Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Favorite Pic of the Day for September 15th

Beautiful shot of Christian Josh Zarate by one of my favorites, Ev Dylan!

Vacation is over, back to blogging!

Happy Birthday today September 15th

Love actor Josh Charles (here with Anne Heche in Pie In The Sky) turns 40 today.
See more of Josh on FH HERE: HERE: & HERE:

Happy Birthday also to: Dave Annable, Tom Hardy, Josh Rafter, Christian Cooke, Will Toale, Rene Haselbacher, Tom Dolan, Jack Gwaltney, Danny Nucci, Tommy Lee Jones & Prince Harry HERE:

Favorite Click of the Week: L'homme est un concept

There are three of four sites I visit on a regular basis and L'homme est un concept (The Concept of Man) is one of them. The blog was one of a samll group of sites that helped inspire me to create FH. The blog is text heavy, and obviously in French, but can be enjoyed whether you choose to translate or not. A mix of great images, (some I have never seen anywhere else) video and a focus on the site owners love of animals (cats in particular). I have spent many hours of enjoyment checking out the archives.


Built From Boredom: Justin Gardner by Peachtree Muscle Photos

Built From Boredom:
Justin Gardner by Mike Saunders from Peachtree Muscle Photos

Last month I first profiled the work of photographer Mike Saunders from Peachtree Muscle Photos, Blending Of Tones. The title of the feature referred to Mike's skill at blending classic elements of 'beefcake' photography incorporating pose with fashion, color and location.

In both my first profile of Mike's work with Ryan Sandefur, and this series of shots with body builder and model Justin Gardner, location plays a key role in the impact the images create. Mike and Justin first shot together last May and followed it up with a second shoot earlier this month. Historically, in 'muscle themed photography', the focus was generally on pose, with the backdrop usually being a simple black or white sheet. If a location was used a sandy beach was generally the most exotic they got. Although there is a certain 'classic' element to Justin's look, Mike placed him in a number of Georgia locations including some great shots at a aviation museum. Mike says they rambled across central Georgia shooting in front of old stores, stone walls and one of Mike's favorite locations, covered bridges.

Although always an active person, Justin says he started lifting weights about 4 years ago mostly out of boredom. To fund the habit, the 24 year old began working at GNC. Now, 3 years later, he is a manager and his biggest enjoyment is helping others live well. His focus on fitness helped cement his career path and is planning on obtaining his Bachelor's Degree in Exercise Science at Old Dominion University in Virginia. Justin currently competes as a natural bodybuilder for the OCB (Organization for Competitive Bodybuilders) and says he is proud to be a team member of All Natural Options.

'The overall point I want to convey is that I enjoy living the healthy lifestyle, but I also have fun helping others to get on that track and making themselves better. I was the newbie lifting not too long ago, and I know how confusing things are on what supplements to take and how to train/eat for success.'

Justin said that he decided to try his hand at fitness modeling after a bodybuilding show this past August. After starting a page of Facebook focusing on fitness and bodybuilding he was contacted by Mike about a shoot. Justin says Mike has been a major help to him with his modeling. Besides taking great shots and being a pleasure to work with, Justin says Mike has helped him with making contacts and finding other opportunities to grow and be successful in the industry.

Mike describes Justin as extremely intelligent, disciplined, laid back, well-motivated and an extremely EXCELLENT poser. 'He works tirelessly'.

'I am pretty much immersed with fitness all day between helping customers at my store, working towards an Exercise Science BS degree, and then of course my own training. You would think I would be sick of it, but it's quite the opposite! I believe if you have a passion for something and you convey that to others that it is easy to build rapport and trust between each other. Posing for me seems to come naturally I think because I have such a multi-layered personality and I can easily convey different emotions and feelings, but also because I enjoy doing it. To me that is the biggest part of it, you have to thoroughly enjoy what you do and it will show in the final product.'

Peachtree Muscle Photos: On Model Mayhem & on Facebook

Justin Gardner Fitness on ModelMayhem:
Justin Gardner Fitness Official Site:

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly: The Talk

I have hesitated writing anything about the disaster that is CBS's The Talk. I am at work when it airs and have precious little room on my DVR (I still cannot figure out how to record programs I want to keep off the freakin thing). I was also pretty sure after I watched an early episode the show last year that it would be gone by Christmas. But... then something happened, the personality of some of the hosts took off and the show started to connect with viewers. I watched a handful of episodes over the Christmas holidays and relented and DVR'd when there was a guest that interested me.

In those few episodes I came to a few 'not so difficult to come to' conclusions. Although Julie Chen was well suited for morning tv and even won me over (after about 4 seasons) on Big Brother, there is a reason she has been dubbed 'Chenbot'. Sara Gilbert, so brilliant as Darlene on Roseanne makes the Chenbot look like Miss Personality by comparison. As stiff as she is thin, the only thing that saved Gilbert from blending right into the set was her relationship with Leah Remini. I have never really liked Sharon Osbourne (possibly because I think she would gut you like a fish without blinking) but understand her widespread appeal. She has that 'trash talking' wild, older mother thing going on. Those types of mothers usually scare me, mostly because they cannot be truly counted on or trusted. I prefer my mother figures more Mrs C than Mrs O.

Chen and Gilbert were bad enough, and when the show began, Holly Robinson Peete and Leah Remini rounded out an uncomfortable foursome. Holly (who although I know was an actress, but I had only seen in Celebrity Apprentice) showed her early desperation to succeed with pre written jokes, antic dotes and stories so obviously preplanned. I am not sure how great an actress she was, but she could not pull off 'impromptu' if her life depended on it.

Remini annoyed the shit out of me on King of Queens and despite the adorable Kevin James turned me off the show. Early on in The Talk she was so loud and out of control it was clear at some point she would ordered to reign it in. But...then something happened, Peete got more comfortable, stronger and often more adept (careful Holly, Chen's husband is the boss!!!!) than Chen at keeping the group together and on topic. Remini dialed it back (slightly, but enough) and they became two of the shows strongest elements. They connected with the audience (something Chen and Gilbert did not, nor still have not, been able to do).

Last week the show returned without them. Their firings were not only surprising, they were cold, ugly and cruel. Cold; because both not only worked hard last season, they worked their ass's off to take a poorly conceived show and turn it into something almost watchable. Ugly; because being on The Talk meant sharing. Both women shared intimate details of their sex lives, their children, their life. All worth it for a job, entirely not worth it for unemployment. Cruel; as both women were unceremoniously dumped with Peete only officially getting word the week before the new season began.

Watching the shows September 11th tribute was so bad I had to turn it off. Emotion is something tied to connection and given Chen and Gilbert still have not made one, the show seemed desperately manipulative. Chen's discussion the impact 911 had on her reality gig Big Brother (with BB's Allison Grodner trying desperately to save the season by downplaying the event to a player who had a relative in one of the towers) was truly disgusting.

Why would anyone care how it affected Sheryl Underwood (who?) and Molly Shannon (brilliant comedic actress, not so brilliant talk show host) given they just started on the show two days earlier. Adding Kris Jenner (ugh) I think will be the final nail in this shows coffin. The ratings have yet to dip but that is more than likely the 'watch an accident' effect. If Jenner (riding on her daughters whoring of the media) has not signed a contract, CBS should get their old hosts back toot sweet! I DVR'd briefly to see the changes, and there was nothing to make me tune back in again. For a show called the The Talk there was was mostly just banal yakking with no mention of any cast departures nor Sara Gilbert's summer break-up. Better or worse, if this had been The View, Barbara Walters would have taken the opportunity to shine the spotlight on herself, ensure she told the audience they all loved one another and proceeded to plug a special. Barbara made a point to mention (slam) each of the co-hosts who left her daily one hour commercial.

The theme song from MASH says Suicide Is Painless, but this death is hard to watch. Suicide is always emotion based and the emotion in this case has to be that of Chen. I have never really felt nepotism played a role in her jobs, she had most of them before marrying Les Moonve. It is not really possible however to believe it did not play a role in Remini and Peete's departures. They out shined Chen pure and simple and with the hiring of Shannon and Underwood (who?) you can be damned sure that won't happen again.