As with many “Women in Music” issues of major magazines, the selections in Elle‘s May issue are hardly earth-shattering; articles on Pink, Alicia Keys, and Adele are hardly going to introduce people to sounds they haven’t heard before. (Nor are they supposed to. They are supposed to sell magazines.) But the selection of British pop star Rita Ora for two of the covers is fairly eye-catching, as she has yet to hit it big in the US. It’s also eye-catching, of course, because Rita Ora at her best has some great, bold style, which the stylist wisely decided to play up. Check out her colorful editorial, then go here to listen to “Torn Apart,” a fun, reggae-inflected collaboration between Ms. Ora and the artist formerly known as Snoop Dogg. More
Every now and then when I’m feeling sad, I remember that Baz Luhrmann‘s crazy, postmodern, technicolor, 3D version of The Great Gatsby is coming out soon, and that it stars some of our greatest living thespians, and that its anachronistic soundtrack is produced by Jay-Z, and I feel okay again. It also means lots of flapper-themed Carey Mulligan editorials, which are nice, too. In the May issue of Vogue, Ms. Mulligan lays to rest any lingering silliness about how she’s not pretty enough to play Daisy Buchanan by donning several heart-stoppingly gorgeous 1920s ensembles in an editorial masterfully shot by Mario Testino. She also says some smart things in the accompanying feature, like “Daisy Buchannan was basically a Kardashian.” (I’m paraphrasing.) That is so true! Carey Mulligan is just the greatest. More
It’s officially spring, y’all! Birds are chirping, buds are opening, and today was the very first day this year I ventured outside without any fabric covering my legs. (The bottom two-thirds, anyway; it’s not leotard weather yet.) And it will grow even springier next month, which magazines shall celebrate with various spring-themed spreads! As a sucker for both spring and flowers, I do not tire of these kinds of photos, especially when they feature cool people like Karen Elson. She’s best known outside the fashion world as Jack White‘s ex-wife, but she’s also a musician in her own right, as well as a great model who’s been working in the industry for some time. And age 34, she’s getting more work than ever. This is hardly over the hill, but it’s still nice to see in such an age-ist industry. Click through to get psyched for spring by looking at Karen Elson wearing pretty clothes and flowers. More
Q: Is there a baby monkey?
A: Of course there is a baby monkey. More
Every few months there’s some fashion editorial/event/publicity stunt in which someone has made a dress out of something not traditionally used to make dresses. Recent examples include cheese, gummi bears, toilet paper, roadkill, beetle wings, 3000 cow and yak nipples… In the time between those stories, we hear of industrious teenagers making prom dresses from similarly unlikely materials: cardboard, homework, etc… More
If you saw the glimpse of fashion tits Cara Delevingne flashed in Love Magazine’s “controversial” fashion film and thought you might like to see more of said fashion tits, you’re in luck. Interview Magazine has just published an editorial starring the young Ms. Delevingne that is the fashion tittiest thing I’ve seen since yesterday.
“What are fashion tits,” you ask? Generally speaking, fashion tits are small-ish, perky breasts which, when revealed in photos, read as artistic, rather than pornographic, due to their shape, size, and context, as well as the quality of photography. Obviously, these rules are silly and arbitrary, and easily broken by people like Terry Richardson, who’s never met a fashion tit he couldn’t porn-ify. But breast rules aside, this is also just a lovely set of photos. Cara Delevingne may be in danger of overexposure at this point, but it’s easy to see why: no matter how many questionable things she says or Shania Twain songs she lipsyncs to, she is beautiful in a way that a lot of people like, and pretty much photographs like the platonic essence of fashion model-ness. More
In the latest issue of Wired Magazine, Alison Brie (of Mad Men and Community fame) hams it up in some photos illustrating an article about the new ways people are using technology to engage with TV shows, and how outdated the Nielsen rating system is. (And how we have gotten better TV shows as a result.) None of the pictures within are quite as great as the cover shot, which shows what Trudy Campbell would look like if she murdered her horrid, sniveling prig of a husband and took his job. But they do show off Ms. Brie’s range as an actress, which is something the article discusses, and she looks great in all of them. Now, let’s do some “Mad Math.” More
Of all the self-referential ways the fashion world comments on itself, plastic surgery-themed editorials are one of the best. That’s because most efforts at self-referentiality come off self-indulgent and un-self-critical, while it’s pretty much impossible for a decent plastic surgery themed editorial to do that. The imagery of plastic surgery is so grotesque that it makes you think “hey, that’s awful!” even if you still want to look like the model therein. These photos “expose” the price of beauty, if you can call it that.
It also just appeals to my gothic sensibilities, because once you’ve grown up listening to Marilyn Manson you will never not enjoy a photo that combines the glamorous with the macabre. Additionally, it echoes a Suicidegirls photoset published during that site’s heyday, which was humorous and compelling enough to still be stuck in my mind seven years later. More
So I’ve already said enough about Lana Del Rey‘s shortcomings as an artist/empty signifier/hubristic first year Pratt student to last me for quite some time. But what about Lana Del Rey, model? As it turns out, she’s actually really good at that. She should do it more!
The latest issue of L’Officiel Paris features the cyberbullied singer/songwriter in a retro styled editorial that gives James Dean and Marilyn Monroe‘s ghosts a rest for once and draws on the iconography of an equally mythologized, if infinitely classier, country called Spain. From the red lips to the mid-length, wavy hair to the beautiful clothes, this is a feast for the eyes. Much credit should go to photographer Nicole Nodland, who got some really beautiful shots. But Ms. Del Rey is great and posing and conveying moods, too. And this goes without saying, but she looks lovely. If only she’d been born in an era before trip hop, she might have been a silent film star. More
To help promote her upcoming turn in the Boy Meets World sequel Girl Meets World, Danielle Fishel (a.k.a. Topanga) has submitted herself to Maxim‘s lad mag treatment: lingerie, housework in heels, the whole nine yards. Looking at the photos, I’m impressed with how little she seems to have aged since Boy Meets World ended 13 years ago, despite having lived a relatively normal life bereft of all the magical poisons Hollywood starlets generally gain access to at age 28. I am also struck by the degree to which the uber-socially conscious Topanga would probably not approve. But it’s all worth it for the story she tells about Bob Saget: More
In the April issue of Harper’s Bazaar, former child star Selena Gomez can be seen “growing up her image,” as they say, in a very leggy editorial shot by our old pal Terry Richardson. At best, Uncle Terry’s “mainstream” photos look like perfectly serviceable fashion photography, and at worst, they look super stiff and boring, and both of those styles are showcased here. Things are further complicated by Photoshop abuse in some of the pictures. But Selena Gomez is a lovely young lady, so her cute/sexy/charismatic personality shines through nonetheless. I am even willing to overlook the fact that she claims it’s hard for her to get dates in the accompanying article. More
As you may recall, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are on the cover of French fashion mag L’Officiel Hommes this month, demonstrating for all their newfound love of privacy by having simulated sex, rather than actual sex. Now, Kimye can be seen having simulated sex with itself across many pages of the magazine in an editorial of epic me-portions. How is it that Kim and Kanye manage to look narcissistic and fame-hungry even as they demonstrably possess all the fame one could possibly be hungry for? That is truly a mystery for the ages. More
The spring/summer 2013 issue of V Magazine is the “dynamic duos” issue and features numerous pairings of creative people, like Sean Lennon and Yoko Ono, Devonte Hynes and Solange Knowles, and…Lindsey Wixson and Naomi Campbell? Yes, that’s right. In an editorial calle “Prime Time,” the 42-year-old goddess and the 18-year-old Terry Richardson muse (who are both referred to as “supermodels”) lounge around and talk about who knows what while looking blase about their daily hydration requirements. V doesn’t say what type of creative collaboration these two engaged in to be featured in this issue in such a way, but I guess they collaborated on this editorial, at the very least. More
As much as I like to make fun of Audrey from Girls for being a huge fashion victim with her camo-print rompers and culturally insensitive headbands, I believe there’s a right way to wear this un-killable trend. Why, I’ve even been known to rock a floral headband myself. I’m also a fan of that witchy, lacey, Steve Nicks look, which is good, because it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Considering these two facts, then, it’s no surprise I approve of this ethereal photo spread in the March issue of Vogue Russia, which does the late winter/early spring nature sprite thing quite well. On a related note, my birthday is in March, so I am going to pretend they made this editorial just for me. More