GUEST EDITORS Stuart Semple Stuart Semple is a British artist and curator. A creative polymath who’s output spans many innovative mediums. He has exhibited worldwide and collaborated with some of the biggest music stars and brands on the planet. He is also the director of The Aubin Gallery on Redchurch Street. www.stuartsemple.com
Bertie Brandes Hello! Welcome to a bit of my world. I’m Bertie, I currently edit a girl power zine called The Mushpit, write a column for Vice called Pretty Girl Bullshit, and blog my little heart out on LE BERT. In this issue of Who’s Jack, I’ve put together some of my favourite fashion game changers, a couple of totally crucial beauty tips, and a Drew Barrymore inspired shoot! xoxo www.bertiebrandes.com
Gemma PeppE I run campaigns and events at The Hepatitis C Trust. I’ve been working at The Trust for over 5 years now. I originally took the job because I was too ill to get a proper one but it’s turned out to be my ideal occupation. My job is to raise awareness and tackle discrimination leveled at people with hepatitis C. I do this by getting hepatitis C out into the public domain via events, exhibitions, films, dinners and any other creative means I can think of. With an estimated 400,000 people in the UK still undiagnosed and a death toll that is overtaking that of HIV my job actually means something to me. Right now treatment is better than ever and a definite cure is on the horizon so it’s more important than ever to get people diagnosed. www.hepctrust.org.uk
Ada Zanditon Born and based in London and a first class graduate of the London College of Fashion, Zanditon made her London Fashion Week catwalk debut in September 2009 (Vauxhall Fashion Scout, Ones to Watch) and presented her Autumn Winter 12 collection Simia Mineralis on the London Fashion Week Digital Schedule at Somerset House. The vision of the brand is to create elegant, sculptural womenswear embellished with Zanditon’s original illustrations. The silhouettes are strong, confident and geometrically cut, featuring origami inspired engineered details. Each season this is combined with a unique conceptual narrative that explores and evolves Zanditon’s signature.
Hello and welcome to the new look, four month spanning Who’s Jack. This is the first of our bumper deluxe issues that fuse together the lenghty content and photoshoots of the old Who’s Jack Magazines with the new additions of 80 extra pages, a purchasable, limited edition print option that comes with extra goodies and all the offers you will see in the back pages. The idea is to offer you a lifestyle, coffee table magazine twice a year that is fatter than our usual magazines, comes with free gifts and acts as a helper to the often expensive, sometimes dull lives that a lot of us lead. We aim to get you into parties, get you discounts and get you free things all as well as providing a magazine with all the content we used to have that spans, fashion, art, music, film and London. This is the first of these new style magazines so we would love any feedback you might like to send us, or any collaborations for our September issue that we will begin work on as soon this this issue goes to print! Our theme for this issue that spans May - Aug is Game Changers. What with the Olympics on their way and the elections just about to take place it seemed to fit and we have got some great people in between our pages that fit the theme just as well. From young people making their way in the creative worlds through to beauty and fashion that has stood the test of time with its originality, charities that are using new means of getting the word out and musicians that are bucking trends and going with their gut, it’s all here and we really hope you love it. Purchasers of our print issues will find offers in our back two pages, a free bag by designer Ada Zandition and a Ltd edition print by artist Sarah Maple in their post box as well as the magazine. We will also be donating 50p from each issue sold to The Hepetitus C Trust and 50p to The Seahorse Trust. Happy reading and see you in September.
CONTACTS Who’s Jack is both online and in print. You can find our website and print issues here : www.whosjack.org We like to keep things simple so if you want to write for the next issue, want to be in it or want to collaborate for it contact either Louise@whosjack.org or
The Seahorse Trust is the charity that we will be giving some proceeds from this issue to. It was set up in 1999 as an umbrella organisation to preserve and conserve the national world, especially the marine environment using Seahorses as their flagship species. The Seahorse trust work in partnership with many organisations and people from all over the world and it is this unique partnership that allows them to benefit from the natural world so well. Seahorses are a very unique fish species that occupy the coastal areas of most of the world and it is these very areas that are most under threat, being vulnerable to human and natural interference they suffer badly and by working together we can make a difference to their futire and the future of these fragile eco-systems. There are two species around British Coastline, the Spiny Seahorse (Hippocampus Guttulatus and the Short Snouted Seahorse (Hippocampus Hippocampus). Both British Seahorses can be found from the Shetland Isles down the west coast of the UK (and all around Ireland) and along the south coast of England; we also have sightings of Seahorses on the east coast and a few years ago they were found in the North Sea. EyesightSeahorses have excellent eyesight and their eyes are able to work independently on either side of their head. This means they can look forwards and backwards at the same time! This is particulartly useful as they hunt for food by sight. SnoutSeahorses have long thin snouts enabling them to probe into nooks and crannies for food. When they find food they suck it up through their snouts like a vacuum cleaner. Their snouts can expand if their prey is larger than their snout. They are not able to chew and have to disintergrate the food as they eat it. DietSeahorses eat small crustacea such as Mysis Shrimp. An adult eats 30-50 itmes a day.
little step out of reality…”
Artists booked so far include… Amadou & Mariam Jools Holland & Roland Gift Levellers Fatoumata Diawara Tim Minchin Imagined Village Caravan Palace Raghu Dixit Akala Dub Pistols Port Issac’s Fisherman’s Friends The Correspondents 11th-15th July 2012 Book Tickets 023 8071 1820 Info 01725 552300 larmertreefestival.co.uk
INDEX 6. City Limits :
Sports Luxe fashion story,
24. Hanni El Khatib :
it’s fine to wear your gym gear on the street, so long as it’s silky
30. Natures Second Chance :
The musician that’s all about Americana cool.
A look into taxidermy, how it’s made and it’s current popularity.
34. Iconic Film Soundtracks : 36. A Short History Of Coats :
The scores that changed the game in the film world.
Which will you be wearing for years to come?
40. The Mystic : A 46. London’s Lesser Known Streets : 48. Meg Myers :
A guide to Edware and Uxbridge Roads.
The monster taking on the female solo artist music scene.
54. Stuart Semple : We speak to our art guest editor. 60. Carly Zinger :
The 17 year old photographer that already has a game plan.
68. Painting With Blood :
Peter Doherty talks to Gemma Pepe about his blood art.
72. 6 of the best films :
6 films that you need to see in the coming months.
The 12 year old rap prodigy 74. Lil Niqo : 80. Art For Arts Sake : 85. Colouryum :
4 artists to keep your eye on who are doing things differently.
T-shirts / illustration / events, it’s all combined.
88. London Elections : Do 92. Playing It Drew :
Bertie Brandes’ Drew Barrymore inspired fashion story.
100. Hoodlum Movies : A
103. Game Changers In Fashion :
104. Sadie Frost On Madonna :
How the Queen of pop fashions her wardrobe right to this day.
112. Out door space in London :
The drinking holes you’ll want to be in once the sun comes out.
113. What’s In My Bag :
Bertie looks at who and what made a difference to the fashion landscape.
114. Beauty Icons :
A rifle through Bertie’s bag.
beauty products that aren’t going anywhere.
118. Sweza : Interactive 123. Ada Zanditon :
128. On The Set Of A Fantastic Fear Of Everything : 132. Jamie N Commons :
We chat to our guest fashion editor.
Hey U Guys get a chance to get on set and chat to the directors.
136. Sandrine Estrade-Boulet :
The country mouse doing it his way in the big city
The second of our artists that have done exclusive work around the Game Changers theme.
138. And Smile : Year 146. Sawdust :
We chat to the design team that got involved with some of our layout this Issue.
151. Into The Pale : Pastel 159. Hepetitus C Photography Competition and Interview with Rankin :
We chat to Rankin who judged the recent competition.
CITY LIMITS Photography: David Stewart www.davstewart.com Stylist: Sarita Morales www.saritamorales.com Hair and make up: Natacha Schmitt www.natachaschmittmakeup.co.uk
Grey jumpsuit, £60, Asos.com / Neon earrings, £10, Asos.com / Grey shoes with pink heels, £65, Topshop
Black basketball vest with tails, Jeremy Scott for Adidas / Sequin shorts, ÂŁ70, Revolve Clothing / Chunky gold necklace, ÂŁ15, Asos.com
Black with gold printed bomber jacket, £48, Topshop / White cuff, £14, Freedom at Topshop
Pink strappy maxi dress, £38, Topshop / Pink hoody, £40, American Apparel
Black dress with neon trim, ÂŁ14.99 H&M / Black trainers with neon trim, ÂŁ29.99, H&M
Hanni El Khatib
Hanni El Khatib Making Good Old Fashioned Rock n Roll Words: Laura Hills Pictures: Tom Bunning Hanni El Khatib
I have long had a problem with the word ‘cool’, a word that once perfectly summed up the stylish, aspirational brilliance of the likes of James Dean or maybe Marilyn Monroe has now become a word to describe almost anything, the every day, another word for OK or alright, but whatever it is used for nowadays it has by no means kept it’s orignal descriptive qualities. However Hanni El Khatib very nearly changed my mind because he is, really very, very cool.
When I meet him at a pub in Hackney he is dressed in a leather jacket, his heavily tattooed arms and hands just visible beneath his chunky silver rings and bracelets. His Ray-Ban sunglasses a permanent fixture on his face and his slightly stubbled chin and cheeks and perfectly coiffed hair looks anything but try-hard. It stirs reminders of the 60s rock n rollers that the word ‘cool’ was invented for.
gained him so many fans, none more notable than Florence Welch who Hanni went on tour with last year after the flame haired songstress personally asked him to join her American tour. ‘I had no idea how big those guys were until we went out on tour with them and I got to see how many fans they had and just how brilliant they were live,’ says Hanni. ‘We all got on fucking brilliantly, we’d go out drinking together and we’re still in touch now. If we come to the UK we look them up and He’s sat with his sound technician, a guy who likewise, if they come to the States they let us usually works with La Roux but for the next know they’re about. We bonded.’ few weeks has been paid to accompany El Khatib and his band on their European tour ‘Growing up I was always surrounded by which they are currently just a few days into. music, my parents were always playing their Almost immediately as I sit down to join them albums and I was forced into taking piano they begin regaling us with a story of how lessons too but I guess it was when I was 11 they’ve just recovered from carbon monoxide or 12 that I really got into it for myself,’ poisoning. Travelling between London and remembers Hanni. ‘I got my first guitar when Manchester in a van hired by Hanni’s tour I was that age and I began to learn to play manager the singer, his band members and bits and pieces and experimenting with his touring crew began to feel ill. It wasn’t different music styles. As I got older I began until they were running off stage during their recording bits and pieces for myself then gig in between songs later that night that they playing in friends bands but it wasn’t until I’d started to question what was wrong. ‘It felt been working as a designer for a few years like a really bad hangover,’ explains Hanni. that I started to make music for myself. I’d ‘We all turned white, our heads were play the odd gig here and there in local stores thumping and we just couldn’t stop being and bars and then finally a friend of mine, sick. It took us a while to work out what was Mark Bianci helped me record some tracks.’ wrong, it wasn’t until the next day when we got back in our van that we noticed fumes Heading into the studio in his spare time were coming up through little holes in the between working at HUF Hanni and Mark floor and that had been what was making us recorded some of his tracks ‘just for fun ill. It was awful, at one point during the gig I really’ but they worked so well together and had to throw my guitar down and run off to Hanni enjoyed putting the tracks together so vomit.’ much that they ended up recording several songs that eventually turned into his first Growing up in San Francisco the son of a album, Will The Guns Come Out. ‘We burnt Palestinian father and a Filipino mother them to a CD and I designed a zine to go Hanni always had two passions, the first along with it and I began selling them at my skateboarding and the second an shows’. obsession with classic Americana. Both Having played all the instruments on his passions later became big parts of Hanni’s songs so far, Hanni decided he needed to adult life. Working for several years as the art add a drummer to his live set up firstly to director for clothing label/skating add a new dynamic and secondly to give him company HUF Hanni would spend his spare someone to share his experiences with. time writing and recording music at home in ‘Even though I recorded the tracks without a his bedroom. Growing up listening to music band I wanted to get a drummer to join me from the 50s and 60s, rock n roll music and on stage but couldn’t find anyone suitable. music that stays true to American heritage Then it hit me, I had a friend Nicky inspired his work even back then. In his own Fleming from school who used to be into words Hanni’s music is ‘like the soundtrack music. I got back in touch with him through a to West Side Story if it had been written by mutual friend and although he hadn’t played the Sharks and Jets instead of Sondheim and the drums for like five years he agreed to it. Bernstein’ and for ‘anyone who’s ever been We played a few shows together and that was shot or hit by a train’ although even he it, we were set. It’s so much better admits he’s not entirely sure what he meant having someone there to share it with, to by that last description. It’s his stripped back drink with before going on stage with and to approach to making real rock n roll that’s travel around the world with,’ says Hanni.
His choice to get in an extra band member for live shows was a well thought out one, ‘I don’t want people to come to my shows and hear songs exactly how they sound on the album, that isn’t real music. Real music is imperfect, it’s improvising when you’re on stage and creating a real live show that people can enjoy,’ he explains. ‘I don’t judge any of these acts that just go out there and play their stuff exactly how they recorded it but it doesn’t suit me and I don’t really think it suits my style of music. The music I make is much rawer than that.’ After his music began to blow up and he started to get some label interest Hanni decided to quit his role at HUF to concentrate on making music his career as he was finding it impossible to tour as much as he needed to and hold down a full time job. ‘It was getting hard to fit everything in and my music was really taking off so I decided to take a gamble and go for it,’ he explains. Sounding like a mix between Black Keys and Johnny Cash Hanni’s laid back rock ‘n’ roll meets blues sound is one that he’s carved out brilliantly for himself. It’s the type of music that will be heard at it’s best swilling a Jack Daniels on the rocks at a sweaty gig with lots of people dressed in leather, it goes down well at festivals such as SXSW at which Hanni has become a regular and it’s the type of music only made by someone who really knows his stuff. But anyone who’s ever listened to Hanni’s material might find it hard to believe that when he first started out the music he was making was acoustic, folk tunes. ‘I was just getting to grips with what music I wanted to make and I was doing a lot of experimenting. The only music I’d ever made had been with a friends band so when I decided to make some music for myself I wasn’t sure where to start. The type of music I make today is far more my style though, I think it fits me better.’ Moving away from the well polished vocal chords heard on his earlier material now-a-days Hanni prefers to record a song in one tack and where possible not change a single thing before putting it out. ‘It goes back to what I was saying earlier about liking to keep things raw. I feel the same way about lyrics, I like things that are emotional, that hurt a bit. For me a well polished song that has been recorded several times and tampered around with just isn’t what I’m about. It’s not who I am, sure it might be for some people but I want my music to be truthful,’ he says.
‘I like things that are emotional, that hurt a bit. For me a well polished Hanni El Khatib song that has been recorded several times and tampered around with just isn’t what I’m about.’
‘It felt like a really bad hangover,’ explains Hanni. ‘We all turned white, our heads were thumping and we just couldn’t stop being sick.’
Since signing to small label Innovative Leisure Hanni has had his music featured in TV shows like the American series, Hung as well as having his single I Got A Thing appearing in an advert for Nike. While licensing songs to big brands in order to get music recognised is nothing new it’s usually exclusive to more mainstream acts signed to large record labels. ‘I don’t think it’s a bad thing to license music to brands,’ says Hanni. ‘My record label are fairly small and so the money helps and the music is used in shows and for brands that I genuinely like and believe in. I wouldn’t let my music be used for any old thing but while I’m still relatively unknown and while I still have bills to pay why wouldn’t I take up offers like that?’. Having grown up in San Francisco Hanni upped sticks and moved to LA mainly
because working at HUF required him to do so but he’s sticking there now for the sake of his music. ‘LA is the best place for what I’m doing. It’s a city built around music, my label is there, there’s no shortage of new venues to play and it’s right by the beach. Loads of my friends are musicians, artists and creatives and most of them live around LA so when we’re not working we can hang out drinking or at the beach,’ says Hanni. Not that he’s had a lot of time recently to spend drinking on the beach. Between almost constant touring Hanni has been fulfilling a busy press schedule, being shot by the likes of Rankin – ‘that’s pretty cool isn’t it?’ he boasts – and also working producing music for his friends and fellow
musicians, Feeding People. ‘I’m going to be helping them out on some tracks,’ he tells me. ‘They sound like a mix between Sabbath and Jefferson Airplane and they’re fucking great so I’m getting involved with producing some of their music and they’re helping me out with some of mine.’ The day after our meeting he’s off to tour the rest of Europe before briefly popping home and then heading out to tour some more. ‘I know I shouldn’t complain and I do love it but it’d be nice to have a bit of time to chill out at home with my dog you know?,’ says a now slightly tired sounding Hanni. ‘It’s a crazy life this one, it’s literally none stop.’ But would he change it if he had the choice? ‘Not a fucking chance.’
Words by Rebecca Rutt How do you create a work of art out of the body of a dead animal? It’s something that may seem a little odd and eerie but taxidermy has risen greatly in popularity in the past few years and Rebecca Rutt set out to find out why. I’ve been to many an old, rustic country pub where mantle places are adorned with dead fox heads or grand stags and always thought this was where they should stay. The thought of animals being stuffed and put on display makes me feel a little nauseous but I’m still strangely curious about the whole process and in my quest to find out why this Victorian fashion had come back I was proved wrong on several counts. I started with a visit to Broadway Market in East London and then headed to Dover Street market in West London. In no time at all I noticed owls, squirrels and rabbits nestled among the racks of antique clothes
and furniture as well as a few more random choices like a bear’s head and two peacocks. They weren’t just in the vintage shops either and after a quick bite to eat in Les Trois Garçons, hidden inside an eccentric Victorian pub from 1880, I started to get a real insight into why and how this trend has resurfaced. It seems taxidermy is nearly as popular now as it was in Victorian times and it is not just specialist antique dealers or rustic landlords who are buying it. In fact it seems as much of the London vintage scene as mismatched tea cups and has successfully filled the hole of something new, eclectic and different which so many Londoners crave. Across London there are hundreds of shops where you can buy these items and many people choose to have their pets stuffed once they die. It’s all very odd to me and I definitely prefer my animals
breathing, or on a plate covered in gravy – but something about it lures me in with a strange curiosity. Julia Watson is a self-confessed addict of taxidermy and says the recent buzz around it is because it’s seen as a quirky and cool thing to be interested in. She says it has become a growing trend and walking around London it’s clear it’s ‘become part of the furniture’ in most places. Taxidermy events have been springing up across London this year and proved to be extremely popular. The tweeness of taxidermy in an English pub has been transformed to events like Hackney’s taxidermy and afternoon tea organised by The Robin Collective and Animal Vegetable Mineral, a new boutique food events business. Mixing together drinks and quaint
Design & illustration by Sawdust
pastries with taxidermy seems like an impossible combination but once again it fits the bill for Londoners looking for the next new thing. ‘Everything slightly odd has its moment as people strive to be a ‘bit different’, and the English eccentric heritage culture is very in vogue at the moment,’ says Julia who admits it is a ‘creepy interest’ but for her it was part of growing up. Julia’s dad has a growing collection of animals including a leopard, fox, owl and a parrot (although these are banned from the house as her Mum does not share this passion). ‘David Attenborough is a godlike presence in our house and taxidermy is a fantastic way to see animals up close, especially extinct animals, and places like The National History Museum are a great way to
discover this,’ she enthuses. And London is full of people just like her who are fascinated by the chance to see these animals up close. Charlie Gates got her first taste of taxidermy as her mother used to clean ‘posh people’s houses’ and a few of the rooms had specimen jars and taxidermy. As a child she remembers being fascinated and would spend hours staring at the animals and poking them. ‘I ended up bringing this wildlife home and eventually opening it up’ Charlie now holds live taxidermy sessions, talks and events and is surprised by how many people attend. She says her family have had strange reactions to it. While her brother is petrified, her Mum has eventually come to terms with it and her sister even used to hide dead pets in the freezer and bring them up to London for Charlie to work on. When asking why taxidermy has become so popular, Charlie
says she thinks it’s because it’s a bit like fashion. ‘It’s a new and amazing trend that no one has ever seen before and everyone loves it and gets involved. In a few months people will probably go off it, as they do with any kind of trend, and it won’t be cool anymore.’ But Charlie says years later it will probably come back into fashion again – like Leopard print. After a quick history lesson, Charlie tells me that although it was part of the Victorian culture – they were a bit extreme back in the day, and would kill everything they could. After this onslaught both taxidermy and fur were put to bed by various laws and regulations but curious artists couldn’t stay away and as their curiosity grew – it came back into fashion again. If you (like me) have started coming around to the idea it’s important to know where to buy it. The internet has a lot of options but if you’re looking for a bargain
a car boot sale, bric-a-brac stool or even your Granny’s attic might be a better option. One of my first lessons in taxidermy was that – taxidermists do not stuff. This is misleading as they actually remove the skin from an animal, create a model of the animal out of wire and other materials and then put the skin back onto the model. The rules around taxidermy state that if you come across a dead creature and want to have it preserved, you must first decide how the animal died. If you’re sure it wasn’t killed illegally, you can contact a taxidermist and you should have details about where you found the animal and what state it was in. If you visit a taxidermist there will be frozen animals which are waiting to be prepared as well as finished animals and you should be given information for each item. Also make sure you go to a taxidermist who can show you their label and record number so you know they’re genuine. There are thoughts that the rise in popularity of taxidermy may pose a threat to endangered species. As people find out more about it and it appears in bars across the country – the worry is that people will start craving stranger and more unique animals and a black market could develop or even worse – animals could be killed especially for taxidermy. But there are rules to make sure this doesn’t happen. Certain endangered species are exempt from taxidermy and if you buy one you could be breaking the law. Therefore some animals will need a permit before you buy them and a list can be found on the Guild of Taxidermists website (taxidermy.org.uk) and even if you buy something the laws can change – so make sure you check this list each year. If you want to become a taxidermist there are certain rules to abide by. You must be a member of the Taxidermists Guild and it is the first port of call when wanting more information on taxidermy. The guild exists to advise taxidermists and also works with the police and animal charities to make sure those working in this area are acting professionally and legally. It says taxidermy is often wrongly linked with other traders and traders in animals and animal skin. The practice of taxidermy is completely legal and a respected trade governed by strict regulations covered by
the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (C.I.T.E.S). Charlie advises that you need to have a ‘pretty strong stomach, a good eye and very delicate hands to remove the skin perfectly’. But she says it takes practice, care and respect, you shouldn’t be afraid to have a go yourself and practicing with things on the road is a good place to start. She says she has a ‘mind like a magpie’ and can’t bare for things to be wasted. She is quite a hoarder and obsessed with collecting old things – ‘even collecting the dead’ – and this is where her inspiration to become a taxidermist came from. She now holds DIY alternative taxidermy nights which she says came about completely by accident. This year her New Year’s resolution was to say yes to anything and after being offered the chance for a first solo art show she decided to make it quite a performance. She had just been given a fox by her brother and decided to do what she does in private in public. ‘I promised I would only do one live show, but people kept asking so I had to keep saying yes.’ That is how she found her new career and spends a lot of time doing workshops, talks and presentations. Alastair Mackie wouldn’t call himself a taxidermist but does currently have an exhibition on alternative taxidermy. He says as a child he was always fascinated in it and growing up on a farm in Cornwall these materials were easily at hand. He thinks taxidermy ‘has an uneasy sense of contradictory aesthetics’ which he thinks fits in well with the strong contemporary fashion at the moment. Most taxidermists will be artists or sculptors by trade who will have had to attend rigorous training to be able to create such works of art. There are also many stages involved, from measuring the carcass from all angles, removing the skin, and sculpting a model of the body and then sewing the skin back on. If you are interested take a wonder around London’s markets or book an appointment at a live event. Even if you are feeling a little squeamish, it’s an exciting opportunity to see something completely different and an interesting night out for the curious.
Design & illustration by Sawdust
Words by Mark Williams
Tommy (1975) The Who
The Godfather (1972) Nino Rotta
What is a good film without a soaring musical score to really emphasise the significance of when his eyes meet hers across a crowded room, or when the good guy finally meets the bad guy, in the epic showdown to beat all showdowns?
Tommy is the rather daft but wonderful rock opera directed by Ken Russell, with Pete Townshend co-writing and Roger Daltry on acting duty as the protagonist Tommy. There’s even singing parts for Oliver Reed and Jack Nicholson! The story of a ‘pinball wizard’, Tommy is a regular child until he witnesses the murder of his father and is told that he didn’t see it or hear it. The shock results in him becoming the ‘deaf, dumb and blind kid’ who ‘sure plays a mean pinball!’ Tommy gains a sixth-sense for pinball and is soon taking on all-comers in a kind of bizarre musical pinball world championship, beating Elton John who plays his pinball via a piano keyboard contraption which operates the paddles. Yes, it’s as weird as it sounds, but this was the seventies, and it least it makes slightly more sense than Pink Floyd’s entry into the cinematic arena, The Wall, which came along in 1982.
The sweeping strings of Nino Rotta’s composition for The Godfather are as recognisable as Marlon Brando’s puffy cheeks or the phrase ‘I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse’. In a film that is regularly top of those slightly pointless polls where people try to decide whether they like Star Wars better than The Shawshank Redemption, the soundtrack is so Italian it would make Tony Soprano well up as he thinks about the homeland of his ancestors.
Without an adequate soundtrack, most films would fall flat, floundering like a turtle on it’s back trying to express themselves appropriately. It would be like having a conversation with someone but looking at their feet instead of their face. And by good soundtrack we’re not talking a Tarantino-esque ‘pick a load of songs you like that already existed but we’d forgotten about’. It has to be original compositions, tailor made. So let’s have a look at ten very different, but equally superb cinematic audio-gems.
The Wizard of Oz (1939) Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg Flash Gordon (1980) Queen Who else but Queen could have created the musical accompaniment to a film so gloriously camp as Flash Gordon? Without Freddie Mercury’s cry of ‘Flash AAH-AAH, saviour of the universe!’ it would almost be an entirely different film. The action scenes throughout Flash Gordon are underpinned by Brian May’s guitar solos and the voice of the inimitable Freddie. Rarely has their been a greater synergy of music and on screen action than when the Hawkmen are attacking war rocket Ajax and the electric guitar can be heard underneath Brian Blessed’s declaration of ‘who wants to live forever? DIIIVE!’ Saturday Night Fever (1977) The Bee Gees If ever a film could be called a zeitgeist movie, then Saturday Night Fever hit the disco ball on the head. OK, so perhaps only zeitgeist in terms of popular music, rather than prevailing international socio-economic trends, but let us not digress. The album of the soundtrack by The Bee Gees went platinum fifteen times over, meaning that it sold fifteen-million albums worldwide. It was top of the US album charts for 24 weeks, managing a paltry-by-comparison 18 weeks at the top of the UK album charts. It was bloody massive. It propelled the Gibb brothers from superstars to Supermegahumungostars! Stayin’ Alive, More Than A Woman, and of course, Night Fever are amongst the best known of the hits, all of which did very well as singles, as the discos were packed out with people trying to outdo the size of each others flares and Afros. A simpler time in many ways, where you could judge a man by his ability to dance like John Travolta ...
The soundtrack for The Wizard of Oz is a big part of its enduring legacy, despite the fact that a lot of people are more concerned with whether Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of The Moon syncs up with it or not. That it was released over seventy years ago, and we still instantly associate Follow The Yellow Brick Road, We’re Off To See The Wizard, and Somewhere Over The Rainbow, with the adventure of Dorothy, the Lion, the Scarecrow and the Tin-Man proves that it is one of the most iconic film scores ever. This Is Spinal Tap (1984) Christopher Guest, Harry Shearer, Michael McKean, and Rob Reiner The film that turned the mockumentary format all the way up to eleven, because ten wasn’t loud enough. We follow David St. Hubbins, Nigel Tufnel, Derek Smalls, and their ever changing drummer as they let us in to the world of the eighties rock band. Hits like Sex Farm had propelled them to great heights, but at the time of filming their best days are behind them, as they play to smaller and smaller audiences. The album cover for the release of the soundtrack matches that of the fictional album Smell The Glove, which is entirely black. The reason for this is best explained by David St Hubbins: ‘It’s like, how much more black could this be? And the answer is none. None more black.’ South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut (1999) Trey Parker and Marc Shaiman It’s possible that the subtle nuances of Uncle F*cka and Kyle’s Mom’s A Bitch are lost on some. OK, so it may not have the grace or majesty of Morricone, but as Cosmo Brown said in Singin’ In The Rain, ‘make ‘em laugh, make ‘em laugh, make ‘em laugh!’ and the film version of South Park certainly does that.
Tron: Legacy (2011) Daft Punk French electro DJ/robot hybrids Daft Punk were enlisted by the makers of this mega-budget sequel to Tron to give it an audio oomph to match the spectacular 3D visuals on display, as crazy Light Cycles whizz about The Grid. It’s not a million miles away from Daft Punk’s 2005 album Human After All, but then I guess that’s exactly why they were chosen for the project, and it’s certainly different enough to stand out on it’s own as a brilliant piece of film scoring. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (1966) Ennio Morricone When you say 1966 to a football fan, you’ll get a long wistful look into the distance as they remember the last time the England football team won the World Cup. Say it to a film fan though and they may well look wistfully into the distance and whistle you the tune to Sergio Leone’s spaghetti western epic The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. And, if they’re into the film a bit too much they might pull out a revolver from underneath their poncho and shoot you. Ennio Morricone was the man who wrote the music that would help Clint Eastwood become one of Hollywood’s most iconic stars. And while the eponymous theme tune is more recognisable, the song that features at the end of the film called The Ecstasy of Gold is so utterly rousing that it makes the hairs on the back of the neck stand up and salute an absolute grand master of the cinematic musical composition, Ennio Morricone. The Social Network (2010) Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross Trent Reznor is better known as the man behind Nine Inch Nails, but David Fincher drafted him and Atticus Ross in to make the tunes for his film about the creation of the giant, data hungry monster that is Facebook. In the early days though it was much more innocent, merely a way for American university students to keep tabs on each other. The soundtrack is a brooding, darkly ambient affair that never relents in it’s assertion that Mark Zuckerberg and co were on the verge of something bigger than they could have possibly imagined.
Words by Camilla Hunt It is a truth universally acknowledged that certain pieces of clothing never go out of style. Whether it be the justification behind your father’s unfortunate refusal to part with a certain pair of trousers that have remained distinctly ‘snug’ since their last outing in the mid 90’s, or the reason that half of your skirt collection currently consists of varying lengths of leather, it is safe to say that we have all, at some point in our lives, heard this age old nugget of fashion wisdom. Jeans have now spanned a couple centuries since Levi Strauss first had a little thought back in 1873; the necktie lasting an equal duration whilst the savoir-faire of the little black dress allowed it to establish itself as a timeless staple for any female in need of style absolution and the promise that, for just one moment, she and Holly Golightly are one and the same. However, as the cold weather seeks to put the wind up such perfectly preened skirts, the time has come to seek shelter in the form of other classics that look to provide a little more warmth and stability than a humble cocktail dress can provide. Sometimes the best part of an individual’s outfit, regardless of their gender, is not their carefully selected accessory or meticulously polished shoes, but the jacket that brings the entire look together. After all, there’s nothing stylish about freezing to death, no matter how devilishly handsome you may look whilst doing so. Over the years, a multitude of jackets and coats have come and gone, fading in and out of fashion by the time pay day has even had a chance to come around. From the cropped denim that adorned many a pop star in their youth to the floor length PVC monstrosities reminiscent of The Crow and still worn by the odd overgrown Goth that still lurks by the Camden Lock, there are simply some designs that seem
(thankfully) incapable of standing the test of time. And then there are the exceptions. Spanning seasons, wars, and generations, there is an elite quartet to be reckoned with that laugh in the face of their fickle counterparts that are at once iconic, irrepressibly flattering and effortlessly stylish. Worn by men and women the world over, from sailors to singers, let me begin with the first of the formidable foursome.
The Pea Coat Having survived 300 years of naval battles and arduous voyages across the globe, the pea coat remains as popular today as when it adorned the backs of many a maritime man. Originating as a cold weather uniform in many European navies, most notably the British and the Dutch during the 18th century, the term ‘pea coat’ even derives its name from the Dutch word pij, a type of cloth commonly used in the composition of the jacket. Typically, the pea coat is a short double-breasted jacket made of coarse wool; secured by three to six buttons and reserved in its colouring, not often deviating from a shade of navy or black. Throughout history, fashion designers have drawn inspiration from military uniforms such as these as can be seen most recently at Kenzo Menswear SS12. Not one to be restricted by the confines of militia uniformity, Antonio Marras broke away from the homogeneous palette of the forces with a spectrum of floral printed shirts and raspberry coloured suits; the vibrant disorder refined with a touch of smart sophistication courtesy of the pea coat. Even amongst a clash of candy brights, there is simplicity to be admired as the Pea Coat, through its streamline shape and orderly lapels, adds an element of respectable authority to its wearer. That is not to say that I’m expecting men to be
ditching the conservative in favour of fuchsia and chartreuse as the safer shades are still very much in favour as seen at Yves Saint Laurent with Stefano Pilati’s vision of utilitarian uniforms in classical navy and black. The sleek aesthetic focused on darker colour combinations to ensure that the traditional elegance of the coat was not lost to modern tastes and that the designs that filter through to the high street don’t leave every man one bad wig away from an Elton John tribute act. That being said, the Pea Coat is no longer reserved for just the male population. Women too have long been getting in on the act, daring to be a little more adventurous in their colour schemes to add a feminine touch to the naval institution. However, the Pea Coat isn’t the only coat to have survived generation to generation as can be seen in another military jacket that still reigns supreme. The American Bomber The American bomber has undoubtedly stood the test of time. More popular than ever, the perpetually fashionable leather jacket is over 90 years old and, after countless redesigns, is going nowhere. This iconicpiece has roots with World War I, where ‘bomber’ pilots with the Royal Flying Corps in both France and Belgium were amongst the first military to be issued with flying coats. Open to the elements, pilots in the cockpits needed a way to keep warm and in 1917, the US Army’s Aviation Clothing Board developed the first leather bomber jacket featuring a high collar, a zipper with wind flaps and a tight cuff and waist. The fashion industry was quick to take notice of the bomber’s increasing popularity and soon civilians too were donning their own interpretations of the flight wear. Throughout the years, innumerable Hollywood actors have also helped to glamorize the military bomber jacket, leaving the public secretly
Design & illustration by Sawdust
referring to themselves as Maverick or posing as James Dean whenever someone turns a blind eye. In a word, the bomber jacket is cool. And effortlessly so! Men and women alike are drawn to the look of this jacket, synonymous with legends, adventure and generally being a badass. It evokes notions of both the rebellious and the romantic, adding a certain edge to any outfit in an instant without looking like you’re trying too hard. At Prada’s most recent SS12 assembly, the feminine and characteristically pretty were juxtaposed with ‘Grease’-inspired, T-Bird-worthy touches mostly notably in the form of flame embellished bombers and patent leather that added a sharp touch to the pastel pleats and high waisted pencil skirts. Across the menswear spectrum, from Lou Dalton to Christopher Shannon, the bomber refuses to show any of slowing down as it continues to mark its territory as a timeless classic that moves with each passing season. Never staying hidden away in the wardrobe for too long, the bomber can share this accolade with yet another coat that refuses to take a back seat. The Mackintosh Back in the day, the sheer odour of a Mackintosh on a wet day was enough to put just about anyone off wearing it. Today, on the other hand, all it takes is a certain royal to put on a modern day variation in the form of a double breasted beige wool Burberry trench and sales of sizes 4, 6, 8 and 10 go through the roof. Of course, it can be claimed that if a princess had donned even the most heinous of clothing, her subjects would still wear it but, the fact of the matter is, the trench didn’t especially need any help to shift it from the shelves in the first place. First created in 1823 after several trials and tribulations to patent a method of layering naphtha softened rubber between woollen cloth, the Mackintosh, named after
its creator Charles Macintosh, did not always have such a stylish reputation. Early Mackintoshes were drab green and unwieldy floor length affairs that sweltered their wearers due to their nonporous nature. Not exactly the stuff designer’s dreams are made of. Although odour free variations were launched after an improvement by Joseph Mandleberg, it took a good few years to finally produce a truly low odour fabric that served its purpose. However, despite all the problems, Mackintoshes were quite popular in the 19th and 20th centuries prompting a series of development and reinvention over the years, moving from World War uniform to become the raincoats and trenches we all know, and very much love, today. Infamous for its now classic trench coats, the Burberry Prorsum SS12 collection stayed true to the label’s structural identity offering a whole host of tailored raincoats with a Spring twist. Rich beige and earthy tones were interrupted with splashes of forest green, yellow and deep purples – a far cry from the dreary and wild macks of times gone by. From dressing stylish men and women on the street to the roadside Flashers in search of a thrill, the Mackintosh has reinvented itself over time to ensure it truly remains eternal. However, another notorious raincoat too has held its own. The Waxed Jacket Distinctively scented and ultimate accessory of the country side Toff, it is, of course, the Waxed Jacket. Created by John Barbour in approximately 1894, the jacket began its life in the form of oilskins for seafarers and other outdoor workmen who needed protection from the harrowing English weather. By the beginning of the next century, however, Barbour’s durable Beacon Oilskins were becoming legendary. Now iconic of British country life, the waxed jacket, with its unique waxy finish and corduroy collar,
has for generations been worn by rosy-cheeked farmers, pony-mad fillies and people who want to look the part when shooting fish out of a river. Well, sort of. In actual fact, though the jacket has acquired this reputation, it has uncovered an entirely new fanbase in recent years with models, actors, festival goers and those who, quite simply, don’t want to get wet all rejoicing in the age-old icon. There was once a time when the waxed jacket was the natural counterpart to conservative tweed skirts and scarves for ladies who hunted whilst men gallivanted freely in mustard corduroy. Now, however, they are being worn by people like me who shoved one on over a red leopard print dress at Glastonbury to not only tone down my garish attire but to stay at once vaguely fashionable and, more importantly, dry. There is a certain classicism that attracts the wearer; a no-fuss appearance which allows it to pass through the years untouched and unaffected by fads and trends that in turn, just like all the other aforementioned coats, allows it to never fall out of favour. Having survived anything from 90 to 300 years, I think it’s safe to say that there will always be a place for these iconic coats in our wardrobe regardless of what new trends will come to pass. The Pea Coat, Bomber, Mackintosh and Waxed Jacket have out lasted them all and long may it continue. It’s just a shame that’s not the same for the Puffa.
T he My st ic
Photographer: Kenny Mc Cracken @ Create Studios Art Direction & Styling: Rachel Holland @ La Luminata Stylists Assistant: Poppy Salkulku Hair: Caterina Maiolini MUA: Jacqui Buchanan Model: Sarah-Jane Kimberley ‘When I Die, Bury me in the Clothes of My Youth’ Grey Sweater: Me & YU, £28 Navy Ocean Wave maxi skirt: XO Fashion Studio, £486 Corniche Chrono Watch, Union, £130 Gold Acrylic Earrings, Findchitta Finch, £24 Green Wedges: Dominique Kral, Price on Request
Shirt – American Apparell Trousers – Asos Boots – Beyond Retro
Yellow Leather Breastplate, E A Burns, £150 Shoot ‘Em Up T-shirt: Wildfox, £60 Sequin Multi-Colour Skirt, ASOS, £30 White ‘Bullit’ Watch: Union, £90 Zebra Print & Glitter Wedge, Beyond Skin, £153
Black Dress with Sequin Cross: ASOS REVIVE, £120 Gold & Black Fringed ‘Volvare’ Jacket: Alice Palmer, £325 Red Perspex Ball Clutch: ASOS, £65 ‘Rocio’ Hoop Earrings: Union, £155 Glitter Socks: Urban Outfitters, £8.00 Sirene Peacock Glitter Heels: Beyond Skin, £130
Blue ‘Cotinga’ Dress: Tramp in Disguise, £891 Pink Triangle Leather Pendent: E A Burns, £26 ‘Tranquil’ Amethyst Ring: Decadorn, £65 Pale Amethyst Ring: Decadorn, £60 ‘Hands Off’ Red Platform Shoes: Iron Fist, £59.99
‘Galle’ Smock dress: Mungo Gurney, Price on Request Metallic Colourblock Necklace: Nylon Sky, £38 Large Reversible Bracelet: John Moore, £403 ‘Sputnik’ Grey Bullit Watch: Union, £90 ‘Part Pud’ Wooden Block Heels: Irregular Choice, £115
Despite being eclipsed in recent years by the bright lights and allure of London’s first Westfield Centre in Shepherds Bush; Uxbridge Road remains one of the most culturally eclectic streets in the Big Smoke. Coloured with vibrant shops, scents and sounds, this street has (in abundance) the hustle and bustle that defines London living. Home to the institutional yet understated Shepherds Bush Market, where visitors can purchase anything and everything from rare herbs and spices to pets and vintage wedding dresses. The market vendors sell the freshest fruit and vegetable produce catering to the diverse ethnic demographic in the area and the countless food stalls tempt passers-by with unusual smells to challenge their taste buds. For the adventurous food lover, Uxbridge Road is ideal. Scattered with Asian, African and Caribbean cuisines to name but a few, the only problem potential visitors will face is deciding upon where to go. Caribbean restaurant and take away, Ochi’s at 226, is a favourite with locals and celebrities alike, Rihanna has often said that this modest spot is her first stop in the UK when she is craving some authentic Caribbean cooking. This venue is always packed with loyal customers with autographed pictures of famous faces adorning the walls; undoubtedly because of the cheerful staff who always engage in friendly banter with
diners old and new, which is one of the restaurants’ charms. Aside from the appetising eateries, Uxbridge Road has its pulse on West London’s arts and music scene. The delightful Bush Hall at 310 hosts several events, music performances and theatrical shows throughout the year. Originally a dance hall in the early 20th Century, Bush Hall retains its lavish, chandelier laden interior, however, it now hosts the likes of Adele, R.E.M and The Killers on an intimate stage. Across the road at number 7 is the old Victorian library, now reaping successes as The Bush Theatre, exhibiting provocatively entertaining performances from up and coming and established playwrights brings people past its doors. In addition the theatre has its’ own playwright development scheme to which they receive over 1,500 scripts per year and pride themselves in responding to every applicant, to support new and international writers. The playhouse offers a pre and post set theatre menu changing to adapt to the theme of every new performance. Fully equipped as a café/restaurant during the day and a bar into the late hours, this venue offers a nice quirky spot if one wants to escape the hub of activity outside. Uxbridge Road offers an abundance of waterholes for the thirsty visitor; The Princess Victoria, built almost 200 years ago, was Shepherd’s Bush’s first
tram stop and following several years of decline, this gin palace has been restored to its former glory. Now offering fine food and wine, a cigar shop and a decadent venue for events, this gastro pub deserves its high praise and several awards. One would not struggle lazing away the summer days here in its Victorian themed beer garden. Although not technically on Uxbridge Road, The Defectors Weld is definitely close enough for a mention. Walking off of Uxbridge towards Shepherds Bush Green, The Defectors is one of the trendiest spots for late night dancing and drinking in the area. Featuring an extensive liquor menu, with buy one, get another for £1 cocktail deals every day from 5-7 pm (5-11 on Sundays) and DJ sets into the late hours from Thursday –Sunday, clientele of all ages dance the night away under the ambient lighting. Uxbridge road and the surrounding streets offer endless amounts of activities for those willing to overlook its rough and ready appearance. Easily reachable by public transport, the nearest tube stops are Shepherds Bush Market (Hammersmith and City Line) or White City (Central Line) and bus routes 207,427 and 607 run frequently along this road.
If you can’t afford a trip to the Middle East this year then fear not as Edgware Road brings the East to the West at a fraction of the price. A road that most will have unwittingly walked past many times before, due to its location just off of Oxford Street and Marble Arch; this street is so heavily cultured it would not be out of place in an area of Cairo or Marrakesh. The most notable highlight of this location are the countless shisha bars that have opened innumerable gardens to host such activities. Following the indoor smoking ban, many feared that this area would lose the strong Arabian character that it had spent so many decades perfecting. However, most café and restaurant bar owners on this street were determined not to let the shisha smoking pastime become a dying activity, and so emplaced removable windows and shop gazebos onto their entrances to retain the indoor smoking allusion. Walking down this street, one will be subject to strong smoky Middle Eastern scents escaping from the Arabian perfume and make up shops lining the walkway. For Arabic textiles, shisha pipes and literature, head to one of Edgware Road’s many vendors dotted in between the restaurants and cafes.
Middle Eastern café culture is prominent on this road which is almost always bustling with people from distances away coming to meet old friends and make new ones. Everyone appears to know each other, offering warm embraces and jovial handshakes, yet do not feel like a hesitant outsider as many of these people will have formed this friendship over the Moroccan mint tea that is currently warming their palms. For a good cup of authentic mint or hibiscus tea, head to the Turkish Café du Liban at 71, where these hot delights are served in glass vessels rather than china mugs along with heavy amounts of sugar unless instructed otherwise. Team your drink with a sampling of baklava (sweet filo pastries layered with nuts and syrup) and sit outside watching old men sipping cardamom laden black coffee over a game of cards and spot the many passers-by on their way to do the same. Food is served extravagantly along this road, with the main cuisines being Moroccan, Turkish and Lebanese. Maroush at 21 has been serving Lebanese cuisine to the public since 1981 and now has a popular chain of restaurants and cafes. The impressive Edgware road venue is, however, only one of two spots featuring belly dancers for the enjoyment of on looking diners until the early hours of the morning
(open until 2am most days). Families fill the restaurant over two floors during the early evenings, opening up to a younger crowd in the late hours, who sit with bubbling pipes on mahogany chairs, only rising to participate in the music and dancing. Visitors desiring an alternative palatable experience than that offered on a North African menu should head to number 444 where the locally renowned Mandalay Burmese restaurant resides. Award winning Mandalay offers a fusion of Chinese, Indian and Thai food at affordable prices. The adventurously diverse menu is not for the food wary as almost everything here is unique yet highly recommendable and written about across the world. Edgware road is a hub of Middle Eastern and eclectic fusions throughout the year, whatever the weather, and is well worth an afternoon or evening trip to seek out some of the discreet havens not reflected by their exterior appearances. Edgware Road is easily accessible by National Rail, (Marylebone and Paddington), Underground (Edgware road and Marble Arch) and by several bus routes including the; 6,16,32,36 and 414. Words : Emma Galal Layout : Pandamilk
The most exciting Monster in musical the game Words: David Whelan Pictures: Lauren Randolph
When we meet Meg Myers time has been distorted and folded back in upon itself. We sat in West London, drinking coffee, as the sun began its evening descent, whilst Meg, damaged foot and all, had yet to reach midday in California.
Such are the modern conveniences we at Who’s Jack take full advantage of. She’s keen to point out that normally at this time she’s about to head off to work, ‘hopefully my last ever food related job. I want to go straight to touring. I don’t like working as a waitress, you realize how many assholes there are in the world.’ The latest single, Tennessee, from her debut EP, Daughter in the Choir, seems to be a pretty direct reaction to these ‘shitty people’. ‘Everyone in LA is trying to be something they’re not,’ she explains ‘And I’m here just sitting in my fucking sweatpants! Just chilling out.’ But don’t assume that the angst and emotion in her songs directly corresponds to Meg as a person. When we chat she is relaxed, smiley and eager to joke about. ‘I’m definitely being funny in Tennessee,’ she explains when I bring up the differences between Meg on Skype and Meg on record. ‘Mainly I just miss the East Coast and I don’t like it here. My dad lives in the Smokey Mountains and I didn’t grow up in Tennessee my whole life, I grew up all over the East Coast. But I’d always go back and visit him, stay a few months. It’s so pretty up there. I really do miss it. I do love it.’ Right now, she tells us, she’s living up in ‘hipster city’: ‘Some of the guys around here wear – this is mean – really high boots. Are those Doc Martins? It looks a little too much like they’re going for a mountain hike. I have a pair of combat boots, but I only wear them for actual hiking. Made for hiking, not for street.’ There’s a definite Southern appeal in Meg Myer’s character and her openness to discuss the reality of her climb up the music ladder is refreshing. ‘I was pretty sheltered,’ she says when asked about her childhood, ‘so I didn’t know anything about LA. I moved here with a boyfriend 6 years ago. I’m 25 now, just so you know. I didn’t know why I wanted to move – well, it was for the music. We were trying to figure out whether it was New York or LA. He chose LA because he wanted something similar to Florida’s beach vibe. We just wanted to completely get away. I wish we had gone East, but that’s just me.’ Meg’s not exaggerating when she describes her life as ‘sheltered’, by the way. She grew up as a Jehovah’s Witness which, to a Londoner whose only God is a cold beer in the sunshine, seems like an entirely different world. ‘They’re kind of like Mormons, if that helps? I mean that in the way they’re sheltered. I have some Mormon friends and we talk about it. There are definitely differences, though. Mormons, they can have ten wives… But that’s weird. Jehovah’s Witnesses aren’t like that at all. They only
have one.’ Her website declares that she is no longer part of the faith. When we asked her why, she put it down to aging and family. ‘I left because I was a kid, and then I grew up. When I was 12/13 my mum divorced my stepdad, so my mum left the Jehovah’s Witnesses.’ But what about her music? Daughter in the Choir is hard hitting, sarcastic, catchy and diverse. Some tracks, like Tennessee, sound like the little sister of Tyler the Creator’s Yonkers. Others, like Poison, wouldn’t be out of place at 3am on the dance floor. Yet, despite these differences, they all seem to be bound together by deeply personal moments. ‘A lot of my songs come from a dark place,’ Meg says. ‘But a lot of them come from emotion – whether it be sadness, happiness or just dreaming. A lot of times it comes from real life, but I exaggerate my feelings to make them a story. Like, I didn’t kill the guy in Monster [her debut single]. What I mean in that song is that I had to leave the relationship.’ Monster hits hard and it’s undeniably the rawest track on the EP. ‘Monster is my song that is completely true,’ Meg explains. ‘I met the guy that Monster is about two years after I got to LA, and we just broke up in July 2011.’ Does this mean she’s the new Adele? ‘I’ve been hearing that I’m the new Adele. It’s funny. We both write songs about break-ups. But, come on, who doesn’t?’ Take, for example, her song Adelaide, which runs like an observation of a dysfunctional relationship at the point of breakdown. ‘Adelaide is a big metaphor for me. It’s me looking at Adelaide and seeing how she’s too scared to leave. She’s just too stuck in it. I talk to her in the verses.’ We suggest that this sort of self-reflection, complete with fictional versions of yourself and the splitting of character traits could also be the beginning of some larger problems… ‘Haha, yes,’ she jokingly agrees. ‘I’m talking to myself in my music. I’m a little crazy. It’s the beginning of schizophrenia.’ Meg’s career, which has been going for a few years, recently took off thanks, in part, to her collaboration with Doctor Rosen Rosen, who is, we believe, a Doctor of beats rather than of medicine. He’s an experience remixer, having completed official remixes for Lady Gaga, La Roux, Drake and Britney Spears, amongst others. It was a match made in heaven, as Meg’s earlier collaborations, she tells us, ‘never worked out’: ‘I started playing in Florida, playing a lot of
acoustic shows, with people in bands, but I just wanted people to play for me, really.’ Enter the good doctor, with a helpful dose of enthusiasm, craft and a nose for a good hook. ‘I met him a year ago. I just felt like he could really take me somewhere. He just simplified my music – he complemented it and never wanted to take the spotlight. I pushed everything out of my life and focused on making music with him. He’s amazing. All of my EP was written during my time working with him.’ It’s clear throughout our hour-long chat that Meg just wants to get on the road and start playing her music to the listening public. ‘I want to do what I love – music – for a living. I can’t wait to start performing. But we’ve been recording and videoing stuff and doing interviews… I don’t love all the press stuff.’ Shock, even us? ‘I mean it can be fun – depending on who it is – this is great. I’m sitting in my house right now. This is the future.’ Her live shows consist of a mix of direct performances (‘The fans want to hear the songs they know’) and added emotion (‘Play the song with more passion, is my motto’), which sounded to us like she’d know her way around a karaoke stage. ‘I don’t like doing karaoke – I get so embarrassed! On stage, singing my own songs, I feel shy and nervous, but in a really good way.’ She doesn’t come across as shy in our chat or, for that matter, online where her Twitter account proudly declares that, in a game of ‘Fuck, Kill or Marry,’ she’d have sex with Steve Martin, marry Mark Knopfer and kill our beloved Colin Firth. ‘Firth’s awesome,’ she admits. ‘I just wanted to pick somebody everyone loved. I couldn’t actually pick somebody I wanted to kill. But, actually, I think everyone I wanted to kill I’ve already killed.’ She’s also introduced us to the concept of ‘pussy music’, using Coldplay as the perfect example. ‘I can get down on that,’ she says, ‘I’ll always have a place in my heart for Yellow.’ So what, then, Meg, is the opposite of ‘pussy music’? ‘I think that’s whatever has no feeling. There’s plenty of it out there nowadays. I’ve never listened to Justin Bieber, maybe he’s the perfect example. Really pop. Don’t get confused. A band like Limp Bizkit are cool. They have feeling. Heavy metal has soul.’ Outside of the music, Meg spends some of her time tucking into the latest comic offerings of Larry David, Steve Martin
â€˜A lot of my songs come from a dark place,â€™ 37
(‘My Twitter thing about wanting fuck him was a joke, but I do love him’) and Bill Murray (‘Can you imagine a young Bill Murray?’): ‘My favourite show is Curb Your Enthusiasm. It’s had a profound impact on my life. Like, whenever I’m out or I want to do something, I think – fuck it, I’ll just do it or say it, because Larry David would. When I do something
stupid or get angry I say, ‘That’s OK. Larry David would do it.’ Which, to us, is a pretty good lifestyle choice indeed. ‘I think it’s really important for people who want to sign you to really love you,’ she stresses. ‘I’m not going to chase labels.’
We leave her as night approaches in London and the heat of the day creeps beneath her LA windowpane. We tell her we’re off to eat soup. She promises that if she makes it, ‘I’ll buy you soup’. Any preference? Minestrone. Thanks for asking.
GUEST EDITORS : ART : Stuart Semple
mechanics of how a commercial gallery can run. Whilst I’m behind it, its not really my thing, I just help a bit, it’s really about our artists, the visitors and the wonderful team there that makes it what it is. I don’t show my work there or my collection or anything, so it doesn’t feel like it’s my gallery, it’s everyone else’s. I don’t have my name on it.
Who’s Jack have long had a relationship with Stuart Semple right since the early days. It was because of this and his great talent and general kindness and willingness to be involved in the world of Jack that we didn’t think twice about speaking to him about guest editing our art section. If you are not familiar with Stuart as an artist then read on. If you are, then read on. We spoke to Stuart about his most recent show and what he sees as a Game Changer in the art world.
I try not to curate my own projects, my own work. I feel like I’m too close to it sometimes and quite often a fresh set of eyes sets it straight. I love art, it’s as simple as that and I want to work with it in every possible way, when I curate I really work with artists rather than objects and that’s always inspiring and an education. I think it’s healthy to get out of yourself and into what other people around you are doing.
Your latest show - It’s Hard To Be A Saint In This City - what is it about London as a city in particular that makes that statement true?
It’s vital, you need to be tight with the artists you are showing. I start with them way ahead of the show sometimes even a couple of years, and really get to know the project and what they are trying to do, then we can make sure the gallery can facilitate their vision properly. I think because I’m an artist I understand how I would like to be treated by a gallery and what I would expect. Really for the gallery to support a great show it’s all about dialogue with the artists, how you deal with the objects that are made comes a lot later. You need to believe in the artist and the artist needs to believe in you, it’s a relationship and they take time to build.
I love London, don’t get me wrong but there’s a harshness to it sometimes, there’s an edge. That’s what makes it great, but in the face of that stuff sometimes it’s hard to stand firm in your beliefs. Sometimes it can distract you from who you really are. Art is not your only forte, you write too and recently stepped in as the arts editor of Phoenix Magazine that was published to coincide with Fashion Week AW/12, tell us a bit about that? It was really fun! I got to write about things that interest me and we were lucky enough to get an interview with Ghost of a Dream who I admire a lot. It’s a great opportunity to get the word out about art and artists in a different space. Day to day you look after the Aubin Gallery, how did that come about? It’s been quite a few years now and seems to have really evolved over time. At the start it was a shell, the whole building. I borrowed some clothes from Aubin and Wills for a photo shoot and made friends with them, they explained what they were doing with the building and asked if I had any thoughts. It’s changed so much since then. I’m proud of all the show’s we’ve had. We’ve got some really brilliant artists. Obviously it’s a commercial gallery and as that aspect has evolved and our artists have become busier, increasingly I’m closer to the business side than the creative one. As an artist was having your own gallery ever a goal? I don’t think so, I didn’t really have many goals as such. The gallery was really an unexpected opportunity, but one of my core things is about making art accessible (without dumbing it down) and I’d curated a bit before so this was a chance to extend all those things and really re-invigorate the stale
How does curating other peoples work differ from curating your own?
You seem to have great relationships with the artists that you bring into the gallery, how do you feel that helps bring about and create great shows?
You recently exhibited your work in Honk Kong. How does that differ to showing work in London? It’s another world, the contemporary art scene, despite what you read is very small, it’s a fledgling thing. Some of the conventions we have here or that you would expect in a western gallery just aren’t there, which in one way is liberating and in another is terrifying. It’s all about commerce, selling, the market. I think that’s due to the newness of the country and the privileged status of law and science etc... the arts aren’t being pushed, so educationally they are playing catch up a bit, but that will come. It’s opening up at the top end, but it’s still about swapping brand name artists for money rather than incubating and supporting great ideas, which is a period I think we’re in here in the UK. The recession may well have forced our hand there, but we’ve always had a history of radical thinking, eccentric and unique thought. In one way it was hard to communicate with the HK audience, the links to art history that we can take for granted are just a blank wall for a lot of them. Although it’s China, it’s also not really China and hardly any Chinese people came to my show which was sad, I found myself with other Westerners, I didn’t find an art community as such although I hunted... there were glimpses of it here and there but it was really hedge fund people, bankers...
they were lovely too but I didn’t see curators, critics and artists. You use a lot of different mediums in your work. If you could only pick one medium to continue in what would it be and why? Lately I’ve been really drawn into digital stuff and moving image, I’ve not really shown any of that side yet as I’m still a beginner, it’s the thing that’s really pulling me at the moment. If I had to just choose one thing, it would have to be paint though, everything I do I approach as a painter even if it’s sculpture. I couldn’t live without paint. Do you have a different planning process for different mediums of work? Yes, defiantly. Each thing needs it’s own mindset, sculpture for instance most of the time has some degree of fabrication so it’s much more designed whereas drawings or paintings can be a lot less planned and a lot more spontaneous. Likewise with film, if you’re going to go out and not waste your time and everyone else’s you had better have the thing planned properly, right down to when the crew can get some lunch! We loved Happy Clouds ( An art installation at South Bank that released foan happy faces into the sky), are you generally a happy person? Thank you. Sadly not so much any more. I’m increasingly frustrated, and disappointed. Is that what happens when you grow up? Everyone has their ups and downs don’t they? I do have happy times, but the older I get the more I see that the times we live in aren’t that happy for many. Really it feels like the world is too slow and people are too self centered to give properly, that makes me sad. Where is the machine now? It’s at Bournemouth Airport. You always have commissions on, do you find you get commissioned on a broad subject range? When people ask me to make things for them, they don’t really talk about the subject. I do get a broad range of people asking though which adds the variety in what I do for them I suppose. It could be a yacht, it might be a band, it could be a magazine. I do all the art for the Moncler stores which is great fun, they just tell me the size really. Really I don’t think I do commissions in the traditional sense of the word, like a portrait painter or things to ‘fit’ with a decor scheme or something. I prefer to think about them like collaborations, a healthy dialogue that leads into some work, where both sides are contributing something. That’s the way I work with bands and brands. A proper two way process. I won’t make what I’m told, I’ll make what I believe is best for the project. I won’t compromise my art, everything I
make to me has to fit in the trajectory of what I’m doing as an artist, and collaborations are an important part of that story. Your first successes seemed to come relatively quickly - do you feel that’s fair to say? I don’t know, I’ve been doing this for over a decade now and it’s an incremental thing. It’s certainly not got easier by getting busier. If anything it’s harder now. The longer you do it the more involved things become. Particularly with making the work, there’s a lot more pressure on it these days than there was at the start. The stakes are still as high, I still put my all into every show, they are still make or break, every time. At what moment did you sit back and think, ok - this is going to work now with regards to your artistic career? I don’t think I ever did that. Very early on I made a promise to myself that I would be an artist and that was it. That was way back, the first week, before I’d sold anything at all, I didn’t know where the rent was coming from the next week. It was like I’d burned all my bridges and just decided, sink or swim. I just knew I had to spend my time making my work, I’m very lucky that I managed to keep doing that for so long.
You have worked with brands and collaborated with people like Umbro. Do you think that it is important for artists to use brands to create awareness and help allow them to achieve pieces they wouldn’t necessarily have had a chance to otherwise? For me it makes sense, there’s still a lot of snobbery in the artworld about that. Essentially you can’t do everything yourself, and if you click creatively with a brand, I don’t see any problem collaborating with them, if it works, both of you leave with more than you came with. Look at my relationship with Aubin & Wills, that’s turned into a whole gallery! And I’ve designed clothes with them. It’s brilliant. It’s also a very democratic thing, the more mainstream something gets, the bigger and broader the audience becomes and I’m always really conscious not to fall into the trap of making stuff for a narrow niche. Quite often the exciting thing that comes from a collaboration like that is the resource, if you work with a fashion house, or a department store or something, they are just much better equipped, and creatively possibilities start to appear that never did before. If you could collaborate with any brand/person who would it be? There are loads, David Lynch would be a dream although I imagine a nightmare at the same time. How cool would it be to make something with David Hockney? Cyndi Lauper! I want to do something with her.
How would you describe your art in one word? Lonely. What would happen to make you stop doing what you do? I guess it would have to be something really bad like a health thing, or maybe some days I really struggle to think of things to make, maybe sometime creative block will get the better of me. What keeps you going? The work itself, everything I make gives me clues as to where to go next and that’s really exciting. The actual ideas are the things that drive me on, wanting them to see the light of day.
CARLY ZINGER Fashion photographer at 17 Words : LOF Photography : Carly Zinger Model // Elinda Hartin Styling // Jess Zinga
Photographer Carly Zinger is fast carving a career for herself as a fashion photographer. When we saw her work and realised it was coming from someone of such a young age we thought we had to get her involved in our Game Changers issue. So here she is. What made you want to get into photography? I began taking photos as a way to remember my life, as I treasure those small moments that others seem to pay less attention to. I guess this grew into photographing people I find interesting and unique, people that I befriend, and together creating something beautiful. What was the first camera you had? A Sony DSLR. It takes some amazing images, but now it’s getting old, so I am saving up for a Canon. Who do you look to for inspiration? I do look to those big names in photography for inspiration, but also photographers and stylists who are up and coming and maybe not as well known . . . yet. I can see myself in them, as we are both going through the same experiences in the industry. If I had to name my biggest inspirations, it would be Julia Trotti and Lucia Pang. I have watched both of these girls photography grow and seen them travel the world. I can only hope to be somewhere where they are one day. Why fashion photography? When I first started out, I never intended to specifically take fashion photos. I would venture out with a close friend and a bag full of clothes, it was just what seemed natural. This evolved into a team of creative stylists and makeup artists. But I still love going out with a mixture of my wardrobe and the models, and styling the shoot myself. You are 17 and getting some great attention for your work, why do you think that is? I photograph things and people I find interesting and beautiful. I am just glad other people like them as well. When I look back to the beginning of last year, I didn’t know a thing about the industry. I have been so lucky to meet some amazing people that have given me advice and opportunities. All I can say is that the internet is one powerful tool and I am extremely fortunate to have access to it, so I can show the world my photography.
If you could work with any model who would it be? Rosie Tupper. She has such a natural beauty. She has an essence of youthfulness, which I would love to capture in my photos. I have wanted to work with her for a long time, and hopefully one day this dream will become a reality. If you had an unlimited budget for shoots what one item would you definitely have? Haha that is a very hard question! I think that most of the things that I would hope for at every shoot do not cost a thing; the right weather for example. But, it has always been my dream to take photos of a model draped over an elephant. Who do you think are the current game changers in photography? Yes, there are those photographers that are well renowned, with big budgets for amazing shoots. But the real skill is creating something out of nothing. And I think the most creative of people are those that have to improvise. I can’t say any one particular person, as I think it’s the youth of the world. They are keeping those who have made it in the business on their toes. How do you intend to change the game for your own career in photography? Lately, I have been experimenting with underwater fashion photography. It has been an area that not many think works well with fashion, yet I believe it is an area that parades beautiful, fluctuating movement and colours, which is rarely seen on the land. How do you feel growing up on Australia’s Northern Beaches affected your work and inspired you? Oh, where I live is just amazing, and has definitely influenced the way I take photos. With numerous beaches, headlands, sand dunes and forests just a couple minutes drive or walk from my house I can explore my ideas in concrete forms. So the locations I have access to influence the style of photos I take. I am constantly on the look for inspiration. When my mind doesn’t have to think about school, it is constantly looking at the world around me, wondering whether I can use it in a photoshoot. What, for you is beauty? Beauty is something different for everyone. But for me, it’s simplicity, it tells the truth.
You won the Moran prize at 16, what was the image that won it? It was full of emotion. I captured it down at the beach, as about fifty kids played tug of war. You could see the struggles on those girls faces and their determination to win. I cried when I won it! I had never won anything that big before and it was quite overwhelming with all of the cameras around. If you could have your work in any magazine which would it be? I have been reading Rush, Oyster and Vogue ever since I can remember. It would be amazing if I could have my work featured in one of those, to own one out of hundreds that has an image of mine in it would feel great. What do you feel is happening to photography and editorial shoots now that magazines are moving online and print is struggling? I think it has strengthened the industry. More people have access to creative peoples work, which is great for young photographers and artists just starting out. What do you feel are the roles of site like Tumblr and Pinterest for the photographer? Personally, Tumblr has helped me in ways I could never have imagined. Not only did it help me promote my photography, but it is also a great forum for inspiration. What are your plans for the future? Right now I am focusing on finishing high school, then I hope to travel the world, meeting people and taking photos as I go. If you could shoot anywhere were would it be? I would love to shoot in the Greek Isles. The vibrant colours and timeworn buildings have always attracted me. What one thing could you not work without? I always utilize the sun in different ways in my images. It has a way of altering the atmosphere of a photograph, depending on where you place your subject.
PETER DOHERTY Blood and Art
Words: Gemma Pepe Pictures: Peter Doherty
In March at The Hepatitis C Trust we launched a photography competition and asked people to send in photographs on the theme of blood, you can see the winner in a few page time. Blood is a huge theme and open to many interpretations. An Internet search bought up many examples, from menstrual art to Mark Quinn’s recent offering of 4.5 litres of his own blood frozen into a bust of his head. It illustrates the fragility of life; a few degrees rise in temperature and it’s gone. Quinn’s bust to me, is the ultimate expression of self-love and acceptance. Displaying my blood would take on such a different meaning. It would be an aggressive statement and one I imagine would elicit revulsion and fear. With all this in mind I wanted to talk to Peter Doherty about the use of blood in his art. When Peter donated a painting to The Trust for auction I was excited at the audacity of a charity concerned with a blood borne virus auctioning Peter Doherty’s blood art. I welcomed any stick I got for it; I was itching to defend our stance. I got the (then) health editor of the Sun to write a piece about it but her editor insisted she write about his drug use which wouldn’t have been a friendly pay back to a generous gesture, so we canned it. I spoke to Pete on the phone from Paris where he is living now. We start off by discussing a mutual friend and the joys of getting older. I tell him that these days I recommend which nuts to eat to this particular friend rather than take copious amounts of drugs with him. ‘That’s what life is all about’, says Pete.
I start with the obvious question. Why use his own blood to paint with? ‘It compensates for my lack of technical ability, I wasn’t blessed with a talent for drawing so I squirt instead’ Pete says laughing. If you only saw the more abstract pieces Pete has done you might well believe this is true but the crouching model in Salome is beautifully drawn. However he goes to say ‘When life was being wasted and I was unproductive, if I could bang out a painting it felt like I was achieving something’. I suggest that blood is the ‘river of life’, ‘Yes, exactly’, says Pete.
I don’t feel a spiritual connection to the blood once it’s left my body but I do to the images’.
And it’s true, it’s more than been 10 years since I’ve had a drink or taken any drugs but I remember those long periods of recovery after a binge or during times of addiction, being punctuated by a soul destroying moment of clarity when I’d realise what an utter waste my life had become. I can understand Pete’s need to draw blood and get creative with it.
Our talk of Catholicism and spiritualism leads Pete to recall a friend telling him that it’s extremely bad luck to write in red. In fact the Japanese believe you should never write a persons name in red because of its associations with death and the fact that red is the colour used to register a death. ‘This really freaked me out for a while’, says Pete ‘until I realized that the blood turns brown. So something that starts out as one thing, good or bad will transform into something else anyway.’
I ask Peter if for him it relates to self-harm? ‘By default it is self harm but that’s not how I see it. Self-harm implies pain which by definition is painful, it doesn’t hurt me so it’s not self-harm. My parents see it as an insult, like I’m saying here’s my blood and putting it in their face. It’s not supposed to be a voyeuristic thing. When I first began it was out of necessity. I covered the walls of the dingy environments I frequented or lived in with my blood because I didn’t have any pens or paint. And I’d cover the walls because I didn’t have any paper’. ‘I know it’s a paradox to say that it’s not supposed to be a voyeuristic thing when it attracts attention, but it’s not. These days I live a very solitary existence in a private world away from the paparazzi.
We discuss our mutual love of crucifixes, another staple in Pete’s work. They come up in conversation because I mention Andre Serrano who immersed crucifixes in piss. We both come from Catholic backgrounds and wonder if our love of crucifixes and Catholic iconography stems from an atavistic memory passed down from our ancestors as it’s certainly doesn’t come from its values.
Before we finish the conversation Pete promises me another painting for the charity. He’s got a big one in London for us. Just before I go I realize I haven’t asked him how he lets his blood. ‘I use a syringe’, he says. I’m surprised he can get much out of a syringe to which he answers, ‘A little bit of blood goes a long way. Hey, that’s a good line to encourage people to give blood.’ It is too! The Cob Gallery and Guts for Garters recently exhibited Pete’s at 205 Royal College St, London, NW1 0SG
6 Of The Best Films you may not be looking out for in 2012 but which you cannot miss. As we roll into blockbuster season we can expect the multiplexes to fill up with bombastic action flicks, massive star-crammed super hero movies and the very worst in mindless entertainment. However there is so much more happening on the cinematic landscape if you know where to look. Here is our list of films out in 2012 that may not be on your radar but which you cannot miss. Words : John Lynus
THE CABIN IN THE WOODS The name Joss Whedon is usually enough to guarantee a large number of people will have already bought their tickets for his 2012 film (which isn’t The Avengers) and in many ways this film is the culmination of Whedon’s work to date. This is a teenage slasher movie Scream was meant to be. In taking the oft-used horror tropes and subverting, undercutting and conextualising them in a way no-one has before Whedon and director and co-writer Drew Goddard have created a film that goes off the rails early on and throws up genuine surprises throughout, right up until the very final shot. It’s an exhilarating ride, with a number of excellent performances including Bradley Whitford and Richard Jenkins making for a very enjoyable double act as well as the Thorman himself Chris Hemsworth and Whedon regular Fran Kranz (soon to be seen in Whedon’s ‘secret’ Much Ado about Nothing’ project) doing great work kicking seven shades of stereotype from their genre roles. Easily one of my films of the year, make it one of yours too. Release Date: I’m cheating here a little as the film was out on Friday the 13th of April, but it’s the sort of film you want to urge people to see again if they have seen it and to seek out if they haven’t. Trust me, you’ll love it.
GRAVITY Alfonso Cuarón’s space bound disaster film has had a long and arduous bout of pre-production with virtually every recognisable Hollywood actress becoming attached to this film at one time or another, and with good reason. Aside from the opening scene (which will be one long seventeen minute continuos take) the character played by (as it turns out) Sandra Bullock spends most of the time alone, struggling to recover from the calamitous misfortune suffered whilst attempting to repair the Hubble space telescope. Cuarón’s outstanding adaptation of Children of Men in 2006 points to the director’s suitability for this film, the long takes of Clive Owen battling his way through a war-torn London street while the whole world collapses literally and figuratively around him remain breathtaking and there’s much to look forward as the director expands his horizons above and beyond this planet. Release Date: 23rd November 2012
Paul Thomas Anderson’s long awaited follow up to the epic There Will be Blood is finally in production with an October release date in its sights, something that was not always guaranteed to happen given the film’s subject matter. The Master in question is Philip Seymour Hoffman’s enigmatic and charismatic Lancaster Dodd, who starts his own religious movement, dubbed The Cause, which begins to grow exponentially in following the end of the Second World War. With Amy Adams and Joaquin Phoenix in support this will surely be Hoffman’s film, with Anderson’s keen ability of creating compelling central characters around this may, despite the comparisons to Scientology, be the film which leads the race to the 2013 Oscars.
Rian Johnson may be better known for his debut, the high school noir Brick, but if you’ve not caught his follow up then you’re in for a real treat. The Brothers Bloom is a beautifully told and utterly unlikely tale of a couple of conman siblings whose dalliances with the brilliantly drawn oddball Penelope (played to eccentric perfection by Rachel Weisz) take them all over the world and at no time do we ever really know what is really going on. It is with a great deal of critical acclaim and a growing fan base that Johnson offers up Looper, a sci-fi story about illegal time travel and self-immolating hired killers in which a hitman discovers his next target is his worst nightmare. Joseph Gordon-Levitt reunites with Johnson and Bruce Willis joins them for the film along with Emily Blunt and Paul Dano. Like the Coen Brothers Johnson’s take on any genre is guaranteed to be something a little different and his gift for dialogue should make for a far less obvious slice of science fiction. Release date: 28th September 2012
Release Date: 12th October 2012
JEFF, WHO LIVES AT HOME
Wes Anderson returns to the land of the living following his adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr. Fox in 2009 with a typically offbeat tale of young love conquering all in Moonrise Kingdom. The Duplass Brothers return with another wicked spin on family life as they introduce us to Jeff, Who Lives at Home. Jason Segel is the naive Jeff who takes a break from his basement abode and runs into his brother (Ed Helms) whose marriage is falling apart and who leads him on an increasingly unlikely and unexpected journey.
Setting its scene on an island off the coast of New England in the mid 60s the film centres on two youngsters falling in love and running away from the oppressive small town they live in and the small minds which inhabit it.
Taking a lighter touch than their previous film Cyrus this is a whimsical look at the not-so-manifest destiny of characters out of sync with the world. It’s another well chosen directorial step from the brothers.
With Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Tilda Swinton and Bill Murray in the cast, headed by newcomers Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward, Anderson has attracted some serious talent, each capable of turning in excellent performances when the mood takes them, and the director’s unique take on life and love is sure to produce something special.
Release Date: 11th May 2012
Release Date: 25th May 2012
For most 12 year olds a typical week would involve preparing to start secondary school, perhaps a swimming lesson or two and an argument with their parents about going to a friends house after school. But 12-year-old Lil Niqo aka Niqoles Heard-Goodwin is an exception to the rule. He doesn’t have time to worry about everyday pre-teen things like what he’s going to get up to after school because he’s too busy trying to uphold the expectation put on him as the youngest signing to Jay-Z and Russell Simmons’ Def Jam Records, a label that acts as home to the likes of Kanye West, Rihanna and Niqo’s nearest age equivalent Justin Bieber. Signed to the label two years ago Niqo, or as he often refers to himself Boy Wonder, has spent the last few years hanging with hip-hop royalty, walking as many red carpets as he’s presented on, becoming a Youtube sensation and the object of affection for many a music blog. As the issue is our Game Changers issue we thought it’d be rude not to have a chat with the boy who, given half the chance could change the face, and height, of hip-hop as we know it…
Words : Laura Hills / Images : Julia Turnbull Matthew Avestro for lighting and photography tech support.
Even when I was four years old I was walking around with a notebook under my arm that I would write lyrics in ‘Even when I was four years old I was walking around with a notebook under my arm that I would write lyrics in. It was all scribble scrabble and didn’t make much sense but I was obviously into it even then,’ says Niqo when I speak to him from his home in San Diego. ‘I guess it was when I was in 2nd grade [at the age of 10] that I realised I had a talent for rapping. I took part in a school talent show and performed Shorty Like Mine by Bow-Wow and Chris Brown, everyone was smiling at me and it made me feel great, I loved it. It was the best feeling.’ The fact that Niqo found his way into the music industry in some form is perhaps not a big surprise, afterall he was surrounded by it from the day he was born. His mother, now his manager, worked in the industry as an artist developer and would often bring Niqo along to video shoots and concerts put on by the acts she looked after. Spending his spare time watching the likes of B2K and Marques Houston it wasn’t long until Niqo got a taste for a world he wanted to be a part of, ‘I’d watch them from backstage and think to myself ‘I can do that’’, he says of his young ambition. Despite the fact she now watches over his every move – although Niqo insists she isn’t a ‘momager’(Mom Manager) - Nique (or as she’s known on her Twitter page Mama Mogul) was the first to have her reservations about Niqo trying to make it into the music industry at such a young age. ‘She was pretty against it at first,’ Niqo tells me. ‘She saw so many people working in the industry and how hard it was for acts trying to make it. She obviously didn’t want me to get hurt or rejected, she wanted to make sure that I knew hip-hop as a culture and understood what it was I wanted to be a part of before she’d let me have a go at it.’ Niqo’s persistence and determination finally wore her down and Nique took Niqo to meet her long time friend and colleague Kevin Wales. The CEO of Worldwide Entertainment and an industry veteran himself Wales was the perfect go-to to man for seeing if Niqo had what it took. Having helped to discover the likes of American R&B singer Mario Winans and Jagged Edge as well as having years worth of experience helping to nurture the ‘tween’ market Wales was the obvious place to start. It took just one performance during their trip to see him in Atlanta for Wales to be sold on Niqo’s talent and he immediately offered him a
production deal. Leaving Wales’ office on a high Niqo spent the next few weeks rushing through the stages of getting a record contract that takes many musicians years to achieve. He was whisked to meet Bu, the Vice President of Def Jam records – the label that made Jay-Z famous and then made him president – who was so impressed by Niqo’s mature way of rapping that he flew the 10-year-old to New York to perform a showcase for record executive L.A. Reid. In Niqo’s own words he ‘killed it’ and was signed to the label less than half an hour later. ‘It felt amazing, just to go in there and showcase for L.A. Reid was a blessing and walking into the Universal building was crazy. There were pictures of all my favorite artists on the walls, I couldn’t believe it. It’s funny because I actually had a dream the night before that I got signed.’ Becoming the youngest artist on the label which also housed the likes of Frank Ocean, Young Jeezy, Ne-Yo and fellow young-un Bieber it would be easy for Niqo to get ahead of himself even before releasing his debut album but he seems determined not to. ‘I wasn’t an overnight success, I’ve been working on my craft since that first talent show. My management and I worked so hard really grinding and getting me to a professional level, ya know? The fact that the first label I went to actually signed me is crazy especially as I’ve always wanted to be on Def Jam Records because it’s such a legendary label,’ he says as if he can’t believe his luck. For anyone who has yet to hear anything from the young star Niqo delivers his raps with all the confidence and ‘swagger’ of a grown rapper but where his older peers might rap about money, topless girls and clubbing Niqo keeps things true to his age rapping about school, baseball, his dreams for the future and is more likely to name drop his fellow young rapper Lil P-Nut (Google him he’s equally amazing) than any of his more famous label mates. It’d be easy surrounded by an industry full of people much older than him to fall into a trap of trying to act older than he is, especially as he becomes more widely known but for now he seems to know his market, ‘I’m only 12, of course I’m going to keep it suitable for my age! It’s funny though, loads of people think I’m older than I actually am, they say I’m an old soul but that’s not something I tried to achieve, it’s just me, it’s my demeanor.’ In his own words one of the biggest things that surprised him about the record industry was how many songs you have to produce to put together a good quality album. So at such a young age is it not hard to find things to inspire his lyrics? ‘At the moment the things that inspire me are being able to get in front of people and make them smile so as long as I have that I’ll always be inspired. I like to think that I don’t have to worry about running out of things to rap about because as I get
older my fans and I will grow together and while the topics I rap about might change I’ll still try and be a conscious rapper,’ he says.
THE THINGS THAT INSPIRE ME ARE BEING ABLE TO GET IN FRONT OF PEOPLE AND MAKE THEM SMILE When Niqo isn’t recording, performing or indeed being home schooled by his mum he’s managed to find the time to get a presenting stint the BET Awards in America talking to the likes of P Diddy from the red carpet. ‘That was one of the greatest days of my career so far. I can remember trying to sneak onto the carpet the year before to see what was going on then the next year I’m there speaking to my favourite celebrities,’ says Niqo. ‘I’ve done loads of incredible things since I started, another of my favourites was being on 106 N Park [an American hip-hop and R&B music video show]. I always watch that show so then to be asked on it was indescribable. I got to introduce the presenters Rocsi and Terrance and after that I co-hosted the show with them and got to hit a little freestyle on air. Yeah, I’d have to say those two days have been my favourite memories ever.’ Aside from presenting Niqo has also bagged himself an acting job on the Fox Network TV series The Finder, recently shooting an episode alongside the likes of 50 Cent and actor David Boreanaz. ‘I played a young rapper called Lil Jay-Stryke,’ explains Niqo. ‘I got the part by auditioning like everyone else but the shows main actor and David [Boreanaz] liked what I did so much they offered me the part. I loved being on a TV set, I had my own trailer which was awesome seeing as it was my first role and I was only shooting the one episode. It taught me that I love being in front of the camera so hopefully it won’t be my last TV role, in fact, I’m heading to an audition later today.’
I CAN REMEMBER TRYING TO SNEAK ONTO THE CARPET THE YEAR BEFORE TO SEE WHAT WAS GOING ON THEN THE NEXT YEAR IM THERE
But it’s not all red carpets and filming with hip hop stars, just like every other 12-year-old Niqo has to find time to take his exams and go to school, albeit at home. ‘Education comes first! If I’m in the studio or in between shows, the books come out,’ he says with an enthusiasm I can’t help but think it has been spoon fed to him, he has, after all taken on the position of being a role model now. ‘I definitely feel like a role model. I’m a voice for the kids you know? I see it as my role now to bring clean music that isn’t watered down to people the same age as me. I try really hard to make sure that the image I reflect would make my parents proud of me and I do that by not only walking the walk but talking the talk too.’ ‘Quite a lot has surprised me about the music industry,’ says Niqo when asked how he’s finding life as a recording artist. ‘Firstly you have to write a lot of songs for an album, I didn’t realise that. I also wasn’t prepared for people to start walking up to me out of nowhere knowing my name and asking for an autograph. That stuff is crazy but I love it. I can’t say I like everything about this new life I’ve chosen but there are good and bad things about every choice you make and I wouldn’t trade the position I’m in now for the world.’ And what a position he’s in. Nearly 19,000 followers on Twitter, comments on his music video which range from ‘oooow sooooo cute! Your
adorable!’ to ‘this is the freshest kid I’ve seen’ and with blogs written about him that claim he rhymes better than any adult rapper out there it would be hard for someone of his age and experience not to get wrapped up in a world notorious for massaging egos and excess. But not for Niqo. In his downtime he can be found skating with his friends, walking his little brother to school or planning how he’s going to use his new found fame for good, ‘That’s important to me, I want to help stop all the bullying that goes on. I want to let kids know that no matter your age, race or size you can be whatever you want to be in life’, he says. For the rest of the year Niqo has big plans, as well as his first TV stint airing he’s also just about to release his first official single and album. Then of course there is going to be a tour, endless promotion and if all goes well, work on the follow up album will begin. But with all this going on at the age where the rest of us have just started secondary school does he ever worry he’s just too young to handle it all? ‘Never, I was always taught to believe in myself, keep God first and follow my dreams so that’s exactly what I did and because of that I know this year is going to be massive for me.’
ART FOR ARTS SAKE 4 New Rule Breakers... What unites our 4 protagonists this month is an embrace for the internet, social networking and interactive public focused projects. Often existing independently of established gallery systems with a strong thread of humour running through their work, these four exist after the market, before celebrity and for the most part spend their time making awesome stuff just for the sake of it.
MIRIAM ELIA The first time I met Miriam, within a few breaths she’d told me probably the funniest story I’d ever heard. Essentially Miriam had fallen in love with Turner Prize winning, lights-going-on-and-off Martin Creed himself and she had a bonkers idea about a piece of work she wanted to make about it all. Then about a year later, she’d actually gone and done it. Making a humongous light box, in the style of a Take A Break editorial spread. Spilling her poor heart out in the ultimate artworld kiss and tell. Each line a micro comedy, underscored by the tragedy of a young broken heart. Not satisfied with popping the monster up in an art gallery, Miriam took over the Nave, an old church in Islington, adding a sense of religiousness to the worship of her accomplishment. ‘I FELL IN LOVE WITH A CONCEPTUAL ARTIST AND IT WAS TOTALLY MEANINGLESS’ is one of the most heartfelt and hilarious works I’ve seen in my life. Spilling clichéd emotion out on that scale, complete with a choir singing Back Street Boys and clouds of dry ice can’t be easy. The best comedy can be cringe-worthy but one of the unspoken laws of art is to leave that territory well alone. Not so for Elia - she’s a girl with balls. With Miriam, whether it’s her comedy, her collages or video work she’s constantly serving up something new and unexpected. Since the Creed piece she’s turned the other cheek, exorcised her demons and works continue to flow. Not many people fuse comedy with the complexities of conceptual art. When Miriam takes us, via her radio show (for Radio 4) into the mind of a psychotic hamster, or into video pieces where she plays a benefits scrounging bunny rabbit with more kids than sense, in her world we find ourselves challenged, amused and most of all entertained.
(right) MIRIAM ELIA - I fell in love with a conceptual artist and it was totally meaningless www.miriamelia.co.uk/home.html
LUCKY PDF - schoolofglobalart.org : www.luckypdf.com
LUCKY PDF Lucky PDF are a group of artists that I’ve admired for ages, what they do is a lot of fun, always challenging and nearly always totally on point. Just because something is jokey doesn’t mean it can’t be important. Through their internet interventions, live events and online broadcasts, Lucky PDF constantly question what art making can be, pushing the boundaries of materials and acceptance. I love their trashy, has-been detritus aesthetic, but not for it’s irony, rather for it’s pseudo-nostalgic look and feel. Through that it shows us just how far we’ve come from the early days of digital info-graphics and presentations, and at the same time how little we’ve gained. Although it was their broadcasts from last years Frieze art fair that put them on the map, they’ve been making fantastic stuff since 2008. A lot of people talk about video art, I’ve not had a video recorder for about a decade. Digital video is different because it’s cheap and it’s able to be consumed globally at its point of conception. In a time where each of us has the ability to broadcast via our timelines, youtube channels and twitter feeds, Lucky PDF have an uncanny knack of pulling our digital futures together to show feeble metaphors and expose their hollow potential. In one of their most recent projects, they enlisted TOWIE star Chloe to do an impromptu video performance whilst promoting their new School of Global Art. With Lucky PDF, high, low, celeb and social networked culture are chucked in the blender emerging with an early ms windows powerpoint presentation containing very little resolution as to what art making can be, when we have all become hopeless interconnected internet junkies. One thing is certain, their work speaks volumes about where we are, right now, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Turn on, tune in and slob out.
JOSEF VALENTINO - With Josef in Hong Kong www.josefvalentino.com
VALENTINO I first heard of Josef back when the recession bit in hard and he commandeered a shop in Seven Dials, christening it ‘Worthless’ in a nod to the recently defunct Woolworths, where the public could bring their junk. Valentino’s artist friends would transform and embellish the objects, which would be sold back to the original owner for a price they felt was fair. This questioning nature into the true value of art extended into his recent project , ‘Average Joe’, which earns him the rank of Art World game changer general. In a system where the importance and validity of an artist or work is determined almost exclusively by it’s market potential, Josef subverts the whole thing shifting participation from a niche elite to the worldwide everyman. In line with Damien Hirst’s 2012 global assault, the Gagosian gallery staged an international exhibition across all 12 of its shopfronts from London to Hong Kong, Athens, New York and Vienna. Chucking in a door entry bribe for the super rich, Gagosian dished out a stamp-and-keep spot challenge card. Quite simply turn out for Damien’s spots at each space, get the card stamped, and you’ll become the lucky owner of a signed Damien Hirst print. Armed with his own coffee club style Hirst points card, ample airfare from his online supporters, a cinematographer and a willingness for the perils of jet-lag, Josef set off on his adventure. Traversing the globe in a public funded attempt to prove that even the Average Joe can participate in Damian Hirst’s meteoric market price hike. Like our other new breed art game changers, Josef’s knack with social media enabled him not only to gather an international hotbed of support but a powerful group of funders, each buying a share of the resultant Hirst and following Josef’s travels to each Gagosian online. In Valentino’s hands art is not only democratic, entertaining and accessible, it’s played out in digital social situations taking audience participation to another level. From one Average Joe to another keep pushing!
HAYDEN KAYS, The Sun, The Moon & The Truth, 2011 www.haydenkays.blogspot.com
HAYDEN KAYS Roll the clock back a year, I’m in the Aubin Gallery and we’ve been hit by Kays, he’s put stickers all over the shop. A cheap promotional trick that got my back up, especially as a year on the sticky residue has done just that, resided! Despite the fact that from the off he annoyed me, I can’t help but admire the chutzpah of the lad, who sent ransom note style letters to my old gallery manager. In a way he reminds me of a younger me, which despite what it sounds like isn’t a good thing. Anyway, all the antics aside, Hayden has an incredible ability to cut to the chase of an issue. He’s the master of the one liner. He’s clever, a media pundit hidden behind a concrete poet. It’s hard to refine a vocabulary that is so effective and so economical. Like Hirst at his most annoying (and I suppose his cleverest) what marks Hayden out as someone pushing things on, is his willingness to antagonize. Resistance is important because it tests conventions, if he’s brave enough to continue doing it I’m sure at some point he’ll press all of our buttons.
Colouryum is a design, illustration, clothing, promotion and photography company, the sole idea of Chris Cummins, a Bristol legend. He seems to know anyone and everyone withinillustration, the music and club scene. This comes in very handy for Colouryum is a design, clothing, promotion and photography comhim,the as sole you can spotCummins, the newest DJâ€™s wearing Colouryum Tee. anypany, ideaoften of Chris a Bristol legend.aHe seems to know one and everyone within the music and club scene. This comes in very handy for him, as you can often spot the newest DJâ€™s wearing a Colouryum Tee.
I first met Chris at a night called Sureskank, which he promotes, as well as being best mates with all the resident DJ’s. Me and some friends were stuck outside the full club and Chris kindly got us sneakily past the bouncer. This of course meant not only was he a talented fashion person but he was also a nice boy, if you put that together with his illustrative style and colour popping designs he becomes puerfect fodder for a Who’s Jack interview. Sum up your style in a snappy statement! Surreal colour fun. What is your design process? mainly computerised or hand drawn? Predominately computer based. I sketch ideas now and again, but work best playing about in Photoshop & Illustrator. How did you get in to t-shirt design? Through street-art I suppose. While I was doing that I was visiting shops like Alterior (long gone) on Park Street, which at the time were pushing people like Obey and Banksy before they hit
the proper mainstream. This was probably about 10 years ago. It was inspiring to see graffiti and street art as designs on clothing. The first thing I bought from there (and still have) was a Ziml t-shirt which was from a really small run, I really liked the idea of owning something quite exclusive. I think from there it was really about wanting to make something myself that I would wear. It was quite an obvious step after friends asking me to create designs to go to the local screen printers. My-Yard, a popular Bristol boutique, how did you get involved with them and why? I had known the My-Yard guys for some time and had actually been selling my clothing in the Workshop, which was an art/ street wear gallery run by the Fifty Fifty guys. I had some left over tee’s from an old run which I put into their shop when they were just starting out. They were looking to start their own clothing brand and asked me if I was interested in submitting some designs. They really liked my submissions and they ended up selling really well. I have worked with them closely ever since, mainly because I really like their
brand. Whenever I go in to the shop I will always end up buying other peoples designs when a new range comes out. What else do you see Colouryum going into? More clothing collections or collaborations? I have a few more collaborations in progress, and have just been sorting out all of my SS12 stuff. I would obviously love to have my own clothing company but I think for the moment the market is far too saturated, particularly in Bristol. Starting up my own independent label and making it really successful, would take a serious amount of time, money and effort, which I just don’t have at the moment. I would definitely like this to happen at some point though. I am also looking into new avenues other than just screen printed designs, such as material design. Something that I am quite excited about as it will give me the opportunity to a create wider range of clothing. Sight 2 inspirations, one old and one current? Andy Warhol & Keith Haring
Words: Hannah Jenkins
THE LONDON ELECTIONS
Do you care about London enough to vote for its Mayor? Words : Rebecca Rutt / Illustration : Lorna Leigh Harrington
Better off with Boris or better off with Ken? It’s a decision 5.8 million Londoners have the chance to decide on 3rd May and if you live in the city and have any interest in how it’s run you’ll probably be heading to the polls to make your choice on the day. Twitter has been riddled with electoral slogans and has overseen several political battles, such as Boris changing the London Mayoral Twitter account to his own name, while every spare advertising space across the city seems to have been taken over for the race between Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone but which one will you be voting for and do you even care at all? It’s set to be the closest race ever fought in the city and despite Brian Paddick being nominated again by the Lib Dems after coming third in 2008 the main race is between Boris and Ken and is being fought from every angle. However, despite all the talk very few people are expected to actually head to their local polling station on the day. Voter apathy is all to common these days from choosing a prime minister to picking a local councilor and my friends who fall into this group tend to give excuses of ‘they’re both the same’ or ‘it won’t make any difference anyway’ and even ‘I’ve not got time’ but if we were more educated and knew how powerful our choice was maybe a few more people would make the effort. In many countries around the world it’s compulsory to vote such as Australia, Belgium, Chile and Cyprus so every person gets a say – however as some may be voting under duress perhaps it’s not the most accurate system. As a woman I feel particularly strongly about this as until 1918 we weren’t allowed to vote in our country and had no say about its running. But are the two main contenders so close it doesn’t matter who wins? ‘There are lots of things that affect turnout, from the age of voters, the levels of deprivation in an area or even the weather on the day. But our research shows that the picture isn’t always what you’d expect,’ says John Bennett, Greater
London Returning Officer. In London we have the chance to vote for the Mayor, which is one of the most powerful political position outside of Downing Street. The last election was held in 2008 and turnout was poor to say the least. In the mainly conservative areas outside of central London, known as the Tory doughnut, people were far more likely to vote while some inner-city Labour strong-holds failed. When it comes to regions some of the highest turnouts came from Hammersmith & Fulham and the lowest overall was in Hounslow. ‘Some of the most affluent wards in London only managed a turnout of 35%, while some of the poorest wards were beating the London average. And it’s a myth that low turnout is just an inner East London problem too. The lowest turnout was actually a ward in outer West London,’ adds Bennett. A map has been released by the election organisers, which shows glaring disparities between neighbouring areas. For example, in East Sheen in Richmond 29.5% headed to the polls while down the road in Putney Heath in Wandsworth was 60.3%. This hints that if anyone wants to take over the spot from Boris they need to tap into the golden ring around London if they stand a chance. But if anyone’s going to do this it would be handy to know what the Mayor actually does apart from riding around (and sometimes falling off) those blue bikes. The official line is that the job varies a lot from developing policies, setting budgets and generally championing London around the world and I would say it’s really just a figurehead title. The main issues Londoners are concerned about are jobs, growth and the economy so surprise surprise both candidates are promising to cure all the above. Next in line are tacking crime, improving public transport and building cheap homes. ‘The economy and creating jobs is the number one important issue that Londoners say will help them decide who to vote for,’ says Tomasz Mludzinski, spokesperson for Ipsos MORI.
If you’re wondering who might be in line for the next seat it’s pretty hard to call. Early hints show that Johnson and Livingstone are neck and neck but more than 40% are currently unsure of who to vote for signaling that it’s still up in the air. One big thing to know about this race is the personality issue. ‘This election, unlike general elections, is dominated by personalities. Voters get to vote for an individual candidate for the top job - the closest thing we have to a presidential election,’ explains Mludzinski. If you’re not too aware of what’s going on so far here’s our brief guide into the main points from each party. Boris Johnston Slogan: Back Boris Background: He became Mayor back in 2008 and was one of the original Bullingdon Club members while he was at Oxford. Boris has gained a mass celebrity status and is one of the only politicians around the world known by first name alone. One thing to know about Boris – he’s a lot brighter than he lets on and may come across as a bumbling clown type figure but is in fact highly switched on. Promises: Boris has a nine-point plan of what he intends to do for London. This is pretty similar to Ken’s and includes ‘cutting waste at City Hall’ by freeing up £3.5billion to put towards other public services and giving Londoners £445 back by freezing the Mayoral share of council tax. Creating 200,000 new jobs over the next four years and introducing 1,000 more police officers. Investing £221 million to transform local high street, supporting small businesses and creating 11,000 new homes and 10,000 new jobs around the Olympics. Extending the bike hire scheme and reducing tube delays by 30% by 2015. Criticisms: Ken claims that in just four years Boris has increased average bus fares by 50% and many Tube fares have gone up over 20%.
‘In tough times like these, Londoners can’t afford a mayor who is so out of touch while he is raising transport fares on ordinary Londoners and cutting police numbers, he thinks it’s okay to have a second job for himself paying £250,000 a year– an amount he calls ‘chicken feed’ - on top of his £144,000 a year Mayoral salary,’ exclaims Livingstone. Top quotes: On commuting: ‘I forgot that to rely on a train, in Blair’s Britain, is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil.’ On becoming Prime Minister: ‘My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive.’ On how to vote: ‘Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3.’ Ken Livingstone Slogan: Ken’s fare deal Background: Ken was the Mayor from 2000 until 2008 and before this he was Leader of the Greater London Council. One of his main focuses is transport, he is responsible for introducing the congestion charge and he’s known as ‘Red Ken’ in the mainstream press because of his outspoken left-wing policies. Promises: Ken is focusing on transport and
HOW TO VOTE Hopefully by now I’ve convinced you to act and make your voice heard on the 3rd, so how do you go about it? ARE YOU : Living in London / Over 18 ? Then you can vote. Everyone is registered as long as they live in London, are over 18 on the 3rd May and a British, Republic of Ireland, Commonwealth or EU citizen. If you want to do it on foot you can at a local polling station but you must be registered to vote in London to do this. The station will be open from 7am to 11pm and you’ll be sent a polling card before the day to bring along. If you’re not in London you can also vote by post but to do this you should have registered by 18th April through the official website. Finally you can vote by proxy which means someone else can do it for you. All you need to do for this is complete a form before 25 April online. On the day you’ll get three votes on the day, one for the Mayor and two for the London Assembly. There will be three different ballot papers which will list all candidates.
promises to cut fares by 7% this year and freeze them throughout 2013. Single Oyster bus fares will be reduced from 1.35 to 1.20 and from 2014 fares won’t rise above inflation - £1,000 better off over four years. Low-income families will be able to get up to £700 while those earning up to £40,0000 can apply for interest-free loans. A nonprofit lettings agency will be created to reduce rents and provide secure tenancies, campaign for a London living rent, in fact he says that ‘no Londoner should pay more than one third of their income in rent’. Top quotes: On Boris: He’s not one to hold back and called Boris a ‘lazy tosser’. Which he told The Huffington Post UK during a question and answer session: ‘That was absolutely a serious analysis of his work-rate.’ On bankers: ‘If you go into the City, you’ll be on massive bonuses, and able to feed any amount of cocaine habit that you have’ he said. On Boris (again): ‘For Boris, it is about being the next Tory party leader and being Prime Minister. Therefore, rather than doing the detailed nitty-gritty stuff of running London, which involves annoying people... what we’ve had is four years of photo-opportunities, prize-givings, ribbon cuttings and nice fluffy things - while ducking all the difficult issues.’
14 CONSTITUENCIES WHICH DO YOU FALL INTO ? London’s 14 constituencies: Barnet & Camden Bexley & Bromley Brent & Harrow City & East : includes Barking & Dagenham, Newham, Tower Hamlets, and the City of London. Croydon & Sutton Ealing & Hillingdon Enfield & Haringey Greenwich & Lewisham Havering & Redbridge Lambeth & Southwark Merton & Wandsworth North East : includes Waltham Forest, Hackney and Islington South West : includes Hounslow, Richmond upon Thames, and Kingston upon Thames West Central : includes Westminster, Kensington & Chelsea, and Hammersmith & Fulham
Playing It Like Drew Photographer: Nick Polaroid Pomeroy / Model: Kitty Knowles / Make-Up: Jess Taylor / Nails + Hair technician: Charlotte Roberts / Stylist: Bertie Brandes / Stylistâ€™s assistant: Joss Meek
Illustration : Lorna Leigh Harrington
....If the hood fits Words : Joe West
It is the early 1990s. South Central Los Angeles is ghettoised, poor and predominantly black. Gang violence, drugs and racial tensions between residents and the police are resulting in riots and the rotor blades of news helicopters flout the skies and fan the people cold. The desolate caldera left by an imploded society is not as barren as it first appears, with some of the most political, anti-authoritarian music since punk developing amongst sharp-tongued teenagers who live and breathe this world. They want fast cars, ass and justice. The order of priorities varies, but the agenda is generally the same. A yearning for escape, whether temporary or permanent, is key.
property destruction are portrayed as the main aims in some areas of the media. Rock musicians are white, middle class and comfortable with their lot, so disenfranchised youths look to Grime and performance poetry for any kind of coherent argument against the establishment. Even Billy Bragg is touting urban music as the only viable conduit for protest songs in modern Britain. It still has fangs.
a new genre of British cinema is clambering out of the tower blocks of London. It is a genre that has been evolving for a number of years, only reaching the point at which it might spill over into the mainstream and truly define itself in 2011. For the sake of clarity this genre is known as the Hoodie Movie, inelegant and stigma-drenched as that phrase might seem.
The same violence, drugs and poverty issues plague inner city areas in the UK as in the US, and identical creative outlets are being used to explore and document them. Films like Adulthood look at the characters that might inhabit these worlds, with writers and directors only succeeding because their work mirrors their own experiences. While you can question the degree to which such movies match the reality, you cannot doubt the intent of the message.
I didn’t coin this term, but so far the associations have been largely negative because of the garment’s threatening connotations amongst affluent audiences. I’m not going to try and reclaim it or put a positive spin on it, but the Hoodie Movie is an evolving genre with a growing audience and a culturally relevant point to make. In this way its trajectory is inversely proportional to the career path of Danny Dyer.
During this period cinema is twisting its own way out of the concrete. Films like Boyz n the Hood, Menace II Society and Juice emerge, often starring the same musicians that the politicians fear for their rebellious message. It is a new counter culture, albeit one which takes a frying pan/fire approach to life. These films are eventually categorised as ‘Hood Movies’ and although there are still pictures made today which bear lingering associations to this genre, the incendiary messages of the originals make modern iterations seem impotent and staid by comparison.
Unsurprisingly there are films which take an opposing tact, with relative outsiders creating the likes of Harry Brown. With an eye for an eye approach to perceived urban decay, the bafflement of the comfortable classes who cannot appreciate how such an enclave of society can exist in an apparently modern, civilised nation is played out to the point of becoming a fascistic purge. Back in the mid 1990s Falling Down was the equivalent American poster boy for indigenous white collar angst.
It is August 2011. A fatal police shooting in London causes local protests. In the course of a day this is used to justify national unrest, although mindless looting, arson and
Admittedly the racial boundaries are less significant in the modern UK than they were 20 years ago in LA, and the urban poor may be able to access Facebook and BlackBerry Messenger, but the comparisons hold up surprisingly well. Some are rightly claiming that
At first Hoodie Movies occupied a single narrative format. The films which arguably initiated this new wave, such as Bullet Boy and Kidulthood, are gritty, naturalistic dramas that frame the violence and sex which seem to drive inner city existence through relationships between family and peers. They come to depressing conclusions about life for youngsters growing up in this environment and while there are moments of levity, the overriding message is one which presents friendship as destructive, death as ever-present and the privileged classes as exploitative and prejudiced.
While these films are dark and gloomy, they manage to maintain a youth appeal because the light of judgement does not fall directly upon the main characters, who are victims of their environment as well as products of it. Kidulthood in particular does a great job of punching upwards and criticising those who deserve the ire of the audience while letting us make our own minds up about the shattered innocence of the 15 year old protagonists. It features a slimy coke-snorting TV actor, a drug pushing suburbanite who parts with free weed for blowjobs and a posh white boy (played by Nicholas Hoult off of Skins) who is painfully incapable of socialising with the kids who live just a few miles from his gravel-rimmed homestead. Kidulhood’s 36 hour timeline has led to critics claiming that the dramatic events are compressed to the point of implausibility, but the restrictions of the medium and the attention span deficit of modern audiences makes this necessary and actually adds intensity to the cacophonous crucible of the events it depicts. Its sequel Adulthood follows a similar template, but is perhaps less successful as a result of its laurel-resting and the vats of testosterone, which appear to fuel every character regardless of their gender, threaten to drown the subtleties of the plotting. Laugh it Up With the groundwork of the genre established it has been possible to produce films which hybridise and even parody it. Anuvahood was released this year and although it is not exactly at the sophisticated end of the comedic scale its attempts to satirise the tropes of Hoodie Movies are at least satisfying for the young audience at which it is aimed. It has been compared to Ice Cube’s Friday, although it is a little more like the scatological Wayans Brothers spoof Don’t Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood. Except with cameos from Levi Roots and Richard Blackwood. Exploring problems through humour can be as cathartic as using drama, but Anuvahood’s style is less Four Lions and more Beverley Hills Ninja. Its opening minute best encapsulates the Hoodie Movie style, lampooning the browns and greys which permeate the colour pallet of films in this genre and showing a young man being encouraged into violence through peer pressure. A brief, humiliating punch punctuates the hubris of his convictions and actually restores colour and vibrancy to the world of the film, which is lacking from most dramatic portrayals of life in London. It has youth appeal stamped all over it, which is a patronising way of saying that it might not be for everyone. But then the Hoodie Movie is rooted in the exploration of the teenage years, at which point emotional maturity is not guaranteed.
Urban Nightmare One of the highest profile Hoodie Movies of 2011 was Attack the Block, Joe Cornish’s alien invasion horror-comedy which managed to shoehorn some social commentary into a package that was predominantly promoted as being a spoof. What audiences actually got was a tense, unsettling sci-fi thriller which forced the victim of a mugging (Jodie Whittaker) to team up with her attackers. The presence of Nick Frost’s bedraggled drug dealer and his gangly student stoner customer seemed slightly incongruous, as these were characters played for laughs, unlike the youth posse that was authentically constructed and then put into preposterous situations. This was the film’s only major weak point, but it otherwise proved that action, humour, horror and heart can coexist in this genre. While Attack the Block is certainly a high point, 2011 has also seen something of a commoditisation and distillation of the formula laid out by Kidulthood. Sket, which is from the same team of people that created Anuvahood and 2010’s pseudo-apocalyptic riot simulator Shank, borrows the gender spanning aggression, violence and criminality of its predecessors, but packages it in a way which does not invite reflection or incite any moral questions. Instead its revenge-thriller plot encourages the viewer to relish the bloody trail of bodies it leaves or, if you have a conscious, just feel a bit sad about the whole thing. Harry Brown springs startlingly to mind again. It’s as if I’ve not fully excised the demons planted in my head by that film. I think the British film industry is still waiting for its La Haine and it might never get it. Perhaps we have jumped straight to the watereddown action spaff of District 13. Which is why it might be worth looking away from the big screen and turning to the little one in your house if you want to see where the influence Hoodie Movies are seeding will bloom next. Medium Rare Anyone who loves film must appreciate the restrictions that the medium places upon the narratives it can convey. About a decade after the Hood Movie genre got a foothold in the US a TV show called The Wire emerged. You may have heard of it. Over the course of five seasons and hours of screen time it told a rich, deep story of life in drug-stricken Baltimore from every conceivable angle. In the UK the ubiquitous Ashley Walters has been attached to similar projects for the small screen. Telling Hoodie Movie-style stories on the TV allow for the makers to insert breathing space between the bouts of machismo and action which define big screen iterations of urban filmmaking in modern Britain. Top Boy is the most recent televisual outing for Walters and features an extensive roster of characters, covering school age kids and neighbourhood thugs to social workers and parents. The lack of a police perspective acts as the only exemption from this world, which could be seen as reflecting the block-dwellers’
animosity towards them or, as is more likely, was necessary due to a limit on the amount of screen time and research available to writer Ronan Bennett. Covering four 50 minute instalments, Top Boy still fails to stack up to US series in terms of length, but this gives it a significant advantage of the cinema-shackled Hoodie Movies. Of course the intention of Kidulthood is to abridge the experience of being an inner city teen into a curt narrative which condenses and exaggerates the lifestyles of its characters, arguably distorting them but making for a compelling if unrealistic experience. On the other hand Top Boy has almost triple the running time available to it and focuses on the monotonous, oppressive atmosphere of boredom and inaction which swarms around the young characters in Hackney. For example, when the main gang is instructed by drug dealer Dushane (Walters) to stake out various locations at which a rival may appear, the youths gamely obey. They have accumulated the skills of watching and waiting throughout years of directionless stasis on the estate. Even the youngest members, two 11 year old boys, sit obediently and share packed lunch items while they wait to essentially sign a man’s death warrant. These actions also highlight the degree to which an animalistic mentality governs the youths, with alpha males anticipating compliance and individuality greeted with mistrust. To dismiss Hoodie Movies as tabloid fodder while Top Boy is targeted at a broadsheet audience would be to oversimplify things. Any genre will have its stand out exemplars and its shallow cash-ins and we have perhaps reached a point at which this is particularly obvious amongst urban-oriented films. As long as there is an audience for them there will be works which fit Hoodie Movie profile. But I’m not profiling. That would be narrow minded. Hoodie Movie Glossary Sket – The equivalent of a double whore Wa gwan? – Hello. I know you well enough to not stab you immediately, but may do later. Clart – Blood clot, used as a familiar greeting and an insult. Not a portmanteau of ‘clever’ and ‘art’, which is how I’ve been using it. Dis – Short for both ‘this’ and ‘disrespect’. Not to be confused with the town in Norfolk. Chim chim cheroo – A sexually aggressive chant made from rooftops.
GAME CHANGERS MADE IN ENGLAND Dr Martens switched up the shoe game for girls (and boys) who wanted the perfect combination of heritage and lout. The heavy rubber soles stomp all over your floppy canvas trainers with the smoothness of an American Spirit covered in butter. I got my first pair at the difficult age of 15 and believe me things were way less difficult when I had the equivalent of two hammers on my feet. Now available in an extensive range of colours and styles, you can find the perfect riot shoe for you. Just make sure you’ve got the guts to back it up - Dr Martens take no prisoners.
PRETTY KILLER Meadham Kirchhoff successfully established themselves as game changers when they sent tye-die rainbow hair, frothy petticoats and gothic veils down the runway for Spring 2011. Championing girl power and self-expression over the ‘shut up and don’t eat that’ ethos of the fashion industry, Edward Meadham and Benjamin Kirchhoff deserve big glittery medals for injecting a shot of energy into what has become an increasingly monotonous market. Forget the perfect leather jacket net-a-porter wants you to buy, this kind of design is all about breaking rules and kicking ass. While their main line is not for the weak of wallet, MK have designed multiple capsule collections for Topshop, the last of which mixed flowers, stripes, lace, and skeleton print knee-highs with equal measures of Marilyn Manson and My Little Pony. A designer who doesn’t discriminate? Game changer.
ALL THAT GLITTERS JANZ AND COOPER Established in London 2010, Janz and Cooper provide some much needed respite from Rayban’s monopoly over the sunglasses market. Manufactured with artistic precision in England, their frames come in three shapes and an array of colours and patterns. The Oh Nico! are a big acetate hungover dream come true. Mine are glued to my face all weekend. Forget wearing the same sunglasses as every other douchebag you know and set the standard with a pair of these game changers. You’ll be whisked away on a jet in no time.
Scared of sequins? Welcome to the club. In fact not only am I afraid, but I also can’t avoid the red carpet Soap Awards associations my brain loves to project onto anything remotely sparkly. Step in Ashish. The first and only designer to make sequins better than okay, better than great, I’m talking perfection. It’s hard to describe the effect Ashish has had on London fashion without getting all misty-eyed. The Indian born designer brings an apathetic kind of cool to his collections, despite a celebration of colour, texture and print more daring than virtually anyone else out there. How he manages to make sequin sunflower print smocks and straw boaters look totally bad-ass is beyond me. But boy does he manage.
PAM HOGG'S UNITED QUEENDOM You know when chicks rock that fluorescent hair like it’s *their thing*. Yeah, it’s totally not. Pam Hogg’s been owning the acid punk aesthetic since their mums were into Lionel Ritchie. Now easily identifiable for its love of PVC and stoned it-girls, Hogg’s line has been a paradigm of London dissent for over thirty years. Almost sickeningly cool, the super-sexy super-DGAF (oh yes) attitude her clothes embody would succeed in making even the meekest look mean. And hot. While you’ll probably never be able to track down/ afford anything from her latest collections, there’s always Ann Summers and home bleaching kits to tide us over. Long live punk rock.
SADIE FROST How Madonna Influenced Me Words: Sadie Pictures: Samuel Bradley I remember being 15 when Like A Virgin came out and Holiday. I remember seeing Madonna as being very cheeky, very sassy. Although I always dressed in things like ruffled skirts, long johns and skirts over leggings for me she really affected my style when she began to make it acceptable to wear lingerie as outerwear. After this I collected hundreds of slips. I have a pink one that is very reminiscent of when John Paul Gaultier was designing her outfits. Madonna would do things like wear slips or suspenders over jeans and that’s what I began to do too. What I liked about what she was doing was the androgyny of it all. I liked the way she was able to combine both masculine and feminine fashion items together and make it look great. Madonna also accessorised brilliantly, her bowler hat for example in particular. I of course have a bowler hat! I think she had balls to do something that very few women in pop were at the time, being that adventurous. Madonna also of course firmly brought leggings to the forefront of fashion. I have worn leggings through out their rise and fall and rise again into favour. 6 years ago I was photographed in leggings with a headline saying sack the stylist, now they are everywhere. Madonna was the first person to do something like wear just a leotard on stage, or lacy knickers over tights. People like Lady Gaga and more do the same thing now of course though I do think that it’s gone a little too far now. Another accessory Madonna introduced to me was the small gloves. You can make these just with bits of fabric as she sometimes did. I collect loads of bits of fabric I like because you can do so much with them. Belts, legwarmers... The classic 501’s are another item that can thank Madonna for their popularity along with faded and ripped denim. I’ve not got any 501s but I do have plenty of stuff that has derived from them. I think it’s basically about expressing your sexuality with your style as well. Madonna mixed modern, retro and vintage, brilliantly together. This inspired me to collect a lot from markets and all over the country. I’m always looking out for great vintage markets and shop finds. The final thing I took from Madonna was her love of ankle boots. I am not one for girlie high heels so an ankle boot it perfect for me. Little ankle boots or pixie boots with fishnets and a romper or something, perfect.
London’s top pubs with outdoor spaces
Rebecca Rutt When the temperature rises Londoners can be found flocking to the nearest patch of sunlight to try and soak up some warmth and bring some colour to their generally pasty skin tones. And while enjoying the rare bursts of warm weather the best accompaniment is good friends and cold drinks. Across the city there are pubs and bars filled with sun lovers and if you can get in early enough you can guarantee yourself an afternoon of beautiful weather and good company (as long as the rain holds off). Here’s our list of London’s top drinking holes to catch some rays in.
The Vine www.thevinenw5.co.uk 86 Highgate Road, NW5 1PB A trip to Highgate is not complete without a stop at The Vine which reopened last July and now offers one of the best pub gardens in London. Serving up your typical gastro pub-style grub it has a huge outdoor terrace area, which is ideal for a hot sunny day. The outdoor area is covered with elegant white umbrellas and if you squint your eyes slightly on a warm day you can almost convince yourself you’re somewhere in the south of France rather than a North London pub. If it’s fully booked try The Flask down the road for some outdoor drinking.
The Spaniards Inn www.thespaniardshampstead.co.uk Spaniards Road, Hampstead, London NW3 7JJ 0208 731 8406 Both beautiful and historical this pub has a lot to offer. It’s mentioned in Dickens’s The Pickwick Papers, and apparently Keats wrote Ode to a Nightingale here so what better place to while away a few hours and perhaps come up with something creative. It looks a bit like a country pub you should find while hiking through the South Downs but is handily situation in Hampstead. The food is excellent and there are specialty beers, real ales and ciders on tap, and excellent jugs of pimms for you to enjoy while sitting in the large garden which looks out onto the Heath.
Faltering Fallback www.thefullback.co.uk 19 Perth Road N4 3HB Windmill www.windmillclapham.co.uk Clapham Common South Side SW4 9DE 020 8673 4578 Both a hotel, restaurant and pub the Windmill is a good spot for anyone south of the river on a sunny day. Not only has it got an extensive wine list and tasty food menu but you can opt for plastic cups for your drinks and take them onto Clapham Common if you wish.
This pub is a local favourite of mine, which is the kind of place you’ll only really find out about if someone tells you. It’s a ten-minute walk from Finsbury Park tube and nestled on the end of several residential streets. The Irish pub is massive and has several different sections including a thai restaurant and a mainly-sports dominated bar but the main event is the garden area. It’s spread on several different levels of decking so you can find a big table for you and your friends or perhaps a quieter area for a couple. It’s a real hideaway but make sure you get there early if you want a seat.
The Dickens Inn www.dickensinn.co.uk Marble Quay E1W 1UH Being stuck in your office when it’s nice inside can be torturous – especially when you know how unreliable our British summers can be. So if you work in the city and want a spot of lunchtime sun bathing head to the Dickens Inn. The beer garden is beautiful and has two different decking levels covered in bright flowers with a beautiful view over the docks. The only problem will be trying to leave and heading back to the office.
The Herne Tavern www.theherne.net 2 Forest Hill Road SE22 0RR 0208 299 9521 If you want a good garden with enough space even when London is experiencing a heat wave this is it. It’s huge and despite being promoted as ‘family friendly’ there’s still a lot of people without kids enjoying the good quality pub food and beautiful outdoor space.
G A B Y M N I s e S ' d n T a r A B H e W Berti thicker. Tippex eat your heart out.
Bumble + Bumble Brilliantine:
This makes you look like you’ve been dragged backwards through the sexiest hedge ever. It gives you hair like the girls you hate.
Smells like soap and Valentines Day.
Rub this under your eyes for that hot Queen of the Damned thing I know you’ve got going on.
Barry M Nail Varnish in Matt White:
Sally Hansen Hard as Wraps:
This will actually make your nails longer and thicker. Combine with aforementioned varnish and never look back.
Barry M Small Body Glitter Gel In Silver:
You’ll be amazed at how much having a few specks of glitter on your face makes boys want to kiss you. Break some hearts.
Crazy Colour Hair Dye: Always
have a couple of bottles of this super cheap semi-permanent hair dye handy for when you or you friends have bad break ups and need immediate distraction material.
For hangovers. Duh.
Palmers Cocoa Butter Lip Balm: Keeps ya silky.
Manages to make nails look longer and
Beauty Icons Beauty Icons There is an exclusive club that exists amongst those in the beauty know. Its members are vast, and they are all extremely secretive. But, take a peek inside their bathrooms, and their make-up bags and you will discover the membership benefits of a lifetime. The cult of beauty has its own special membership products. Products that have stood the test of time, and become a part of life for many people. Iconic, and enduring, these treasures have stood firm in the world of beauty, and will give you the ultimate key to a more beautiful you. Words : Luke Stephens Ilustrations : Kia Simpson www.makemeupkia.blogspot.com
Midnight Secret, £64.50. Guerlain, a very well established premium French brand, famous for many things, have a secret. First released in 1990, The secret is this. Tiredness is no excuse for not looking your absolute best. The Midnight Secret container is a smart glass bottle in which sits a revitalising elixir with added Blue Gold no less, to fight signs of dullness after heavy nights, or just pulling the odd late one, this cream will re-energise your skin into looking like you have had a decent nights rest. I find it’s also an excellent post flight treatment. This staple of the skincare range at Guerlain has stood the test of time and continues to be a favourite amongst party-goers and workaholics alike. Creme de Corps, from £8.50, Kiehl’s. Founded in New York City’s East Village in 1851 by the Kiehl’s family, Kiehl’s apothecary style bath, body, and skincare products have been a firm celebrity favourite for many, many years. Famous for their no nonsense approach to things, right down to the packaging, Kiehl’s uses their extensive knowledge of the pharmaceutical, herbal, and medicinal world to inform their product development. Since the early 1970s Creme de Corps body moisturiser has been the most visible hero product of theirs for nearly 40 years, and not least because of it’s yellow colour. As a testament to its greatness and the integrity of the Kiehl’s family brand, when a well known beauty editor complained that it stained her bath robe, she was informed that it was designed to be as beneficial to the skin as possible, and not with a bathrobe in mind. Ultimately, so pleased with the amazing hydrating, and softening results of this iconic body cream, she continues to use it to this day.
No5, Chanel, from £45. There is only one No5. A true beacon in the fragrance world, it is something of a benchmark by which all other fragrances are measured. The best selling fragrance in the world since the 1920s, it has beguiled many a lady including the likes of Marilyn Monroe who famously declared that in bed, she wore nothing but a few drops of No5. The perfume has a history studded with legend, and a slight air of mystery. Was it called No5 because it was the fifth sample Coco Chanel tested? Or was it No5, because she was the fifth sign in the zodiac? We do know that it gained massive notoriety on the far shores of the US before the rest of Europe. When France was liberated in 1945, American soldiers apparently lined up outside the famous Rue Cambon boutique to grab a bottle for their wives back home. And such was and still is its appeal, that The New York Museum of Modern Art has had a bottle in its permanent collection since 1959. With its simplicity, no more decorated than a lab flask, and its ‘stamp’ label, every woman that owns a bottle has a story of their own to tell when it comes to Chanel No5.
Hoola, Benefit, £23.50 Who doesn’t want a tan? Benefit claim that Hoola will give you a natural sunkissed bronze SO natural, that no one will know it came out of a box. This famous bronzing powder has won countless awards, and remains one of the best out there. The UK premium markets best selling bronzer (source NPD) with its funky Tiki styled box, and handy brush included, it’s the perfect size for any handbag. It celebrated its ten year birthday last year and is still on their top selling list after all this time.
Touche Eclat Touche Eclat,Yves Saint Laurent, £25 Celebrating 20 years of exhistance, YSL’s Touch Eclat ‘envied copied, but never equalled’ is the number one selling beauty product in the UK. Commonly mistaken for a concealer, it is a complexion enhancer, and highlighter. Designed to eradicate dark areas on the face and bring radiance where it encounters signs of fatigue. A revolutionary delivery system with its click pen and brush applicator, you would be hard pushed to find anyone, male or female, who has not at least tried this innovation in beauty. 1 is sold every 10 seconds somewhere in the world, and the product has an average of 350 Google searches every day, safe to say it’s still going strong.
Revlon Nail Enamel, £6.49. Revlon were the inventors of Nail Enamel during the great US depression in 1932. They created a line of nail enamels using pigments instead of dyes for a much needed boost to the world of beauty with a long lasting, opaque colour. Celebrating 80 years this year, Revlon Nail Enamels have been a staple part of the beauty industry, and encouraged women to match ‘lips and tips’ with samey colours for lips and nails.
Eve Lom Cleanser, from £30 When this cleanser launched, it revolutionised the beauty world. With a large celebrity client base, facialist Eve Lom believed that good skin was achieved with a more holistic approach to lifestyle, and diet. Good preparation of the skin was essential to the Eve Lom philosophy of skincare. She revolutionised the beauty industry with her cleanser. Its lymphatic massage, and hot cloth system have now become a must have for many, many women around the world. Designed for all skin types, and containing a unique blend of four aromatic oils, this one product does it all. Cleanses, tones, lightly moisturises. With its multi award winning status, it has stood the test of time and continues to be the beauty secret of many a beauty cabinet.
Elnett Hairspray, from £3.56 for 200ml. The famous ‘Golden Godess’ hairspray. Seen backstage at practically every fashion show, and shoot, Elnett hairspray has been a staple in the kit of any hairstylist who knows their salt. 50 years old this year, it has taken on many changes to its external appearance, but the formula remains the same. This go to hair laquer’s scent is unmistakeable, and its hold and famous micro-diffuser technology will continue to ensure its place on dressing tables around the globe for many more years to come.
Lancome Hypnôse Mascara, £20.50 A relative newcomer, launched in 2004, this sell out mascara has sat comfortably inside millions of women’s make up bags ever since. Lancome, the go to brand for any mascara, created a slightly curved brush and formula that promises not to cake or flake, to take you from day to night, with up to 6 x more volume. If you haven’t tried it yet, why not? Advanced Night Repair, from £41. Back in the early 80s, Estée Lauder was the pioneer in creating a skincare product that works whilst you sleep. Designed with regeneration in mind, and an innovative formula that saw right into the effects of damage caused by the environment it is having it’s 30th birthday this year. Many a beauty expert’s secret weapon against skin damage, both past and present, and premature ageing, Advanced Night Repair is still the number one selling serum, and has won countless awards over it’s 30 year history.
Beauty Eight HourIcons Cream
SWEZA The Modern Artist
Words: Nicky Baird Images: Sweza
Artist Sweza is the first of the Red Stripe artists involved in the Make With A Red Stripe Project that has created an exclusive ‘Game Changer’ image just for us and you, the reader. Where do you live?
I am Berlin based but I have also lived and worked in Boulogne.
Tell us a little about your work?
I have a classical graffiti background. In 2000-1 I started to do more street illustration and urban interventionist work but over the last four years my work has become a lot more conceptual.
When did you realise you had a talent?
When I was three years old and I decorated the walls of my parent’s apartment. I think they were happy that I’d used wax crayons because it could be easily removed! I have always been curious- curiosity has made me do lots of things- things like skate boarding as well as graffiti.
What inspires you?
That’s a very hard question! I am inspired by life, by the streets, angles, holes in the wall, architectural details, structural details- what happens to them, how they age, how they are deconstructed – the metamorphosis of the city. I am also inspired by ideas, when I was younger the books ‘Spray Can Art’ and ‘Subway Art’ completely blew me away, it was so exciting to see what was going on in New York, what Don D White, Seen and Lee were creating. I didn’t really understand it but by making work inspired by it I tried to understand. I have always been fascinated by typically masculine hobbies like graffiti, hip hop and skate boarding. The internet also gives me an ideas boost, images and information can be shared instantaneously, there’s so much out there- it’s crazy!
What are the tools of your trade?
Initially, when I was a classical graffiti artist I used spray cans, pens and paper as my work was very illustrative. More recently I have used tiles and cctv cameras. As my work has become more conceptual, it is the idea which defines what materials I use.
Do you have any notable fans?
It’s hard to say! I often get good feedback from people over the internet and that’s great, that’s what I’m looking to achieve.
Tell us something no one knows about you?
Another hard question! I’m a very open person; I have no secrets left to tell! I like playing video games, but everyone knows that!
Do you have any UK shows coming up? No, but any invites are welcome!
Tell us about the piece you’ve made for Who’s Jack?
I have made a ‘Q Radio’- a new and improved version of the ghetto blaster piece I have made previously. The first generation used a Q R code to play only one track, the new Q radio uses the same technology to play a different track every day. The tracks I use are songs by friends of mine who are musicians- laid back hip hop beats, trip hop, and electronic music mainly. I am possessed by concept of interactive street art, I am also fascinated by today’s digital hacking culture. I am the worst computer programmer though so I have resorted to analogue hacking. Q R codes allow me to hack urban equipment. I recently hacked the Abbey Road crossing, putting up a street sign saying ‘Watch your step’, underneath which was printed a code which could be scanned (using an android phone) and would mean that you could see yourself on your own screen. There will be a limited edition of 100 pieces signed and numbered of Sweza’s Q Radio design for Who’s Jack. Find out more about Sweza at www.sweza.com Find out more about the Red Stripe project at www.redstripe.net
INSTRUCTIONS FOR IMAGE ON PAGE 119-120 The exclusive image produced for Jack is a new and improved QRadio which changes itâ€™s music daily. 1. Scan QR Code with your smart phone 2. Load data 3. Place phone in position over where a cassette would normally be on the image 4. Enjoy
GUEST EDITORS : FASHION : ADA ZANDITON
desirable, wearable collections. I feel that every season I learn more about her – my customer and I feel that I learn more about myself, as a designer and that each season the collections are stronger because of that.
We have watched Ada Zanditon as she climbed the ranks at London Fashion Weeks and got more and more attention for her geometrical visually arresting designs. Who better to talk about game changers? What three things would you say you need to become a fashion designer? Heart, brain & lungs – because you need to follow your heart, be of a strong mind and remember to breathe. I would also highly recommend pencils. What was the first item you made? The first ‘garments’ that I made were when I was 5 years old – custom designs for my Barbie doll made of multicoloured tissue paper and sellotape. I particularly remember the pastel flares because I still seem to have the same agenda )SS12 Poseisus). I just have now upgraded to finer materials & more sophisticated forms of manufacturing. What was the first item you saw that made you want to be a fashion designer? No one particular item - I had a childhood obsession with Vogue or any other fashion magazine I could get hold of – from the age of 5. Designers that I remember first capturing my curiosity and whose work I could recognise were Azzedine Alaia, Comme des Garçons and Gianfranco Ferré, because I stuck pictures of their clothes from Vogue on my wardrobe door. It feels quite amazing to see my brand alongside those names in some of the stores that I am currently stocked by. I used to obsessively watch The Clothes Show with Caryn Franklin – that had big influence on me as well. How do you think your work has evolved since your graduate collection? My graduate collection was an opportunity for me to ruthlessly pursue a concept – it was intended to be a collection of pieces that a singer would wear to perform. My thought process with my graduate collection was not to have to design to a wide demographic, but to be really specific. To be responsible to myself, to design and create a collection that was an unreserved statement about who I am and to push the boundaries of form as a designer and as a technical achievement. I arrived at what are fundamentally the foundations of my aesthetic. Since then I ] started my brand and worked to build, evolve and develop that strong unique signature into
If you could design for any one person who would that be?
Elegant Psychedelic Bauhaus.
I have already had the great pleasure to create pieces for Lily Cole, Jameela Jamil, Leah Weller, Katie Melua, Summer Rayne Oakes and Lucy Siegle – all women who I admire for being beautiful, intelligent and engaged with the here & now. That is the women who I design for.
How do you go about choosing your models for catwalks?
What do you think of designer mixing with high street?
I don’t choose models for the catwalk much at all these days because I have chosen to create films that I show on the Digital Schedule at London Fashion Week in the Canon Screening Room at Somerset House. Currently I work with the director Thomas Knights. Our first film together AW12 Simia Mineralis was shown on Friday 17th February to several packed screenings of buyers and press – and a very special guest – Colin McDowell who watched the film twice! My collections are very conceptual and I feel that I can communicate more about the unique vision of the brand through the medium of film than catwalk. I met Skye Victoria who I cast in my latest film, working on another project for the artist Ben Ashton who creates amazing 3 dimensional photographs. She is very much how I imagine a young Elizabeth 1st to look. Regal, elegant, razor sharp cheek bones and a great strength of character. There were all things that really drew me to her.
When I was younger in my club kid days of endlessly dressing up to go to nights like Kashpoint and Boombox I would wear everything but the bathroom sink and even then I remember wearing some forks and spoons on one occasion – designer – high street – cutlery – bin bags – Easter chickens – fuzzy felt – you name it, I tried to wear it at some point in the early to mid noughties.... my all time favourite was dressing up using only a cardboard box and a permanent marker and turning myself into a Nokia 6110.
How would you describe your label in 3 words?
What do you think is the best way to dress this summer? In my spring summer 2012 collection, Poseisus – like a Greek goddess who has decided to dance in the Kanaval. Fluid, light, orchid tones, fuchsia, ombre’s and black structured pieces to contrast. What draws you to geometric shapes? I blame the Russian constructivists! Rodchenko & friends, but my illustrations are so flowing and organic they require a very geometric silhouette to frame them. Tell us more about your jewellery collaboration with Luca Romanyi? I met my co collaborator for Ada Zanditon Jewellery at London Fashion Week 3 years ago, six months before I properly launched the brand in September 2009. We both immediately felt that we had a very complimentary aesthetic and shared a strong vision. We both love modern contemporary jewellery – bodily proportioned architectural pieces and innovative materials. Our latest collection uses wood off cuts from a furniture workshop that have been laser cut and etched to our designs. The wood is combined with organic paint, brass chains and fabric residue (veg tan lamb leather and eel skin) from the production of the garments in the collection. The process is the closest thing I have personally experienced to telepathy – we sit down together and ideas flow – Luca makes the pieces at her studio in London. I love working with her because we share that desire for technical perfection as well as innovative design.
(We really want a picture of that) What is your favourite item of clothing that you own now and why? It changes all the time, but currently it is the showpiece Tailcoat from my AW12 collection Simia Mineralis. The shape is based on a Victorian gentleman’s tailcoat – the sleeves are origami engineered leather 3d triangles, the body is panelled Melton wool and leather and it is lined with silk and organic velvet. I also created my own deconstructed version of a tailored welt pocket and I inserted a mane of dip dyed human hair on the back. I love wearing it – its luxury, beauty and form combined. What other designers do you admire and do you have any up and coming names that you are keeping an eye on? I think people see fashion as very competitive but in truth I have tons of friends who are designers. I know many designers and I admire them all – because we know what each other are going through and it’s tough being new and building a brand. Would you ever add menswear? There is nothing to stop a man from wearing my clothes - in fact quite a few already do. I think it’s important to establish one range fully before adding lines to the brand. I think the reason I get asked this question so much is because of the androgynous aspect of some of my pieces. Personally I feel that it is about time that the entire dialogue around gender got an upgrade. You have drawn awareness to the work of The Bat Conservation Trust & The Seahorse Trust. Tell us about that? Whether I was using sustainable textiles and responsible manufacturing or not – which I am – I would still be drawing my inspiration from the same sources – and these species as well as Bees, Gorillas & even microscopic bacteria are all fascinating sources of inspiration for my designs.
Many designers would say the same, nature and evolution is an incredible source of originality, beauty and innovation to most designers. The difference for me is that I feel it is possible to take this dialogue one step further and use the medium of fashion to communicate about conservation issues and bring awareness to endangered species and the people working to preserve them. I see it as part of the cradle to cradle approach to design. Anita Roddick pioneered this kind of approach with The Body Shop. I want to bring that kind of vision into the realm of luxury high end fashion because I feel it is an opportunity to evolve the dialogue of how we define what luxury is. With the Bat Conservation Trust and The Seahorse Trust – both groups were extremely helpful in providing insight and information into my subjects. For SS12 Poseisus I teamed up with Sea Life (our lovely sponsors) and The Seahorse Trust to create an installation of a digital seahorse tank for my stand at London Fashion Week. Sea Life provided a flat screen framed by my illustrations that showed footage of seahorses as a juxtaposition to the collection hanging on the rails. It was great because it brought the source of inspiration directly alongside the finished product and it showed buyers and press something different and unique and framed the context of the work. Further to this myself, Kurt (Junky Styling) and Nik Thakkar (Karl Is My Unkle) will be doing a sponsored swim for Seahorses very soon! Previously I created T-shirts from which profits went to the Bat conservation Trust. This process where the end product can give back to the inspiration is something that I wish to develop as creatively and effectively as possible going forwards. How do you feel the industry could be more sustainable as a whole? That is such a huge question, complex and interesting. But impossible for one individual to provide a complete answer for! The fashion industry has such a vast supply chain and the range of product, gigantic will not even do it justice. Sustainability is increasingly important to many brands, textile producers and manufacturers, not just because of consumer awareness/demand but actually because the costs of raw materials and wages are increasing. There are 7 billion people on the planet, resources are not infinite. Efficiency is more important than ever, sustainability and efficiency (when knowledgeably combined) can achieve remarkable results.
Secondly, the high street has evolved rapidly in the last decade and is increasingly able to offer products that ‘reference’ looks from designer collections. I think it is increasingly vital that a brand such as mine can point at what our unique offer is. Quality and design are important but I think that alone they are not enough. The dialogue has to evolve further. Before I started my brand I did a project with Oxfam and Jane Shepherdson and as part of that project we went up to see the clothes recycling plant called Wastesavers. It is an enormous space where thousands of second hand garments are manually sorted into different categories. What people seldom realise is that unlike aluminium cans, clothes in general (Patagonia jackets being a rare exception) are very challenging to recycle because they are usually made of multiple raw materials and components. Most of what we throw away is made from synthetic polymer fibres and will sit in landfill & take hundreds of years to biodegrade. To begin imagining how much we throw away imagine your apartment or house is entirely made and filled with clothing, multiply that by 10, imagine that physical volume and then imagine that this much is thrown away and goes into landfill in the UK every day in the UK alone. It’s a huge amount and it’s easier to imagine in your mind’s eye than the statistics. Clearly waste management and textile upcycling have their roles but furthermore I feel this is a symptom not just of greed but of the rapid trend cycle of fast fashion, aggressive marketing and rapid consumption models overriding our sense of identity and personal style. The industry can and some parts are, taking many steps to become more sustainable but I think that it is not just the industry but our relationship to the way we consume and dress that also has to evolve.
ADA ZANDITON IMAGE CREDITS Photography / Elliott Morgan Styling / Alexis Knox Make-up / Adam Burrell using Illamasqua Hair / Oscar Alexander Lundberg using Fudge Stylist assistant / Ailie Robertson Model / Genevieve @ D1 Gorilla / Louis Cheshire With thanks to Friedel Buecking. 1.
Simia Mineralis Coat, Ariel Day Dress & Ring All clothing & Jewellery / Ada Zanditon Shoes / Charkviani
Mineralis Black Dress & Sculptural Necklace All clothing & Jewellery / Ada Zanditon Shoes / Jean Pierre Braganza
Crystallum Dress / Ada Zanditon Shoes / Jean Pierre Braganza
Where do you see your brand in 10 years time? Time will tell, suffice it to say I have many plans... What keeps you motivated? The finite reality of life meets the vision in my head, this and chocolate. What could you not work without? Rose flavoured tea, stripper height heels and orchestral music.
My ambition, personally and as a brand, is to redefine luxury and question what we define luxury to be. There are three key motivations behind that ambition. Firstly, as a designer when I became aware of the impact of fashion on the environment it made me question things. I thought, if I design something that has this negative impact on the planet or on people, is that garment really beautiful? I am really interested in beauty that is from the core. 127
Inside the House of Morbid Junk
On set with Simon Pegg and A Fantastic Fear of Everything It’s a beautiful day to the west of London with a sky annoyingly clear and blue we are led through a dark corridor and there we find, housed in a soundstage of Pinewood, an entire world.
A Fantastic Fear of Everything is the first beneficiary of Pinewood Studio’s funding programme for new British films and co-directors Crispian Mills and Chris Hopewell are busy utilising live action, stop motion to bring alive the world’s first psycho-comedy. Producer Geraldine Patten explained that key phrase, ‘We didn’t feel any existing phrase was going to quite do [the film] justice. It’ll all become clear but in the meantime it’ll hopefully give you an idea of where we’re going with this character and the film.’ The character in question is Jack, played by Simon Pegg and the title of this piece is perhaps a little misleading as though we were physically on set with the actor we were told he was in character as much a possible and when we stepped on set we found out exactly why he wasn’t keen to break that spell. Reading his tweets of last August Pegg was clearly excited at the prospect as Patten explained, ‘Jack is very much the centre of the story and this is hard work for him, but in a very good way. He is definitely excited, he’s got amazing energy and he’s leaping around the set and it makes a huge difference when your lead actor is like that. It’s a dream casting really, and anyone who has read the script can hear him say the lines.’ Though we are confined to a few rooms there’s still a vast amount to take in, books stacked ceiling high, pictures hung
seemingly at random and fighting for wall space with the mounted head of a slightly startled moose. Antique furniture lines the walls, positioned not because of how it looks, more likely because it has stuck to the floor. Pinned to the walls are pages ripped from books, random doodles and scrawled notes, it is a patchwork of maps and muddle and Victorian miscellany as if someone has vomited up an omnibus edition of a popular penny dreadful. Like Holmes without the domestic insistence of Mrs Hudson someone is missing here and we are looking for clues as to who it is. We are inside the untidy mind of Simon Pegg’s Jack, a man broken up and then broken down with memories (in the form of quite terrible paintings) of his ex littering the flat, and when we visited the set there was something emerging in the method of his own particular brand of madness. The brief synopsis online paints the picture perfectly. A former children’s author turns to crime fiction and dives into a deep ocean of research on the lives and deaths of the various Victorian serial killers and becomes lost. A script he is working on finds its way into the hands of an interested Hollywood executive and in turning in the final draft Jack has to find and overcome the source of his titular fear. Co-director and production designer Chris Hopewell walked me through this carefully constructed set and into the dark, complicated world of a man living in his obsession.
We begin with the relationship at the centre of all this, the co-directorship of Chris Hopewell and Crispian Mills who have previously worked on music videos and are now bringing their own sensibilities to this project. A lot of the effects are in-camera and while Mills, who wrote the script, handles the actors and the overall direction it is the additional eye of Hopewell which lends itself to the overall focus of the visual and production design elements. ‘It’s always useful having two brains and one mouth, it means I can go on set and mess around without getting shouted at.’ They have been working together for three years and enjoying the experience of seeing what was in their heads for so long, realised on screen, not least the ability to use that extensive pre-production on set. ’The whole flat was conceived by myself and Crispian, but then actually getting to design it you can build in all the shots, so we’re not going cold into a location. All of the angles were designed specifically for shot, so we worked out what you’d need to see – the sink, the toilet – so it all works for the drama’ The toilet, in particular, has a couple of oddities which are perfect visual representations of the obsession and paranoia at play here. The sink was there somewhere I presume, like most of the kitchen, lost under days of neglected plates and burgeoning new eco-systems.
Although the claustrophobic set-up may play well into the themes of the piece it was originally planned as something else. ‘The original idea was that [the flat] was in a big old embassy which was shabbily converted in the 50s and now he’s rattling around in this once grand apartment and feeling a little bit lost.’ That this imagined grandeur has been relegated to a compact, ‘cosy’ in estate-agentese, says a lot for the process of focusing the ideas to the point at which it goes before the camera. When we saw Simon Pegg ruminating on the unfolding mystery there was a sense that he wasn’t lost, but finding firm ground again, and while we were there several objects and particular lighting arrangement suggested that there are clues everywhere and the flat will change of its own accord as the mystery in the story deepens. ‘Throughout the sets there are resonants of his previous life, and his former wife who he’s split up with, and all around are these rather naive oil paintings that Jack has done and pushed to one side, subtly forgotten. The idea is that at one point he was in a happy relationship and had quite a nice flat but now his obsession with Victoriana and Victorian serial killers has led to this layer of morbid junk. We didn’t want it to look like Steptoe’s Yard, we wanted it to have some classy lighting and nice touches that [his wife] put in, so there’s memories of her. You could have gone over the top, there are elements which are grand and gothic but really here’s a writer who gets so into his vibe that he surrounds himself with all the clutter.’ When we arrived on set there was a brief scene being shot of Jack making a crucial connection using the fantastically designed centrepiece of the room, ‘The biggest feature in the room is what we call the Wall of Death, which is all of his reference material on the various serial killers. There we just mentioned Crippen, he later crops up in an animated sequence in a toy theatre in which he dismembers his wife in a bath. Which is quite fun.’ The animated elements are part of the film which Hopewell is keen to talk up, ‘They are Jack’s mind’s eye, really. The way they are introduced is fantastical, but there are a lot of fantastical schemes within the scenario. It’s not legitimised in any way, we see Jack’s toy theatre which he’s been building and he’s looking at it and it comes to life. It’s just the way Jack’s mind works within the environment.’ In Jack’s mind we see him making sense of everything that’s happening which is something he can’t do in the outside world, ‘That’s not his place at all. His pantophobia, (which is his Fantastic Fear of Everything) is this overwhelming fear of everything around.’ Hopewell conjures up the spirit of Amelie when talking about the film’s ‘out of time’ nature and thought the world (Paris in her case, London in ours) is clearly contemporary. The characters sit awkwardly within it and this points to how the film’s more stylised sequences will be dealt with, not least the demons Jack must confront in a laundrette… ‘We tried to find places which had a very noir
feel, like The Third Man which has very over the top scenic renditions of Vienna with long shadows and the Dutch angles, which we use in here.’ Simon Pegg has been working with Crispian Mills on the role of Jack for a good while and, in Hopewell’s words ‘Who wouldn’t want to put money into a film with Simon in it?’, and according to the co-director it marks a departure for the actor, who has seen his star rise inexorably in the last ten years. With an estimated two-thirds of the film taking place in the apartment (though of course it won’t be limited to the four walls which contain it) and with Simon Pegg leading the film almost completely alone, Hopewell champions the actor’s bravery and there’s no doubt that it will be one of his most challenging and intriguing roles for a long time. Leaving the cramped, dark world of Jack’s flat and out into the streaming sunshine of Pinewood there is a feeling that the directors are clear in their vision and grateful in their securing of Pegg as the lead actor as their years of work will soon find its way out into the cold light of day.
Crispian Mills on A Fansastic Fear of Everything, Romantic Notions and Bohemian Renegades Calling your first film ‘the world’s first psycho-comedy’ is a sure sign that you know you have something special on your hands and with A Fantastic Fear of Everything director Crispian Mills’ vision of a man possessed by his own imagination is finally committed to film with an eye to a Summer release date.
How did you develop your Fantastic Fear of Everything? It’s been about five years of work, I’d been writing scripts with varying degrees of failure from about 2000 and had a terrible experience with one script which went to the promised land of Hollywood and had turned into something unrecognisable. I realised that if you really, really care about your script then you have to direct it as well. So, I had to find an idea that was pretty simple and would work on a relatively low budget. I found a short story by Bruce Robinson and from the first draft I could see that it would work well with Simon Pegg and luckily for me he saw that possibility too. The first script was more like a short film and then it was developed into an hour and it grew and grew until it became a mad, three act drama. Was the original short film just Simon’s character sitting in his home, imagining his fears out loud? Yeah, it was a guy freaking out on his own, but it grew naturally. It grew because it wanted to and the people who read it wanted it to too so it took on a life of its own. It becomes an experience where you watch the film become a character outside of itself
which is really exciting. How important was the Film Council disbanding and Pinewood’s investment in getting the film made? At times it was almost impossible. Unless you’ve had a film made, or you’re a brand or a known writer or director it’s very hard. The only films that people want to make are films that have already been made. People are too scared of the risk of anything new. They can’t justify it to their bosses. It can be disheartening but you hang in there and ultimately you need to not give up and meet the right people at the right time. Having Simon Pegg on board must have helped it grow in a new and interesting way, likewise with your co-director Chris Hopewell. How did they enhance the production? I’d made a couple of music videos in Bristol with Collision Films, which is Chris
Hopewell’s company and they had this collective of artists, set decorators, animators and other, sort of, bohemian renegades and it was such a great atmosphere that I thought if I ever made a film then I’d want to make it with these guys and with this kind of spirit and I got romantic ideas with companies like Zoetrope, like a gang of artists. And to a large extent we did it, we managed to make a film which played to our strengths. I knew I had a great animator in Chris so I said - Ok, I’ll write a couple of animation sequences into the movie and as far as bringing alive the fantasy world, this inner world of this writer, it’s great to have that. It was a magical experience walking on set everyday, there was so much detail, so much character.
What did Simon bring to the character? He’s a great actor because you believe in his characters, like all great comedy actors who have such charisma people don’t realise what a great job they were doing. It’s very exciting to be able to write a script knowing you had this personality there, and towards the end of the writing I knew who the cast were going to be and you can have a lot of fun. It’s a very theatrical film, it’s got that clearly defined three act structure and lots of opportunity for Simon Pegg to bounce off the walls. Foley Walker said he’d never seen such a manic performance in his life. Are you happy with the end result after five years in the making? Seeing it all coming together is pretty exciting, as it’s such an effort to get any film
made, especially an independent film that it’s these moments that get you through it. The moments where you say ‘I’m not mad’ and it was all worth it. I’m actually now [November 2011] in Abbey Road, which I haven’t been to for about ten years and we’re finishing off the score which is being put together by Michael Price and it’s a real classic, full-blown Hitchcockian brass section blow out. I had a meeting here with Michael about a year ago to talk about doing this, whether it would become a reality, and we talked about spending all of our money on having a great brass section that would get the audience to sit up and say ‘Wow, this is an old-fashioned Hitchcock thriller. This is Bernard Herrmann’ and he’s done the job. 131
JAMIE N COMMONS A Glimmer Of Country
Words: Emma Galal Images: Samuel Bradley I was once told that you can tell a lot about a person from their choice of meeting venue; my interview in Jamie N Commons’ bar of choice was no exception to this rule. Stepping out of the dusky rain into the safety of a predictably quirky Shoreditch café bar, Commons greeted me with a big smile, if at all slightly cautious. Scrabbling upstairs for a seat, the unassuming bar downstairs transformed into an impressively alluring velvet and gold laden den, which would not have looked out of place somewhere along the Moulin Rouge. ‘I dropped my hat!’ Breaking the perfected Parisian illusion and clearly disturbed by this, Commons commences the clear up operation to remove the wintry London residue from his astute charcoal coloured trilby. There is more than a glimmer of country about this twenty-two year old, speaking with a fusion of American and English South Western drawl; acquired from his youth in Bristol and teenage years in Chicago. ‘It took me two and a half years to adjust to living in London- I’ve always been a bit of a country mouse and London’s really different’ Commons confesses. In a city that is swamped by anonymity, how does one find enough space to make their mark in the Big Smoke? Apparently they don’t. ‘I wouldn’t say that I’ve melted into living here…I think I’ve just got better at zoning out from all of it.’ Yet someone who exudes such an effortlessly chilled aura which is so in keeping with London’s current alternative scene, must have had little trouble fitting in. Moving back to England aged fifteen, Commons knew that he wanted to pursue a music career after his talent was noted throughout his early years. After being accepted onto a course at London’s renowned Goldsmith’s University to study music, Commons played at several open mic nights, trying to break into London’s more liberal music scene and constantly learning additional skills outside of those he was being taught. However, despite his English training, Commons hopes to remain loyal to his American roots throughout his music. It is often the goal of every performing artist to ‘crack’ the American music scene, so as a former resident how important is it to this singer? ‘It is quite important to me that the music has quite an American sound. I like going back there; when I left I was just a kid you know? But now I go back on working trips so you get to see it really differently, seeing different sides of the same places that you used to go to and getting to do different things. The US is a big issue for where I want this music to go but it is also important just to be as far reaching as we possibly can be. Obviously America has a special place in my heart for what we’re doing and hopefully our sound will lend itself to American ears’. Admitting that he does not have his finger on the pulse of the UK’s or American music scene, Commons feels that he is learning about the music industry on both sides of the pond. Valuing old school methods, Jamie believes in the importance of playing live shows and investing in the music, as well as making time for the supporters, in order to become a memorable entity.
Determined not to fall prey to the pitfalls of the iPod shuffle generation, Commons aims to keep each of his tracks distinctive and not to stick with the same sounding music just because it is successful, as many artists now tend to do. Conversely, Commons aspires to create an album where every song retains individuality and amalgamates different genres as artists such as the Beatles managed to do whilst keeping their overriding sound. Achieving this is no easy feat, although, Commons does not seem like one to shy away from a challenge. Stealing inspiration from wherever he may find it, Commons retreats back to his parent’s home to conceive new ideas and to generate the palpable emotions that are lyricized to create his songs. Explaining his song writing technique, Commons smiles; ‘I usually go back to my parents’ house and write in this little shed at the back of the garden, which is good because there is no internet, it’s barely heated and there’s one guitar and an old electronic keyboard with all of those Samba and Foxtrot tracks we used to fool around with when we were kids. I drink white wine, and smoke cigarettes when I’m writing- which I guess is probably bad for the long run if I want to stay in this game- which I do! It’s all very Sherlock Holmes – a three cigarette problem’. Leaning forward in his chair as if he were almost telling me a secret, Commons divulges where life finds him and his music at the moment; ‘Everyone’s a product of what they consume and different age brackets shape who you are, where you’re at in life. My writing is quite autobiographical, even though I try to write in character. It’s all in there… a little too blatant for my liking sometimes, but for the more complex subjects I try and write a little more elusively. I have written songs that are a little too close to home.’ Asking if any of his songs have ever got him into trouble, his laugh is a more than adequate answer; ‘I wrote this one the other day and it’s about being in love with someone and you don’t know why, and I got really excited and recorded a demo and played it to my girlfriend who sat listening to it in stony silence. She was like ‘What the hell Jamie? Is there something you’ve got to say to me?!’ I just admitted that I hadn’t even realised how the lyrics would come across. I think that although songs are autobiographical to a certain extent, they are not necessarily of that time or about what you are experiencing during the period of life when you are writing. A lot of the time I like the sounds of the lyrics and I only
realise what they mean or how I was feeling whilst writing them a few months down the line. I’m quite stubborn; if things don’t feel right I can’t do it or write it, which is probably why song writing takes so long for me to do. The American Country and Blues influence is inherent to the Jamie N Commons sound, particularly in his late 2011 track, Preacher. So much so, that Commons’ single would not sound out of place on a Johnny Cash album. Not unfamiliar with comparisons to such great American superstars of that era, Commons admits that unlike Cash, he is not even slightly religious, despite the heavily religious undertones of the title track from the EP. Some might criticise the sound and persona that Jamie depicts in such dark compositions, questioning the sincerity of his sound and ability to pack so much emotion and angst into his records, based on the reality that he is only twenty two years old. Posing this to Jamie, he seems relatively unfazed, ‘Although (my writing) is autobiographical, anyone can take emotion and imagine an event and put all of those emotions into that event. You don’t have to kill someone to write a murder ballad. It is what I do and it’s just acting isn’t it? I don’t think it makes it any less authentic, it just depends whether it is good. It is not a matter of realism, just whether it’s decent music and it seems to be going well so far.’ Obviously surprised by his bands successes so far, Commons finds himself in the privileged position of being currently unsigned to any record label, allowing him to write without the strains of conforming to a particular demographic or audience. This has meant that at most gigs, the audience is often more mixed than a bag of skittles. ‘Of course we attract the ‘yeah man that was really rock’ fifteen year old emo kids, yet at the same time we manage to draw in older ages and friend’s parents who use our sets to remind them of ‘the good old days’. We’ve managed to get some sort of scene cool onto us- I really don’t know how that happened, the whole positive reaction is generally surprising to me, I think more so because we’re not similar to anyone else- so to be recognised for that is great. I think that might change a bit when we get a new producer with a different sound because our music is working across the board at the moment, but who knows what the demographic will be in the end.’ Recently named as the BBC’S’ Sound of 2012 artist and being categorised as one to watch by several on the pulse music magazines, this year is set to be a memorable one for Jamie. With the unreleased next single ‘Devil in Me’ already receiving radio play station wide, things are
starting off well for the singer. ‘(Devil in Me) is another step in the ambition ladder, it’s quite direct and not necessarily where the sound is going to go, but it’s a good next step. It is almost a flip side to Preacher; about being haunted by regret and your past and justifying things through your faith... (he laughs) another cheery upbeat number for the kids!’ Indeed, but with tracks as genuinely provoking as these, one cannot fault him on it. As an up and coming artist, Commons has a keen desire to work with other musicians, ‘I see music as a social activity. I’d collaborate with anybody of any genre. The best musical experience I’ve found is singing with a choir. That’s where I learnt how to sing, and I played in orchestras with other people.’ Do not be fooled by his nonchalant demeanour, Commons is no stranger to hard work- teaching himself several string instruments, after struggling to follow direction from music teachers- he admits that everything in life has to be done his own way. This undoubtedly makes things a lot more difficult for the singer who struggles taking time off to relax; ‘If I do have any spare time, I feel guilty that I’m not working, so I’ll read a book, watch a film or go to a gig like Josh T. Pearson’s who I recently went to see, to try and get some inspiration. I find myself doing ten days non-stop full of meetings and rehearsals, then have three days of absolutely nothing, but you can’t ever switch off because you stay in the same driven mode’. This year is set to be even busier for Jamie, who has plans to tour extensively around the UK and Europe to promote Devil in Me. As a perfect candidate for a festival, will Commons be performing at any in 2012? ‘I think so, I’d hope so. I’d love to play End of the Road and at smaller festivals like the Secret Garden Party because I’m getting a bit too old for Reading and Glastonbury now-there’s too much walking involved!’ With so much in store for Jamie N Commons, the singer and his band do not appear to have a lot to worry about at the moment. With interest from record labels, upcoming performances and Devil in Me released through LuvLuvLuv Records on 26th March, it is a stroke of luck that Commons does not value time off as with such strong marketability (that is a wonder to Jamie himself) it is unlikely that this upwards rollercoaster is going to stop. ‘I’ve got a belief that the slower you go up, the slower you will go down’ Jamie explains, and with such a strong work ethic and distinctive sound, we predict that Jamie N Commons will not be going down any time soon. Much like the Parisian venue, Commons was a charming and alluring discovery. The BBC’s’ predictions were right; it’s 2012 and we’re watching.
‘It’s all very Sherlock Holmes – a three cigarette problem. I have written songs that are a little too close to home.’
There Is Potential In Everything To Become Art Words: Nicky Baird The second of our Red Stripe Artists Sandrine Estrade-Boulet tells us how she makes the mundain and ordinary extraordinary. Where do you live?
I live near Paris in place called Boulogne-Billancourt.
Tell us a little about your work?
My work aims to make the ordinary seem extraordinary, to make the mundane stand out. I see potential in everything, things that have been forgotten, details that other people would not notice such as the marks and indentation on a wall. The pace of life today is so fast that things are easily missed. I see life in 360 degrees and it’s fun, my work is humorous and designed to entertain. Some people call what I am doing street art but I find this label too restrictive. I live by Matisse’s maxim, ‘the world is full of flowers for those who want to see them’.
When did you realise you had a talent?
I drew a lot as a little girl, doodling on my school books. I was fascinated by everything, the clouds as much as the stains on the sofa. My father was an amateur photographer and my mother painted sometimes so I grew up surrounded by art. My Granny used to take me to exhibitions too, the first and most memorable being an exhibition of works by Modigliani. It was after I finished school that I went to art school in Paris, Ecole Boulle followed by Ecole Estinne.
What inspires you?
A lot- everyday life is inspiring! I am fascinated by creative people, whether they are artists, architects or musicians. I am also inspired by music, particularly that of David Bowie, Gainsbourg and The Smashing Pumpkins as well as artists including Peter Blake, Tim Burton, Lucian Freud, and French artist, Alain Bublex. Everything can be inspiring - even sitting in a café. I have also just finished reading a fascinating book about Rosa Bouglione, at 100 years old, the oldest member of the famous Bouglione family who first performed ‘The Winter Circus’ in 1852. Circus performers are entertainers and are closely related to artists in my view.
What are the tools of your trade and what do use them for?
My tools are my camera and my computer as well as paint, brushes and light clay. I like to use materials that kids would use and to mix materials such as photography and clay. I also collect things I have found on the street and draw around them. But who knows, maybe tomorrow I’ll say that I want to paint on canvas!
Do you have any notable fans?
Maybe, maybe not, who cares! If David Bowie wants to be my fan though, then bring it on! It’s silly to look for fame. I have had Facebook fans coming up to me during exhibitions of my work, however, which is great, and so encouraging.
Tell us something no one knows about you?
When I was younger I used to think I was from another planet and that I had been adopted by my parents. I waited for my real parents to come down from the sky to take me back with them! I grew out of this belief when I became a teenager.
Do you have any UK shows coming up?
No- I wish, but maybe in future, who knows! I like the UK a lot and have recently been working on a series of photographs of London.
Tell me about the piece you have made for Who’s Jack? How did you come up with the idea and how did you make it?
With the theme of game changers in mind I went out with my camera and found a sign with a man digging (the ones that are put up when building work is taking place) out on the street. I took a picture of it and altered it on the computer to make it appear as though the man is digging a brain and is therefore a brain digger. I did it because when you want to find other ways to express yourself or find solution, you have to dig your brain, think differently and see under the surface. You need to go deeper, dig in a different direction and this is what my image represents. My piece is also a tribute to street art because it was a major ‘game changer’ for the art scene. I saw the theme as a way to try to find a different way to express my ideas. I took inspiration too from Marcel Duchamp, who once said that you can be an artist without having anything special. Technology is an amazing thing, having the potential to create and re-create and to make something unique. I’m also thinking about making the piece in real life too, not just digitally. Find out more about Sandrine at www.sandrine-estrade-boulet.com Find out more about the Red Stripe project at www.redstripe.net
And... Smile! Images : : Dav Stewart Styling : LOF make-up : Luke Stephens Hair : Nicole Kahlani Oliver at AMCK Elisa at Bookings
Shirt : Lazy Oaf
Crystal necklace : Vamose / Blue spear necklace : Urban Outfitters / Crop Top ASOS / Pale Denim shirt : Top-
Denim Jacket : Topshop, Polo with pattern collar Lazy Oaf
Dress : Topshop / Crystal necklace : Vamoose
T-shirt : ASOS Mens
‘BANG’ T : Wildfox
T-Shirt : ASOS Mens
Rucksack : Lazy Oaf / Leggins : Asos/ Vest top : Illustrated People
GUEST EDITORS : LAYOUT : SAWDUST Sawdust looked after a few of our spreads this month and so we only thought it proper to let you know a bit more about them. So we had a chat with award-winning creative partnership of Rob Gonzalez and Jonathan Quainton.
based style. Growing up I loved watching films, particularly films with radical concepts in them (I’m a science-fiction junky). I think it’s the cinematic, atmospheric qualities within film that resonate with me. My grandparents also ran an independent photographic studio in Warsaw were I’d spend a lot of time hanging out whilst visiting on holiday as a kid. I’ve also become increasingly fascinated with typography through Jon’s early passion for it. J: Typography is my passion so I would have to say that’s my strongest area. If you’re talking about personality then I would say that I’m very patient and meticulous. I can also get very competitive which helps me focus to achieve better work. What do you feel being based in London adds to your work?
How long have you been ‘Sawdust’ R: 6 years in June but we changed our name after a few years so technically more like 4 years as Sawdust. J: We have transformed quite a bit since we started and learned a lot along the way, has it been that long? If you had to choose a favourite between typography / graphic design / illustration which would it be and why? J: This is a tough one to call as they are all quite interchangeable but my passion from a young age was type so I guess I would choose that. R: I agree, it’s difficult because our work is an amalgamation of all three usually. It’s fair to say we’re passionate about all three and how they can intertwine. How did you both come together? R: We met whilst studying ND graphic design in Oxford where we become close friends before going off to different universities. J: We both had a love for playing football. We still use football analogies when talking about our work today. Do you find working in a partnership easier than alone? What does each bring to the other? J: I haven’t worked alone much apart from a bit of freelance work quite a few years back. I think as a partnership you can share the highs and lows together which can help keep you positive and stay confident in the work you are creating. R: We bring our own set of skills to the table, which seem to work together so working independently for us would be difficult. I think our work would become something else without the others’ input. Which are each of your strengths? R: I’m drawn to visually arresting imagery and composition, whether it’s a clean graphic style or a texture / more-image
J: We wanted to be surrounded by other creatives and work with clients that would understand the work we produced. London has given us a lot more contacts and a large supply of healthy competition which keeps us on our toes. How do you keep motivated and maintain fresh ideas? R: It’s a challenge to constantly be stepping out of your comfort zone and maintaing an experimental and expressive studio philosophy, but it’s always been those sorts of designers that have inspired us the most. J: Motivation is born out of the fear of being left behind. Fresh ideas are born from motivation. Who’s work inspires you? J: Wim Crouwel — hearing him speak about his work at the design museum blew my mind. R: I think there’s a level you can reach as a designer or artist where the shackels come off and you produce work that has a visible freeness, it is without restraint. It’s people like that who inspire me the most... Wim Crouwel, Herb Lubalin, Milton Glaser, Mario Hugo, Alex Trochut, Non–Format are a few of these people. Where does the name Sawdust come from? R: Sawdust is the by-product made during the manufacturing or creation process. We love the idea that the craftsmanship in our work is what people end up seeing more than they do us, the creators behind it. J: Sawdust just worked for us, we liked the idea of craftsmanship as well as a short name that would be memorable in a very saturated industry. If you could work anywhere in the world where would it be? J: We have everything we need around us in London at this current time and have no plans on moving, but you never know what will happen in the future.
R: The only other place I have thought would be a great experience is New York. Do you have any of your own work on your walls? R: Yes. Of course. J: A couple of prints that are for sale in the shop on our website. Does one of your mothers have something of yours hanging on her wall? J: Erm, does girlfriends mothers count? R: No. Which part of your job do you like the most? R: For me it’s two stages that are equally thrilling. 1. The moment when you discover the solution or execution. 2. The excitement of showing people what you’ve created. J: When you have successfully delivered the final piece of work to the client and they are extremely pleased with it. If you could make a logo/design root for anyone/any company who would it be? J: Our doors are open to working with anyone/company that we deem as having a good business ethic that we agree with. What tools could you simply not work without? R: Alan Fletcher once famously replied to a similar question: Q: ‘What is the most treasured and well-used piece of equipment in your studio?’ A: ‘My head’ Whenever I’m asked this I always think of his answer — it’s perfect. J: Unfortunately for me it’s my glasses although things become a lot more expressive if I leave them off. What key attributes would you say are essential to being a designer? J: Good organisation, perfection, a curiousity for the world, open-mindedness, and a Mac. R: An eye for composition too... Working for yourself in a creative field is tough. Have you ever thought about jacking it in? R: Never. We are constantly evaluating our studio’s direction however, which is a good thing. J: It can get pretty tough sometimes but what else would we do? If you were going to bring a third person on board and it could be anyone who would it be? J: This would probably be a person who could strengthen areas that Rob and I don’t
specialise in, probably a new business person. So if you only have a couple of pieces of your own work on your walls, who elses work do you have hanging there? R: We have work from various people such as Wim Crouwel, Rodchencko & Popova, MadeThought, Jason Tozer ... J: We really don’t get around to sticking up as much as we would like to, although one wall is completely covered in inspiring design. What are each of your favourite colours/shapes and why? J: Circles are very pleasing to me. I’m quite fond of the Deco style which combines circular and rectangular forms. R: I like to incorporate either a black or a white when using colour, I find that so long as one is present I’m happy. How do you think design has shifted with the rise in digital and the failing print world? How has it had to adapt and are there any plus points and negatives to a more digital world when it comes to both viewing and creating design? R: Graphic design ‘welcoming digital technology as a platform’ was already in full flow when we were setting our studio up, so it’s difficult for us to comment on how it’s shifted in truth. It is clear to us that moving image / motion / animation appears to be increasingly dominant — there seems to be incredible demand for it. It’s more exciting for instance to have a website in this day and age than it is to have say, a business card. Printed material is beautiful and valuable still but it needs to work harder today. We live in a world were numerous flyers and leaflets are printed that simply look horrendous, so at the very least technology will mean people will think twice about having something printed and if they do, then they’ll hopefully do it with a degree of quality. www.madebysawdust.co.uk
INTO THE PALE
Stylist - Aartthie Mahakuperan - aartthiestylist.carbonmade.com Photographer - Voyko Jeric - www.vojkojeric.com Make up & Hair - Hannah Phillips using mac- hannahphillipsmakeupartist.com Model - Isabel at first models T-shirt - Muriee Shorts - Topshop Socks - Topshop Brogues - Russell & Bromley
White T-shirt -gap shoes Floral trousers -Nanette Lepore Sun Glasses - Topshop Socks - Topshop Wedges-Zara
Pink Vest- Splendid Jacket - Iro at Urban Outfitters Shorts - Claudie Pierlot at Urban Outfitters Socks - Topshop Loafers - Russell and Bromley
Jumper - Athe By Vanessa Bruno at Urban Outfitters Trousers - Zara Socks - Topshop Wedges - Kurt Geiger
Spotted top - Urban Outfitters Shorts - Zara Sun Glasses - Stella McCartney
Blouse - H&M Denim Dress - Urban Outfitters Socks - Topshop Wedges - Banana Republic
Crop jumper - Topshop Trousers - H&M Socks - Topshop Wedges - Zara
White dress - Peter Jensen Jacket - Topshop Socks - Topshop Wedges - Banana Republic
Skirt - Asos Top - H&M Sun Glasses - Paul Smith
Everyone needs to be aware of the dangers of sharing blood and the various routes of transmission. You can’t tell by looking at someone if they have a blood borne virus. It used to be that we only worried about whether we’d had unprotected sex. There are so many ways that are not so obvious in which a person could become infected with hepatitis C. They may have had a blood transfusion or received blood products prior to 1991. They may have had medical treatment abroad or had a tattoo somewhere that wasn’t regulated. They may have done something as simple as shared a toothbrush or razor with someone who has the virus.
GUEST EDITORS : GEMMA PEPE : THE HEP C TRUST Each year The Hepatitis C Trust holds an auction at The International Music Summit (IMS) in Ibiza at the end of May. We’ve been doing this for four years now and we’ve noticed that artwork goes down best. This year to capitalize on our association with the IMS and to garner some press and awareness we launched a photographic competition on the theme of blood. The winning photograph (left) has the accolade of being auctioned at our IMS event, published in Who’s Jack? and exhibited at West Bank Gallery in London’s Westbourne Grove. The photographer Rankin agreed to judge the competition along with our patrons Sadie Frost and Boy George. Blood is an interesting theme, not only because of the obvious link with the charity but also because of the scope of interpretations we anticipated receiving from entrants. When we launched this I had in mind Larry Clark’s Tulsa series which documents sex and drugs but most notably presents a beautiful profile of a heavily pregnant lady who, when you look closer, is injecting herself with heroin. It’s clear from our entries though that not everyone’s mind goes straight to the squalid.
The reason hepatitis C is more contagious than HIV is there are billions of copies of the virus in the tiniest drop of blood, which is why you’ll catch hep C from sharing a note to snort drugs but you won’t catch HIV. Hepatitis C is only passed on through blood, unlike HIV, which is in body fluids as well as blood. For this reason it’s very unlikely you’ll catch hepatitis C through sex, unless your thing is very rough, abrasive sex, the nature of which I will leave to your imaginations. None of us can be complacent. We came across a woman whose child had hepatitis C and had contracted it from her at birth. Before the pair were diagnosed this child had had such fierce nosebleeds, his nursery had to take him to accident and emergency on a number of occasions. None of the nursery staff had worn gloves when dealing with this child. No one considered the possibility that this child at the age of three was infected with hepatitis C. If hepatitis C is untreated there is a high chance your liver will eventually become cirrhotic and cancerous meaning a liver transplant or death. Many people have no symptoms whatsoever but this doesn’t mean your liver isn’t being attacked. This is why awareness raising is crucial to save lives. This photo competition has been a success on a number of levels, not just press and media but it’s opened up awareness to a whole new audience and made them consider their blood and the blood of others. If you think you may have been at risk call our helpline 08452234424 www.hepctrust.org.uk
GUEST EDITORS : GEMMA PEPE : RANKIN ON GAME CHANGERS Rankin, we consider you a huge game changer in photography, as many others do; why do you think people view you in such a way? Wow, thank you. That’s very flattering. I really wouldn’t consider myself as a game changer. I just love what I do and just want to keep doing it forever. It’s like the most incredibly positive addiction. What first inspired you to pick up a camera? I didn’t come from an artistic back ground so I didn’t really have a handle on what being creative was. It was something I was scared of. Photography was something I believed I could do on my own and could understand. It offered me an outlet for these ideas I had but was nervous of. I started taking pictures when I was 20 and quickly realised photography was what I really wanted to do. Could you cite one pivotal point in your photography career? This is a difficult question. I couldn’t really pick one but I suppose starting up Dazed & Confused with Jefferson was a pretty big turning point and one that opened a lot of other doors.
You now have Hunger magazine: what made you want to enter into print again at such a fragile time for that form of media? Jefferson and I started Dazed & Confused in the middle of an economic recession – because we needed a vehicle to get our work out there, and there just wasn’t any. So we made our own. It’s odd, but in times of economic instability, it’s often the case that creativity thrives. There are openings and opportunities that are closed during more prosperous times, and people think more laterally and creatively about how to push their messages and causes out there. It just felt like the right time to do it, and I’ve always followed my gut! Do you feel that the readers of Hunger look more to online or still fully appreciate the aesthetic of a print publication? Nothing can take away from the luxury and sense of satisfaction that comes from making or owning printed matter, but an online presence is necessary these days, and also offers a whole world of new opportunities. You also have Hunger TV. Is this the much needed (these days) online angle of the new publication? The Hunger TV is the living, breathing version of the magazine. What I love about magazines, and have always loved about them, is that they make art and fashion, and a lot of other occasionally unattainable things, accessible to all. I truly believe in the democratisation of culture. Nothing makes culture and art more accessible than the internet – and magazines these days need to have their equivalent counterparts living online. The Hunger TV is an amazing platform which extends all of the magazine content, and allows the readers/viewers to get even closer to the people we feature. What is it to be ‘hungry’ to you? To be hungry is about being excited, and keeping on creating and collaborating with like-minded people: from intriguing, intellectual and crazy characters from the past, to new up-and-coming artists with diverse skills and an exciting approach to the world. These people and their work is what really excites me. I can’t stop pushing forwards, searching for creative talent, pushing myself and others. What in your eyes is beauty? I always get asked this question and the truth is it’s impossible to define. Every person has their own take on it. It’s certainly about what’s on the inside as well as the outside, obvious though that is to say. It’s as much about people’s idiosyncrasies as it is about their perfections. You just know true beauty when it’s in front of you – I don’t think you can put a formula to it. You are working with the Hepatitis C Trust currently, what drew you to the charity? It’s a cause that doesn’t always get the attention it needs. In an age where deaths from Hepatitis C are starting to outstrip those from HIV/AIDS, being conscious of what could be in our blood is more important than ever.
You were part of the judging panel for their recent photography competition, what did you look for in a winner? I look for something that touches me, metaphorically speaking. So back to your work, what is your favourite camera and why? I actually have three: Phase One 645 for studio work, Canon 1DS for low light and when I need to shoot fast and a Leica S2 for location shoots. What piece of equipment or technology has really changed the game for you? Certainly digital technology, and also video, which is a great way to share the experience of my shoots, to extend the shoot on to other media. I LOVE this stuff and embrace it 100 per cent. What do you think of the digital photography age? Can anyone now be a photographer? I think it’s great. It’s certainly helped my career in that everything can be seen instantly; I can see and show the subject what’s working and what isn’t right away. I certainly think it has encouraged more people to pick up a camera and give it a go which is great... that instant result is so addictive. Shooting digital, you can have a consensus on the image between the photographer, the hair stylist, the makeup artist, the creator, the ad agency, the client – it’s a creative process, because I’m getting feedback. Digital photography is really collaborative. It allows everyone to get involved on set. The creatives can see the ideas come to life, the models can see what is working and what could be better. It allows me to work efficiently, as I can edit and develop as I shoot. What do you think of apps such as Instagram enabling and encouraging people to be more creative and visually sharing their lives? It’s a good thing. Phone cameras have advanced so much and as a result encourage more people to pick up a camera, take photos and share them with friends. It’s a fantastic way to encourage budding new photographers. I’m keen on people expressing themselves and think that’s got to be a good thing, I’m just nervous that sometimes people use images of themselves as a tool to sell themselves. Is there one person you have always wanted to photograph but has always eluded you? I’d love to shoot Johnny Depp – I think to watch him act is fascinating and to photograph him would be great as well. Barack Obama – now that would be unique. If there was one photographer to take your portrait, who would it be? I would have to say Nick Knight. I love his work.
I’ve known Damien since the early days of Dazed and we’ve always kept in touch. He started talking to me about this major project that he was working on, all about the ancient world and crazy creatures of the past. I’ve always been fascinated by the ancient world. So we did a shoot together, just playing around with some concepts, and working with his favourite model – Dani. The idea grew from there – we evolved it together after that. Do you like collaborations? Or do you find sometimes it can be hard to share an artistic vision? Well really every shoot I do is a collaboration, so I guess I must do! Sometimes it can be hard, but you have to embrace that, ride it, then you get the best results. Working with Damien on Myths was really rewarding, he’s a genius and I don’t say that lightly, how could I not love it. You have been doing a lot of directing over the past five years or so for music videos and the like; what do you like about video that you can’t do with a static image? That’s a very tough question to answer in a few sentences. Technically they are so similar in so many ways but the tone and content has to be almost the opposite. The best analogy I can think of is that directing is like writing prose, photography is like writing poetry. I am obsessed by moving people emotionally, so I am drawn to each of them for different reasons. Do you remember the first photograph that struck a chord with you? It was a poster by the Hungarian war photographer Robert Capa from the Spanish German civil war. I was about 12 years old. It had a lot of impact on me What’s been your most crazy shoot to date? It was with Courtney Love and that’s as far as I’ll go – she’s the goddess of craziness and we should all worship at her temple. Who is in your top three favourite people you have shot? Another difficult one – there are so many – but I’ve always loved shooting Heidi Klum. Then I’d say Kate Moss and Robert Downy Jr and of course my wife. They all have that certain something, They are just great to be around and excited about life. They allow you to capture that and it’s exciting to photograph them. If you could give one piece of advice to the young photographer, what would it be? Don’t be so narrow as to just do photography, the modern medium is changing so fast, you have to embrace where it’s going. In another life what would you be doing? I’ve always wished I could be a doctor.
Do you have other artists’ work hanging in your home and if so whose? Yes, I love collecting art, I own works by Peter Blake, Matt Collishaw, David Montogomery, David Bailey, Polly Morgan, Martin Parr and Nick Waplington to name a few. You collaborated with Damien Hirst on Myths: Monsters; how did that come about or were you already good friends?
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Who's Jack Magazine, Issue 56 Who's Jack Magazine, Lil Niqo, Meg Myers, Stuart Semple, Ada Zanditon, Sawdust, Simon Pegg, Sadie Frost, Ranki...
Published on May 2, 2012
Who's Jack Magazine, Issue 56 Who's Jack Magazine, Lil Niqo, Meg Myers, Stuart Semple, Ada Zanditon, Sawdust, Simon Pegg, Sadie Frost, Ranki...