me that I still manage to know everything about all of the contestants each season anyway...) but I definitely get inspired by music. Right now the song that's really resonating with me is Adele's Turning Tables off her sophomore release 21 (and recently covered on Glee) I've been dealing with some super lame relationship stuff of late, and (as per usual) Adele's song describes EXACTLY how i'm feeling. it's kind of creepy how she does that, really. The lyrics really give me perspective I think, and her soulful voice just gives me pause. i'm really grateful that I can find music that really speaks to me.

Fashion Beauty Friend Friday is the brainchild of Katy Rose of ModlyChic. If you want to get in on the action, join the FBFF google group to join in on all the behind the scenes discussions.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Cover Wars: Meghan Collison by Marton Perlaki for The Room S/S 2011 Cover

Meghan Collison by Marton Perlaki

i'm in love with the colours here, and her expression is priceless.
gingers do it better.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Photo of the Day: Corn on the Sidewalk

via PLola

this was actually really awkward. i was just coming home and i saw a cob of corn on the sidewalk. just like that. nothing else to it :)

Photo of the Day: Question Everything

via PLola

i pass this meter almost everyday, and there's always this adorable vintage bicycle attached to it. the other day i noticed that someone had written on it and i just had to take the shot. 

Photo of the Day: Cross-Track

via PLola

so it only just occurred to me that i should stick original work into my editorial calendar. so from now on, i'll be posting something original on sundays. (except this week, because today is monday...) today i have a few things, but this is the first. it's just the train tracks outside the subway on commonwealth avenue, and i'm not even really sure why i took this, it just seemed like a good idea at the time. anyway, do enjoy.

Editorial: Guinevere van Seenus by Mert & Marcus for Interview April 2011

Guinevere van Seenus by Mert & Marcus

The red colour of her hair makes these shots. They contrast with everything in the most amazing way.

Editorial: Rachael Grasso & Jessica Moloney by Zac Steinic for Culture

Rachael Grasso & Jessica Moloney by Zac Steinic

It's a tiny bit scary how amazing this is. I don't have the words.

Friday, 15 April 2011

Friend Friday: Spreading the Love

A note from Katy Rose: "This is the official one-year anniversary of FBFF! So I wanted to do something about gratitude. We each have so many people in our lives and in the blogging community who have helped us along the way. It’s time to shine the spotlight on them and give credit where credit is due."

1.  When it comes to be personally – I owe a lot of who I am to:

my favourite photographer friend. i haven't known him for very long, but in the short while that he's been in my life, he's managed to make a significant impact. between helping me with my personal problems and encouraging me professionally, he's been a big part of keeping me sane through the last year. he's ossum, and i love him dearly :)

2. When it comes to be professionally – I owe a lot of who I am to:
no one in particular just yet! if i was forced to choose i think i'd say my mum. even though we fight constantly, my mum has always tried her very best to give me everything i need in order to pursue the things i love. from the years she spent shuttling me to extra-curriculars before i could drive, to helping me find a degree program that suited me, i'm pretty sure that in the years to come, she will continue to support me, and help me to accomplish what i want in life.

3. When it comes to the art of blogging, I’m grateful to these people for helping me through some rough spots:
i am grateful to Katy-Rose primarily, for creating friend friday. i don't remember now how i happened upon her blog, but i'm very glad that i did. for me, being a part of friend friday is what really helped me to become part of a larger blogging community. when you're first starting out, it can be VERY daunting, and immersing myself in this online family of sorts has given me a place to go to if i need help, advice or just support. i'm eternally grateful for that.

4. One blogging challenge I’m grateful happened because it made me stronger was…
my miniature burnout over the summer. i think reaching the one year milestone and feeling like i was still just treading water was very disheartening, but i think it gave me the opportunity to reexamine why i was blogging in the first place, and what i wanted out of the experience. i think every blogger goes through this at some point, but i think it was especially helpful to me to seriously think about how this blog would fit into the larger goals i have for myself.

5. To my readers, I’d like to say… 
i know you're there, i see you! leave a comment and say hi :)
but seriously, i'm grateful for the people who take the time out to stop here and read what i post. i'm grateful that those same people keep coming back, and i'm especially grateful for the people who let me know what they think and give me feedback on what i do here. thanks! i'd be talking to the wind without you.

Friend Friday: Rules of Engagement

*NB. this the #FF topic from two weeks ago. i'm just now getting around to it. i didn't have the time to do it then, but i decided that i still wanted to say my piece on this topic. more friend friday for you my lovelies!

Everyone hates spam online. unfortunately, there's a new form of spam that seems to be unique to bloggers that usually gets all of us riled up. It's those "please follow me" type emails and comments. you know the ones: the "follow me and i'll follow you" types? But in a medium that heavily depends on connection and networking, how can you build relationships without coming across as desperate for exposure?

1. Guest posts are a good way to gain new exposure. What do you think is the appropriate way to go about securing a guest spot?

i personally think that exchanges are superior to guest posts. that way, both parties are exposed to readers  that they didn't previously have access to. that being said, i think that in proposing a collaboration/exchange/guest post, it's important have a clear idea of what you want to do. just sending out a blind email, probably isn't going to get you anywhere. be discriminating about who you extend your invitations to: don't just approach them because their blog is popular. be sure that you know what their blog is about, and have an idea for what you think you can bring to their brand that they don't already have and vice versa.

2. Leaving comments is essential to growing your blog. But how can you leave a comment without coming across as ‘Follow Me. Follow Me!’?

i honestly, think this is a non-issue. we should be leaving comments because we have something to say, not because we're mass spamming other bloggers. the very best bloggers, will always at the very least return the favour and check out your blog and perhaps leave a comment. it's tit for tat, but in a constructive way. i always ignore the 'follow me' type messages. frankly they're annoying, self-serving and they can make even the most well intentioned blogger seem impersonal and inauthentic.

3. We’ve all gotten a mass email at one time or another asking for blog exposure, a link exchange, etc… But the mass emails don’t work. 
How do you make your email stand out from the crowd?

i try to make them personable. i don't email bloggers very often, but when i have, (i reached out to a few bloggers last semester for a paper i was writing) i took the time to write each one individually, and specify why i thought that they would be able to help me. the little things really do matter, and sometimes it can be as simple as addressing a blogger personally. i recently got an email from a blogger that was addressed, 'dear webmaster'. i mean SERIOUSLY?!?!? understandably i hit delete.

4. In interacting with other bloggers where do you draw the line between seeking support and begging for exposure?

i think that most bloggers are welcome to the idea of collaboration and building relationships. there are few bloggers who are unwilling to lend a hand should another blogger reach out to them. for me, the line is crossed when any/all outreach to other bloggers is consistently self centered. we should be helping each other, not trying to piggyback on each other's success. 9 times out of 10, a sincere request will get you further than an automated and desperate plea for attention.

5. What’s one rule of engagement error you made and how have you remedied that?

the biggest error I would make initially is to leave snarky comments. My intention was never to be mean, i would simply say what i honestly thought, but i forgot that the 'if you have nothing nice to say...' rule applies online too. i've definitely changed that, and now i feel like i really have an opinion that needs to be heard, i take the time to phrase it diplomatically. no one wants to make enemies online, especially unnecessarily. and disagreement over a wardrobe choice is certainly not a reason to have an anonymous blogger hating me :s

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Cover Wars: Poppy Delevigne by Brian Daly |Playing Fashion February 2011 Cover

Poppy Delevigne by Brian Daly

what i love about this is how natural and fresh she looks. from the minimal makeup to the freckles, she looks like a genuinely beautiful woman who doesn't need all the frills to make her gorgeous.

Campaign: Jennifer Lopez by Ellen von Unwerth for TOUS Spring 2011 Campaign

Jennifer Lopez by Ellen von Unwerth

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Soundtrack Saturday: Rolling in the Deep -Adele

Rolling In The Deep
i haven't done a soundtrack saturday in about a month and that really bums me out. so even though it is now 8:32pm as i type this, i'm getting it done.

this week's song is rolling in the deep by adele. it's the first single off her amazing sophomore album 21.

even though the song was originated by adele, the version that i took inspiration from for this post was this cover version by my future husband john legend. it's an amazing acoustic cover that  i think might actually be better than the recorded version. 

i love adele immensely, but there something about the way that john legend really broke it down to the bare essentials of the song.... it just moves me :)

in any case, i tried to think of the way that the song made me feel when i put together this set. JL's version is so soulful and sad that i really wanted something long and flowing. for some reason, sadness always translates that way for me. go figure. i also wanted to keep it simple in terms of layers, so i packed on the accessories instead with the rings, bangles and earrings. and instead of a heavy coat, i opted for this light grey blazer that meshes well with the mood of the song. 

for makeup i figured a classic red lip would suffice, so as not to overpower the general tone of the outfit. it also creates a visual focal point that contrast with the base colours in the outfit. i'm not positively in love with either the wedges or the clutch, but i thought they did what i needed them to do.

anyway, if you want to download john legend's AMAZING cover you can do that here (for free!) i'm sure you'll enjoy it as much as i do :D

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Tent Life: Haiti by Wyatt Gallery

TENT LIFE: HAITI from umbrage on Vimeo.

saw this great video in JO305 (like 5 seconds ago) about some for the work that photographer Wyatt Gallery did in Haiti after the earthquake.

Till the Word Ends

britney's new video premiered!
i'm excited and i love this video more than her last one, but still...

i'm partial to this video because i've always been a fan of videos in the sweaty, sexy, piles of people variety, but the whole thing was brought down by the fact that there was nary a smile or a coy look from the brit-master herself. the ONE time she REALLY smiles close to the end, we get this glimpse of the old britney that we used to love.

it's not really my place to talk about ms. spears or her well being (i'm not say, dr. phil or dr drew after all) but i watched the mtv special on her the other day and she just seems so... DEAD. like she'd rather be anywhere else. she gives off this vibe like she could care less and that she'd rather be at home with her kids watching yo gabba gabba :)

ANYWAY.... i do like this video. watch it. dance. get excited.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Cover Wars: Elle UK May 2011 Cover | Reese Witherspoon by Ben Hassett

Reese Witherspoon by Ben Hassett

i'm not really sure why, but i'm not the biggest reese witherspoon fan. i DO like this cover though. it's alluring and sexy but without being too overt. 

Cover Wars: Malgosia Bela by Greg Kadel |Numéro #122 April 2011

Malgosia Bela by Greg Kadel

positively speechless.

Editorial: Crystal Renn for Vogue Mexico April 2011 by David Roemer

Crystal Renn by David Roemer 

thi might be slightly belittling to my dear Ms. Renn, but i feel like she embodies everything that Tyra is always telling her top model girls to do. if she was on the show she'd blow them all out of the water. and not just because she has so much experience. i'd love to see Tyra do an all plus-sized cycle of Top Model and have Crystal be a permanent judge for that season.