Monthly Archives: March 2015
Designs by Jessica Halabi
- Photography by Amanda Diaz - Makeup by Renee Rampersad for Makeup By Renee - Hair by Danielle Barbey for Ricci Hair Co. - Model Trista M. at PHABRIK model + artist management
- Photography by Boglár Peruzzi - Styling by Tímea Diána Jakab - Makeup by Boglárka Török - Hair by Gabriella Halasi Szabó - Model Vilmos at Art Models - Clothing by Mei Kawa, Pepe Jeans, Levi's, Gas
- Photography by Harry Fellows - Styling by Amit Gajwan - Hair by Damion Monzillo - Makeup by Chico Mitsui - Models Kira and Natalia Rassadnikova
My Hong Kong Experience by Mark St. James
Where can you find the world’s most delectable dim sum (Michelin-starred Tim Ho Wan, naturally), the most grandiose shopping, the most fervent clientele and the most alluring skyline that, come eight o’clock every evening, lights up in a scene that gives Vegas a run for its money? Why, it’s Hong Kong, of course! Whether I was taking the Star Ferry across the stately Victorian Harbour or hiking through a vivid, green lush hillside on winding paved paths high up on The Peak (the view was nothing short of breathtaking), I found myself in the moment. I was placed firmly where I knew centuries of historic events have taken place leading up to the modern Hong Kong that I love so much today. From ancient grounds and holy shrines like Tian Tan Buddha and the Wong Tai Sin temple to some of the tallest buildings in the world (including the International Finance Centre and International Commerce Centre), there started a fierce battle within me: to continue on with my explorations of the mountainous cityscape, grab another delicious morsel to enjoy…or GO SHOPPING! You can guess where I went. From the largest mall in Hong Kong on the Kowloon side, Harbour City, to any number of world-class shops in Causeway Bay—including the very best from Europe and around the world—the shopping was…dangerous. I found myself staring at pieces that were only seen by the elite because Hong Kong and its booming economy can support that level of elegance. I could certainly get into trouble here. But what I found most intriguing was the home grown Hong Kong fashion scene. Pristine style choices made by passing pedestrians would steal my gaze simply because of the level of thought that went into a single outfit. They were always immaculate and incredibly polished. I could tell that everyone researched which fashion pieces to invest in and which designers to follow. It was this local interest that led me to look inward and meet some very cool Hong Kong designers. Six Lee and Michelle Lai of MISCHA handbags are designers from Hong Kong that flourish because of the demand for fashion that starts from Hong Kong and mainland China. But these big designers aren’t the only ones making waves. Other local fashion designers get a head start at the Fashion Farm Foundation, which is an organization that takes young designers, builds them up and then showcases them for the world to see on global stages including Paris, Milan, and soon, New York. In short, Hong Kong was constantly amazing, with people bustling in every which direction, a million things to eat, see and do, and me in the middle of it all. Describing my week-long stay in this world-class city as a whirlwind would be an understatement. Next time, I plan to stay few more weeks and bring you front row coverage of Hong Kong fashion week! Hong Kong: Asia’s World City is a cosmopolitan of vibrancy, varieties and trendiness. Visitors will be amazed by the unique fusion of east meets west, the diversity of new and old, exquisite culinary experiences and fantastic shopping. Hong Kong offers Every Moment. A Different World. Discover Hong Kong! This article was written as part of a press trip sponsored by Hong Kong Tourism and Mode Media.
By João Paulo Nunes
Zaha Hadid Architects released the first images of their inaugural project in Brazil, an 11-storey apartment building on Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro. Named Casa Atlântica (after its location on the waterfront Avenida Atlântica), the residential block will feature a skeletal façade design with each storey resembling a horizontal vertebra. The residential tower will comprise of thirty apartments serviced by a 6-star hotel. Features of the building include a spa, cinema and rooftop pool overlooking the beach.
By João Paulo Nunes
Fashion brand Versace unveiled the campaign for its Spring/Summer 2015 menswear collection. Photographed in New York by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott, the ads were styled by David Bradshaw under the direction of Giovanni Bianco and featured models Filip Hrivnak, Alessio Pozzi and Miroslav Chech.
Photography by Carlos Esteves
Bhaktapur: what a better place to start to feel Nepali life than this historical city! With its narrow streets, several central squares and courtyards, one can come across a temple or touch a statue several hundred years old. Known as the City of Devotees, the typical Newari architecture found here is based on a combination of red bricks and wood carving. The unique use of materials, colors, shapes and forms are exhibited also in the wearable art and clothing. Be immersed in this ancient, "devoted" atmosphere! About the photographer: Carlos Esteves has a degree in Computer Science and a Master of Business Administration. Photography is his major passion and since 2010, his portfolio has been certified by the Associação Portuguesa dos Profissionais da Imagem. He's also passionate about travelling and discovering the authenticity of the places he visits. He was a finalist of the Travel Photographer of the Year competition for two consecutive years and he's always looking to capture his next powerful image.
By Avery Kremer
COSMETICS Brave a New Wave World Take the softness of airy, feminine vocals and bathe them in the sultry ominousness of moody repetition. Add an analog synth. Repeat with simplistic rhythms worthy of a pulsating dance floor. You’ve now entered the effortlessly cool reality of Vancouver’s minimal synth crew, COSMETICS. Even the band’s name alludes to an authentic new wave structure, stripped down and artificially dynamic. It is a minimalism conducive to the sparse, repetitive melodies and noir motivations of this synthesized dance duo. COSMETICS formed in 2008 when Aja Emma started producing music with Nic M. Emma lends her voice and synthesizer talents, while M brings his unique flair on the synthesizer as well as the duo’s rhythm and production. They write and record their self-described pop collage sound at their OUI! home studio in Vancouver, Canada. This stripped-down genre, an interesting take on pop music, is certainly dance floor worthy! In 2010, Brooklyn label Captured Tracks released their 7" debut entitled "Soft Skin." The following year, their pop-synth production, "The Cries," galvanized the Milan runways, creating a haunting, dramatic atmosphere at the Versace Spring/Summer collection. Currently, COSMETICS’s release list from label Captured Tracks includes "Olympia…Plus," a compilation LP of their finest, circa 2010-2013 productions, one EP, and a few singles including "Black Leather Gloves" and "Sleepwalking." With a long-awaited debut album and a European tour underway, this west coast duo is scaling the new wave world, taking with them their analog synths.
by Shawna Pandya
From couture to cars, skyscrapers to screens, design matters more than you might think Design, design, design. Omnipresent, yet all too often overlooked in importance. It catches the eye, drawing in the casual observer. Beyond art and fashion, design impacts many industries including medicine, automotive and consumer electronics. “Design,” said Steve Jobs, “is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” More than that, design is what attracts us to interact with something and to want it. Design demonstrates the most nuanced understanding of human motivation. Discerning what will capture a person's attention and stir them to action is a big part of creating innovative design. If we define design as "creating with the intent to evoke specific reactions or behaviours," it becomes a powerful problem-solving tool. When it comes to products, processes and visuals, design can be a superpower. Design & Dollars Given the broad definition of design, it is impossible to pin down its exact global GDP. Apple, known for its obsession with minimalist design, skyrocketed to a net worth of over $700 billion USD in 2014. If Apple were a country, its GDP would be 20th in the world. The web design industry in North America alone neared $35 billion USD last year. The global value of the fashion industry is expected to hit $3.7 trillion USD by the end of 2016. Suffice to say, design is valuable. Design affects behaviour—especially buying behaviour—so it only makes sense to invest in it heavily. Creators of all kinds have picked up on this; they strive to outdo themselves in search of more finesse—and market share. Gone are the boxy sedans of the 90s, replaced with curvier, sleeker versions. Hold the first-generation iPhone next to an iPhone 6: the original is almost clumsy in comparison. Compare Apple to its competitors: you can't argue with his Steve Jobs's eye for design. Designing Behaviour In retail, physical spaces are constructed to guide buyers into entering, exploring and purchasing. Searching online for "retail layout strategy" yields a wealth of articles on storefront optimization. North American shoppers, for example, tend to turn right upon entering a store. Retailers capitalize on this trend by placing attention-grabbing displays there. Now consider layouts in print and digital media. Visual layouts and headlines are designed to catch the eye, converting passersby to readers. The balance of text, colours, figures and patterns can mean success or failure for a newly-launched magazine or website. This push for outstanding design has cultivated completely new industries in the past decade. User experience (UX) and user interface (UI) designers were unheard of before the proliferation of smartphones and apps. Now, these designers call the shots in technology. My friend, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, once asked me to aid in his search for a full-time UX designer for his startup. I was laughed at by my designer friends: He wanted a full-time designer? All to himself? Good luck! Designers were in such high demand, they could pick and choose their contracts. No one settled for working full-time for any sole project. The Architecture of Good Design If design is so important, we need to understand what makes for good design. More than aesthetics and symmetry, good design has to feel intuitive. It stirs the desire to engage. It can look deceptively simple, despite being complex and multi-dimensional. A well-designed product can take hours, months, years to develop. It can evolve from its original self. Ultimately, good design elicits that "Ah yes. This is for me," sentiment. What evokes this feeling today will not necessarily be the same tomorrow. The pinnacle of 1970s design is cringe-worthy today (orange shag carpet on brown tile, anyone?). Design evolves—this is as true in home decor and fashion as it is in technology and medicine. Design also drives adoption, sauntering hand-in-hand with ergonomics and usability. I recently met with a group of enterprising biomedical engineers who were designing new tools to permit better access to the brain for certain neurosurgical procedures. I pored over their concept, asked detailed questions and played with the prototype. Their answers were exact, their methods sound. However, when I picked up the tool, I frowned. “The handle is too light,” I said. “The concept is great, but compared to what surgeons are used to, this is far lighter. They won’t like it. A heavier handle will also give you more leverage in surgery.” Medical devices are challenging. Doctors are notoriously picky and creatures of habit. If they can find a reason to resist change, they will. Graphic design icon Ivan Chermayeff, the mind behind the National Geographic and Armani Exchange logos, captured the heart of it, noting, “Design is directed toward human beings. To design,” he said, “is to solve human problems by identifying them and executing the best solution.” Profit and adoption aside, design matters because it is a physical manifestation of vision, leadership and creativity—the new currencies of our age. This becomes especially relevant at a time when automation is increasingly widespread. In other words, be unique or be replaced. Your value is in your individuality, and design is a realization of that individuality. Designers—fashion, graphic, technical or otherwise—take note. You are valuable. You matter. You can make things happen. Design is the future. Design is here to stay.
- Hair by the Allilon Education Art Team - Photography by Trevor Leighton - Makeup by Cheryl Phelps Gardiner - Styling by Giuseppina DeCamillo Allilon is a globally recognized education company focused on promoting the highest standards of hairdressing training founded in 2008 by Johnny Othona and Pedro Inchenko. Renowned for its innovation and dedication to the craft it offers an extensive range of educational courses at its London Academy, while its top team of innovative educators regularly deliver education globally and produce forward-thinking seasonal collections in line with the brand. Okafor is a collection inspired by the hyperrealist portraits of renowned pencil artist, Kelvin Okafor. Boasting dramatic shapes with flashes of dark colour, the collection takes inspiration from the shape of the eye—the focal point of Okafor’s drawings. Fusing a mixture of portrait photography with black and white and pencil drawings, the collection truly comes to life to showcase the work of the collaborative artists. —Allilon There’s a shyness and a confidence about people that I love to capture. The key features I focus on when I draw people are their eyes—they are the windows of the soul. You can really feel their identity when you look at their eyes. To be able to achieve this standard that I’ve set for myself takes discipline; when you rush things you don’t really appreciate the process or understand what it is you’re doing. —Artist Kelvin Okafor The first time the art and emotion of Allilon caught my eye was in Berlin when presenting their Mane collection. The audience was brought to tears at the beauty of that collection. Year after year, their strong collections have amazed audiences around the world. This past year at the Davines World Wide Hair Tour in Allilon's home of London, the Okafor Collection was again brilliant. Instead of watching from the audience, I was backstage and could see once again the effect they had on their viewers. It's been so wonderful to work along side the Allilon Education Art Team. As artists who are so open to sharing their craft to educate others, Allilon welcomes hair stylists to their London Academy and also bring their teaching across the globe. I am truly blessed to be part of such a passionate industry. —Chantal Girard, WC Davines Session Team