Monday, April 30, 2012

Neon Mamacita's First Video

At our last photoshoot, we had an extra half hour of studio time, a light set up, and a pair of computer speakers. That was enough- our first music video was born. Its a silly little thing, just me doing my dance routine in my outfits (which also happens to be my favorite thing to do). But thanks to Brian Papish, video editor extraordinaire, I think this video has some spunk.

Shot by Nick Shepard
Assisted by Andra Georges
Edited by Brian Papish
Clothes by Neon Mamacita

Friday, April 27, 2012

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Portrait Project

Portraiture is a celebration of the individual. But more than that, it is an imprint of the sitter. It presents the subject's likeness after death, or after aging, to future generations of spectators. Perhaps that is why portraits have such gravity, it is impossible not to wonder about the life behind the face.

I was particularly inspired by a recent trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to see their Renaissance Portrait Exhibition. After decades of Mary and Jesus, the "Renaissance witnessed the rediscovery of the individual." Of course, I was most interested in the clothes, jewelry, and hairstyles that were perfectly captured in the profiles of the most beautiful ladies of the day.

But Nick and I, being products of our generation, decided to tackle portraiture with a healthy dose of post-modernism. Enjoy the photos!

Photographed by Nick Shepard
Styled by Annie Shepard
Assisted by Andra Georges
Modeled by Mikaela Flynn and Katie Hoffman

More Portraits after the Jump
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Monday, April 23, 2012

Island Fever: Hawaiian Inspired Picks from Etsy

Way back in December I started dreaming about Hawaii. And after the monsoon that we just had, beaches and sunsets are back on the mind. It seems I'm not the only one. The Pacific Islands are officially trending right now, inspiring everyone from Givenchy to Topshop, Zara and everyone in between.

Of course, we've been here before. In 1946 the first transatlantic flights to Hawaii began to, allowing the newly moneyed middle class access to a bit of American paradise and Hawaii began to export a new kind of product- vacation. While you can't bottle up and bring home a day at the beach, your clothes can certainly make the trip.

Thus was born the Hawaiian shirt, sarong, and Pake Muu. Invented in 1924, Rayon quickly became the fabric of choice for this new industry, with its silky feel and light weight.  When buying Hawaiian, I always recommend buying rayon because it has the best hand and is the most authentic (but it is extremely flammable so watch out for those bonfires). And of course, the prints! Oh the prints!

Of course, it wouldn't be fashion if it wasn't repeated. The 1980s saw a resurgence in Hawaiian style, by pretty much copying the styles and prints of the 1940s. Hello Tommy Bahama. And while I generally hate the 1980s, you can actually find some pretty good pieces out there at really good prices.

And as fashion would have it, 30 years later, we find ourselves yet again in the midst of island fever.If you wanna get with it, check out my picks from Etsy

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Hip Hop Style gone Wrong

When it comes to rap artists, it can be hard to separate bad style from good style. The line overlaps way too much. Someone with bad style–think Rick Ross or Snoop Dogg–can push it far enough that the line between ridiculous and genius leans more toward the latter. 

Artists who don’t have the genius but just have bad style either lack originality or their execution is off. Because in this industry, it’s not about what you wear but how you wear it. And they definitely need a trip to the swagger coach.

With that, here are my thoughts on some of the worst-dressed rappers out there. 

Shirtless men with a lot of tattoos: I feel like I could devote an entire post to rappers’ bad tattoos (For starters, I would call Gucci Mane’s facial tattoo of an ice cream cone a poor choice), but I’ll try to limit myself. Lil’ Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, and Jim Jones all make the mistake of confusing a couple of tattooed sleeves and an inked torso for a shirt. Yes, they are all pretty ripped, but the look has become a copycat trend, and a regrettable one at that.

Foxy Brown: I’m all in favor of a little cleavage but nipple is best left to the bedroom. Foxy clearly feels differently though, because in every photo of this girl her boobies are falling out. But I do have to hand it to her, Ms. Foxy Brown definitely has some chutzpah.

Bizarre of D12: Bizarre serves as inspiration to all men who might be carrying a little extra paunch around the middle. Instead of hiding his rotund belly, Bizarre chose to embrace it with one of the least flattering tattoos ever inked. And for all those guys worried about a little balding, take a cue from Bizarre and cover it up with a frilly shower cap.

Nick Cannon: It’s not that his style is so bad, it’s that’s it is so ‘mehh’. Somehow, whether Nick Cannon is wearing a suit and tie or a hoodie and jeans, he manages to look like an overgrown boy. That this strange photos of him and Mariah belongs on does nothing to help his cred.

Mickey Avalon: Call me traditional, but I just can’t get behind a man who wears eyeliner on a regular basis. Also, the hand constantly cupping his balls is just a little off-putting.

Want more Bad style?
 -----------Click Read More---------
And be sure to check out my post on The Best of Rap Style

Monday, April 16, 2012

Now you Can have your Cake and Wear it Too

It is a rare and wonderful thing when an image is innovative, smart, beautiful, and funny all at once. That's why T Magazine's ode to digestion, Salad Days, is such a triumphant piece. As they did in their previous collaboration, Diamond in the Roughage, Richard Burbridge and Robbie Spencer disguise svelte models behind mounds of colorful excess.

Of course, they were not the first to see anthropomorphic shapes in food. Back, way back, in the 16th century Giuseppe Arcimboldo started turning bowls of fruit into people's heads. This guy must have had a sense of humor because while everyone else was painting the Pieta  or the Resurrection, he was painting a man made of fish; specifically one with a sea lion above his right ear. 

So here's a toast to food; to eating, playing, and wearing it.

All paintings by Arcimboldo (Check out these photos and see his paintings come to life)

Not full yet?
---------------For Dessert click Read More------------

Friday, April 13, 2012

April Flowers: Etsy Picks of the Week

They say that April showers bring May flowers, but this April has seen its own explosion of blossoms. These springtime buds inspire so much ornament and design that I've decided to pay homage by selection the best floral pieces on Etsy and bring them to you.

This is the start of a new weekly feature, in which I will curate a collection around a chosen theme. I've chosen Etsy because of its vast offerings of handmade and vintage pieces (the fact that I sell on there doesn't hurt either). 

So be sure to check back each week and let me know what you think. Enjoy the springtime!

 Pink Cherry Blossoms Photograph $30:  Full of vivid colors and textures, this picture captures the fleeting beauty of spring cherry blossoms, and delivers it in an 8x8 photograph. Perfect for adding a splash of color to any room.

 Hand painted Watercolor Tulip Scarf $25: The artist who painted this scarf allowed their artistic expression to come through, giving it a nice, slightly abstracted air. The swirl of colors read great on the neck as well as off.

Sheer Floral Dress $58: I love how the floral pattern on this dress is denser at the hem, as if gravity simply pulled down the flowers. Plus, this type of relaxed style is very wearable, perfect paired with a pair of sandals and a fitted leather jacket.

Golden flower headpiece $245: This might have been designed with a wedding in mind, but it would look beautiful on any woman, blushing bride or not.

Burnout Floral Kimono $239: This piece nails that sought after combination of pretty/ cool. Inspired by the piano shawls of the 1920’s, the modern silhouette brings the velvet burnout look up to date.

1950s Blue cotton dress $208: The 1950s silhouette with a narrow waist, stacked bodice, and full skirt is incredibly flattering to women’s figures. To top it off, it’s covered in a lovely blue floral print. Ideal for a spring or summer wedding.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Icarus: The Boy who Fell from the Sky

I've been so busy this past week that the idea of falling is heavy on my mind.  Maybe that's why I decided to take tonight to partake in a nice glass of red wine  to motivate some inspiration.  It didn't take much before I was attacking the painting of Icarus that I started back in October with small studies. I'm still not done but it's looking a hell of a lot better. Keep an eye out for the finished product.

"The unconfined skies remain 
                         though Minos may be lord of all the world 
                          his sceptre is not regnant of the air"

"While he was working, his son Icarus, 
                         with smiling countenance and unaware 
                                    of danger to himself, perchance would chase 
                                 the feathers, ruffled by the shifting breeze, 
                                or soften with his thumb the yellow wax"

" As when the bird leads forth her tender young, 
                         from high-swung nest to try the yielding air; 
                         so he prevailed on willing Icarus"

"The unlucky father, not a father, called, 
                         "Where are you, Icarus?" and "Where are you? 
                         In what place shall I seek you, Icarus?" 
                         He called again; and then he saw the wings 
                         of his dear Icarus, floating on the waves"

All paintings by Annie Shepard, all quotations from Ovid's Metamorphosis

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Girls who Fall and Can't Get Back Up

I find I have absolute empathy with the girls featured in this editorial by Alessi Bolzoni for Grey #6. As a 25 year old young woman (girl?), I feel as if I am constantly on the verge of an accident. The small travails of daily life, as insignificant as slipping on the stairwell or spilling the contents of my purse, at times seem insurmontable. The larger questions of life, career, and love just make me want to collapse and be dragged through it all by someone who knows the way. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

This is How Daphne Does It

Daphne does ethereal fantasy like no one else. I have serious doubts that she is a real person. More like a cyborg made up of wrinkle proof skin and couture collections.
Marcus & Indrani for Muse Magazine