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Berlin 52.5233째 N, 13.4127째 E






















Photographer: Ben Rayner Film Directors: Dan Magee & John Fisher Art Direction: Mark Gregson Men’s Stylist: Daniel Cook Women’s Stylist: Cat Woods Hair: Katrin Wespel Make-Up: Patricia Piatke Special thanks to: Ellie, Alison, Pia, Misha, Tiziano, Aristea, Norbert, Klaus, Glenn, Kat & Gemma Nice one



These pages are a call out to our longing for freedom.

Taking a journey of our own we headed to Europe’s

To the inherent and insatiable need in all of us to ex-

cultural capital, Berlin, to capture the energy of city life.

plore, to journey, to see new things. And to sharing the

A bustling and ever-changing place, with a rich and

experiences with friends and strangers along the

tightly-woven history, the streets of Germany’s capital are

way. This is a rallying cry to uncover the unseen and

packed with undiscovered gems, hidden corners bursting

to discover new sights, whether they’re hidden on the

with new scenes, and it’s on these streets that we shot

streets we’ve walked down a thousand times or those

our beautiful new look book and campaign film. Bench

we’ve never set foot on before. Our AW13 campaign

AW13 is a call to be adventurous, to go one step further

celebrates the energy and community spirit of cities the

and know your city. To explore the colours and sounds of

world over - a nod to the fast-paced and active lifestyle

the places around you. Because life, and the world,

of metropolitan living. Whether on the race to work or a

is simply what you make of it.

mission to track down new places to hang out, our latest collection is designed to be on the move, with purpose built pieces for the dynamic people who wear them.



Warschauer Straße 52.51658°N 13.381°E

Warschauer Stra e Wa r s c h a u e r S t r a ß e i s a s t r e e t i n t h e Friedrichshain locality of central Berlin, t h e c a p i t a l o f G e r m a n y. I t l i n k s t h e Oberbaumbrücke, a landmark double deck bridge across the River Spree, w i t h F r a n k f u r t e r To r.





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Schlesisches Tor 52.5008째 N, 13.4417째 E

Schlesisches Tor In the Bohemian quarter commonly known as SO36 (named after its former postal code). The station is named after one of the former city gates of Berlin built in the early 18th century; the road that ran through it led southeastward to the province of Silesia.






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Oberbaumbrücke 52.5019° N, 13.4456° E

OberbaumbrUcke The Oberbaumbrücke is a double-deck bridge crossing Berlin’s River Spree, considered one of the city landmarks. It links Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg, former boroughs that were d i v i d e d b y t h e B e r l i n Wa l l , a n d h a s b e c o m e a n i m p o r t a n t s y m b o l o f B e r l i n ’ s u n i t y.



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An Englishman in New York via Berlin



B e n R a y n e r i s f a s t b e c o m i n g a f a m i l i a r, a n d f r i e n d l y,

Are there any places that you haven’t been to

face on Bench shoots. Having shot our SS13

yet that you’d like to shoot at?

c a m p a i g n i n N e w Yo r k l a s t y e a r w e a s k e d h i m t h i s time to leave the Big Apple, journey across the Atlan-

The location is a big part of a shoot, of course. It

tic and join us in the city a little closer to his home

can really make some shoots really more

t o w n . Fo r t h e m o s t p a r t , t h e l i f e o f a f a s h i o n p h o -

interesting than they would have been had it been

tographer is spent in the waiting lounges of airports

somewhere else. There are lots of places in the

hanging around for a plane to the next shoot armed

States I’d like to shoot at, there’s so much

with a bag of equipment, a coffee and a scrunched

v e r s a t i l i t y i n o n e c o u n t r y. C o l o r a d o , M o n t a n a ,

up copy of the call sheet. Rayner has seen his share

Te x a s , t h e d e s e r t s a r e a m a z i n g . O h a n d a l s o ,

of cities around the world and against the backdrop

South America.

of Berlin he captured the beautiful shots that make u p o u r A W 1 3 c a m p a i g n i m a g e r y.

Since you’re constantly crossing borders, where do you consider home?

What’s Berlin like as a backdrop for a shoot? N e w Yo r k f o r s u r e ! E v e n t h o u g h I ’ m a p r o p e r L o n I’ve been here a couple of times, always for work

d o n b o y.

a c t u a l l y. I t ’ s e x t r e m e l y v e r s a t i l e a n d y o u r e a l l y d o get a lot of scope and variety by just moving around

Where’s the dream holiday?

s l i g h t l y. Yo u c a n f e e l t h a t i t ’ s e v o l v i n g r e a l l y q u i c k l y b u t i t s t i l l f e e l s q u i t e n o s t a l g i c i n a w a y. B e r l i n i s

Definitely South America - Argentina, Brazil or


Pe r u .

How much are you on the move?

What are your top tips for surviving on the road?

I travel at least once a month, sometimes three,

D o n ’ t g e t j e t l a g . D r i n k t o n n e s o f w a t e r. D o n ’ t t r y

sometimes abroad and sometimes within the US.

r e - d r e s s y o u r s e l f a t t h e e n d o f t h e X- R a y m a c h i n e

On one hand travelling keeps stuff interesting but


sometimes you’re so busy that you really don’t feel like you gotten to know a city at all that you’ve

What’s are the staples in your hand luggage?

travelled to. My iPhone for sure, because podcasts send me to What are the best and worst places

sleep wherever I am. I love them. I just got into

you’ve been to?

noise cancelling headphones too, which are great

A u s t i n , L o s A n g e l e s a n d To k y o a r e t h e b e s t .

for planes. And always take a sweater on a plane,

There’s no worst really! The ‘worst’ would probably

even in the summer!

relate to production difficulties on the job itself, not the place.





As one of the top destinations on



the continent, Berlin welcomes

Stralauer Allee 3, 10245 Berlin

Invalidenstraße 122, 10115 Ber-

millions of tourists every year who


flock into town to soak up the his-

Billed as the world’s first ‘music

tory and the atmosphere of this

hotel’, nhow Berlin is certainly a

Easy on the eye and the wallet,

i n f a m o u s c i t y. A s w i t h a n y t h i n g i n

lot to take in. Sat proudly on the

the Honigmond


banks of the river Spree it’s a deaf-

(honeymoon) Garden Hotel is

eccentric capital, the places avail-

ening sight of curves, colour and

a beautiful gem in the heart of

able for the weary

plastics, thanks to the interior’s

the capital. Once a derelict and

tourist to sleep are wildly different.

designer Karim Rashid. Built in the

abandoned building, the owner

Beautiful, edgy or downright rau-

city’s party district and located

Carl Loyal converted the place

cous - there’s a type of place for

right by Universal Music’s German


anyone to call home, albeit tempo-

H Q, t h e h o t e l i s t h e p e r f e c t p l a c e

a elegant and homely 10-roomed

rarily as they pass through.

for the budding musician to rest

hotel. The

their voice. And because the inspi-

Tu s c a n - s t y l e d g a r d e n , c o m p l e t e

Here are our top 5 most-innovative

ration for a hit record can strike

with six cabins, is the jewel of the

places to crash when you’re hitting

at any hour of the day or night the

c r o w n h e r e a n d p r o v i d e s a r e l a x-

the streets of Berlin.

conceirge offers electric guitars

ing oasis for anyone worn out by a

for use, delivered straight to your

48 hour stint at Berghain. Thanks

b e d r o o m d o o r.

t o a l i v e - i n o w n e r, t h i s h o t e l h a s

1. HOTEL MICHELBERGER Wa r s c h a u e r S t r a ß e 3 9 / 4 0 , 1 0 2 4 3

a feeling of home with guests 3. PROPELLER ISLAND CITY

encouraged to pay into a piggy


bank for any drinks they help

H o t e l , b a r, g i g v e n u e a n d o c c a s i o n a l

Albrecht-Achilles-Straße 58,

themselves to from the bar in the

choir practice room, the Michelberg-

10709 Berlin


t o s t a y. S e t u p b y e n t r e p r e n e u r To m

At Propeller Island City Lodge each


M i c h e l b e r g e r, t h i s b u z z i n g a n d v i -

room is a

We i n m e i s t e r s t r a ß e 1 , 1 0 1 7 8 B e r -

brant environment is run by a

different world, and most of these


passionate group of friends who set

worlds are not for the faint hearted.

about to create something genuinely

Whether you’re tucked up in a fly-

The one for the style conscien-

unique. With a range of

ing bed, checking out the angles in

tious, Casa Camper is the second

Michelberger spirits and their own

t h e r o o m c o m p l e t e l y w a l l e d i n m i r-

hotel to be opened by Spanish

c o c o n u t w a t e r,

rors or kipping on a raft suspended

s h o e m a k e r C a m p e r. C h i c a n d

Fo u n t a i n o f Yo u t h , t h e y a r e d e t e r-

from the

fashionable, the hotel’s clientele

mined to build a

ceiling with rope (no heavy bed

consists mainly of Europe’s up-

f r i e n d l y, b u t d e t e r m i n e d , e m p i r e

fellows allowed), this is certainly a

wardly mobile fash pack and left-

f r o m t h e i r K r e u z b e r g m a n o r.

hotel stay you will not forget in a

t h i n k i n g b u s i n e s s t r a v e l l e r s . Fa r

h u r r y. E v e n i f y o u t r y t o . N e s t l e d i n


Our base for the duration of the

the western district of

wallet-busting, the hotel is sleek

Bench AW13 shoot, their effortlessly

Charlottenburg, the rooms here

and compact, and with bicycles

welcoming service and basic, but

include a prison cell, a crypt or

for hire from the reception it’s the

achingly cool, rooms means that a

an option to sleep in boxes on the

p e r f e c t b a s e f r o m w h i c h t o e x-

trip to the Michelberger is like stay-

floor while your bed is suspend-

plore Berlin.

ing in your slightly pretentious (but

ed above you. It’ll certainly give

well meaning) friend’s spare room

you something to talk about over

for the night. Exposed concrete,

breakfast (incidentally not included

vintage furniture and a programme

in the price).


er is much more than just a place

of events to rival an actual music v e n u e , t h e M i c h e l b e r g e r i s t h e p e rfect hub for the cash, yet culture, consciencious.



East Side Gallery 52.5031° N, 13.4447° E

EAST SIDE GALLERY The East Side Gallery is an international memorial for freedom. It is a 1.3 km long s e c t i o n o f t h e B e r l i n Wa l l l o c a t e d n e a r t h e centre of Berlin on Mühlenstraße in Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg. The actual border at this point was the river Spree. The gallery is located on the so-called “hinterland mauer”, which closed the border to East Berlin.



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Alexanderplatz 52.5233째 N, 13.4127째 E

ALEXANDERPLATZ Originally a cattle market outside the city fortifications, it was named in honor of a visit of the Russian Emperor Alexander I to Berlin o n 2 5 O c t o b e r 1 8 0 5 b y o r d e r o f K i n g F r e d e rick William III of Prussia. The square gained a prominent role in the late 19th century with the construction of the Stadtbahn station of the same name and a nearby market hall, followed by the opening of a department store of Hermann Tietz in 1904, becoming a major commercial centre. The U-Bahn station of the present-day U2 line opened on 1 July 1913.






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Kreuzberg 52.5233° N, 13.4127° E

KREUZBERG Kreuzberg has historically been home to the Berlin’s punk rock movement as well as other a l t e r n a t i v e s u b c u l t u r e s i n G e r m a n y. T h e S O 3 6 club remains a fixture on the Berlin music scene. It was originally focused on punk music and in the 1970s was often frequented b y I g g y Po p a n d D a v i d B o w i e . I n t h o s e d a y s t h e c l u b r i v a l l e d N e w Yo r k ’ s C B G B a s o n e o f the finest new-wave venues in the world.




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Dan Magee

From the s to the direc


skate park ctors chair.


When Dan and John met over 10 years on the

is a big step for us in terms of the level of clients

side of skate park, they never expected their

and brands that we work with.

friendship to take the turns that it has. Then 17 years-old, John was riding for the UK’s Blueprint

Have your beginnings in skateboarding influ-

Skateboards, where Dan was team manager and

enced your work today?

c r e a t i v e d i r e c t o r. I t w a s w h i l e t o u r i n g t h e c o u n t r y, s h o w i n g a t d e m o s a n d s i g n i n g a u t o g r a p h s ,

Dan and I have this ongoing thing where on

that they each in turn picked up a video camera,

almost every shoot we do, there’s always been

to document their lives and antics on the road.

s o m e o n e w h o e i t h e r i s o r w a s a s k a t e b o a r d e r,

Fa s t f o r w a r d t e n y e a r s a n d t h e y ’ v e c o m e a l o n g

o r i s s o m e h o w c o n n e c t e d t o t h e i n d u s t r y. S k a t e -

way from filming ramp tricks on Super 8. Accom-

boarding definitely influenced me because as a

plished directors, now they spend their time trave-

young skater you’ll end up half the time watch-

ling the world, creating big hitting campaign films

i n g s k a t e v i d e o s o r ( f o r k i d s t h e s e d a y s ) Yo u Tu b e

f o r t h e l i k e s o f O 2 a n d B B C R a d i o 1 . We a s k e d

clips. At the time I got into filming there was a

them to once again to pack up their kit bags and

sudden step up in the production values of these

hit the tarmac, heading to the streets of Berlin to

films, they became very arty and almost cinemat-

direct our AW13 film.

ic. I’d always filmed my mates skateboarding but t h i s m a d e m e l o o k a t i t i n a d i f f e r e n t w a y.

After 10 years, how did you and Dan get to the point where you are today?

Earlier this year we directed a piece for O2 in which we pretty much utilised all the techniques

John: I don’t remember too much about the first

that we’ve learnt from skateboard filming. Obvi-

time I met Dan. I must have been about 17 and at

ously we didn’t pitch it as a skate-style film, but

the time Dan was running a London based Skate-

I think it probably shows in the way it’s shot and

board company ‘Blueprint Skateboards’. I was a

edited. It’s been slightly different with this Bench

skateboarder myself and was approached by them

film, as we wanted to make it a bit more cinematic

a s a s p o n s o r. A t t h i s p o i n t I w a s m a i n l y i n f r o n t o f

and less gritty we approached it in a different

the camera throwing myself down stairs at Dan’s

w a y.

c o m m a n d , w h i l s t h e h i d b e h i n d t h e c a m e r a m a king the films. After a fairly short lived skateboard-

What goes in to pulling together a shoot like

i n g c a r e e r, I e n d e d u p h e a d i n g t o w a r d s t h e f i l m i n g


aspect of things. I was making my own skate films and teaching myself the basics of video cameras

Lots of meetings and conference calls (my abso-

and editing. At the time it was mainly a hobby but

lute favorite). It’s mainly working along side the

I decided that after skipping college and working

wider team to make sure we’re all on the same

dead-end jobs, I may as well go to uni and get

page. Obviously as directors we have these ideas

some sort of a degree in this ‘hobby’

of things we’d like to do, but we’ll almost always get shut down by the German production team

I wouldn’t say uni taught me much on a techni-

saying we can’t do it because of accessibility or

cal side of things but I feel it definitely made

heath and safety issues. Like the shot we did of

me realise that making films was what I wanted

the couple riding on their bikes - we shot it from

to do. I spent a year or so years working for a

the side of a moving van but I didn’t really say

small production company in Bristol and Dan had

too much about the set up until a couple of days

started to wind up his involvement in Blueprint.

before. I think it went something like “Oh by the

We h a d n ’ t a c t u a l l y b e e n i n c o n t a c t f o r a f e w y e a r s

w a y, w e ’ r e g o i n g t o f i l m f r o m a m o v i n g v a n ’ . T h e i r

but he hit me up with a proposition of working on

i m m e d i a t e r e s p o n s e w a s ‘ N o y o u ’ r e n o t . We ’ r e n o t

a f e w j o b s w i t h h i m . We m a d e a c o u p l e o f o n l i n e

allowed to do that’ but after lots of phone calls

branded films and people started to offer us work

and producer running round pulling her hair out

as a ‘duo’. As we both had a fair bit of experience

they always manage to make it happen. Along with

working a camera, and also the edits, we just

those kind of things it’s about making sure we’re

started to build up a reel. Along side all of this,

integrating the product and the brand and making

we were taken on by Skinflicks as directors, which

sure everything is in line with the brands direction.


What’s the best place your job has ever taken

What are the worst parts of traveling a lot for



The best place i have ever filmed was in Detroit.

I don’t really have a worst part of travelling. If I

V i s u a l l y, t h e p l a c e i s m i n d b l o w i n g . A g a i n , i t w a s

get to travel for work I don’t see how I can moan

for a documentary so we really got to explore the

r e a l l y. I g u e s s n o t e v e r y o n e g e t s t h a t k i n d o f o p -

p l a c e . Fa m o u s f o r i t s r u i n s w e p a i d s o m e l o c a l

portunity so I’m grateful for any part of work that

urban explorer to take us around the abandoned

involves seeing new places.

buildings and it really is incredible. It’s a sight t h a t y o u s i m p l y c a n n o t e x p l a i n f u l l y, y o u n e e d t o

What tips do you have for smooth sailing?

s e e i t . Fo r f i l m i n g , y o u c o u l d p o i n t t h e c a m e r a a t almost anything and it would look amazing.

When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes a n d a l l y o u r m o n e y. T h e n t a k e h a l f t h e c l o t h e s

I do get to travel quite a lot for work, the last

a n d t w i c e t h e m o n e y.

couple of years has been interesting. Berlin, Switz e r l a n d , D e t r o i t , G r e e c e , I b i z a , Pa r i s , I r e l a n d , t o n a m e j u s t a f e w. Sometimes it’s not as glamours as it seems. It’s u s u a l l y v e r y l o n g d a y s w i t h l i t t l e t i m e o f f t o e xp l o r e b u t m o s t o f t h e t i m e w e g e t t o s e e a d i f f e rent side of the place compared to if I was there as a tourist. How much does a shoot depend on the location itself? The location is an important things. But it all w o r k s h a n d i n h a n d r e a l l y, e a c h p a r t o f a f i l m needs its attention, the casting, the location, the lighting etc, take on of those away and it looses an important asset. With Berlin I’d been there a few times before but on this shoot I only really had one day before shoot to look at any locations that were approved. There was a lot of thinking on our feet and making the most of our surroundings. There were a few ideas I had in mind but without the right location it didn’t work so we had to adapt to our surroundings. Are there any places that you haven’t been to yet that you’d like to shoot at? I ’ m s u r e t h e r e a r e p l e n t y, I d o n ’ t r e a l l y h a v e a n y preferences. From experience, there are places I’ve been to on a shoot that I would never have thought of as a place to visit, yet they end up being really interesting. I had never thought of Detroit as a place to go to and (still probably wouldn’t for a holiday), yet it ended up being one hell of an experience for work.










These pages are a call out to our longing for freedom. To the inherent and insatiable need in all of us to explore, to journey, to see new t...