Monday, November 30, 2009

Trendology: hard graft

A friend of mine shows me a very interesting accessories site today and I instantly fall in love with it. This company is called hard graft and is based in Austria. They use 3mm wool felt and Italian vegetable tanned cow leather to create their accessories. Since all the things are hand made, they are keeping all products in limited production. From what I have seen from their websites, the products look very promising and they should be very durable.

This is definitely a very nice gift for the holidays. My top recommendation will be the 2UNFOLD laptop bag and the Y+U Macbook Sleeve. Make sure you check out the product site here.

Y+U Mac Book Sleeve and 2UNFOLD laptop bag

3FOLD Multi-Use Bag

TRENDOLOGY: Leaders of the Pack: Who’s Ahead of the Curve?

Giovanna, taken by The Sartorialist
Courtesty of,

When the time arrives for designers around the globe to unveil their collections to the rest of the world, I get really excited – I mean really, really excited. Back in the days when we didn’t have the world at our fingertips via the World Wide Web, I relied on programs such as Fashion Television to satiate my thirst for fashion. This was eons before the likes of Marc Jacobs and Alexander Wang. I was glued to the TV whenever they featured a show on the runway and wanted more after the end of the program. Now, it’s a completely different story. I can get so much fashion –enough to make me sick, with a simple click of a mouse.

Through such sites as (Vogue’s online home), I can get details and pictures of the latest shows during fashion week. But I don’t limit myself to just the shows. Just as much, or even more, I enjoy looking at photos of the show-goers, models, and stylish people outside and around the show venues -- the people who I undoubtedly envy and loathe, only because I’m not one of them. It’s these extremely chic individuals who define style and sometimes influence the way I want to dress.
Giovanna Battaglia of L’Uomo Vogue is one person who I always look to for style ideas. In my opinion, it’s individuals like her who strongly influence trends and fashion, because they are able to take what’s on the runway, mix it up in a way that no one else thought to do, and add their own personal style. Thanks to street-style photographers such as Scott Schuman, better known as The Sartorialist (my person favourite), and Tommy Ton, we are able to follow these style-setters around the globe, look to them for inspiration, and maybe gain insight of what will be next.

I am not someone who blindly follows trends, and I certainly do not want others to do so; you shouldn’t take my posts too seriously. I’d like to think that I have some personal style. I get ideas from all different places, people, and things. As with anyone, I believe that my life and lifestyle also influence the way I dress.

[Un]Discovers: **Kel-Z**

This blog not only talks about fashion trends and our works, but also some undiscover/discovered photographers, artists and graphic designers. Now, let's have our first feature:


I always like to discover new talented artists on flickr so I can get some new inspiration and be amazed by their works. The above photo is the the start for me to follow this photographer's photo stream on flickr. Her name is Kelsey, also known as **Kel-Z** on flickr.

I have been constantly "stalking" her ever since the above photo is released. Even though she lives in Syracuse, Utah and I live in Toronto, Ontario, with the internet technology, we become friends and start to comment on each other's works. I am also honored to be able to use my graphic design skills work on her 2 photos and become part of my aurora collection.

If you have noticed from her photos, she always like to use red as the primary color for many photos; however, that does not mean she does not play with other colors. What I like the most from her photos is she is willing to take a lot of risk, especially on her face. She is not afraid to test out different make up on her face, and she can always pull them off! Her ideas are always so fresh and inspiring, which makes me want to shoot something like this in the future.

If you don't believe me, you should see some of the photos I post here and check her photo stream on flickr!

Here are my aurora pieces I have done with her:

Ring Leader's Magic Lamp

City Warrior

Here are her works that I like the most: (All photos are courtesy of **Kel-Z**)


Trendology: Balenciaga S/S 2010

Searching through all the 2010 Spring/Summer Collections, there are a few brands just stuck in my mind. One of them is Balenciaga. Nicolas Ghesquière, the creative director of Balenciaga, has decided this season should go for a urban glam. He is trying to blend in some hip hop/ street fashion elements to this high end brand.  What you see in this runway show is some leather hoodies, some leather pants, some stripe patterned one piece dress. Other than the leather parts, Nicolas is using a lot of bright colors to make this season as colorful as possible. Out of all the celebrities out there, I can see Jennifer Lopez and Fergie wearing some of this collection to perform.

For a full collection, you can check it out here.

Wave of Inspirology: TripY Radio

I have to say one of the best things for being a photographer is to get to know a lot of people. Loic, who is from Paris, France recently moved to Montreal to continue his career as a model.

When he is still in Paris, he is a DJ and has worked in 2 different stations. When he moves to Montreal, he has decided to open a new web radio station on his own and the outcome is TripY Radio. This radio consists of today's biggest hits, but also some classics. Further more, because he is from France, this radio has also included new French pop songs. Even though I have no knowledge of this language, but if the music is good, my brain will have inspiration.

Here is the link for his site: Once you are on the site, click the play button under the On Air section then your music journey should begin! If you know French, you will be able to know more about Loic.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Trendology: Vonrosen

When I am looking at the new entries from Design Scene today, I see them introducing a new brand named Vonrosen. It is a Berlin company which uses silk and cashmere for its clothes. The design looks simple, but  it is timeless. If you want to spend money that can last for a few seasons, I think this is probably a good brand to go for. This brand is not out for public yet, but I am sure it will have its place in the fashion industry.

Photos are courtesy of Vonrosen

Trendology: Dr Martens for Raf Simons

Back in summer, before this blog is developed, I already have my eyes on these shoes for fall/winter 2009. I am always excited to see what Raf Simons can do with Dr Martens. I remember one season, he uses red lines instead of the signature yellow lines. This season, he has done something something far more than I can expect: the use of different tons of metallic gold, silver, bronze and the blend of different colors.

My personal favorite will be the gold, silver and bronze 8-eye High boots. Unfortunately, I cannot find it in here, or else I would really want to own a pair of this season's hot item. Want a pair of classic shoes with a twist? I strongly recommend you to keep an eye on these shoes!

Trendology: Z Zegna S/S 2010

If I have to choose one of my favorite Spring/Summer collections for this coming year, Z Zegna is probably one of my choice. As GQ describes this collection as "Theatrical, colorful, and occasionally eccentric departures from its more traditional parent", it also gives me a feeling of the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. This is an interesting coincident because Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland is going to be shown in theatre in March 2010, which is when this collection will be in the market for sale.

The main color theme for this collection is black, white and blue. I especially like the metallic blue blazer and also the 2 tone stripe trench coat. Of course, there is not way you can take your eyes off the MAd Hatter's Hat! If you want to spice up your wardrobe this coming season, this is probably one of your best bets!

All photos are courtesy of GQ and if you want to see more of this collection, please head to here!

Model Packages

As you have read so many posts about trends and inspirations, you might have forgotten what we actually do, which is helping models to develop their portfolio. We provide various package deals for the models each package has a lot of things to offer. Even though you will pay us to do the shoot, we can guarantee you that the photos will meet your expectation. Once the shoot is over, we will promote you on our blog for FREE so that more people will get to know you and that's part of our mission.

Further more, Once you have done a shoot with us, you will be on our record.  When we have a concept shoots in mind and believe you can fit into one of the characters, we will invite you for the shoot and you will keep the photos for your portfolio for free. If any of the concept leads to real commercial deals/ some projects, we will contact your agency and pay you for the shoot. Down the road, we just want you to succeed and become one of the main players in this industry.

The following are the different types of packages. If you are interested, feel free to send us an email to and ask us about the price.

Model Package "A"
3 hours of shoot (include makeup time)
2 outfit change
1- 2 make up looks (natural and glamour)
5 photos will be retouched. You will get all the retouch and non-retouch photos (medium resolution) in a disc/server P.S There will have an extra charge for one extra retouch photo

Model Package "B"
2 hours of shoot
2 outfit change
5 photos will be retouched. You will get all the retouch and non-retouch photos (medium resolution) in a disc/server. P.S There will have an extra charge for one extra retouch photo

Actor Package "A"
1-1.5 hour of shoot (include makeup time)
1 outfit
1 make up
2 retouched photos in high resolution. Retouch photos and non retouch photos in a disc/server. P.S There will have an extra charge for one extra retouch photo

Actor Package "B"
1 hour of shoot (include makeup time)
1 outfit
2 retouched photos in high resolution. Retouch photos and non retouch photos in a disc/server. P.S There will have an extra charge for one extra retouch photo

We guarantee the money you pay will worth every penny. If you think you are ready for this, then let's shoot some nice photos and start your modeling/actor journey!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Ray of Inspirology: Step Right Up

Few weeks ago, I do not remember where, but I have seen a behind the scene video for this shoot. Today, I discover it is an editorial shoot from Harper's Bazaar's December Issue. This shoot is by Peter Lindbergh featuring the supermodel Mariacarla Boscono.

I always love the idea of incorporating fashion with circus scene, and Peter Lindbergh has done it flawlessly. If you like the photos, make sure you pick up a copy of Harper's Bazaar's December Issue!

Here are some of the photos from the shoot I like:

Friday, November 27, 2009

TRENDOLOGY: Vive Le Roi de la Pop

Photo 2 courtesty of
The sound of a faint heartbeat... The gradual build-up to a sudden pop of music
composed of an immediately recognizable bass solo and a distinctively high-pitched “Aaow!”...
I turn up the volume on my stereo driving home from work, (I’m listening to “Smooth Criminal”) and I can’t help feeling mournful and think about how much he has influenced the world of music and fashion. I still haven’t gotten over it. There will never be another... Thankfully, he will always be remembered, especially when so much of what we are seeing in fashion now is reminiscent of him –perhaps even inspired by him. I choose to believe the latter.
I believe it all began with Decarnin’s haute French versions of MJ’s signature military/band jackets at Balmain in Spring 09 –jackets that were purchased and worn by none other than le roi himself. It looks like Decarnin can’t stop till he gets enough, because he showed more military jackets heavily adorned with metal epaulettes for Spring '10.
It’s undeniable. There is currently an 80’s revival. But did it all start with MJ and snowball to the point we’re presently at? Or is MJ’s influence overrated? Personally, you should know where I stand. If I happen to see an unbelievably chic woman in the streets dressed in an essential Alexander Wang white tee and a pair of black cropped pants (like the ones seen at Demeulemeester for Spring '10), I’ll think, ‘Michael...Billy Jean...moon walk...’
“So, Annie are you OK?” As the song winds down and I hear these lyrics, I think, ‘Yeah… we’re all OK, and you’ll never be forgotten.

Wave of Inspirology: 3 Words

Just saw this music video and I feel like this will probably inspire some people with some of new photo shoot concepts. I think I will have to see it a few times to absorb the ideas.

3 Words - Cheryl Cole with

Ray of Inspirology: Hedi Slimane

When I think about black and white photography, there is always a person pop out in my mind. His name is Hedi Slimane. He once work as a creative designer for Dior Homme for a few years until he leaves the brand in July 2007. Since then, he has done a lot of photo shoots, both personal and commercial, and has become one of the most famous photographers of all times.

I always find his style to be unique. Most of the time when you look at his photos, you know that he only uses a very simple set up and still be able to achieve amazing results. Most of his photos are in black and white but they are never lack of modernism. Once I have a conversation with my friends and we are discussing his photos, in the end we come up with this conclusion: His photo is like a landscape photo, it is something that you will actually want to buy it and hang it on the wall, regardless the person in the photo is a celebrity or not. Overall, his photos are going towards an artistic approach and I personally really like his dramatic shadow effects.

If you believe you have never heard of his name or seen his works, trust me, they are everywhere. One of the recent works he has done is the CD cover of Lady GaGa's latest CD: The Fame Monster. Also, he has done a spread of Robert Pattinson for the magazine AnOther Man.

Here are some of his works.

Courtesy of Vogue Homme International S/S 08

Trendology: +J

Jil Sander's clothes always amaze me because of their cuttings. Their clean cut and simplicity alwaysmake  people look fresh and modern when they wear them. Uniqlo is one of the most popular clothing stores in Japan and its popularity is increasing in the States. If you have check out Uniqlo's website, you can always get a lot of inspiration, such as the calendar you see in this blog (last thing on the right column).

In March 2009, Uniqlo and Jill Sander announce their collaboration +J and the line will be on sale in October. This is probably one of the most exciting announcement every fashion follower wants to hear. Recently, I read a editorial spread in GQ magazine and in one particular photo, Joseph Gordon-Levitt is all dressed up in +J. I have to say the clothes do look like they are worth a lot but in fact, the shirt costs only $40US. If you live in New York and you are looking for good cutting clothing, I strongly suggest you to take a trip to Uniqlo and see if they still have any +J stocks left. (I know this is a late post, but I just can't get over the +J image)

Courtesy of Uniqlo

TRENDOLOGY: Thighs the Limit!

Seen all over the fall 09 runways including Stella McCartney, Haider Akermann, and Rodarte, the thigh-high boot screams SEXY but with sophistication. Slip on a pair over skinny jeans or wear them with a mini. Avoid looking x-rated by covering up bare legs. -Julia Roberts in Pretty Women... Need we say more? For an equally sumptuous look, try the Over-The-Knee length boot -also seen througout fashion week on and off the runway.

Click here for more inspiration!

Photo: Courtesy of

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Dames in the Salon

Back in July, we are lucky to collaborate a shoot with two talented photographers: Ellie Iravan and Sibel Aisha. We are also honored to be working with a team of talented hair stylists in Hair Culture Salon and have Erin Ademoglu as our stylist for that night. The two dames we have for this shoot are Emily and Jovian.

The concept of this shoot is about incorporating fashion with different hair styles. During the shoot, we have tried different styles and a few wardrobe changes. Since we are willing to try different things, the photos turn out to be great.

Here we present you the photos that we like the most:
(Photography by Marcus Kan, Makeup by Leslie Gray, Styling by Erin Ademoglu)


Trendology: Prada Book

I have known the brand Prada since the 90s but is not a fan of the brand till 2000. I remember when I first have my Prada bag, I feel so excited. The reason of this is because the bag is made of nylon which makes it light and can carry a lot of things. Till this moment, I still don't see a lot of brands use this kind of material to make their bags and I am proud to be a Prada user.

After so many years of waiting, Prada finally publishes its first book: Prada Book. Inside these 700 pages, you can see how Prada has evolved in the past 30 years. This book contains Miuccia Prada's work, runway  show photos, concepts and more. I really can't wait to buy this book and put it in my inspiration book section.

If you want to take a sneak peak of the book, you can visit its official link here. You can buy the book at the Prada web site or you can order it on Amazon. I do think that this book is a must have for all fashion followers.

Wave of Inspirology: Gap 2009 Holiday Commercial

There is a particular holiday advertising campaign I am always looking forward to see and that is GAP. Even though this year their commercial has some problems with the American Family Association (seriously, I heard Christmas in the ad, I don't understand why AFS is that upset), it still amazes me with their imagination.

If you walk past by their stores, you will see people were lying down on the floor and making christmas star shape, peace sign, or circles. I really love the red color in those ads, and everyone looks very happy which makes you very happy as well. I remember for the past few years, they like to use celebrities to be on their holiday ad campaign, but this year, they just use all dancers. In the TV commercial,  Pharrell actually helps to create that song. The downside is I cannot find the photos for the print commercial campaign, but the upside is I can share with you the TV commercial campaign.

If you want to have more holiday spirit, you should visit their latest holiday site, Gap Cheer Factory. You can customize your personal sound card. I try it out and is actually not bad!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wave of Inspirology: Make Me/ My Love

I always have an urge to shoot black and white photos; however, I can never come up with a good concept to do this kind of style. To me, black and white style represents timeless and it has a very classy feeling. I also want to incorporate today's fashion trend with this type of photos (which makes it even harder to come up with a concept)

Recently, I saw a video I really like and it makes me want to do black and white photos right the way. I really like the edgy and fashion approach of this video. This is probably one of Janet's videos that I enjoy the most. If you like black and white, you should see this Make Me music video.

Make Me --- Janet Jackson

Ray of Inspirology: Little Girl and Boy Lost

A lot of editorial shoots have inspired the way I think photography should be. In this section, I am going to share some shoots that inspire me.

I always have a thing for fairy tale, but in a twisted way. Also, I have followed Lady GaGa interesting choice of fashion sense ever since I saw her on the Miss Universe back in 2008. When Lady GaGa meets fairy tale, you get Annie Leibovitz's latest editorial shoot for Vogue.

This shoot also has one of my favorite models, Lily Cole. She is the girl who is on her food hunting adventure with her brother (actor Andrew Garfield). In the end, they encounter the witch (Lady GaGa) and they kill her to save the children in the house.

Simple story line, but lots of imagination! I love how Annie uses lots of giant props to make this fantasy comes true. Overall, her works always amaze me (Remember her version of Disney characters? They are my top favorite)!

The following photos are courtesy of Vogue and if you want to see them online, check out here! Get your copy at your nearest bookstore now!

Golden Slumber (Courtesy of Vogue)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Aurora and Evolution

You may know that Aurora means northern and southern lights. It is one of the most beautiful things in nature. To us, Aurora means dream of fantasy. What it means is the result of graphic design meets modeling photos. When these two things blend together, the outcome is usually STUNNING and full of EXCITEMENT. We do not have a guideline for this kind of creation, it is all about how the graphic designer feels about the photo. Of course, you can request what you hope to see in the image and we will try our best to fulfill your wish. In the end, all we are trying to do is to make the knights and dames to look more stunning in the battlefield.

Aurora Dream

As for the word Evolution, it is equal to the word Concept. We consider every concept shoot an evolution because we always like to put a twist on an ordinary concept. With the twisted concept, everything becomes more interesting and people will be amazed when they see the final result from our production.  Currently we have a few concept shoot that are in their draft stage and we are excited to make each concept into reality.


We have covered all the terms that you need to know from our group. Now let's have a quick recap of those words:

Knight of Dusk - Male Model
Dame of Virtue - Female Model
Aurora - Graphic Photos
Evolution - Concept Shoot
Icon - Exhibition Shoot

Keep following this blog because you will never know what to expect in the next entry.  Also check out flickr images on your left to see more photos from our photographer, Astro Marus.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Knights and The Dames

If you have seen our logo, you should have noticed that it is made up of black, white and pink. Each of these colors does represent something to our group and in this entry, let's talk about black and white.

Black and White are like pairs, they cannot be separated in our definition. They each represents dark or bright, ying or yang and of course, male or female. To us, we also want to associate words with male and female models because we don't like ordinary words; therefore, we come out with knights and dames to represent each gender. Further more, since we associate black to male and white to female, the result will become :

Black = Man = Knight
White = Woman = Dame

The reason why we choose the words Knight and Dame is because these models are fighters in the modeling industry. We know that because they are passionate about their jobs and will fight hard for their futures. In our definition, we are their add-on armors. With our photography, directing, styling, make up and hair dressing skills, we will customize their flawless armors for them to fight in the battlefield. For the knights, we call them the Knights of Dusk because they first are associated with the color black, but also our style for them will be more gloomy but still look cool. As for the dames, we call them Dames of Virtue because we tend to give them a more glamour and bright feeling (and of course, they are associated to white). Regardless of which side you are on, we will explore your other persona and let you have the appropriate attitude for your battleground (and yes, those definitions are just guidelines, they are meant to be broken!).

Sounds complicated? Let's translate the above paragraph into our everyday language. Basically, once you pay us for a photoshoot, we will do our best to capture your best model look and possibly find another side you have never realized before. BUT, that doesn't stop right here. We will keep you on record and whenever we have a concept shoot or exhibition shoot we are going to develop, if we believe your look fits one of the characters, we are going to approach you and ask you to be on board with us. We will pay all the rents and we are basically giving you a FREE shoot so you will have photos for your portfolio. If those shoots will turn out to be some advertising campaign and stuff, we will definitely pay your share. In the end, we want to get your name out there too!

For those of you who have read till here, may your passionate spirit help you reach your goal! Good Luck and feel free to approach us.

The Knight

The Dame

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Icon: Read'em and Weep

As you have read from the last post, we had an exhibition back in October and it was called "Read'em and Weep".  On the opening night (23rd October,2009), even though it was raining heavily outside, we were glad that there were a lot of people came and supported us. Thank you so much for Sibel to upload the video and now you can get a glimpse of what was going on that night.

Thanks Sibel for providing the video

Overall, this event was a success and we are hoping to collaborate with different photographers again to work on more cool projects for exhibitions!

We have decided to have a new word for the term exhibition. To us, we believe every exhibition represents an icon in our timeline. From this exhibition to the next exhibition, we will continue to evolve; therefore, each exhibit is like an icon, or assessment to us.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Creation of à la mode

Can't believe how far we have come through to this point. I still remembered how Leslie and I were brainstorming how this group should work in the cafe and now with the help of Ryan, our vision is starting to see the reality. At this point, we are still developing the facebook fan page, but I am already having a good feeling that this is going to be a brand new journey for all of us.

In the following days, I will try to explain how our group works and I am sure this will make you excited (yeah, you, the one who is reading this right now!). As for now, let's explain what we will do.

As for this moment, we have three directions we are going for. The 1st one will be shooting photos of the models to help them to create their portfolio. We have been working with different models and we always can discover his/her other persona that they ever notice. We enjoy working with them and from what we heard, they enjoy working with us too!

The 2nd direction we are going for is concept shoot. We constantly have different ideas in mind and with careful planning, we turn the ideas into reality. Recently we have done a concept shoot and we are going to sell this concept to companies. Due to the fact this is dealing with other companies, we cannot tell you what this is all about at this moment. Stay tune for some good news!

The 3rd direction is exhibition. We love to collaborate with different photographers, makeup artists, stylists, hairdressers and models. Back in August,à la mode is lucky to be part of a shoot with Sibel Aisha Photography and Dcfotography. The theme of this shoot is to bring the Kings and Queens of playing cards to life. Since we know that a lot of people have properly done this before, we have made a twist to it. Each suit will be assigning to a specific theme and they are: Loathe for Spades, Love for Hearts, Power for Clubs and Greed for Diamonds. Ryan is the King of Spades while I am responsible to shoot the Hearts couple. After we have done the shoot, this project gets a chance to be displayed in the Sleeping Giant Gallery for a week from Oct 23-29,2009.

In the future, we are planning to do event and wedding photography too. Stay tune for more information about us!

Cheers to the bright future!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...