Friday, October 30, 2009

Love Buns

Today I went along to my audition for the TV show 'New Zealand's Next Top Baker.' Yip.

I was asked to bring along a sample of my best baking so I made love buns. Invented by Nigella Lawson, these treats are the most delicious things ever and it's advised to keep the ratio of bun to gloriously glossy topping as even as possible. They look like those fake display cakes that some bakeries have in their windows, but they don't taste nearly as plasticky.


Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Heming-Way and Charlotte's Web

Dree on the cover of French Magazine

In the process of devouring the latest edition of Purple Fashion we were just a little bit chuffed to discover that a couple of previous Black Magazine models were featured so prominently. Kemp Muhl, our Issue 5 cover girl, now known as Charlotte Kemp, features in a 12 page Terry Richardson shoot, and Olivier Zahm interview, with her lover/partner Sean Lennon. The shoot revisits the deeply-in-love couple posing a la Sean's parents, John & Yoko. The couple have also cropped up in all of the top mags recently in a campaign for Zadig & Voltaire (below).

Later in the book, rising star Dree Hemingway stars in an amazing naked shoot by Inez van Lamsweedrde and Vinoodth Matadin with make-up by Aaron De Mey. Hemingway, who appeared in the last issue of Black, is close to the hottest property in the modelling world at present and has rocketed in to number 27 on the ranking of the worlds top working girls. The great-grandaughter of Ernest Hemingway, Dree has an amazing array of looks and a totally fabulous face (above). One to watch...

Sean & Charlotte

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Shore Boys (and girls)

Black Box in Taka; bang the drum...

Earlier in the year we were driving an international visitor friend of ours around Auckland to show him the sights. We went up Mt Victoria then headed north through Takapuna as he was keen to do some shopping. "Why are we here?" he said, somewhat confused "What is this place? I can't see anywhere to shop!" Enter The Department Store? A multi-dimensional, three story complex, in the heart of Takapuna with Karen Walker, Blackbox, Stephen Marr, Flotsam & Jetsam and Michael Lett Gallery which in one fell swoop is addressing the lack of quality retail and artistic environment in Auckland's third largest city. Karen Walker is on a roll, having just opened her delightful Ponsonby Road store and Blackbox is already one of Auckland's most important fashion retailers. Stephen Marr is delivering a three-pronged offer; the hair salon, Lucy & The Powder Room and the Marr Lab, Flotsam & Jetsam are adding their unique cornucopia of goodies and Michael Lett, one of Auckland's most respected gallerys, a second North Shore option. All in all a brilliant retail concept. Recession? What recession...

Open now: The Department Store, Northcroft Street, Takapuna

Manukau's Fashion Fiesta

Next weekend, November 6 & 7, the 8th annual Villa Maria Cult Couture event will be held at the Telstra Clear Pacific Events Centre in Manukau. Black fashion director Rachael Churchward is, for the third year running, judging the event alongside Adrian Hailwood. The third judge this year is Showroom 22's Murray Bevan, and if you have never been, we can't speak highly enough of Cult Couture as an event and a place where fashion meets art, culture and peformance. The show, put together by Chantelle Whaipu and her crew at Manukau City Council is as spectacular, in a true school Aotearoa way, as any event on the creative calendar. Every year Cult Couture is backed by the region's great winery, Villa Maria Estate, and the region's undoubted raw creativity, cultural interpretation and talent comes to the fore. The fact that the Villa Maria Cult Couture design awards are open to fashion students and graduates, emerging and established designers and artists of any age, from all around New Zealand, just exemplifies the spirit of the event itself. So step outside the square and take a trip down the Southern Motorway next weekend. You won't regret it...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Sneaky Squizz - Black 11 - Five

Yesterday ranked Constance Jablonski third in their top ten models of the Spring 2010 catwalk season. Says the world's number one fashion site: "Ok, this isn't Constance Jablonski's first season, but the French export did land on more runways than any other model, including Balmain's all-star line-up.  With her tawny locks and cheekbones you could slice a baguette with, the question is, what took everybody so long." Good timing then that we have Constance as one of our four cover girls this issue. PhotographerMichael Schwartz, fashion editor Elizabeth Sulcer [who styled this shoot], Valery Gherman [our New York editor and make-up artist], Tom Van Dorpe [fashion editor] and Tuan Anh Tran [hair stylist] have collaborated to shoot Constance, Heidi MountSiri Tollerod and Hannah Holman for Black in a 16 page feature of four of the top working girls in fashion today.  Here's a low res shot of Constance from that spread...looking forward to printing next week...

Dior's Lady Noir Affaire

Marion can see clearly now!

The impeccable Marion Cotillard is the star of Dior's new eyewear campaign for quite possibly the ultimate 'must-have' shades around at the moment, the Diorette. In typical Galliano/Dior style the campaign is being released as a series of films shot by Olivier Bahan, the director of La Vie En Rose, a film about songbird Edith Piaf. The first film viewable online here has a deliberate Hitchcock feel about it which suits the frame and shape of the eyewear perfectly, and encapsulates all that is Noir. If the list of Hollywood celebs that have snapped up the Diorette is anything to go by - Madonna, Sharon Stone, Katie Holmes, Dita Von Teese for starters - then the Diorette and it's classic style looks set to be the eyewear story of the year.

A limited number of these classy sunnies are available now at the new Sunglass Gallery at Smith & Caughey's in Queen Street and exclusive Dior stockists around New Zealand.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Great, Great Songs #12 - Wire - Outdoor Miner

Wire. Looking good...

This short-but-sweet classic from the legendary Brit post-punkers Wire doesn't really sound like anything else the band did but it is in my humble opinion, their best song. The sweet singing, melodies and pop sensibility of the tune leave you hankering for more of Colin Newman's undoubted song writing genius. The lyrics read like an acid trip scrawled on a napkin and perhaps that is what helps to make it a great song. Check this version, far more recent than the photo above, of Newman and co performing the song on ukelele. And here's the lyrics in full:

No blind spots in the leopard's eyes
Can only help to jeopardize
The lives of lambs, the shepherd cries
An afterlife for a silverfish
Eternal dust less ticklish
Than the clean room, a houseguest's wish
He lies on his side, is he trying to hide?
In fact it's the earth, which
he's known since birth
Face worker, a serpentine miner
A roof falls, an underliner
Of leaf structure, the egg timer

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

1 AM Online and Loving it

A couple of months back 1 AM morphed comfortably into an online magazine, and if the latest two issues are anything to go by, going online has been a revelation for the magazine's founders Glenn and Amanda Hunt. The Hunts were integral to some of the finest fashion and photographic moments of the late, occasionally great Pavement Magazine. The photography and fashion in Pavement when it was good, was very good. The sense of immediacy is back. With an apprenticeship in international fashion from the late nineties to the early noughties via Amanda's modelling career, and Pavement's network of international contributors, Glenn and Amanda traversed the fashion trail and had fun doing it. The couple's excellent Wish - u were here xxx magazine garnered a short but sweet reputation as a photographic vehicle. In short, they have plenty of international experience and it's showing. 1 AM talented.

Helen's Here!

We think the Helen Cherry Winter 2010 range is one of her best yet. The look book features the unique, and endearing, Georgia Fowler looking smart and savvy in a decidedly masculine/feminine range. It is a strong design step forward for the much loved New Zealand designer and Rachael, for one, can't wait to get into the pants...oh, and the rest of the range.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pug wash

AfterYes this is a post about my pug; I'm sorry, but I gave him a bath this afternoon and his reaction to the water was too funny to resist documenting. I don't often think he's cute (I don't particularly like him you see), however today was an exception. He hated it, but at least he now smells like Aesop lavender shampoo!


Ali McD's Eye

It's official. Ali McD is a one-woman casting phenomenon. The fact that she is based in Dunedin, a city with less people in it than psychedelic mushrooms, or student riots, is testament to her incredible eye for world-class models. She could find them from anywhere! are now highly aware of this, as are Red 11 in Auckland who have, smartly, formed a partnership with the Dunedin doyen to help take her models to the world. In the past two days she has sent us a couple of newcomers [above] that would walk, work and be praised in New York, London or Paris, tomorrow. Of the moment? Next big thing? For sure. Ali Ali whoop!

Poetic Justice

Ok, we know this is the second Huffer post in a row. And we know that we have been slack at posting on final deadline, but we just had to post this. Anyone who went to the Huffer show at ANZFW would have noticed a bunch of words on the runway. We did, but didn't have the chance to walk around reading them. So here, pasted on to an "11 foot six, black painted, hinged, then laminated timber" structure to "create art" is Dan Buckley's poem to celebrate "Fly", the Huffer collection which was shown. We think it is genius...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Huffer Moving Pictures

One of the things we loved about working with Huffer on their Air New Zealand Fashion Week show was the amount of effort that they put into the detail, capture of the show, and everything that goes into it. Lindsay Horner is a film-maker from the Southern climes who has worked with Huffer in the past, notably on their "House Of Horrors" project and the relationship has proven so successful that Steve and Dan decided to fly him up to document the show and the team putting it together. Here are the links;

Pre- Show; Huff'n'Puff and Show'n'Tell...

The soundtrack is by Coco Solid and both films are peppered with a sense of humour - which is refreshing in a sometimes po-faced fashion world...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Plus 61 - Photoblog

Photo: Nirrimi Harkanson

Fans of Australasian photography - fashion or otherwise - should check out Plus 61, a blog dedicated to quality photography down under. The content in mainly Australian but does include expat New Zealanders like Derek Henderson and Rene Vaile among others. There is some great work here but none more so than 17 year-old Nirrimi Harkanson who comes from Townsville of all places and now lives in Melbourne with her partner in love and crime Matt Caplin. Considering her age, her images are superb...we love it...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

First the film, and now the cameras...

The Impossible Project is proving exactly how possible it all is when it comes to resurrecting the recently deceased Polaroid instant film format. As we mentioned a month or so back we are very excited about trialling some of the new instant film for The Impossible Project for next issue of Black Magazine and now it seems the people at Polaroid are even backing the venture by offering new cameras to carry the format. The new licensee of the Polaroid brand, The Summit Group, announced in Hong Kong yesterday that they will relaunch some of the most popular Polaroid cameras and are now commissioning The Impossible Project to develop and produce a limited edition run of Polaroid-branded instant films by the middle of 2010. Whether Summit Group re-introduce the iconic land camera is not known but photographers, amateur and professional, around the world will be watching this space with interest...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Sneaky Squizz - Black 11 - 4

Paloma Faith is a UK-based singer and actress who has recently been making dents in the British charts and gaining a truckload of fans along the way with her quirky dress sense and pop sensibilites. Robert Erdmann took the opportunity to shoot Paloma for Black over the British summer and enlisted the help of Kimi O'Neill, one of Love Magazine's fashion editors along the way. The shoot and interview will feature in Black 11 - in the meantime here's a taster - Paloma is already using this image as her profile shot on her MySpace page...the amazing hat and dress by Alexander McQueen...


Salvador Dali's Instrument masochiste

...basically means "an altruistic concern for human welfare and development" so when New York art collectors and philanthropists Julian and Josie Robertson announced that they were gifting the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki fifteen works through its foundation there is no doubt that this was a philanthropic act at it's purest. Art is one of the greatest gifts, and art by masters such as Cezanne, Picasso, Matisse, Gaugin, Mondrian, Dali and more, to a city - and country - devoid of such masterpieces is a great gift indeed. The Robertsons announced their 'promised gift' to the gallery and the people of New Zealand in May 2009 and for one week in early November we will be able to see these masterpieces, for free, in the gallery's 5 Works In 7 Days exhibition. Picasso's Mere aux enfants a l'orange [1951], Braque's La tasse [1911], Matisse's Espagnole [1922], Derain's Paysage al Estaque and Salvador Dali's Instrument masochiste [1933-34] will form one third of the final exhibition in the newly refurbished gallery in 2011 but for one week you will be able to wander into the gallery and see them up close.

5 works in 7 Days
Sat 7 - Fri 13 November, 2009
Auckland Art Gallery, cnr Wellesley & Lorne Streets

Flash Frames

If you have a penchant for quality sunglasses, then like an art lover, you may well find yourself cruising into Smith & Caughey's to check out the new Sunglass Gallery which opened yesterday. For the first time, many of the great sunglass brands; Gucci, Dior, Roberto Cavalli, Tom Ford, Hugo Boss, Ben Sherman, Lacoste et al are all on display in the same spacious location. So when the sun finally does come out, Smith & Caugheys could well become your one-stop shop for summer eyewear.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Cryptozoology Groove-ology

A photo of the boys frying up some death worms on the George back balcony

Here comes the sound of the Mongolian Death Worm and other assorted Cryptid treats. Rhys Darby, perhaps the funniest New Zealander of recent times, and David Farrier who has done amongst the funnniest things a New Zealander has done in recent times, are joining forces on the radio. George FM could well have a radio winner on their hands when the pair combine to unleash The Cryptid Factor, every Saturday morning, on the station's nationwide network. Given the international star status that Darby now attracts, it is great to see him hanging around Aotearoa, performing and popping up regularly in local media and now doing a radio show. Farrier has been adding spice and interest to TV 3 news over the past few years and his inquisitiveness, which recently sent him on a documentary search for the Mongolian Death Worm, will add plenty of random moments to be sure. In a nutshell, Rhys Darby perhaps describes the impending show best; “If I ever had the time in my busy Hollywood schedule to listen to radio, this would be the show I would listen to, it’s a show about mystery, adventure, monsters and bollocks."

The Cryptid Factor with Rhys Darby and David Farrier on George FM. Saturdays, 8-10am, George FM.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Black 11 - On Set - Blacklist

Over the past week, whilst on deadline, we have been shooting a number of nice final images for our Blacklist section with photographers Stephen Tilley, David Shields, Marissa Findlay and Daniel Max. Today we are shooting a retrospective Zambesi shot with Marissa, Georgia Fowler, Greg Murrell and Amber D. Rachael Churchward and Atip W have put together a hero retrospective outfit and as you can see above Atip decided to try it out first although it obviously won't look like this... The picture of Rachael blow-drying a silver jacket below is for our Karen Walker Resene paint story...the new range is something else with a bunch of hot metallics that are perfect for customising clothes as well as painting your kitchen...

Sneaky Squizz - Black 11 - 3

Holy deadline! Sorry about the lack of blogs over the past few days - so much to do, so little time. In the meantime here's a sneaky squizz at our accessories shoot from New York. Shot by Arthur Belebeau who is back in Black after 7 or 8 issues. Arthur featured in Issue 1 and shot the cover and a great editorial for Issue 3. The fabulous make-up is by our New York editor Valery Gherman. More posts this week, promise...