A Kind Of Magic

Originally posted in 2012. Edited slightly for reposting.

IMG_0634IMG_0654IMG_0630It was a meeting of minds. Both female. Me the svengali in my late thirties and my muse Sara a very grown up girl of eight. Sara loves dressing up and has an innate sense of style, a delightfully mischievous sense of fun and the limitless imagination of an artist. Being eight years old for her the lines  between creativity and play don’t exist which is exactly how it should be.

For example.
I caught her before going off to school one morning and she asked me what I was going to wear for the day.

Mmm I am not sure I want to wear something really different I just don’t know what.

She thought for a moment then scrunched up her face and with some uncertainty suggested a wedding dress. She thought again. A beaming smile crossed her face. Then confidently nodding her head and flexing her eyebrows she said:

How about wearing this table?

She demonstrated carefully with her hands tilting them above her head slightly to one side before doing catwalk sashay shoulders to show how one would wear a small coffee table.

She said it partly in fun but there was also a serious intent to her unusual sartorial offering.  It was not the precise literal solution to my predicament but in existential terms she had read my mind. The effect of being in such precise harmony with another human is magic and other worldly. It has happened a few times in my life sometimes even without speaking and it is the memories of those very moments I reckon that will shine brightest when my lights are dimmed. It is a form of magic no less.

Sara is a true iconoclast. More Salvador Dali or Elsa Shiiaparelli than Gok Wang.

The conversation stuck in my mind. It was exhilarating and so much fun to be a child again.

She demonstrated her flair for all things fashion numerous times in drawings, in inventive hair twists, and exceptionally artful accessorising. I have never before and doubtful may not again meet someone with such a fun and true sense of personal style as I understand it. Playful, creative expressive, and always fun.

We simply had to do a shoot together. I took these pictures in her back garden in Tottenham back in spring 2012.  I hope you enjoy the results.

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Angel At My Table

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I am a frequenter of greasy spoon cafes. I get it from my father’s side. What their fare lacks in dietary nutrition the social and communal offerings they provide more than make up for. I especially enjoy them in off peak times as it is then that they attract peculiar outliers like myself. People who crave a sense of community and normality but  in bite size portions. Who like to be with people but a distance.

The universal appeal of the greasy spoon is an excellent backdrop for observing  life’s sublime contrasts.

I met Angel at one of my favourite joints  in Archway, London. Our meeting was brief. We talked about clothes and style but what we communicated was something greater.

 

 

 

Timewarp

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The casual stance, the attitude, the fantastic get up. It could only be New York. This photo of a young lady was taken unawares somewhere on Lower East side circa 2005. Apologies for the poor quality of the picture. I wanted to catch her before the rare specimen was swallowed up by city transit.

Disco psychedelia with a subtle hint of exotic executive.

She certainly looks like she means business. A real go go getter. I’d love to know where she was headed. Any ideas folks?

On The Prowl

I like New York in June
How about you?
I like a Gershwin tune
How about you?

I was back in my all time favourite city for six sweltering days recently. It was as I’d always experienced it crazy, hot, and fizzing with magic. And inspiring. I walked and walked till my feet swelled up all third trimester like. I greedily sucked in all the energy and sights not knowing when I’d be back there. This series was taken headed uptown into Time Square at rush hour. It doesn’t get more hectic than that or more vibrant. ImageImageImageImageImageImage

Kentish Town, Brighton, Venice and beyond…

I have been busy with other projects lately one of which is having my hair cut. Sad as it my seem this does require a lot of me and usually involves endless research, equivocation and procrastination. The perm is gone and I am happily sporting a short sleek style with no trace of those troublesome curls. I will post pix in the near future. Promise!

I have also been doing some exploring and would like to share some style, attitude and inspiration from my travels.

This St Patrick’s day was celebrated in style at The Forum in Kentish Town.  Irish superstar and style icon Imelda May and fashionista Aisling Conboy enjoy the backstage vibes after The Damien Dempsey show.

Italians do it better. I can’t argue with you on that one Madonna. Elegant solo diner snapped on a Venetian back street. March 2012.

I finally made it down to Brighton a couple of weeks ago and managed to pick the wettest day for it. The prom was alive with day-trippers and locals and made for a lively spectacle none the less.

The Great and The Good

My street style collection is growing bigger, brighter,wilder and bolder. Most of my unusual suspects were snapped in London and Dublin. I have finally broadened my lens to include the male of the species and also managed to catch my very first celebrity! Can you spot him/her?

My first tentative subjects were photographed on Georges St in Dublin back in 2009. This was before I had any knowledge of heavy hitters The SartorialistStyle BubbleThe Style Scout all of whom I now greatly admire. It was around the same time I  had a fledgling impulse to start my blog.

Back then I set my subjects against a very serviceable shop grill backdrop and hastily fumbled with my beloved and sadly departed Canon ixus while trying not to delay too long the flow of pedestrians.  Nowadays I take a more varied approach. It depends on so many factors but the main one is recording a look that  inspires me. I’d like to thank all who were willing and also those who I caught unawares for wearing it so so well.

Next Stop Venice…