Monday, December 31, 2012

My Thanks for 2012

I would like to thank all those who have chosen Lee Folkard Photography to capture your memories in 2012.

I would also like to thank those who have supported my work; those that commented on images and status's via the Facebook Page; Lee Folkard Photography.
Those who have retweeted or "starred" my tweets, via twitter; Lee Folkard.
Those who have read, commented and shared blogposts on the Blog - Lee Folkard Photography.

I would my loyal corporate clients who have made use of my services throughout the year. And also all those who have purchased images from the website; www.leefolkard.com.

I would like to thank all those close to me who continue to support my passion and my work.

Thank you.

Here's to seeing you again and again and again in 2013. Even if it is just through virtual contact.



Sunday, December 30, 2012

Brad Pitt for Chanel No. 5


Celebrity has always been the answer to great advertising, whether it is good or not, simply because putting the face of a star on a brand makes the product that much more desirable. Chanel’s decision to use Brad Pitt for their new Chanel No. 5 campaign is nothing short of creative genius. Its innovation is simply proved by using a man for one of the most prominent female fragrances in the world.

The ads themselves are not good and Brad has received a lot of backlash for them. They consist of nonsensical ravings about the journeys of life and love and Brad ends up looking awkward reciting a monologue it is clear he doesn’t quite understand. But it manages to somehow work. Brad Pitt – with that husky badboy voice, etched in black and white – will sell the fragrance simply because it is Brad Pitt with his husky badboy voice filmed in black and white.

The ads are shot by Oscar-nominated director Joe Wright but it fails to live up to the standards that Chanel has managed to keep alive for all these years. But search for Brad Pitt on YouTube and the first search result will be the Chanel No. 5 ads – so people are talking and watching and it is “inevitable” – as Brad inexplicably ends the ad by saying – that the fragrance will sell.


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Yousuf Karsh – The Soul-Searcher


“Within every man and woman a secret is hidden, and as a photographer it is my task to reveal it if I can. The revelation, if it comes at all, will come in a small fraction of a second with an unconscious gesture, a gleam of the eye, a brief lifting of the mask that all humans wear to conceal their innermost selves from the world. In that fleeting interval of opportunity the photographer must act or lose his prize.”
-       Yousuf Karsh

Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) is one of the masters of 20th century photography. His body of work includes portraits of statesmen, artists, musicians, authors, scientists, and men and women of accomplishment. His extraordinary and unique portfolio presents the viewer with an intimate and compassionate view of humanity.

Karsh was born in what is now Turkey and was sent to live with his uncle, a photographer, in Canada during the Armenian Genocide at the age of 16. His uncle saw his great potential from Karsh helping out in his studio and sent him to apprentice with portrait photographer John Garo in Boston. Karsh’s place in photographical history was sealed in 1941 when he photographed Winston Churchill after he had given a speech in Ottawa, Canada.

He published 15 books of his photographs which also included brief descriptions of the sessions. Among others, he had photographed “Nelson Mandela, Audrey Hepburn, Mother Theresa, and Humphrey Bogart.

Karsh was a master of studio lights and one of his distinctive characteristics was lighting the subject’s hands separately. He photographed some of the most celebrated people of his generation. He had a gift for capturing the essence of his subject in the frame of a portrait. He chose to photograph people “great in heart, in mind, and in spirit, whether they be famous or humble”, as he so perfectly put it. 




Friday, December 28, 2012

Major Fashion Stores now in S.A.


2012 saw some major fashion arrivals in South Africa, and more specifically in Durban, with the entrance of Zara, Topshop, Mango, and Cotton On.

Just three months after opening its first South African store in Sandton, Spain’s Inditex Group – which is Europe’s largest fashion retailer – announced that a second Zara store would be opened in Gateway Theatre of Shopping. Zara offers customized ranges for men, women, and kids and is popular for its textured fabrics and materials.

After five years of stagnation, Edcon – one of S.A.’s leading fashion retail companies – along with The House of Busby brought one of the most phenomenal UK fashion brands, Topshop, to South Africa. Stand-alone stores have been opened in Sandton City and Gateway Theatre of Shopping so far with stores still to be opened within Edgars stores around the country. Topshop is widely popular not only for the weight of its name but also for appealing to the fashion-conscious but budget-orientated shopper. Its image was also sent into overdrive after its Kate Moss for Topshop campaign in 2007 and now everyone wants a Topshop piece of clothing.

Mango, a leading international Spanish fashion label, also opened its sixth store in South Africa a few weeks ago in Gateway Theatre of Shopping. Mango is known not only for their excellent ad campaigns that have featured stars like Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson but also for the variety found in their ranges.

Australian clothing retailer, Cotton On, was also launched in Pavilion Mall this year and has fashionistas salivating over their collections that are easy and uncomplicated.

South Africa is finally getting noticed when it comes to fashion and big brands now realize that we are on top of our game when it comes to fashion and style.


Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Right Place at the Right Time


“Do the right thing at the right time. They may just be the little things, but they usually make the difference between winning and losing.”
-       Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Ever wondered how you came to be in a specific place at that specific time just to have something that you will never forget happen. No matter what you believe – or don’t believe – there are occurrences in our lives every day that cannot be explained no matter how hard we try.

Fate or coincidence, being at the right place at the right time is the way our lives run the way they do. Its how we meet the loves of our lives, how we get that golden opportunity to makes our dreams come true, how we see the things that we could only have ever imagined.

So when you find something wonderful happening in your life, just be grateful that you have found yourself in the right place at the right time.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The iPhone 5


“The biggest thing to happen since the iPhone.”

No other devices have quite the name and status as Apple’s “i” range. The iPhone has revolutionized the technology of smartphones and the way the world sees them. The iPhone is the smartphone; there is no doubt about it. Those who have it, love it and those who do not, want it.

The iPhone 5 has an all new design. It doesn’t seem possible but Apple has managed to cram more into the phone than before. There is a larger display, a faster chip, ultra fast wireless technology, and an 8 megapixel iSight camera yet the phone is still as light and thin as ever. The 4-inch retina display lets you see more of everything and everything that you do see is vivid and almost better than real-life. Although the display is bigger, the size of the iPhone 5 is the same as the iPhone 4S. It’s pretty darn amazing when you think about the cutting-edge technology packed into such a little device.

The iPhone 5 is the sixth generation of the iPhone and was launched on September 12, 2012. After Apple started taking pre-orders on September 14, 2012, over 2 million were ordered within 24 hours without the phone even being seen by the majority of people ordering them. This is proof that Apple’s brand supersedes itself and has met the expectations of their supporters and users.


Having managed to secure an iPhone 5 here in SA, a day after launch - i can confirm that there a minor changes that benefit us here in South Africa - however any die-hard apple fan will still want the newest version of their favourite device. 

The iStore at Gateway apparently has stock if i am to believe the emails they keep sending me. 

What is your take on the iPhone 5? 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Life of Pi


“Above all, it is important not to lose hope.”

Lifeof Pi, released this year, based on the novel by Yann Martel, tells the story of a 16-year-old boy named Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel who suffers a shipwreck in which his family dies and is stranded in the Pacific Ocean on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. Upon release, the film was widely critically acclaimed and was also nominated for three Golden Globes including Best Picture and Best Director.

The film is directed by Ang Lee – a celebrated and loved filmmaker and winner of the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and the winner of Best Director for Brokeback Mountain – and has a stellar cast including Bollywood’s Irrfan Khan known from Slumdog Billionaire and Tabu, as well as Oscar-nominated Gerard Depardieu.

The film has also been released in 3D and has even been called a “miraculous achievement of storytelling and a landmark of visual mystery” by critics and perhaps is one of the best films this year. From one of the best filmmakers of our time, the film is a celebration of life and is bound to make those who love the novel proud.


Friday, December 21, 2012

A Photographer on your honeymoon?


Honeymoon photography is becoming the latest trend. It might sound rather strange – taking a photographer on honeymoon with you but it’s actually one of the best decisions you could make in your relationship.

Even unmarried couples are investing in photo shoots, to capture those beautiful moments in their relationship. It actually is an investment – looking back at those photos allow you to relive those moments, keeping the memories and passion alive.

Perhaps the only downside is the cost involved, as the photographer will have to travel and be accommodated by you. But it is worth it for the lifetime of moments captured from a time that cannot be replicated. A couple is perhaps the most happy on their honeymoon, and the candid shots captured then could even rival the wedding shots.

Having a photographer with you, tailing along inconspicuously, takes the stress off you to capture photos yourselves. Everything will be documented without you even knowing it and those are the truest, most beautiful shots.

From 2013, taking bookings for 2014- Lee Folkard Photography will be offering this service. 
Let us see if South Africa is ready for this line of photography. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

That Holiday Sadness


You know that feeling you get on a Sunday afternoon? Its not just that the weekend is over and you have to go back to school or work the next day, but a feeling like the dream is over and you have to get out of bed.

There’s a bit of that feeling every holiday too. It’s the best and worst time of the year. There’s a reason to be happy when you have people to share the time with and there’s an excuse to listen to lame music and not roll your eyes at soppy things anymore.

But for those who are alone, it is the worst. Even for those who are lucky enough to have love around them, it will end and you have to go back to work and school once the holiday is over and start a new year all over again.

It is true; all good things must come to an end. But that is no reason to not enjoy it while it lasts.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Justin Bieber


We are living in a time when legends do not exist anymore, celebrity rules, and music sounds all the same. But then Justin Bieber came along and made people believers again, or rather Beliebers. There could be no better way to describe Justin’s fans; because that is the effect he has had on them around the world. The soul in his voice – so rare in general and not just for his age – inspires and rouses.

After months of rumours, he was confirmed for a South African tour. But the real surprise came when tickets were sold out within the first day of going on sale. It has never happened before in South Africa – two 90 000-seater arenas sold out in one day five months before the actual concert. That’s proof that we do Belieb.

The entertainer will be traveling the world in 2013 for the Believe tour. Warming up with a partial leg in North America, it seems fans around the globe can hardly wait to see the superstar. Justin Bieber won’t just be going to South America either; the entertainer has concerts sold out in Europe too.

Oprah Winfrey said that Justin Bieber is perhaps the biggest star since Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson. But he is unique because of his beginning that stemmed from what is so intrinsically the 21st century – technology. Since his discovery on YouTube and him signing a record deal with Usher, he has become bigger than even those who mentored him.


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Lana Del Rey


“The road is long, we carry on.
Try to have fun in the meantime.”
-       Lana Del Rey, Born to Die

Lana Del Rey, or Elizabeth Woolridge Grant, describes herself as a “self-styled gangsta Nancy Sinatra”. It’s a strange description but fans have come to love the 26-year-old’s husky bedroom voice with that hint of ominous melody. Better than her distinct voice though, are her poignant and haunting lyrics that speak true artistry.

Lana began singing at clubs at 18 and was signed to a record label at 20. But her real break came when she released her single Video Games on YouTube which went viral and got her album Born to Die released selling 2.8 million copies worldwide. Her music has been noted for its cinematic sound and its references to various aspects of pop culture, particularly that of the 1950s and '60s Americana.



She has endorsed clothing line H&M, serving as the model for their Fall and Winter 2012 collection. And this year, Lana became the face of the Jaguar F-Type luxury automobile. Her creativity even comes across in her cover art, as seen in Born to Die, the Paradise Edition.





Perhaps, Lana is what people have been waiting for when it comes to music – someone to write about those heartbreaking truths of life with poise and glamour.



Monday, December 17, 2012

Rita Ora for Glamour UK


Rita Ora has smoothed out all her rough edges in the upcoming Glamour UK January 2013 cover. She is all girly and feminine and looking good enough to eat.

Rita graces the cover in an adorable multi-printed frock from the Christian Dior Resort Collection 2013. She talks with Glamour about being compared to Rihanna, her rumored love affair with one of the least important Kardashians, and how she’s dealing with her newly found fame.

In 2012, Ora released her debut album, Ora, which debuted at number one in the United Kingdom. It also spawned three number-one singles – Hot Right Now, How We Do and R.I.P. – which made Ora the first artist in 2012 to have three consecutive number-one singles on the UK Singles Chart.

Rita’s sound might not be as unique as her look, with cat-eyes done to perfection in smoky shades and with her bleached blonde hair, but she’s got a huge following already that love her despite, or maybe even because of, it.




Sunday, December 16, 2012

Mila Kunis for Esquire Magazine


“If I wanted to charm the pants off you, I could.”
-       Mila Kunis

Mila Kunis has become a firm favourite not just for her obvious feisty sex-appeal but also for her perfect elixir of girl-next-door, glamour, and edge. And thus, she was voted The Sexiest Woman Alive 2012. Her shoot for Esquire Magazine November 2012 shows flawlessly why she has that title to her name.

We’ve known her as Jackie on That '70s Show, as Mark Wahlberg's girlfriend in Ted, as the voice of Meg Griffin on Family Guy, and as the girl who all the guys wanted to be friends with after Friends with Benefits. She has carefully chosen roles that have allowed her to show her talent but also to get people talking – think Black Swan.

Esquire Magazine, however, says she is not really the girl we have come to know. In reality; her eyes are not the mythically large smoky ones as in all her photos and The Sexiest Woman Alive is perhaps not even the most glamorous but nonetheless, she has a way with people and a cheekiness that is infectious.

With five new releases - Oz: The Great and Powerful, Blood Ties, Hell & Back, The Angriest Man in Brooklyn , The Third Person – out in 2013, Mila is not going anywhere.






Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sometimes...


Sometimes, there are moments in life that take your breath away.

It’s the simple moments; the smile on the face of the person you love, the breeze on a blistering hot day, the smell of your mother’s cooking.

Live for the simple moments; the little joys found in everyday life. Because if we know the value of these small events, we know the treasure of the bigger ones.

Just stop for a moment, close you eyes, and breathe in the awe of life.

Friday, December 14, 2012

If Only...


“Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, “It might have been.””
-       Kurt Vonnegut

One of the worst things to have to live with is regret. There is no baggage quite as heavy as the weight that comes with opportunities not grabbed and chances not taken; as moments that have passed you by.

It’s a simple thought, a simple to solution, which can save you a lifetime of “What if’s?” and a lifetime of living in a time that could have been. You see, sometimes we have to earn our futures. Anything worth having has to be earned, and if there is a good and happy future to be had, it must be earned. And to earn it, you have to make choices that you can look back on years later and not wish that you would have done things differently. If you do not earn your future, you risk the fate of living in your present for all your life – or worse yet, living in your past.

Do something because you want to, not because you have to. Grab the moment, seize the day, kiss on the first date. Don’t let the noose of regrets wrap itself around your neck, robbing you of the sweet air found in living the life of your dreams.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Rihanna for Armani


Rihanna’s look changes as quickly as her hairstyles do but she never loses her sex-appeal or allure no matter what trend she sports or sets. And her lingerie advertising campaign for Armani was voted the sexiest set of 2011 so it’s no surprise to see her back showing off the latest line.

Rihanna is taking her second stab at being the brand’s face and body and is looking as seductive as ever. The singer showed off a cropped blonde look in her first campaign but she has gone dark for the new adverts. Her figure is something to be envied and admired as she looks as good in the Armani jeans as she does in the underwear.

Her latest album, Unapologetic, is in stores now and the 23-year-old is sure to not disappoint especially with the success of her latest single Diamonds.






Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Face – The New Reality Show


Following in the footsteps of fellow supermodel Tyra Banks, Naomi Campbell has announced that she will discover the next beautiful face of the modeling world thanks to a new reality show.

Scheduled to hit television screens in 2013, The Face will air on America's Oxygen network, with the 41-year-old British model coaching a group of unknown models as they embark on photo shoots, runway shows and commercials before the eventual winner becomes “the face” of a major brand.

Campbell’s vision for the show is for it to give audience’s an insider look into the industry that has treated her so well for years. Campbell will be one of three model judges, with the remaining two yet to be revealed. Perhaps fellow 1990s supers Cindy Crawford, Eva Herzigova or Helena Christensen could join – Christensen has already helped discover fashion faces of the future via the Crystallized Swarovski Unsigned Model Search.

Judging from the response other modeling industry shows have got, the show should be a hit.




Monday, December 10, 2012

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey


“From the smallest beginnings, come the greatest legends.”




After many months of anticipation, the first part of a three-part series, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, is set for release on 14 December 2012. Based on the book of the same name, The Hobbit follows Bilbo Baggins, a curious young Hobbit, as he journeys eastwards with the wizard Gandalf and a troupe of thirteen dwarves. Their goal is to reach the Lonely Mountain and reclaim a stolen treasure guarded by Smaug, a cruel and terrible dragon. Those who have been loyal followers of The Lord of the Rings will understand the story perfectly and will feel quite at home through the journey.

The film, directed by Peter Jackson, known for his outstanding work in the sci-fi genre, stars Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Cate Blanchett, and Elijah Wood among others. The Hobbit films were produced back to back, like The Lord of the Rings films. Principal photography for The Hobbit films began on 21 March 2011 and ended on 6 July 2012, after 266 days of filming.

The film’s cinematography is already making waves after its world premier. Some fans complained of dizziness at the frames moving too quickly and likened watching the movie to being on a rollercoaster. But others loved it; saying it invites you into the Middle-Earth. The human eye sees 60 frames per second and the average movie is shot at 24 frames per second, but The Hobbit is shot at 48 frames per second drawing you in with every shot.

But from ace movie-maverick Peter Jackson and with a classic story, it should prove to be worth the wait and a bit of motion-sickness.



Sunday, December 9, 2012

Bérénice Marlohe for Omega


It wouldn’t be the first time that clinching the role as a Bond girl has set an actress’s career into top gear. And it’s no different with Skyfall’s Bérénice Marlohe.

She's been busy promoting the latest 007 movie over the last few weeks, even making an appearance in Cape Town, and posing to perfection on red carpets across the world. And now she is using her looks - and time keeping skills - to promote a new product. The French actress has become the brand ambassador for Omega watches.

All the attention the 33-year-old of Chinese, Cambodian, and French descent was getting, prompted Omega to choose her as their latest ambassador. And from the chic, elegant, and crisp images; she is sure to have many more campaign offers streaming in.




Saturday, December 8, 2012

How Photoshop changed Photography


In the past, you had to be very patient as a digital photographer. If you wanted to catch something spectacular you had to carry your camera with you everywhere until you saw something special. To capture a sunrise you had to get up at the crack of dawn. Models had to spend hours in the makeup room and studios had to be well lit. But all this changed instantly with the invention of Photoshop.



Photoshop has changed the history of digital photography. Nowadays, when you look at an amazing photo or image your first impression is still “Wow!” but your immediate second thought is that “It has to be photoshopped!” When you think of everything Photoshop did to change the game of photography, it’s pretty insane.

The most significant effect Photoshop has had on us is how we see our world. Digital artists and manipulators know how to take an ordinary photograph and turn it into something completely different and extraordinary. They give you a new perspective on the world.



Photoshop has also revolutionized the world of advertising. Advertising has changed forever due to image manipulation. You can’t look through a magazine without seeing dozens of photoshopped ads and marveling at them and the thought and feeling that they provoke. It has even changed our image of what the perfect person looks like. With models and celebrities – most notably – we have seen Photoshop go into every magazine cover and spread in modern existence. Undeniably, the effects are beautiful and breathtaking, but they are not real.



Perhaps, though, the most amazing feat of Photoshop is that it makes our fantasies reality. It puts into a photograph a fantasy, one that we might not actually be able to capture in real life, and gives us our wildest dreams as if it truly exists.


Friday, December 7, 2012

The Novel


“Writing fiction is the art of weaving several lies to arrive at a greater truth.”
-       Khaled Hosseini

A good novel is like life delivered by the author to the world in the form of words between two covers. And there is no such magic as the magic contained in the written word.

Novels try to make sense of the world we live in while creating new worlds in our minds. Through the thoughts of even a fictional character birthed from a writer’s mind, you can make sense of what is going on in your own. The written word possesses a strange kind of power over us humans; it can bring us to tears, make us laugh, leave us craving something we never thought we wanted, or fill us with a hope we never knew existed.

Perhaps it is because it calls for us to be in charge of our own imaginations and to paint our own picture from a pallet of words, which makes the novel so special and unique. Or perhaps it is because it celebrates the art of story-telling that contrasts so much with our daily lives. In a novel, the story has been completed for us by the writer and we are not responsible for the actions of the characters, unlike in life where we have to take charge of what is written next in our own stories and be responsible for the choices that we make.

If you ever doubt the worth of the written word, of the novel, think about a time when you have picked up a book and have not been able to put it down because it had cast its spell on you and wrapped its words around you.

What is your favourite novel? 


Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Cover-Up


Humans, especially women, are always in the constant pursuit of beauty. And with the invention of makeup and cosmetics, many women are arriving at the destination of their pursuit.

There have been countless studies in which participants rate the attractiveness of faces, which has led researchers to conclude that beauty could be distilled to a mathematical formula -- we appreciate symmetrical faces, in which the nose is so many millimeters from the eyes, in which the lips are in the right spot between the nose and the chin. Makeup, then, researchers believe, is a way to highlight and amplify female features and youth.

Using makeup may be subliminal ways that women demonstrate their gender and their youth to potential partners. All of these cosmetics may be an evolutionary urge to show off our most feminine traits so that we can attain a universal beauty ideal.

Of course, while we might be born with innate beauty standards, beauty ideals are shaped by external forces such as advertising and pop culture. Would we care so much about the shape of our eyebrows if we didn't see certain starlets or models rake in millions for their appearances?





Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Photographer: Lara Jade




Lara Jade started her own photography career at the age of 17, originally taking on small clients in England, before becoming a fully fledged Fashion, Portrait & Advertising Photographer in New York City. Jealous yet?

With quality work, came high demand, and Lara has taken it in her stride and her work has been featured in well known fashion and photography magazines worldwide.

Not only is she hugely successful in the social media scene (100,000 fans on Facebook), but Lara is also currently working worldwide and is represented by leading agencies in London, Milan & the USA.

If that’s not enough to inspire you yet, then you should know that she’s sponsored by Canon, Bowens Lighting, Broncolor Lighting, Lensbaby, Wacom, Datacolor, and is currently designing her own range of camera bags for US camera bag brand Naneu.

Some of Lara's work:








Tuesday, December 4, 2012

James Bond - The Spy who cannot Die


“This man is supposed to be a spy and yet everybody knows he is a spy. Every bartender in the world offers him martinis that are shaken not stirred.”
-       Roger Moore


Not many enterprises can boast of never going out of fashion or of never failing to get people talking fifty years down the line. It’s been fifty years since the first Bond film, Dr No, and this past week saw the Bond brand still going strong with the release of the latest film, Skyfall.



The James Bond brand has become such an ever-present part of society that we take for granted the lengths that are gone to to keep the fire of the enterprise burning bright. One of the tricks to this feat is that the Bond character is continually being reborn – from only falling in love twice, giving comic relief through Roger Moore, to the laddish Bond portrayed by Pierce Brosnan. The Bond of each time has to some extent fitted into the generation of his incarnation.



It all began with the books from the 50’s penned by Ian Fleming. The 50’s saw radical change, before the flashy and revolutionary 60’s, and people were looking to inhabit a new radical world apart from the horrors and tragedies of the war. Ian Fleming was a radical in his own way and was witness to a different kind of heroes in action – the intellectual badass and the tough, ruthless men who were well-educated and part of high society. They were the commandoes and special agents that inspired Fleming to write the character of Bond, an Eton dropout and government assassin who was bored by the demure traditions of courtship. Even Bond’s name was a deliberate distancing from the convention of upper-class British “gentlemen” crime fighters. Bond might not be a gentleman in the customary sense of the word, but he is a hero in all kinds of ways.

Although the literary embodiment of Bond provided escapism through a spy who traipsed to exotic locations around the world and bedded highly desirable women, he was not suited to the time he was born into through the novels and the words could not quite do justice to his larger-than-life persona and escapades. Bond became the poster boy of the Swinging 60’s – flippant, sexy, amoral, and oh-so-charming. The first Bond, Sean Connery, and arguably the finest, set the bar for the Bond actor very high.



James Bond is a fantasy, but he has become real enough to millions of fans around the world who have remained faithful to the brand for years and will continue to do so just because there is no hero quite like “Bond, James Bond”.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Inspiration

‎"The stories you tell yourself to fall asleep, those fantasies, those are a good place to start when looking for a metaphor for a personal issue.

Also, the first moment you’re awake, that’s a great time for ideas to just pop into your head. In this almost-awake state, inspiration and clean connections just seem to happen.

Mid-day, you might try taking a shower. That’s always good for relaxing your mind to a near dream-state. Great ideas happen while washing dishes, too.

Stephen King writes in the shower. Katherine Dunn writes while swimming laps. Like sleeping, these tasks seem to allow… something… to happen. So it helps to keep a notepad beside the bed, and in the bathroom. Also, long, boring car drives – without the radio playing – are good for creating this same kind of “trance” that allows ideas to form." - Chuck Palahniuk

The Bond Girl


"The nature of Bond's job rules out any long term commitments. For one thing, as soon as another mission comes along, he'll fall in lust with a new girl."



They are sex-pots and saviors. They might be threats to the hero's life or the most ornamental distraction. Whatever may change in the 007 series, you can't have a James Bond film without Bond girls. The Bond girl has become an omnipresent symbol of glamour, sophistication, and beauty. Everyone knows that she is the love-interest of James Bond and that the actress who gets to play the character of one of the most sought-after roles in the Hollywood film business will have her career made.


The first Bond girl, Honey Ryder, played by Ursula Andress in Dr No in 1962 rising from the sea in a white bikini, was a Playboy centerfold in smooth motion. This first film in the series set the Bond-girl standard, as spectacularly embodied by Andress, the coolly carnal Swiss miss, extremely high and the standard has not lowered since. One of the unique traits of the Bond girl is her name. The Bond girls have had some particularly unusual and pun-infused names that have also made way for some exceptionally wry and amusing script one-liners. Honor Blackman as Pussy Galore in Goldfinger, 1964, is a perfect example. This aviatrix-dominatrix is the captain of Auric Goldfinger's all-girl pilot squad, “Pussy Galore's Flying Circus”. Her first name cued millions of teen-boy sniggers, but Blackman, fresh from TV's The Avengers, gave Miss G. a mature sensuality. At 38, she was the oldest Bond girl in the official series. Upon hearing Galore say, “My name is Pussy Galore”, Bond suavely replies, “I must be dreaming.”








The latest Bond offering, Skyfall, introduces another sultry actress playing one of the most important Bond girls to date as this year marks the 50th anniversary of the Bond franchise. At age 33, Bérénice Marlohe, with a husky voice slightly north of Betty Bacall’s, a killer accent, and a substantial build, she is no walk-over. Unlike previous femmes de Bond, Marlohe’s does not have the pun-infused name. She is, simply, Sévérine.



The Bond girl will always be the perfect elixir of sex-appeal, girl-next-door, and femme fatale. And with Skyfall’s local release this Friday 30th November 2012, tongues are set to be wagging in every cinema theatre at not just her form but the unmatched charm and allure.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Lady Gaga – A Revolutionary





Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, has become a household name in the 4 years that she has turned out hit after hit and international number-one singles. But apart from her music, influenced by artists like David Bowie and Madonna, which is both critically and commercially acclaimed, she has become infamous for her fashion sense and public image.



Going from hit-or-miss style, who could ever forget the meat-dress?, to the cover of Vogue has set Gaga as one of the fashion icons of our time and will be ingrained as part of this generation’s radicals. One of the things that make her so interesting and unique is her refusal to remain the same or to be ordinary. Gaga's always working her own special ratio of naked to fully obscured, and weird to mega-weird. We may have a perfectly open view of her undergarments, but her face could be completely hidden from us. Nothing she does, whether in music or fashion, ever quite makes sense but it gets the world talking and taking notice – like a true radical does.

The March 2012 edition is probably the most arresting cover that American Vogue has produced in years. It’s weird and gorgeous and gives you some of that quintessential Gaga give-and-take style – she'll portray a classic model pose, and a somewhat tame frock, but she'll do it without eyebrows and a pink bob haircut and you will love it.



Now Gaga is taking her fashion-sense and turning it into her own clothing line. Lady Gaga is teaming up with her younger sister, Natali Germanotta, 19, a fledgling fashion designer who has just completed her first year studying fashion design at Parsons – The New School for Design in New York. The two have worked together before, with Natali making a cameo appearance as a prison inmate in Gaga's 2010 video for the hit Telephone. Natali is apparently even edgier than Lady Gaga but the collection is said to be relatively normal and wearable. Gaga came up with the idea of remodeling the styles of classic icons from the past; like Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly and Katharine Hepburn. Rumoured to feature in the collection is a rubber version of Marilyn Monroe's white halter-neck dress from Some Like It Hot, and the iconic black Audrey Hepburn shift, redesigned with a plunging neckline.



While there has been no official confirmation of the collaboration, it has been hinted at as an upcoming project on Twitter. If the collection is indeed as wearable as reports suggest, the toned-down approach could suit Lady Gaga given her current incarnation.
Since forming a friendship with Versace matriarch Donatella Versace, the singer's style has become altogether more ladylike of late. The strong bond came after praise for Gaga from Donatella, who said she was 'honoured' that Lady Gaga chose to wear Versace Vintage throughout her The Edge of Glory video.



No matter what the collection has in store for the fashion world, Gaga will always remain unafraid to push the boundaries, draw her own line in the sand, and create an original vocabulary by merging fashion, music, theatre and art into a garment. And fans are definitely looking forward to this at the upcoming South African tour she is set to play at.



ADDED: After watching the concert this past Friday at Soccer City in Johannesburg i can conclude that Gaga did not disappoint. It was everything I expected and more. I'd highly recommend anyone that has the opportunity to see her live - get your tickets! She really has a very inspirational message to share once you get past all her crazy antics!