The key to me, for getting through a long cold winter, is trying my best, to live by the quote above. To remember how excited I used to get as a kid to wake up, run to the window and see that it snowed. Yes, having to shovel, drive to work and pay for heat, can put a damper on that excitement, but given we can't change the winter, what's the alternative? So many adults complain when it snows, but for kids, the white stuff means school might be cancelled meaning the gift of a snow day.
Although FH just celebrated a snow day on Wednesday, with the flurries still falling, there's always time for another excursion out into the cold. Obviously our Sensual Winter Soldier,Luke Geedidn't close much attention when was told as a kid not to go out in the cold without wearing a coat. Although he looks delicious in all black in the above photo, Luke not only abandoned that pesky heavy coat, but he quickly escaped from the rest of his clothing as well.
I first introduced FH readers to model and photographer Luke Gee last November. (Autumnus) although today's images are all about the white stuff, in the first piece, the focus was on Luke wrapped in the vibrant colors of fall. I love Luke's winter themed shots, and he headed out to shoot in the snow a few times before Christmas. The frigid temperatures since, have forced Luke to carefully schedule his time outside, but warmed up enough for a day or two last week, for Luke to once again head out with his camera.
Thanks to Luke for once again sharing his work in front of, and behind the camera. You can see more of Luke's work, in and out of the snow, and in out of his clothing, on his Instagram (HERE:) & on his ONLYFANS site (HERE:)
'You're never really naked when you're wearing ink.'
I am not generally the biggest fan of tattoo's, yet I know that the right ink, on the right person, can be incredibly sexy. I have also learned that tattoo's are intensely personal for many, and often, a person's body mark is a road map of their journey, often highlighting the most painful stops along the way.
Below: Ricky Martin getting his butt tat covered for a scene in American Crime Story: Versace
But... then there's those late night, on a dare, or alcohol inspired tats, may of these ending up on people's butts. Over the past few years a huge industry has risen with people who remove these unwanted art pieces. It takes hours, over many session, as well as a lot of cash to undo what once seemed like a great idea. Some people, who at one time wanted to mark, or commemorate a significant event, learn they maybe don't want to be reminded of it every time they look in the mirror.
One of the things I do love about any artwork, is the process piece. Just as when I feature a great photo, I love the creation piece as much or more, than the final results. Butt tattoo's most often require one to yank down their pants, exposing their skin covered canvas to stranger, and sometimes a room full of people. Then, your butt, and it's future appearance, is fully at the disposal of the person at the other end of the needle.
Denver Bronco Fan Gets Seattle Seahawk Butt Tattoo For Bet
'Jeff is from from NYC and I’m so grateful that we could hang out together on his day off. Jeff is a great inspiration not only for showing you can be in an amazing shape after 40 but also as he seems very peaceful, content and of course very down to earth.'
On his website, photographer Pierre-Yves Monnerville states that what interests him most is representing the diversity of contemporary modern living. In addition, the changes in masculine imagery, with regards to not just fashion, but physical appearance as a whole. It seems to me, that when diversity is discussed in connection to photographing the male form, it is usually about culture and race. Other types of diversity, whether it be body type or age, are not always even brought in as a part of the discussion.
For most careers, the question of 'how old' inevitability comes up. How old is too old to drive, how old is too old to be a lawyer, a doctor, a teacher. For most jobs however, a specific age isn't used directly. Instead, it's masked with a skill based test or evaluation. I was recently at the DMV, and the person with the number before me was an older man sitting with his wife. It was clear when the instructor came to get him, that he was there for test to see if he would be able to keep his licence. As he left with the instructor, his wife got up to follow. She told the instructor he could drive just fine, but was hard of hearing so would not be able to hear his questions. I didn't stick around to see what happened, but am pretty sure he took his last Sunday drive in the country, at least behind the wheel.
We all know, as much as we fight it, that when we reach 60 or 70, we can expect that our reflex time to decrease, our mind, maybe not as sharp, and that may be time for us to slow down and work less. It is not uncommon for models however, to be seen as 'too old' when they hit their mid to late twenties. With about 95% or more of jobs for male models geared for men who are not only young and fit, but also white, 'working less' is something many models must deal with not just at the end, but at the start and throughout their entire career.
Pierre-Yves Monnerville has faced challenges with diversity, both in his personal, and professional lives. As a photographer, it has always been important to him to photograph racially diverse men, as well as models with diverse body types and men of all ages.. Last year, with his own 40th birthday on the horizon, Pierre took on a new project, one which both empowered him, and allowed him to express his feelings on diversity as well as issues of self expression within the gay community.
Pierre's project was to start a line of merchandise for gay men which he called Act Straight. All the garments in the line are printed in the UK on organic cotton, made with renewable energy and ethically sourced. The controversial name brand was a way to stick a middle finger and mock the very idea of 'acting straight'. Pierre's message with the line is to encourage men to embrace who they are, whether it be masculine, camp, feminine or any and all of the many and beautiful shades in-between.
'I am a black gay man. I don’t know which of the black or gay is more obvious but they’re equally strong parts of my identity. When I was a child, a small part of my family was ashamed to be black and spent their lives trying to prove they were or could do as well as or better than the whites. My godmother even angrily reproached her husband for being ‘too black’. On the other hand, I’m grateful I was brought up by people who had nothing to prove to anyone.
During my early teens, dark-skinned and coarse-haired people were routinely mocked, implying they were not as good looking as the ones with lighter complexion. Just like camp shaming and even more pathetic, guys who proudly brand themselves ‘straight acting’ only show internalised homophobia.'
'I was never bullied for being dark. That’s probably because some people preferred teasing me for being gay... Please note I’m using the word teasing rather than bullying. I teased as much as I was teased and don’t feel like a victim of bullying at all, but I digress. In my experience, I see a certain similarity between ethnicity and sexual orientation where some people tend to reproduce and assimilate some toxic and oppressing patterns. So... the idea behind Act Straight is to use humour and irony to empower gay men and exorcise shame and internalised homophobia. Sorry to state the obvious, but as far as I’m concerned, there’s no hierarchy whatsoever in terms of shades of masculinity, ethnicity or skin colour.'
The images of Steven, a personal trainer from NYC, were also geared to speak about diversity and stereotypes we have about male models. We are often made to feel that our worth is somehow connected to how popular we are, or how many followers we have on our social media. Steven's images are meant to show that no matter how hot one may look on the outside, good looking men often still go to bed at night alone. The t-shirts worn by Steven and Jeff, before taking them off to pose in much less, are both from Pierre'sAct Straight line.