I think it was 2003's Love Actually (above) that began my love of actor Martin Freeman. Freeman has had quite the last couple of years with hit movies and critically acclaimed television series in both the UK (Sherlock) and the US (Fargo). The last two years haven't been quite as great for Saturday Night Live who still hasn't fully recovered from the departures of Bill Hader, Kristen Wiig and Seth Meyers.
Mattress Warehouse sketch
Freeman however, brought his magic to SNL last night in what I believe is the season's episode thus far. The show was surprisingly solid from beginning to end. Freeman gets a lot of the credit, but the writers also stepped up their game with even Update not bogging down the pace. A little gratuitous shirtlessness from Taran Killam and Jay Pharoah in the shows last sketch didn't hurt either.
If you can buy the premise, actress Alicia Witt as a Mall Santa, then you like me might enjoy this new flick entering the crowded world of Christmas television movies with Christmas at Cartwright's. Cartwright's is the department store, and a down on her luck single Mom ends up in the Santa chair with a little help from the angelic Harry (the always enjoyable Wallace Shawn)
Also working at Cartwright's is Bill played by gorgeous, and most certainly hunky, Gabriel Hogan. Gabriel has starred in many movies and television shows, most in Canada, including his current turn on Heartland. You might also recognize the 40 year old actor from turns in The Bridge, The Best Years, The Kennedy's and Ice Soldier. Hogan is a perfect match for Alicia Witt and brings a balance to the far fetched, yet enjoyable story. I will be keeping my eye on future projects featuring Gabriel!
Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of interviewing and featuring the work of model, artist and animator Kyle Anderson. When putting together the piece, (Artist, Animator & Gentlemen) I chose some of my favorite images from Kyle's port. I especially loved how Kyle's beautiful black and whites and bodyscapes contrasted with his bright, colorful and playful animations. which I included within the story.
When I was putting the finishing touches on my edit of the story, I returned to Kyle's sites, something I always do prior to getting ready to post for the day. I always want to check to ensure I have all the links and info correct before finalizing the layout. When I returned to Kyle's Model Mayhem Port, I discovered he had added a few new images since my last visit, images from a shoot withCovet Image.
I intimately felt the need to include some of the images within the piece. I had profiled photographer Ray's imagery in November, (Temporary Seclusion) and was eager to showcase more of images. Ray's images really stood out within Kyle's portfolio, with the bright white and reds contrasting Kyle's black & white images. They actually wer sort of closer to the feel of some of Kyle's art and animation... although definitely less whimsical and intensely more erotic.
In my first piece featuring Ray's work with Dutch, I was impressed at Ray's skill and creativity in creating story while shooting, in a hotel room, a location some photographers might find a full of limitations. Ray always seems to find and essence of men he shoots, pulling it out through story and imagery.
Kyle's expressive eyes, along with pose, fashion (especially those socks) create a uniquely sensual series of images. I especially love the image image below. Kyle's pose and eye direction had me curious as to what he was thinking of. Ray and Kyle have created that feeling most of us have experienced; on the road, away from home, in a hotel room alone, uninhibited, aroused and completely alone for the long night ahead of us.
So.... I contacted Ray about including his work in the piece on Kyle, but fortunately for us, Ray got back to me right after I published. I say fortunately, as Ray relayed Kyle was a great guy to work with and happy he was going to be featured on FH. He sent on more images from the shoot which provided me with the opportunity to be able to feature their work in a separate feature. Something I am am grateful for as I would not have liked having to choose just a few favorites from the images Ray had sent on. Kyle had a similar reaction of seeing the results of the shoot.
'Working with Ray was great! He had a very clear idea of the shots he wanted to get and made me feel very comfortable right away. You could really feel his passion for photography which I think can seen in the shots that he got!'
I introduced FH readers to Kyle's animated Advent calendar with #1, the thrusting candy cane, in the first piece last week. Here is #11, with marshmallow hot (chocolate) tub!. Kyle is now up to #12 now so be sure to check them all out HERE: