This past June, while looking for hot Canadians to feature on my July 1st Canada Day themed posts, I discovered the social media accounts of brothersJohn and Brad Mayo. Although Canada Day may have come and gone, but I didn't want to wait another year to introduce the Nova Scotia brothers to FH readers.
Still in their twenties, both John and Brad are retired kayakers living in their parents lakeside home just outside of the city of Halifax. The brothers decided they wanted to make create a new brand of healthy living they call 'Cold Exposure.'
Each day, spring, summer, autumn and winter, they take their morning shower not in the bathroom, but in the lake, even if they have to dig through ice to jump in. In addition to the beauty of the adorable siblings, I love seeing the four seasons so beautifully captured, usually with the lake and surrounding tree's as the brothers majestic and colorful background. In addition to cold exposure, the brothers also practice parkour and have a focus on calisthenics.
'Basically the etymology of calisthenics is "beauty" and "strength." So kalos is beauty and sthenos is strength. So just kind of like, functional movements.'
'A lot of people come up with excuses for why they can't work out or think they need a gym membership, and we just kind of became obsessed with this guy—Ido Portal [who's trained Conor McGregor]—and I was like, "wow, this looks way more interesting than just being in the gym doing bench presses," which is what we were used to because we were both competitive kayakers. We did that our whole lives, but weight training kind of got boring, so once we retired from that sport we kind of got bored with what we were doing, [and] we were like, we want to do some cool interesting stuff.'
It was that specific mood that Mike (Implicit Ditto) describes that first drew me to his imagery. I first noticed Mike's work on Model Mayhem awhile ago and knew I wanted to feature his work. Last year, while profiling model and photographer Tristan Woods, I noticed some fantastic shots of Tristan on Mike's Instagram and knew it was time to reach out.
Mike studied photography in college, but like myself and other would-be artists, time and money issues pushed him towards pursuing a safer profession. For Mike, that was a carer in the tec sector. Once digital cameras began to take hold, and became more affordable, Mike picked it back up and says he hasn't looked back since. With his tec experience, Mike's attuned to changes in technology, and has been fascinated watching how photography and technology continues to blend together and compliment each other.
'I started focusing on the male form in the early 00’s as I decided it made sense to start photographing what it was I was spending so much time looking at.'
'My own personal aesthetic is to try and blend the surroundings in with the model as much as possible. I don’t do well with studio work for that reason. What I really find interesting is the blend of the environment and the model to really create a mood. For example, a person on a beach creates a mood, or in an industrial complex, in the forest, an abandoned house, etc. I just love bringing all of these elements together and seeing what’s possible. While some photographers are amazing in the studio, it’s just more of a challenge for me. But, that could change.'
Mike connected with Mickey through a modeling site, and Mike was among the first photographers that Mickey shot with. Mike could see from his prior work that he was comfortable with his body and looked to find a space with both privacy, and not constrained by being in a public location. This set of images come from their second shoot together, the first was shot at a private residence, these were taken on on the secluded property of one of Mike's friends.
'Mickey is fantastic to work with, in fact, I have to work to keep up with him. Mickey is so athletic and fluid in his movements, he’ll just seamlessly (and quickly) transition from one pose to the next. I often have to catch him and tell him to stop and move back a few poses so I can re-shoot something. He’s also one of the most polite and enthusiastic people I’ve ever met. He’s genuinely grateful for the opportunity and experience and I think that comes through in all of his photos.'
I love the way Mickey blends into, and interacts with his environment in this location shoot. The blend is beautifully quiet and subtle in tone and mood. There are no jarring moments, movements or colors, even the pinks and blue's Mike captured seem to flow with Mickey's beautiful skin tone and the surrounding greens.
Nothing makes you feel older than when a hunk you grew up salivating over, announces on Twitter that he's now a senor citizen... That's exactly what happened when I read Ken Olin's July 30th tweet commemorating his 65th birthday. Although known to most for his role on Thirtysomething, these days, Olin keeps busy as an executive producer for This Is Us, and also served as EP for two of my all time favorite shows, Alias and Brothers & Sisters.
Although I've seen a few episodes of Thirtysomething, it wasn't a show I watched during it's original run. I was about 11 or 12 when the show aired on ABC and it seemed a little too adult (ie boring..) the few times that I saw it. My introduction to Ken actually came a year or two earlier...
Falcon Crest 1985
My parents were big fans of Dallas, and Friday night in our house was always Dallas night. I loved to watch the show with my parents, more to watch them than the show itself. I think Dallas was the only show they actually sat down and watched together. For a time in the eighties, Dallas was followed by another Prime Time Soap, Falcon Crest. Usually before the second soap started, my father left the rec room, and I was sent to bed. Occasionally however, mom was too tired to fight with me, and stayed up, sometimes catching a bit of Jane Wyman drama.
I have a very vivid memory of a scene on the show and seeing a hot hairy chested man diving naked into a lake. The scene wasn't that long, and at the time didn't know who the actor was. We didn't own a VCR yet, and back then, the showed aired just one time. The scene remained one of those 'memories', incredibly vivid but yet not complete.
It was years later that I discovered the skinny dipping hunk was Ken Olin, who briefly played Father Christopher on the CBS soap. When I finally got the net, I was able to find a clip of the scene to revisit that childhood memory. When I first saw the scene, it was incredibly hot to me, but re-watching, it didn't exactly live up to what I had remembered. It was CBS, so you weren't going to see much, but it still holds one of those erotic milestones in my sexual awakening
Queen's Logic (1991)
In addition to Ken's brief swim on Falcon Crest, I think his only other nude scene was in 1991's Queen's Logic. Before anyone gets too excited, the scene shows about as much as his previous one, and is equally as fleeting. Ken, along with co-stars Tony Spiridakis, Joe Mantegna, John Malkovich and Kevin Bacon run to their car after having their clothing stolen while skinning dipping. I'm not sure exactly which darkened buttocks is Olin's, but I'm sure someone can figure it out with a close study.