Saturday, 19 November 2011

Issue 1

This week sees the launch of a new biannual magazine, The Hunger, brought to us from Rankin;  photographer and publisher of Dazed & Confused, AnOther, and AnOther Man. Described as seeking "cultural progression and distinction," the publication will no doubt fly off shelves, perhaps for no greater reason than Rankin's reputation. 

But what really breaks the mould about this new magazine is the simultaneous launch of (live now). The site is a stimulating visual experience, filled with exclusive in-depth interviews and fashion films of those in the magazine. The website successfully addresses the current issues of fashion communication as it openly embraces the move towards digital technology in combination with the glossy. The move towards video to me feels like what should be the future of fashion publication.

"Cheryl Cole feels the heat in our bright, dancehall-inspired shoot." Usually I'm not the greatest fan of Cheryl in a fashion context, but her made-down appearance for the shoot portrays a new side to the singer. Music is provided by The Alpines and coincidentally is one of my favourite current tracks.

"A weird and wonderful journey for Tuuli as she wanders the streets of LA." This futuristic, monochromatic clip depcits the story of a troubled female space-like character and is visually impressive.
"Portia Freeman models plastic and transparency for The Hunger, exploring the world of the hyperreal." Glamorous and full of lustre, this video is player over another great track by Boys Noize and somehow makes cellophane sexy.

Of course, Rankin is known for his photography. Links to some of the amazing stills are available on the site. 

Sunday, 13 November 2011

A Kiss May Be Grand

Marilyn Monroe, the much loved peroxide blonde who went from nude model to Hollywood superstar.
She enticed Hollywood's most eligible men, sang Happy Birthday to the President and was the subject behind THAT white halter-neck dress billowing from the wind of a subway grate.
But despite her iconic status, Monroe herself remains something of a mystery.
This month, the legendary star is celebrated in a film, My Week with Marilyn starring Michelle Williams, which explores Monroe’s relationship with a young English set runner during the making of The Prince and The Showgirl. Williams is taking on a huge role, but from the footage I've seen so far, the blonde star has taken on the role in her stride. Other notable cast members include a host of British actors, including Dominic West, Emma Watson and Dame Judi Dench.

Since the 1950s, Monroe's glamourous yet tragic life has had an enduring effect on popular culture, inspiring artists such as Andy Warhol and Madonna and references to her style are still seen in fashion today, for example in the Prada and Jil Sander S/S12 collections.
My excitement around the upcoming release of this film has lead me into a Miss Monroe frenzy. A quick browse through some of the photographs of the starlet (as well as her long list of memorable quotes) make it easy to understand why the world fell so in love with her; and why present and future generations will to.

"Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition.""I don't mind living in a man's world, as long as I can be a woman in it."
"A wise girl kisses but doesn't love, listens but doesn't believe, and leaves before she is left."

"If you're gonna be two-faced at least make one of them pretty."

"I don't know who invented high heels, but all women owe him a lot."

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Change Begins With A Whisper

Last night, I finally managed to go and see "The Help." I can't deny feeling skeptical about going to see the film adaptation as I was a HUGE fan of Kathyrn Stockett's book. But it's safe to say I was not disappointed. 
Whilst the acting and story-line are superb, what really blew me away were the beautiful costumes.

Costume designer Sharen Davis did such a fantastic job at creating the perfect, pretty dresses we saw on screen. Sculpted out of a sugary pastel palette combined with bold floral prints that are so perfect for the Southern Belles of the film circa 1960.
My favourite adaptation has to be Celia Rae Foote (played by Jessica Chastain). Labelled the 'white trash' wife, this character is shunned by the other Jackson women. Davis gave her a look that was "very Hollywood...but tacky and country" As Celia so looked up to idols of the time, primarily Marilyn Monroe, this was perfect.

Another fantastic adaptation was that of Skeeter (played by Emma Stone.) She's a 23-year-old with a cotton trust fund and a college degree. But to her mother's despair, she is more concerncerned in pusruing her career than a husband. The futher away she moves away from the Junior League mentality of her friends in Jackson, the more she devotes herself - at considerable risk - to a contraversial book featuring the real stories of the black women who work for the white families in her hometown. She breaks all the rules and crosses dangerous lines.

The book itself delved into memorable fashion moments; for example when Skeeter went shopping for her new wardrobe and stocked up on new Pucci dresses! So the task of adapting these exciting written moments onto the screen was no mean feat for Davis (who is also behind the wardrobes of retro hits Dreamgirls and Ray) 
But she gave each character their own colour palette to make sure they looked authentically Jackson, Mississippi. And she succeeded.
To top things off, "The Help" soundtrack is an excellent trip down memory lane. Featuring a great line up with tunes by Johnny Cash and June Carter, Ray Charles, Franki Valli and Chubby Checker, as a standalone mixtape, it's pretty rad. As a soundtrack, it seems no expense was spared and it really added some authenticity to the 1960s set.  I've posted two of my favourites below to finish off.


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