'Most people go through their whole lives, without ever really feeling that close with anyone.'
I have my television on a lot. Fore the most part, it's like background noise as I go through my day. I sometimes have it on when I cook, when I eat, when I clean, or do projects around the house. I have it on when I'm preparing for work, when I'm reading and when I'm working on the blog. I noticed however a few years ago, there's very few television shows that I actually watch.
By watch, I mean a show that I give my full attention. There's very few. Maybe it's a bit of my adult ADD, but my mind tends to wander, especially when I concentrating on something. It means I'm much more productive, doing several things at once. I don't always finish them all, but I accomplish more than when I focus on just one thing. I say all this, to let you know that I easily was able to watch, focus solely and devour each of the 12 episodes of Normal People.
I loved Normal People. I loved the story, I loved the direction, I loved the entire company of actors. Led by Daisy Edgar-Jones (Marianne) and Paul Mescal. (Connell) Each of the shows 30 minutes episodes were on their own, almost like a mini-movie. Although the time line of the show spans just a few years, the show moves from location to location, and section of time to create several different worlds and lifetimes for Marianne and Connell to work their way through.
'People are a lot more knowable than they think they are.'
I won't share any story details, I know many of you have already seen it. For those who who haven't,I strongly recommend you find a way to do so. I actually hesitated writing about the show, and posting images of the nude scenes, because of how much I loved and respected the project. I finished watching awhile ago, but wanted a bit of time to process it. I took my time watching, I binged, but paced myself to watch just two episodes per night, in order to extend the number of nights I could watch.
There is a fair bit of nudity, from both male and female leads, and although the actors certainly have been objectified by many, it's both a sad side affect of on-screen nudity, yet also completely understandable. The writing was so raw, the acting so real, and the direction so intimate, viewers were taken deeper into a couples emotional nexus than most movies strive, or able to accomplish.
I loved Marianne, and was in love with Connell. You felt every beat of their relationship, from unhealthy beginnings, to ups and downs that followed. Their sexual relationship was so intimate, and also one of the factors which created their unique bond. It was crucial these scenes worked as they sort of acted as the intro, to each chapter and piece of their relationship, and the changes which occur throughout their story.
I am going objectify Connell, with a focus on the nude scenes in the second part of my post on the NEXT PAGE. The nudity as stated was important, but one of many important pieces of this brilliant television series. Mescal created a character you not only loved, but respected, sympathized with, rooted for and cried with. He also created a character you lusted for, something the directors and camera work encouraged and enabled. They were wanting or pulling you look at his penis or any specific body part, but they did want you to see him, and see all of him.
I know many FH readers are familiar with StudioMGphotography's images with Greg. I think of all the models Mark has shot over the years, his images of Greg are the one's I tend to see pop up on Twitter, tumblrs and other sites. Mark's shots of Greg on the telephone poll are some of my favorites, and some of the shots I most frequently see shared on-line.
It's easy to understand why Mark's images of Greg had such an impact. Not only does Greg have an incredible body, and Mark captures it so magnificently. Greg seems to have confidence with both his look and body, and his level of fitness. He moves and poses beautifully and Mark spent much of the shoot capturing the hot 18 year old in motion. As eye catching as Greg is moving, stretching, kicking and climbing, he's equally striking, when posing perfectly still.
'Greg is totally unselfconscious in his nudity. I never really knew what drew him to modeling, but he just seemed to like hanging out with photographers and seeing what they would create with him as their inspiration!
Greg is also totally fearless in the face of dirt, grime, splinters or sharp medal. Our first shoot he often walked around exploring fully nude, with the location his gym/playground/obstacle course - there was no hesitation as he clambered over structures or squeezed through openings. He was however "afraid" of crawdads. At our third shoot the river had the occasional crawdad that would run across the bottom in the shadows trying to find hiding places from these giants that were walking up the river. They'd run across in front of him and he'd yelp and jump up on a rock!
Some of you may also recognize Greg from his previous appearances on FH. Greg was the focus of one of Mark's earliest photo books back in 2007. By 2012, Mark had printed and edited several other books, and because of that experience, went back and updated his work with Greg in expanded edition. Mark brightened the editing, added new layouts and photos. At that time however, the book was still only available for purchase in a hard cover edition.
For the first time ever, Greg, is now available in an e-book edition, ready immediately for download! Given Greg is one of Mark's most popular models, Mark has been thinking of an e-book version for awhile, but he wanted to go back in and make sure the images and layout would visually translate from the hard cover edition to an e-book. It took a little work, but it's now ready to enjoy!
'Greg can also change a flat tire faster than anyone I know... At the end of our second shoot we were leaving the location late... he had to get home, shower, pick up his girlfriend, and get to a hockey game (Sharks) they had tickets to. Immediately we realized my truck was driving funky - I had a flat. In a flash Greg had it jacked up, got the spare from underneath, changed it, and we were on our way again. He wasn't going to disappoint his girlfriend or miss the game!'
Greg is the result of 3 outings with Greg, all within a 9 month period. Each day was full of surprises - I hope you enjoy this photographic journey as much as I enjoyed capturing it! The first shoot was Greg arriving with those low-rise pants and T-shirts. The second, was a duo shoot with CJ, who Mark shares Greg hit it off with the moment the met. The third shoot took place in late summer, and is responsible for most of the location shoots, including the shots of Greg in and by the river.
You can order and own the low cost e-book on Blurb HERE: You can also check out Greg, and all of Mark's books, on his site HERE: