My mother loved the beach.... therefore as a kid, I was often dragged there during the summer. It was the 80's, before sunscreen became a must. The 80's was the time of suntan lotion. I remember the smell of the lotion, often coconut scented, mixed with salt. Lying on my multi-colored striped towel, eating peanut butter and jam sandwiches, never able to fully get rid them of the taste and crunch of sand. We didn't buy food at the beach... nope, we brought it. Wrapped in tons of tin foil. No thermos, but a plastic container with kool-aid, ice to keep it cold and to water it down. Desert was always fruit, nothing sugary for us.
I swam, played with my sibling and friends. Then lay down waiting for my mother to finish baking. I didn't love those beach days, but I do love the beach. I especially love the beach in the evenings and on days when the water is rough, after a storm as it slams into the shore with force. I think what I love most about the beach though is the sound. Every year I spend as much time as I can at a cottage I have been going to for over 10 years. What I miss most after every trip is the lapping of the water on the shore. Hearing it as the most effective, and soothing alarm clock to wake up to. And hearing as the most soothing and pleasant sleep aid to doze off to.
I cannot think of summer without thinking of the many hot summer days at lake near my house. I spent so much energy trying to be discrete as I stared at the lifeguard up on their stand. There is something about lifeguards, I guess it's like stewardesses and nurses... there is a sexual connection to the profession. Might be that they're all supposed to be in shape, wear very little on the job and that their main purpose is keeping every body safe.
After deciding I needed to feature a lifeguard piece in my week or summer themes, the problem became who to feature. I never really watched Baywatch, so quickly ruled them out. I have fond memories of all the images of Australian lifeguards that seemed to infiltrate the net when I first got on-line, but there were two other lifeguards I couldn't get out of my head.
I have loved actor Sam Elliott since first seeing him in Mask. My lust deepened a few years ago after buying the DVD and catching his naked walk into the shower in 1978's The Legacy. (some pics HERE:) Elliott is an actor, who although has aged, has not lost his spark, nor his sexual appeal. I remember I downloaded a copy of Elliott's 1976 flick, Lifeguard a few years ago but never watched it. After finally getting my old laptop up and running, (sort of) I was able to find the file and put it on a stick to finally watch.
I am not sure whose hair is the most wavy, Elliott or co-star Parker Stevenson, but they are both adorable in the flick. There isn't much of a story really, but that fits just fine with the lifestyle. The older lifeguard, Elliott, mentors his weekend help, Stevenson as he contemplates life beyond the beach. Throw in a young girl with a crush, Anne Archer with a kid, and a lifeguard comp that finally gets both actors in speedos, and you have an enjoyable hour and half. The movie literally screams the 70's, but after years of dismissing most of the decades films, I am increasingly gaining, if not an appreciation, an enjoyment for what the decade brought to cinema.
Consider this post a teaser of sorts... Regular readers of FH know how much I love the work of Wes and Alex from New Manhattan Studios. Over the past year, on Halloween, and again on Valentine's, Wes has shared his work with one of my, and the studio's most popular models, Bond Brown. Bond lights up in front of the lens and with each session in front of the lens, his grin and boy next door appeal gets more comfortable, edgy, a little devilish and undeniably sexual.
Last summer, Wes and Alex headed west and shot Bond under the California sun. Much of the imagery, knock down and smash any previous boundaries and limits. But... that's for later in the fall. Wes shot Bond in the morning, in the afternoon and in the evening and Wes agreed to let me share a small sampling of their evening shoot on the beach.
I think Bond's California shoot is at the top of my list of favorites from all of the shoots I have featured from New Manhattan Studios. Living in New York, Wes shoots primarily in studio most of the year and I think his work outside; Alex at Sunset Meadow, and Bond in California, really does justice to the scope and Wes's cinematic vision and creativity.
If you can't wait til fall to see more of Bond, check out Bond's page at NMS for an uncensored look at Bond in images and books!
I couldn't put together a summer themed week, let alone a beach themed day, without including the work of photographer Mark Leighton. I have been featuring Mark's images on FH since 2008. Working mostly from his home in Lagos, Portugal, Mark's studio is made up of the hundreds of miles of white sand and blue cool waters and rocks that line the Lagos beaches.
Unlike many of us in North America, Mark's summer studio is open all year round. Although there can be snow in Northern Portugal, Lagos beaches remain ready for sunbathers, swimmers, and photographers, 12 months a year. I love Mark's work, I think especially how he captures how each of the men he shoots interact with their surroundings.
Although some of Mark's models are local, many travel to Portugal for their shoot. The sun, sand and water bring out different things in different models. There are different emotions and levels of sensuality released when out of the studio and working with the heat of the sun beating down as you work.
With Adrian, the location certainly seems to bring out an energy and joy all beautifully captured by Mark. Adrian hails from Oxford, England which Mark reports made persuading him to come to Portugal a bit of a challenge. It wasn't that Adrian didn't want to come, he did. But with a full time job, his limited time off of work was usually spent going to see his family and friends in Romania.
Eventually, Mark prevailed and Adrian interrupted one of his holidays to fly to Portugal for 4 days. Transport links are not the greatest between the two countries and in the end, Adrian had to take three flights before arriving at his destination.
'Adrian is one of the sunniest, happiest models I have ever shot. He always had a smile on his face and was chatty and very kind. As you can see, he has a great body but it is not gym trained, he does all his body shaping at home.'
Clearly all that work at home is paying off. Adrian has an amazing body, great arms, chest and stomach and that incredible butt which, with only a hint of a tan line, gets it's share of exposure to the sun and outdoors. In addition to his great physique, Adrian's face also draws the viewers focus with his beautiful brown eyes and those sensational lips. Even with the short time they spent together, Mark was pleased with the results of their work. So pleased, they plan on shooting together again soon. 'I have some more ideas to explore with him and we both know we will have great fun while we "work"!'