• 4.27.15   Denim Is Very Serious Business for Douglas Friedman

    In San Francisco there is a laboratory that measures the effects on natural materials by ozone, lasers, and acids. The people who work at this lab are constantly exploring, creating, and innovating what will ultimately change the way we interact with the world. Specifically our denim. The lab is Levis’ Eureka Innovation Lab, and it is filled with creative people who love denim and are searching to discover the next level of invention. Photographer Douglas Friedman teamed up with GQ Germany to explore this creative hub. “The whole thing was so exciting to see how they make jeans, how they make Levis, how bespoke and hands-on and organic the process is,” says Douglas. “It’s a lot less clinical than I thought it was going to be. It’s an experimental laboratory where they play and they create.” The lab is full of the kinds of machines you’d expect at any laboratory, but at Levis’ Innovation Lab, it’s not the sparkling clean familiar to a medical facility with the sterile science behind the slow trudge of medicine. Instead, it’s a much more dynamic environment. “Everyone who works there is young and creative and there’s energy that was inspiring and exciting to be around,” says Douglas. “Giant washing machines full of stones for the stone washing, acid for the acid washing, vats of indigo dye to makes shirts and jeans and experiment with different colors and textures and this incredible machine that uses a laser beam to age brand new denim. It was all so fascinating.” There are even safes where they lock up their experiments. It’s very serious business. When it comes to Douglas’ own denim he’s just as serious, taking the time and effort to age them on his own. He gets his pairs crisp and wears them until they’re aged exactly the way he likes them. But, even though his jeans aren’t coming out of Levis’ Innovation Lab, he has one rule: “I only have Levis jeans.” He is brand loyal. When asked if he notices a work adjustment to cater to photographic tastes in other countries, Douglas jokes with a laugh, “I have a really healthy relationship with the countries of Germany and France.” His style remains signature to Douglas Friedman, no matter where he finds himself.
  • 4.28.15   Adam Hayes and Kai & Sunny Find Inspiration with IBM

    It’s 2015, and in this age we know that the internet isn’t just a series of tubes. But sometimes it feels like maybe we’re just plugged into a digital world through our screens. It can feel difficult to connect with the real world around us, losing an element of tangibility, and finding a lack of inspiration. For their latest community push IBM is trying to reconnect users to that seemingly missing inspiration and to show us how they think. Rather than becoming the neo-stereotypical digital zombies, IBM is showing us that there is still passion to draw from this world. Especially in the digital world. Through a series of posters, IBM worked with a handful of artists to illustrate where inspiration comes from in our contemporary world. Each artist was paired with a quote for the posters, along with the central word “Think,” using those ideas as fertile ground out of which to grow their ideas. Two B&A artists, Kai & Sunny and Adam Hayes, joined in on the project. For Kai & Sunny, the quote came from Douglas Rushkoff, a Media Theorist and Author: “I believe we are migrating toward a networked environment in which thinking is no longer an individual activity, nor bound by time and space.”  Kai & Sunny are a collaborative, creative pair, so it was fitting they would work off a quote about moving together, as a group. Few artists work as closely together as they do, and they have a unique take on how multiple people can work off one another for fantastic gain. “From this [Douglas Rushkoff quote] we created our flock of birds migrating,” explains Kai on behalf of Kai & Sunny. “The birds represent freedom and progression. The idea of working together to achieve more. The campaign word 'THINK' has been created by the coming together of the birds but only for that moment.” Kai & Sunny are working with expectation and viewability. They’ve created a pattern that both makes and hides the message, “Think,” illustrating that what is most powerful can be creative by the collective.  For Adam Hayes, the quote wasn’t so much of a quote as it was a question, and came from Mike Rhodin, the Senior Vice President of IBM Watson Group: “How do we redesign how we think?” Adam’s style has always used a combination of technology and puzzles, employing typography to explore space and utility. "My poster mixes mechanical and organic inventions representing a future where man and machine think side-by-side; typeset on a layout of playful letterforms,” says Adam. Bringing the actual quote’s question to life in his poster illustrates the direct question his poster is asking. Combining form and function, we see how the technology works independently of the human mind while being entirely directed by it. In this future we work along side our machines, collaborating and growing together.  To see Adam Hayes’ and Kai & Sunny’s work in context, check out IBM’s “IBMblr,” where all of the posters are featured.
  • 4.28.15   The Power of Honest Representation with Tom Corbett

    Style is about showing who you are. Fashion, makeup, accessories: none of these should get in the way of identity. They are elements of expression, not a lacquer to cover up personal essence and Refinery29 understands this better than anyone. Their latest collaboration with photographer Tom Corbett shows off how the trend of nude lips can highlight what makes a face fundamentally unique, and reveal the wearer rather than try to change them. Tom Corbett’s inherent grace was the perfect match for this story. His signature energy is brought in subtly, coming through in the movement of hair or a powerful look. The intimacy of the makeup sets the tone for moments between the models and photographer, translated directly to the images for the viewer. What we see are soft interactions that Tom has crystalized for us in photographs, telegraphing potential. The concept of this story came from makeup artist Pamela Cochrane whose philosophy is about showing off the features of the wearer. When Cochrane takes care of the beautiful makeup, Tom is about eking out the connection that honest representation provides, showing us the potential strength of ourselves. Hair: Dominick PucciacrelloStylist: Sam BatesSenior Photo Editor: Laura Miller ZisaBeauty Writer: Maria Del Russo
  • 4.21.15   The 90's Are Alive for Guillaume Lechat at GQ France

    This month, after twelve years of silence, Britpop band Blur is releasing their first studio album since 2003. "The Magic Whip" represents a true reformation of a musical group whose legacy is behind them, but has the opportunity to grab a new future. For many of us, Britpop calls images of the late 1980s and early 1990s, when Blur broke out into the scene. In our age of redemption and redefinition, Blur has picked the perfect time to return to us, just as the style from their heyday reappears. GQ France has recognized this confluence of style and trend, releasing an editorial shot by photographer Guillaume Lechat. “Parklife,” as the editorial is called, borrows its name from Blur’s 1994 studio album of the same name, drawing inspiration from fashion in the mid 90’s that has reemerged. Using four young men, each around the age of Blur’s band members 19 years go, it is a contemporary reimagining of a day in the life of this band. Lounging on velveteen mod furniture, drinking tea on weathered leather couches en plein air, backgrounded by smoky, printed, patterned wallpaper. Guillaume, who got to skip around London for this shoot says it was a “Super cool shoot in London paying homage to the Britpop era in the 90's.” Traversing rooftops, passing through alleys, and habitating flats, the shoot took them into a London we remember through photographs and musical reminiscence. London isn’t historically known for its bright sun, but Guillaume takes his natural light very seriously, chasing the sun to achieve the light he needs. That look is an integral element of his process and aesthetic. “To me, a lot of natural light is really important, a lot of movement, and a lot of honesty,” says Guillaume. That light gives an effortless quality to his images, lending a realism that is almost candid in nature. In this editorial for GQ France we’re not seeing Blur as they were in 1994, but we might as well be looking into that past – a past that is increasingly becoming our present. 
  • 4.23.15   Marc Hom Is All About Trust

    In one month, Marc Hom has two covers releasing for Vanity Fair Italia. For both he photographed some of Italy’s most beloved movie stars, starting with Raoul Bova, and then the ever-elegant Margherita Buy. Marc’s portfolio is already a deep archive of celebrity portraits, but Italy’s film community is a little different. Marc is building his relationships there, and those relationships are built on trust. “It’s all about a trust to get someone to get comfortable,” says Marc. “There’s so much that goes into these intimate moments when you photograph somebody.” Both Raoul and Margherita's distinct personalities suffused each shoot with their personalities, and it was up to Marc to capture those for each cover. Photographing film stars presents its own set of challenges. Marc is obviously shooting static images that provide a decidedly different point of view from film. But each of these movie stars is most adapted to a more fluid style. “They’re used to moving and being free to move around, walking from one place to another. So I try to make the same scene as if it were a movie,” says Marc. “Make them not think that they’re doing a still photo but more a moving element.” He creates actions around the set, and keeps the whole production agile so they can follow the whims and energy of the actors on set. Actors live in front of cameras; that's what an actor's job is. They take on the lives of their characters and then forget the crew is there, offering a performance that is intimate and breathing. Marc's setups allow for them to continue that process they know, playing the part of themselves in a natural way. Shooting Raoul was particularly exciting for Marc. “He was just really good,” says Marc. “He really took directions well. I had an idea with the blinds and the light which created a small element to the image that gave it just a little spice. I really liked that and he did too.” The cover with Raoul is the perfect example of what happens when a photographer and subject work together seamlessly. Each brings the elements only they could: Marc's compositional vision pairs with Raoul's generous moment and they capture an ephemeral moment, crystalizing it on the cover of Vanity Fair.
  • 4.22.15   Nicole Heffron's Fanatic Cakes

    Every month prop stylist and set designer Nicole Heffron celebrates some of our favorite directors in her own unique way. Taking inspiration from classic cult filmography, she and photographer Henry Hargraves set up tabletop scenes that imagine how fanatics celebrate their top directors’ birthdays. Replete with birthday cakes and party accouterments, the images evoke the lines that are blurred between narrative fantasy and the passion of fanaticism. It’s April, which means that Nicole and Henry have collaborated on four compositions so far this year. January saw a party for David Lynch, while February was for John Hughes. Quentin Tarantino’s birthday was in March, and April all filthy, filthy John Waters. They’ve given themselves the limit of posting one per month, so they had to get choosey with who they were highlighting. “We did target the ultimate cultish directors that have pretty passionate followings,” Nicole explains. “We are having a lot of fun with it.” Take a look at what Nicole has released so far, see if you can guess which image is for which director, and remember: there are still eight more on the way.
  • 4.24.15   ilovedust Shakes It

    We’ve all learned to love twerking the last year or so. If you’ve been living under a rock, twerking is a form of dance that exists mostly to show off the natural, god given assets by the dancer whose ecstatic motions and gyrations illuminate the bounce and elasticity of the human body. Through targeted movement, plump muscles and fatty tissues are whirled and twirled in conjunction with poppin baselines in a celebration of the human form. The only challenge that twerking has raised is that not every song is conducive to the twerk. TWRK, a Trap Music / EDM musical collective, is looking to change that. For TWRK’s debut EP, “WE ARE TWRK,” creative agency ilovedust teamed up with record label Mad Decent to create artwork that matched the energy of TWRK’s music while keeping the celebration alive.  Drawing from SciFi and 1980’s aesthetic traditions, old school references to the fantasy of Egyptian culture are juxtaposed against retro 80’s color and construction, while remaining contemporary in its inspiration. In many ways, ilovedust’s style transcends classification, shirking a confinable definition for deference to the project. But what ilovedust always brings to their work is a sense of movement and energy, perfectly suited for musical projects. In many ways, the representations that ilovedust has provided for TWRK’s EP are moments of stillness, but through color, gradation, and the play of light on these particular subjects, there is an inherent energy that leaps off the page. They imply the pounding baseline and vigor that TWRK delivers directly to their listeners. At a time when music is increasingly released entirely through the digital plane, album artwork is at risk of demotion, but not in this case. It is compositions like what ilovedust created for TWRK that prove their relevance. It is a visual distillation of TWRK’s own work, communicating through imagery what TWRK communicates through sound. If you want your own piece of ilovedust artwork to stare at you from your digital music device, and beg you to bounce along, the four track EP will release on May 5, but is available for pre-order now.
B&A Instafeed. Images From Our Artists & Community
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  • Releasing TODAY: Gold & Silver SLUGILICOUS!! We have a very limited amount of Slugilicous with SIGNED boxes available for a special price on the Baseman webstore:
http://www.garybaseman.com
They may seem slow, but they will move fast.
#slugilicious #gold #silver #limitededition #signed #sluggy #slug #urbanvinyl #designertoy #vinyl #pills #saltshaker #tripping #garybaseman #baseman
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  • Heading to #Belgium today to speak this Friday May 1st 3pm alongside Studio Jeremyville CD #MeganMair , at the awesome #beyonderground Design Festival in #Hasselt Belgium. I
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