Friday, April 25, 2014

Binx – The future face of fashion

You can’t go wrong with an intriguing name, especially in the fashion world. Binx is one such intriguing name, to match her personality and look. Her real name is Leona Walton, but she was nicknamed Binx by her brothers after “Jar Jar Binks” from Star Wars - the ‘gungan’ from the planet Naboo. Gungans are creatures that have humanoid bodies, long ears, and live underwater. So with this slight resemblance, this gungan is now a supermodel known as Binx.

Initially spotted 6 years ago by an agency owner when she was 13, Binx kept their business card for 3 years until she called them and she has been in development since then. If you count development as rising to the top in a matter of a year, that is – she’s 17 years old now.

Originally, Binx wanted to be a professional footballer and probably would’ve been had her modelling career not gone through the roof thanks to her delicate frame and body structure and her beautifully prominent cheekbones and eyes.

Growing up in Hawaii and Tennessee, and a graduate of performing arts, Binx is an avid skateboarder and a skilful performer of African and hip hop dance. She’s signed to Next Models in New York, Los Angeles and Miami and has been in no less than 27 major fashion shows this past season; walking for Marc Jacobs, Chanel and Prada amongst many other powerhouses. She’s also been chosen as the face of luxury French fashion-house, Céline, where she looks every inch the supermodel in the ads.

Binx is being called one to watch in 2014. And although she only has just over 4000 followers on Twitter so far and she hasn’t got a Wikipedia page yet, this will certainly change soon. She has designers tripping over to have her walk for them because of her androgynous London-style catwalk look as well as her street-cool avatar that has one guessing whether she’s a boy or a girl – something highly valuable in the fashion world. This 1.78m tomboy could very well be the future face of fashion with an edgy, enchanting name to match.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

“Bond 24” – Holding our breath for the next 007 feature

James Bond fans are always grasping on to any rumour that surfaces about the movie franchise, especially when it comes to the next release in the 007 series. This time around, it’s no different as we all await the next Bond release in 2015 which has just started to generate talk and speculation about the plot and, more intriguingly, who will star in it.

   Any 007 release is exciting; it becomes an event for the entire world to reminisce over the Bond collection. Since 1962, there have been 23 Bond films released and in 2015 we’re set to see the next one aptly dubbed “Bond 24”. Producers of the Bond film franchise were aiming at a new Bond flick every two years but when “Bond 24” releases in November 2015, it will have been 3 years since the last release in 2012 which was “Skyfall”. But these spectacular films have always proven to be worth the wait.

Daniel Craig will be returning to star in the 007 instalment, playing James Bond for the fourth time. His “Skyfall” stars are also rumoured to join him again, with Naomie Harris as Miss Moneypenny, Ben Whishaw as Q and (POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT!) remarkable Ralph Fiennes, who was fantastic in Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel” this year, as the new M. “Skyfall” director, Sam Mendes, is also geared up to direct. This certainly whets our appetite.

But that’s not all. “12 Years a Slave” star Chiwetel Ejiofor is being sought to play the Bond villain. After he garnered much praise and critical acclaim for the multi Oscar-winning film, he has caught the attention of many filmmakers. The producers' decision to target Ejiofor is said to have been motivated by the winning recruitment of Oscar-winner Javier Bardem to play Silva, the villain of “Skyfall”. If Ejiofor’s performance in Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” is anything to go by, we know that he has the ability to step up to the role of even a villain.

Filming on “Bond 24” is soon to be underway after Craig and his significant other, Academy Award-winning actress Rachel Weisz, have just performed on Broadway. “Skyfall” was the most successful James Bond movie so far, breaking the $1 billion mark at the box office, which means it will be even more demanding to top that with the next film. But with a clever release date set for November 2015, wisely avoiding the crazy summer period as well as “Star Wars” Month; who knows the heights that “Bond 24” could scale to.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Home is always within you

Some people spend their entire lives trying to leave home. And most of us come to hold disdain and contempt for the place that we grow up in. But really, even though we may want to leave that place more than we want anything else, it’s the one place that we can never truly leave behind.

No matter what memories or experiences our home has given us; it forms us, shapes us, and teaches us who we want to be and who we don’t want to be.

Home is always within us. It’s a part of who we are. And just as we can never escape who we really are, we can never really escape the place where we’ve grown up. If we manage to leave it behind and go off in search of something else – something better – we may just realize that the answers we seek were there in that place all along.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Carl Zeiss – Who was this photography genius?

It has been said that without Carl Zeiss and his inventions, we would not really know what the world looks like. And anyone who has ever has the chance of handling or using a digital camera or smartphone fitted with a Zeiss lens knows that this is true.

Carl Zeiss, born on 11 September 1816 and died on 3 December 1888, was a German manufacturer of optical instruments known for the company he founded, Carl Zeiss Jena, now known as Carl Zeiss AG. Brought up in Weimar, Germany, he became an outstanding lens-maker in the 1840s when he produced expert lenses that had an exceptionally large aperture range which allowed for extremely bright images. This has become somewhat of a distinguishing feature in Carl Zeiss lenses as the images they capture are most often crystal clear and vividly detailed.

Zeiss worked in the university town of Jena, from which he got the original name of his company, at a workshop he set up himself where he commenced his lens-making vocation. His lenses were initially used solely in the production of microscopes but his company later began manufacturing their high-quality lenses when cameras were invented.

By the time Zeiss began creating microscopes for scientists in 1846, glass lenses were an accepted way of magnification, but it was a time-consuming, arduous and costly procedure using trial and error on each piece of glass. In his first year, he only sold 23 microscopes. But subsequently, it was the contribution Zeiss made to lens-manufacturing over 170 years ago that have facilitated the modern production of many lenses today.

The Carl Zeiss lens is most commonly known as a feature in Nokia smartphones, which is a major selling point for many of the brand’s products. However, the Carl Zeiss Master Prime umbrella of lenses, which merge an exceptionally high speed with brilliant image sharpness, perfect contrast, and true colour, has also set new standards in cinematography. These lenses have been used for numerous Academy Award-winning films, including “The Social Network”, “The Fighter”, and “The King’s Speech”. Even “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, which won a total of 17 Oscars, was shot with a Carl Zeiss lens. And famed film director Stanley Kubrick also used a customized Zeiss lens, originally intended for NASA space missions, to shoot his film “Barry Lyndon”.

Carl Zeiss’s legacy now lives on through the lenses we take for granted, and are often unaware of, in cameras, smartphones, surgical equipment, and microscopes with the accuracy, precision and peak image quality that he strived to capture throughout his career being produced every single time.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Shailene Woodley – The next blockbuster youngster

The youngsters are taking over Hollywood. Fresh faces and talent has always been the currency of Hollywood but the past few years have taken this trend off the charts. Seemingly a newcomer, but not actually, 22-year-old Shailene Woodley is going to have a quite a year ahead of her this year as she becoming one of the most talked-about young actresses – after Jennifer Lawrence, that is, who Shailene is actually compared to quite a lot.

Shailene has made one of the most difficult transitions in Hollywood that is moving from Indie cinema to mainstream, commercial cinema. Her only major screen credit until this year has been her role as George Clooney’s complicated daughter in Alexander Payne’s Oscar-winning screenplay, “The Descendants”. But she has also appeared in lower budget films like “The Spectacular Now” coincidently with her “Divergent” co-star Miles Teller which released a few weeks ago and for which she won the Dramatic Special Jury Award for Acting at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, as well as the recent Gregg Araki film,” White Bird in a Blizzard” also starring Eva Green.

Shailene is being praised by critics and fans for trying to be ‘real’ in Hollywood where a lot can be fake. She does interviews barefoot and gives people hugs; it’s no wonder she’s being likened to Jennifer Lawrence who also has a way with her fans. Shailene’s upcoming lead role in “The Fault In Our Stars”, based on John Green’s novel, in which she plays a cancer patient who falls for a fellow sufferer, will release in June this year.

Shailene began her career with a number of smaller roles in television serials like “The OC” and “Cold Case” before landing the lead role of ABC Family’s series “The Secret Life of the American Teenager” which aired from July 2008 till June 2013 and kick-started her career.

“The Fault In Our Stars” will follow the success of Shailene’s performance in “Divergent” which released in March this year, based on the best-selling young-adult novel by Veronica Roth, where she plays Tris, a 16-year-old living in a futuristic society where all the inhabitants are separated into groups based on their particular strength or virtue. “Divergent” did well at the box office and was cited to have done so because of it’s somewhat similarity to “The Hunger Games”. With two much talked-about films out in the same year, a few months apart, it’s going to be a good year for Shailene who has already managed to create great momentum as an actress after working hard for so long.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Film as dream

We’ve all been there; a dark cinema with nothing but our thoughts and a film playing out in front of us in a larger-than-life way. And just like that we’re drawn into a world other than the one we inhabit where we are forced to reconcile ourselves with the mundane nature and banality of everyday life.

Through film, we’re taken on a journey into something great and beautiful, something we could only ever dream about; when the moment we leave the cinema or press the “stop” button, life just seems a little more wonderful.

It doesn’t matter what kind of a film it is; whether it is considered to be good or not critically, all that matters is that in a moment we are able to see something that gives us a completely new experience. Just like reading a book, watching a film can transport us to anywhere we allow it to.

The moment that we cry when we are watching a film isn’t necessarily because what we are watching is sad, but because what we are watching is far more beautiful than anything we could ever have imagined or experienced.

Cinema isn’t frivolous; it’s a necessity. Film is a dream made just for us to enjoy the life we have a little more.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Miranda Kerr shines in GQ Magazine

There’s no doubt that Victoria’s Secret knows how to pick their Angels; they’re beautiful, blessed with amazing genes, and know how to make headlines by never holding back. Although Miranda Kerr is now a former Angel, she has proven to fit the description. She’s feisty and honest in interviews yet almost normal enough for folks like us to relate to. But the mother to a three-year-old son with actor, Orlando Bloom, still holds an alluring air of mystery which has proven to make her fans love her even more.

Now that she’s single again and has stepped down from Victoria’s Secret – much to everyone’s disappointment – she’s never been more emancipated than she is in her interview and photo-op in UK’s GQ May 2014 edition and she’s probably never looked more confident and beautiful.

The 30-year-old was one of the longest running and most loved Victoria’s Secret Angels before she chose not to walk the 2014 fashion show because of her hectic schedule and other modelling commitments. She is currently the face of clothing label Mango, having taken Kate Moss’s place in 2013. She was also ranked 2nd in Forbes’ 2013 list of the world's highest-paid models, with estimated earnings of $7.2 million. Miranda was chosen as the face of Austrian crystal house Swarovski for their fall 2013 campaign. In February, she also replaced Gisele Bundchen as the face of Swedish clothing brand H&M. And she then featured in high-profile campaigns for Reebok and Wonderbra. Miranda is nothing short of a supermodel on a roll and shows no sign of slowing down.

Miranda stripped down for her latest shoot for UK’s GQ May edition shot by leading fashion photographer Mario Testino, showing off her glowing skin and amazing physique that no doubt requires strenuous work and dedication, showing no suggestion of her age or motherhood.

Her interview with the magazine is also making several headlines for her openness regarding her sexuality. But as with many other world-famous supermodels, controversy has always followed them but Miranda definitely leaves little to the imagination in her GQ shoot as to why she is one of the most sought after models in the industry.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

“Game of Thrones” – Fantasy has never felt so real to fans

The “Game of Thrones” television series has taken the world by storm, with fans becoming more and more engrossed in the fantasy as the episodes go by. South African fans have not been exempt from this obsession as most are waiting in anticipation for the premiere of the fourth season on 18th April on M-Net, hot on the heels of the U.S. which premiered the season on Sunday, 6th April. The HBO series was in such high demand by viewers on the HBO Go cable channel that the channel actually crashed. Those are some pretty loyal fans.

It’s quite difficult to explain the plot of “Game of Thrones” to someone who doesn’t watch it, or isn’t even interested in it. But the gist of the series is that nine noble families fight for control over the mythical land of Westeros. The appeal of the series has its basis mostly in the pervasive political and sexual intrigue. The series is high on blood, sex, and dragons (yes, dragons). Season four promises even more nudity and gore, which definitely will not disappoint its fan base.

Since “Game of Thrones” debuted in 2011, the HBO fantasy-drama, which is based on George R.R. Martin's best-selling series of novels, the first of which is titled “A Game of Thrones”, has established itself as the star of the U.S. cable channel. HBO has been the producer of some of the best series that has been created over the past few years; “True Detective”, “The Wire”, “The Sopranos”, and “Six Feet Under” being a few of them.

The series stars some under-the-radar actors who have still managed to cast the audience under their spell nonetheless. Emilia Clarke, however, who plays Daenerys Targaryen, one of the exiled children of the king trying to win back the throne, is one of the actresses who has garnered quite a bit of attention lately and is rumoured to be featured in the next “Terminator” movie in 2015.She’s also been seen on the covers of GQ, Vs., InStyle, and Flare magazines.

The series presents some seriously morally ambiguous and uncertain characters through which it explores themes like religion, loyalty, corruption, war, and punishment. “Game of Thrones” is the most recent big-budget series to be a part of the fantasy genre in mainstream media in recent years. And that’s one of the reasons the series has gained such overwhelming popularity; millions of viewers around the world love it because it’s larger-than-life and fantastical with just a hint of real-world drama to make it relatable.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Project Scouted

Lee Folkard Photography is proud to announce it's 2014 project; Project Scouted.

The search has started as on April 1st.

With prior projects anyone could enter by sending through the necessary pictures and information.
This year we have decided to change things up.
We have selected scouts.
These scouts will be out and about on the lookout for potentials that they think could partake in the project.

Of course these scouts would not be able to cover the full spectrum that is Durban, so we have also opened the search to social media.
If you think you have what it takes and want the scouts to find you - all you have to do is add the hashtag; #ProjectScouted to any of your pictures on either: Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
This will alert our scouts that are browsing social media on the lookout for participants.

When scouted; the scout will get a form to you that you will need to send back to either the scout or before April 25th.

Once your form is back you will receive further details within 24 hours. Should you not receive feedback - please contact your scout to inform them.

There will be one last public scouting opportunity: At Empyre Nightclub on May the 3rd.
To be added to the Project Scouted guest listing for the evening:
Sms or whatsapp your cell; number and full name to 082-49-58-613.
On the night; all you have to do is be there. Scouts will be around signing potentials up.

After this; PHASE 2 of Project Scouted will commence.

Remember at no point will you be asked to pay anything for participating in a Lee Folkard Photography Project.

We look forward to making this years project a memorable one.

Thank you.

Should you wish to interact or add anything to the project all you have to do is use the hashtag: #ProjectScouted. This will be used throughout the project. 

Side Note: Should anyone wish to come on-board as a sponsor for the project, contact us ASAP. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Lorde – The musical phenomenon of 2014

If you’ve switched on the radio at all during the past few months, there’s no doubt that you’ve heard Lorde’s hit single “Royals”, which has some poetic and memorable lyrics which has seen her now being compared to poet Sylvia Plath. From her fascination and love for things of royalty and aristocracy, Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O'Connor thus became Lorde.

At first, she wanted her stage name to be “Lord”, but added the “e” at the end for a more feminine look. Born on the 7th of November in 1996, the New Zealand singer-songwriter is just 17 years old. She was born in Takapuna and raised in Devonport, Auckland and performed in a range of singing and drama classes as a child, and later went on to be signed with Universal Records at the age of 13.

Lorde is being praised for her deep lyrics and insight as well as her genuine demeanour in the music industry. Her musical debut entitled “The Love Club”, was released in November 2012 and her first single, "Royals", debuted at number one on the New Zealand Top 40, and also reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2013 in the U.S. “Royals” has made Lorde’s musical career already, with her winning the Grammy Award for Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance in 2013.

Lorde’s voice has been described as being “beyond her years”, which is rather accurate. Because apart from her voice, it’s her general behaviour that is so unlike her young contemporaries in the music industry; think Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, etc. Her age has been a hot topic since Lorde has entered the scene and all we can hope now is that she remains true to the love of music and sincere lyrics that she has shown so far, as most pop stars begin poignant and real but frazzle to become annoying and fake.

Lorde is a breath of fresh air on our airwaves because she’s not the average pop princess. She’s tweeted unedited photos of herself declaring that “flaws are okay” and she’s not ashamed of proclaiming that she’s a feminist. Any female songstress today who has the guts to admit these things definitely deserves a round of applause.

Friday, April 4, 2014

“Maleficent” – A villain has never been so beautiful

We have been waiting for quite some time for this flick to be released since the casting and shooting has taken place. But with the sneak peak we’ve had from the trailer of “Maleficent”, the title lead played by Angelina Jolie, being released recently, we can safely say that a villain has never been so beautiful.

“Maleficent” is the untold story of one the stealthiest villains in Disney history from one of its most classic and loved fairy tales, Sleeping Beauty, and documents the experiences of Maleficent’s life which result in her turning into such a villain. Motivated by revenge, Maleficent viciously places a binding curse on the human king's newborn baby, Aurora. And as the child grows, she is caught in the middle of the conflict between the forest kingdom she has grown to love and the human kingdom that holds her inheritance. Sounds familiar?

The movie is approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes long but that’s not too inconvenient as 38-year-old Angelina’s ethereal beauty – seeming almost like a fairy tale type of beauty that never ages – makes it worth it. The movie also stars Angelina’s daughter, Vivienne, as a young Aurora, and Elle Fanning in the older role. We’re also set to see South Africa’s own Sharlto Copley in a major role in the movie.

“Maleficent” is directed by Robert Stromberg, also known for “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End” (2007), “The Golden Compass” (2007) and “The Hunger Games” (2012). The trailer that has been released of the movie looks fantastical and magical with everything that is loved from a movie in this genre. The new trailer officially debuted during the 2014 Kid's Choice Awards on Saturday, March 29 and the movie will be released in theatres on May 30.