10/01/2012 - 11/01/2012Bostonista: 10/01/2012 - 11/01/2012

Monday, October 22, 2012

Mario Testino: In Your Face

(Mario Testino on the Red Carpet at the MFA; Courtesy of The MFA)

As someone who has been reading Vogue every month for more than half of my life, Mario Testino is a legendary figure in my mind. The fact that his first US exhibit is now at the MFA in Boston is pretty much mind-blowing to me. The fact that I got to view it before the general public and then actually meet him, well, I'm still in shock. I also have a new fashion crush because he was so charming!

Mario was generous enough to have a "conversation" of sorts with members of the press and bloggers  on the afternoon of October 17th after we had the privilege of viewing In Your Face. At this point in my blogging career, I've been lucky enough to meet (or at least be up close to) many people in the fashion industry that I've admired for so long. Many of them have been...disappointing to say the least. Mario, on the other hand, was so genuinely open and warm. He shared his stories and listened carefully to questions the audience asked. He was thoughtful with his answers and seemed to truly care about what the audience had to say.

He was also completely charming towards us bloggers and made sure to take pictures with each of us afterwards. He asked a lot of questions about fashion blogging and its community in Boston. He even joked, "The bloggers are front row? It took me 10 years to get front row, no?"
Mario promised to take a minute to check out each of our blogs so if you're reading Mr. Testino, Hi!
(Me in the exhibit with Gisele's legs. I did get my photo with Mario but it came out terrible so I'm choosing not to share. You can't see too well but I'm wearing: Blazer by Zara, Skirt by Zara, Shoes by ShoeMint,  Shirt by Velvet similar here, and bag by Rebecca Minkoff.)

So, why did he call the exhibit "In Your Face"?
Because, to him, it meant "something plainly in front of you. The biggest, clearest way of expression. This is really who I am. This is really what I believe in. An acute example of what I cherish.." here in front of you.  He also spoke a lot about the tension that exists between art and commercial photography which, as a Vogue photographer, is something that is often brought to his attention. He doesn't worry about it though, saying, "I don't think I label. I just do what I do and it falls where it falls."

I'm going to share with you some of the stories he told that I think you'll find the most interesting.

On Madonna:
A turning point in Testino's career was when Mario shot Madonna for her first Versace campaign back in 1995. Avedon was scheduled to do the shoot but Madonna wanted Mario and Gianni agreed. Following that, he snapped Madonna with her new-born, Lourdes, for Vanity Fair.
"I was very lucky to photograph her at an important time in her life. (And) She kept bringing me back. She kept me alive!"

On Kate Moss:
(Kate Moss, London, 2006 © Mario Testino)
Mario Testino has known Kate since the very beginning of her career and they are now close friends. He recounted a story about Kate's first runway show at age 15.
"She was crying backstage. (They hadn't given her enough looks.) I said, "Look, don't worry. In life there is cologne and perfume. You are a perfume. You will last forever." I've stuck through thick and thin (with her.) She makes life more fun!"

On Anna Wintour:
Anna convinced Mario to leave Harper's Bazaar (at the time the most influential fashion magazine) for Vogue. He was unsure but followed her.
"I'm a Vogue photographer. Maybe I always was. It was the best thing that has happened (to me.)"
On her infamy, "She has a quality that many don't see. She's very loyal. She's very straightforward. I listen to her and follow her. I show her (this) exhibition. She has a lot to say. And she was so right. I took 3 pieces out!"

On Gisele:
(Gisele Bundchen, New York, 2007 © Mario Testino)
"I met her when she was 17 at a casting in New York. I thought someone had turned on the light when she walked in. I kept telling people, "I have this girl!" They weren't so sure. Then, a year later, all the people who weren't so sure had to have her! She has no problems, skin, hands...she's been gifted. And on top of it she's kind and energetic." She's a hard worker. She (looks at a picture) says, "I can do it better!" She bring energy. You can either be blank or you can be inquisitive and bring a whole new light. She brings a light."

Princess Diana & Catherine Middleton:
(TRH The Duke & Duchess of Cambridge, London, 2010 © Mario Testino)
Mario famously photographed Diana for her final sitting before her death.
"She was entering a new phase. They had taken her HRH (title) and I think she felt a new freedom. She was one of the magical moments in my life. She was a true princess. She had kindness. Why life wanted me to photograph her when I did? (But) Kate she has been prepared. She's a real icon already."

Advice on a Successful Career in Fashion:
"You gotta be you! That is a hard thing. We are all in awe of other people. It is hard to overcome. Otherwise...unfortunately, its work. You have to work! You can see the effort and you see it when you don't (put the effort in.)"

See Mario Testino's In Your Face exhibit now through February 3rd 2013 at The Museum of Fine Arts. His collection of Royal Portraits (including Will & Kate's engagement photos) are on display now through June 16th 2013. 

Thank you to Mario Testino & The MFA team!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Events in Boston: Clarins Media Preview

(Clarin's Christopher Truffa, shows off the latest eye colors)

Last week, I was invited to a media preview of Clarin's latest skincare and beauty offerings at Bloomingdales Chestnut Hill.

Our very own Bloomies is home to one of Clarin's magnificent spas, and it's the only one in the country with both skincare and body treatments available. 

Back during NYFW I stopped by Clarin's Beauty Lounge at the Empire Hotel and was able to indulge in a little pampering. I was also introduced to their most popular product around the world, Beauty Flash Balm. It was life changing. I've been using it twice a day ever since!
They also introduced us to the Courtin-Clarins girl's new "Beauty Flash Blog", an amazing beauty resource for women around the world!

Back at Chestnut Hill, Clarin's head makeup artist, Christopher Truffa, explained the body's lymphatic system and its importance in maintaining youthful looking, healthy skin. He also showed us the proper way to apply skincare products in order to encourage the lymphatic system to better do its job! For example, take some of your Beauty Flash Balm, warm it up on your palms, and then apply by patting it on skin in a lifting, upward motion. You'll immediately feel, and look, more awake!

Clarin's believes in using products as a "lighting director" for women. Their "Instant Light Brush On Perfector" uses different colors of light reflectors to to illuminate skin so it camouflages imperfections and looks great in any light environment.  Brushing it on the spots where light hits your face, like your brow's arch, draws the eye to your best spots and away from blemishes.
Next, Christopher showed us the best way to create the elusive, perfect smoky eye for evening. He made it look so effortless! Unfortunately, I don't think I have a steady enough hand to re-create it on myself but their new 3-Dot Eyeliner is made to be so easy that maybe even I could make a straight line for once!
Finally, they gave us all a giant bag full of Clarin's best goodies! It's only been a few days but already my skin is feeling, and looking, so much better!

Thank you to Christopher, Nassima and Ty for the wonderful evening! 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Evo Hair Care Review

Back in August, I received an awesome surprise from Evo, an Australian haircare line that recently launched here in the US.
They had heard all about my frizzy problems and sent their line, The Therapist, as well as some smoothing extras to help. 
Now that I've been using their products pretty much exclusively for the past two months, I thought it was time to share my Evo experiences with you.
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