Monday, November 14, 2011

Dangerous Diversions: The Photography of Mark Bower

When I was compiling the list of artists yesterday who have shared their work with FH, I was thinking about why some photographers work speaks to me more than others. Of course the reasons are different for each image, each shoot. I can tell you what it is not, and that is hot men. Yes, I know that great looking guys are a core reason many (ok most) people come to FH but the net is full of hot naked men. There has to be something more. I have seen so so looking men be elevated to greatness in a the hands of a skilled artist and incredible looking guys butchered to blandness in the hands of a bad photographer.

I would guess when many see a great shot of a model they google the model, with me, I hunt down who took it. It is usually one factor and one photo that draws me to want to see more of their work. In the case of photographer Mark Bower the image was that of actor and model Kairon John and the factor was excitement and maybe just a little bit of danger.

Four images above: Kairon John

Kairon John is an electric model and Mark shooting him naked, on a motorcycle, with the editing, the poses, is a dangerous, but beautifully safe, overdose of stimulation. It is no wonder then that one of the shots became the cover of Mark's 2011 edition of his Caliboyz calendar. Sadly Mark tells me he has been too busy shooting other projects to have a 2012 edition, but he had created and produced the calendars for the last three years.

Stephen K

There are not a lot of kittens and puppies (ok, maybe one adorable puppy) in Mark's work, In front of Mark's lens, the men are strong, raw, masculine and sexy. These attributes come through the eyes, the facial expressions and the poses Mark captures. The edge, or the danger, may come from Mark's thoughts on planned concepts which he outlines on his MM Page.

Justin Dane Chambers

'The hardest question for me to answer with respect to my collaboration with Models in this forum has to be: "what is your concept for our shoot?" Reason is, I believe strongly in my creative abilities and in most cases, the most incredible things happen spontaneously, in the moment and without planning. Why? Partly because anything a creative individual brings with them to the process is more interesting, more REAL than something mapped out or detailed'

At one time on the other side of the lens, Mark has the ability to feel out each shot from both perspectives, something he has been doing the past twenty years since his passion for photography turned into a profession. Thanks Mark for sharing your work with FH!

Mark Bower on ModelMayhem
Mark Bower Official Site

Below: Connor

Milan Christopher

Carlus Tyler Reed

Broderick Hunter


GQ Thomas

Favorite Pic of the Day for November 15th

Another shot of Autumn from MvR Photo

Happy Birthday today November 15th to:

Check out today's birthday's HERE: & HERE:

A Pattinson Pass

Like many, I crushed over actor Robert Pattinson when I first saw him as Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire. But...for some reason I cannot stand anything Twilight related. I usually love anything Vampire connected but I cannot get through an Twilight film. Some of today's hottest actors make up the cast but the pacing seems in slow motion to me. Kristian Stewart grates on my last nerve and except for his abs, Taylor Lautner, and his lack of acting skill, hold no appeal to me. (sorry!). Pattinson also has a bit of that dear in the headlight look when promoting the film, something I am sure is connected to sudden fame and constant work.

It was nice this past weekend to fall back in love with Patinson in Water For Elephants. I loved every minute of this film from the beginning with Hal Holbrook through the incredible performance by Christoph Waltz and the climatic finale. I love elephants and as kid always dreamed of joining the circus. When I was university I protested local circus's coming to town due to their use of animals, but as a kid the circus held a huge amount of magic for me, all brought back while enjoying this film.

Home For Christmas: Mark MacKillop

Above: Mark by Keiko Guest Photography

I realize that Home From Christmas sounds like a Hallmark Movie featuring Valerie Bertinelli taking on a very dramatic turn... but, when I think of actor, dancer, singer and model Mark MacKillop I can't help but thinking of Christmas and more specifically, The Nutcracker.

5 images below by Walter Kurtz

Most dancers, ballet dancers especially, know that the holiday season usually begins in the summer or early fall with auditions for the Christmas show season which usually runs anytime between late October or November through January. Mark has spent the last few holiday seasons involved with the production but is hoping to take this holiday season off.

Currently living in New York, Mark was born and raised in Vancouver BC. He grew up in the theatre, and with plans to pursue musical theatre and at the age of 17, took the advice of a friend and started taking ballet. Three years later he was hired to dance with the Atlanta Ballet, the oldest continually running ballet company in North America.

After only six months Mark performed his first principle role as Paris in Romeo and Juliet. In the summer of 2010 Mark was invited to perform the role of Espada, the lead matador, as a guest principle Artist in Japan in Don Quixote. It was Atlanta where Mark was living when I first profiled him in 2009. After three years in Atlanta Mark decided to move to New York to return to his roots performing in musical theatre on Broadway.

Since returning to New York, Mark has been working with some of the cities leading photographers including Andrew Werner, Tim Wilkerson, Rick Day and Walter Kurtz. Mark shoots with Walter on a fairly regular basis and as usual Walter has nailed some incredible portraits!

Check out Mark's official site HERE:
& on ModelMayhem HERE:

Below: Mark by Andrew Werner

Next two images from Tim Wilkerson

Below: Mark by Nelson N Castillo

Last three shots from Rick Day