Wednesday, March 3, 2010

#1125 1am's new-look book a success (minus the barely legal teens)

All photos: 1am

Growing up in the cultural wasteland that was Christchurch-in-the-90s, the only thing that kept me connected with what was actually going on in the world was Pavement Magazine. I used to buy each issue, go straight to the fashion editorial pages and scrutinise every outfit, model and photograph in minute detail. (Then I'd read the articles.) Names like Karen Inderbitzen Waller, Robert Niwa, Penny Pickard, Derek Henderson, Barney McDonald and Glenn Hunt were exotic arbiters of cool and everything I wanted to be part of. Fast forward about 10 years. Pavement was gone, and 1am had arrived.


1am had retained some of the feel of Pavement - lots of young, scantily clad girls and interviews with up and coming artists, designers and models, but it was all a bit grungy and base for my tastes. Rather than focussing on the beautiful, it highlighted the nastier elements of the scene - late night parties with drunken teenagers and chaotic photo shoots seemingly fuelled by who-knows-what.


I ran into Glenn Hunt yesterday and he gave me the new issue of 1am. You can either get it as a supplement to Real Groove, or it'll be available at all the normal magazine stores for $7.95 a pop.

The first thing that must be mentioned is the new format. It's an A4, staple-bound book printed on matte paper. And it looks good. The front cover still has that busy, mouse-drawn scrawl, but the book itself is awesome. Flicking through it, my initial thought was that it looked like one of those old School Journals but with way cuter girls.


Open the front cover and you'll land on three double page spread ads - Karen Walker, Zambesi and Kate Sylvester, then a single page ad for Lonely Hearts Lingerie. The ads look amazing on the matte paper - less corporate, more artful. One page on, another double page spread ad, this time for Nom*D. Turn the page and the first story is about lingerie. The text is riddled with spelling mistakes, but Nicole Clulee looks good.

(Cross added by me)

But then you get to the second story, titled Rise and Shine, a feature on the new crop of up and coming Australian models. The first double page spread is a photo of a young girl lying on a bed - fully clothed on the top half, nothing but what appears to be a nude g-string - barely covering her modesty - on the bottom.

Without sounding like the moral police, is it really necessary?

Flick through the next few pages and it's the same thing - girl after girl after girl wearing very little on the bottom half, legs akimbo or in seriously compromising positions. I don't know about you, but in my book a nude g-string is not appropriate coverage for a teenage girl being photographed in a magazine.

So, while full credit must be given to Glenn and Amanda Hunt for the fantastic new-look book, I say lay off the barely-legal teen shots. Scandalous they may be, tasteful they are not.

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21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Totally agree. When people talk about the media and body image problems, they usually complain about women's mags doing snarky stories about celebrity bodies, but I think magazines like this are just as damaging.
It does sometimes seem like they've run out of ideas, too.

Isaac Likes said...

Just so everybody knows, I will not accept comments that have swearing or that are just personal attacks on individuals.

I LIKE YOU!

1AM said...

you mean like your mate terry richardson? i think its good to ad-dress (excuse the pun) these issues and the way one feels about these kind of images so good on you! i just don't agree with censorship, thats the baddy and leads to all sorts of the kind of trouble caused by repression... like having blogs deleted for showing 1AM pictures (rag-pony last issue) ha ha!

anna said...

Read that blurb on the rise and shine story - 'this fresh and intimate portrait of the faces we think most likely to shine'. What do they think makes those photos intimate? The nudity? I don't believe its about repression but surely theres a less superficial and crass way of capturing ones intimacy?
What is the with the continuous use of young teenage girls? a slim body? baby faces? obviously that shoot was on up and coming models, but in general isn't anybody else bored with that look? imagine how interesting a much older person could be...maybe its just me, i'm craving something more stimulating, from a visual AND conceptual aspect. Surely 1am could push that?

Anonymous said...

A success? i think that's to be seen.
I must admit that i did purchase the first two issues of 1am as i am always curious to see what new local magazines will bring to the table.
However i refrained from buying issue 3 and any other issues that followed due to the fact that it just all seemed a bit familiar. No progression through the issues, nothing to offer the reader(due to the minimal words).
I get the aesthetic that 1am is going for; raw minimally retouched images of girls draped in designer garb, but it just seems a bit controversial for controversy sake, e.g in one of the issues a young looking model has a letter P coming out of her mouth in what looks like a pipe.
The photography certainly doesn't do anything for the clothing displayed on it's models
and after one quick look it's ready to go into the bin(i don't mean that in an offensive way, i just mean there is nothing to go back to once you've flicked through the pictures once).
I did get the new issue(attached to my Real Groove) and i think the above shoot with Nicole is very pretty, but otherwise some of the same.

Serah said...

A bit of a shame that unfortunately the pictures capture that final and controversial Pavement issue and once again lower the tone of the whole mag.

Serah said...

NB: I haven't actually seen these pics yet so maybe I spoke too soon and should actually read it first.

Eleanor said...

There is a huge difference between Terry Richardson and 1am magazine, and it's not in content.
Part of the reason that Terry Richardson may be viewed as more acceptable, or at least taken more seriously, is that his work is seen as art - distinguishing itself from porn or exploitation.
The problem with 1am is that the photos lack the talent or the originality to be classed as art.
(plus there's none of the humour that Richardson has)

Anonymous said...

have you guys seen any fashion magazine? come on, look around there are girls in undies all over the place, one of these pics could have been in NO or Black and you wouldnt have said anything. Hell look at the Lonely lookbook same same different young girl.

Simon Hoffmann said...

haha, it always comes back to Terry Richardson in any controversy about 1am.....

Anonymous said...

The Lonely Hearts shoot is very definately styled and shot by a women with women in mind as the audience. They are beautiful. 1am is shot by Glen Hunt mostly. Need I say more....?

Anonymous said...

I guess we could look at it this way - would you want your girlfriend, sister or daughter in a 1am shoot posing in overtly sexual positions and possibly wasted? I sure as hell wouldn't. The Lonely Hearts campaign is not the same by any stretch of the imagination.

Anonymous said...

Obviously you havent actually looked at the latest 1am there are many shoots done by a range of photographers, the one of Nicole is shot by a female as is another.

Anonymous said...
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Cam Putt said...

I entirely agree Isaac. Some of the spreads are absolutely insane. It's at a point where I feel guilty looking at the images, and I wouldn't say I'm all that moralistic.

roya said...

excellent hoohaa, team. I can't really be bothered getting into it at this very moment, and do i do agree with what everyone is saying, of course there is a difference between a piece of artwork and gratuitous and unecessary nudity - but upon skimming the comments i'm surprised no-one's mentioned Bill Henson's name yet.

So here we go: Bill Henson.

Discuss.

Cam Putt said...

@ roya.

We can't talk about an Australian photographer. Tall Poppies and that.

Anonymous said...

So much for Australian up and comming models considering most of those rise and shine models are from everywhere BUT Australia including New Zealander Stevie who is definitely a Kiwi Rising Star who is signed with 62 Models!

Glenn Hunt said...

ha ha love it! i'm not going to waste by breath defending ignorance and nasty vindictive lies, you are entitled to your perspective, narrow as it may be (check out the at the lingerie section of the next farmers or k-mart catalogue that gets shoved in your mailbox), and i'm not going to enter the debate about whats art or not, i know it can be hard to make a judgement of whats coming from the cutting edge, but i do object to people commenting on whats in the magazine without even looking at it, as above, so for the record quote " with CATHERINE MCNEIL, MIRANDA KERR & ABBEY LEE KERSHAW following fellow australian GEMMA WARD to the ranks of mega-model status as some of the hottest names in modeling right now all eyes are focused down-under to see who’s next. 1AM rounds up the budding stars of modeling, showcasing the new season with this fresh and intimate portrait of the faces we think most likely to shine."Get a life, chicken sh**t anonymous xxx

Anonymous said...

Good on you Real Groove for helping out a fellow magazine and making it possible for 1am to become a a tangible object again!

jenna said...

My questions are:

Who are these models? How old are they? If they were over 18, did they freely give their informed and enthusiastic consent to this kind of a shoot? Absent this information, it's kind of hard to have an informed discussion.