*ooof*: Here’s Looking at You, Armitage

This is the second time that I have started the process of producing an *ooof* by writing the ficlet first. What does that tell us about my priorities, I wonder? Is fiction going to take over from my photographic lectures? Before you rejoice – no. I don’t think I can ever stop writing the analyses. They may be my little cloak, the excuse for ogling studying photographs of RA, but much more than that they are an essential part of being a photographer myself. When I first started studying photography, I resented having to look at other photographers’ work in class or as homework. I believed then that it stifled my own creativity, or took away my confidence in my own abilities as a photographer because I was reminded how perfect other people’s work was. Over the years, however, I have come to understand that the process of “looking” does not just apply to my own work – the seeing of the world around me and the (almost) tangible look through my own lens and the editing and post-production process – but to being open to inspiration from other practitioners, understanding the technicalities of their approach and the visual language used by them, and taking bit by bit what I like and admire, while ignoring what I do not appreciate.

All the best of us take inspiration from each other, and some of the best original work is produced when trying to emulate someone else’s style, but failing spectacularly. Essentially, it is very hard to reproduce *exactly* what someone else has captured. As much as I guess in my *ooof*s about apertures, lighting methods and compositorial devices – I could never recreate 1:1 the images that Ascroft, Parrish and Co. have made. Not just because I use different equipment and I do not have access to the exquisite sitter who modelled in their shots, but because I go at it with my own ideas, my own mind, and my own expectations. This realisation, however, frees me to look at their work and take my cue from it, without having to fear (inadvertant) plagiarism. The look at other people’s work is essential as a motivational and an educational tool. The ficlets – to get back to my starting point – are another creative realisation of the idea that was sparked by the inspirational piece of work.

That was what happened to me when I looked at today’s image.

Glamour-23

Armitage still looking good on a window sill
Photographed by Anders Overgaard for Glamour, 2013
Sourced via RAnet

Here we have Mr Armitage posing in a shoot for Glamour Magazine, photographed by Anders Overgaard. Perching on a ledge by a window, Armitage is pictured tying his shoe laces with his right leg drawn up towards his body while craning his neck to look out of the window. How very natural. Not posed at all *coughs* What drew me to this picture were several things. There is of course the unavoidable splash of red in the image. Although restricted to the side of the image, the red fabric of the waistcoat with its shiny texture acts as an eyecatcher, a signal colour that will make this image stand out when you turn over a page in a magazine and come to an article featuring this illustration.

More interestingly, the pose of the subject and how it moved my gaze attracted my attention. It is interesting to consciously note how your gaze moves – it tells us much about our powers of perception as humans, as females, and as individuals. Before you follow me, why don’t you test this yourself. Scroll back up to the image and consciously follow your eyes as they make their way around the components of the image, and then compare with *my* journey (which I hope will be more or less the same as yours). If you can, make a mental note of the fleeting thoughts that may (or may not) cross your mind as you are surveying the prey subject.

As a starting point, my gaze stopped on a point in the centre of the image – this is probably an automatic reaction, schooled by many years of looking at photographs, with my brain assuming that the most important part in an image will appear in its centre. That is not quite so, here, where my gaze settles on a raised knee. But from there the journey gets quite winded and interesting. From the raised knee, the gaze next settles on the face of the subject, or more importantly, the eyes. This is quite typically a starting point for the movement of the gaze, as humans tend to look for the eyes/face in a portrait. Then the red fabric of the waist coat attracts my attention. My gaze follows the line of red down the back of the subject. Then primal instinct kicks in and the Arsitage demands attention, so my gaze lingered notably longer on the thigh/bum area that is quite noticeable in the image and that engaged my interest partly due to the tight trousers, partly due to the enticing shadows that always attract curiosity. However, my gaze eventually prised itself from that area and followed the line of the thigh up, back towards my initial starting point, the knee. Nothing new there, and so it followed the line of black fabric on the shins down towards the ankle, and then the line of the shoe’s sole to the tip. The shoe tip being roughly the same visual line as the exposed forearm, my gaze then moved towards the left, to the hand, wrist, and skin of the subject. The end. Here’s a visualisation of the journey:

picasion.com_55197e424fcb06bd5b035c4d0ffb3b43

That is a rather demanding circle of vision that our gaze has completed there, *ooof*, don’t you think? I feel exhausted for my eye muscles, frankly. And it amuses me no end, that the journey actually looks like a letter α (Greek alpha) – for Armitage, again? (Cf. “A is for Armitage”) But notice how light and colour or absence of light and colour guides our eyes – or in absence of light, strong lines do. Highlights on the clothes of the sitter will attract our attention, dark spots are mainly ignored.

The pose of the sitter in this image demands a lot of eye movement. Which is interesting as it mirrors the inherently dynamic arrangement of the (human) shape. Even though this is a pose that has been held, there is movement implied. And more movement than, say, in the fan candid from last week. It is challenging for the viewer, in a way, but visually very interesting. Note, btw, how it works with the averted face of the subject. Would this pose equally well if the sitter had looked at the camera? The answer is no – it would have looked contrived and silly. Who ties their laces and simultaneously smoulders out of the window? With that in mind, however, the image receives an undertone of voyeurism, of catching someone in the process of getting dressed albeit at a stage too late for a more gratifying view, save for the juicy thigh-bum-combination.

A note on the overall composition of the image, which only revealed its interest to me after several viewings. The framing and square cropping of the image has resulted in an interesting near-symmetry that is visually very appealing. In front we have the subject, sitting upright, the head touching the frame at the top left, back all down the left side of the frame, his right leg drawn up and his left leg stretched out to the bottom right corner. That essentially creates a triangular shape, cutting the image in half – if you imagine a rough line going from the top left to the bottom right corners. Nice, especially if you consider the vertical lines of the window frames as creating a calming, regularly patterned backdrop – negative space.

For photography nerds this image again is most interesting as we can get some extra insight into the making of it from the behind-the-scenes footage that was published as an extra for the digital version of Glamour Magazine. I, for instance, am pleased to note that photographer Overgaard is shooting with a Canon dSLR, identifiable by the camera strap visible in the video clip – a 1D, by any chance?

screencap 2

He shoots people with his canon…
Overgaard shooting Armitage for Glamour
my screen cap

Even though the clip only contains a few seconds of footage with the photographer in it, there is still a lot of information contained in it that shows the location, the setting of the room, and the technology and techniques used on a pro shoot. For instance, the clip clarified for me that the image was not exclusively shot with daylight but that some flash was used. The light flashing is quite noticeable in the clip (around the 1:00 mark).

In case you are wondering – the flash is not attached to the camera. I would expect a professional photographer to use studio lighting for any kind of in-studio job, and so I presume that Overgaard is using a studio light that we cannot see in the clip. What you see on his camera (and what looks like a flash to the uninitiated) is actually a wireless trigger. To me this particular one looks like a Pocketwizard (the brand name – and how fitting, when shooting someone who was in “The Hobbit”… I can see bite-size Gandalf working his magic, sitting on top of the camera there…). A wireless trigger does what it says on the tin – it wirelessly triggers an off-camera flash or a strobe, i.e. it connects via radio signal with a light that is not wired to the camera and fires it. It gives the photographer greater flexibility in moving around, avoids messy cables and cords, and can simultaneously trigger several lights.

screencap 1

Overgaard, wirelessly triggering
Shoot for Glamour
my screencap

We can also see very briefly that Overgaard is illuminating the scene at the window with a very simply, very effective device, non-technological and most effective. He lights Armitage up with the daylight from two sides, even though the windows are only on one side of the room. He does that by placing large, white boards directly opposite the window. These throw the light back onto the sitter.

screencap 3

Not a wall but white boards!
my screencap

Phew – that was a long excursion into theory and practice. How about we relax now with a little story? Sit down girls, while Aunt Guylty reads you a nice story…

~/o\~

He surveyed his kingdom from the bathroom door. He really liked his new flat. Apartment, he reminded himself, they call them apartments over here. It wasn’t big – just a large living space with a little office area to the side, a comfy lounge space with a couple of sofas, a small kitchen, raised on a platform at the rear, fully equipped, mind you (time to get the Jamie Oliver app out again), and two doors on either side of the living space leading into his bedroom and the other into the bathroom opposite. Big industrial windows that harked back to the industrial use the building had been built for, let lots of light into the room, making the space bright and airy even on the dullest day. Pretty cool loft for a provincial chap like me, he smirked. It wasn’t quite up his street, all this coolness, but he had softened the look with the help of an interior designer and added a designer chair here, a few colourful cushions on the sofas and angled a rather large mirror above the sofa to throw some light onto the lounge area.

He felt at home – in this home away from home, so much so that old habits had crept in again. Books and magazines were piling up on the coffee table and beside his egg chair – perfect for reading in, one leg tugged under his bum – and he hadn’t bothered to tidy away the wine glasses he had consumed the last few nights while studying manuscripts, either. But now was not the time to think about that, he was getting ready for the day, and after a slovenly breakfast in only his boxers – he liked to sleep as unrestricted as possible – he had dawdled in the shower. He padded back, naked, into the living room, still damp. Or maybe it was the right time. Thank God there were no flats directly opposite his, he’d be done in for indecent exposure, prancing around in the nip like this. Haha, what a joke. Bending down to pick up the manuscripts from beside the chair, he wriggled his bottom teasingly towards the kitchen, then arranging the papers neatly on the coffee table, and straightening the magazines and books into stacks in tidy right angles. He grabbed last night’s bottle of Pinot Noir with his right hand. Oh, the dregs. Too precious to throw out. He downed the two sips from the bottom of the bottle, kicking his head back, pushing his chest out and brushing over his hairy chest with his left hand in a gesture of comfortable tactility. Ugh, oxidised. Maybe not such a good idea after all. He scratched his privates absent-mindedly. Making sure everything was back in its place and hanging smoothly, he shook his head at his disgusting habit of emptying the dregs, schooled by many years of frugality, gathered the wineglasses between his fingers and ambled back to the kitchen. Now for getting dressed, and quickly…

All done up in his new finery – that red-backed waistcoat really was delightfully tight around his chest, a pity the flaming, shiny red would be hidden under his jacket – he padded back from the bedroom into the living space, the shoes in his hands. He perched his bum on the window sill to get his shoes on and tie the laces by the light of the window. Suddenly he caught a movement from the corner of his eyes. He looked up, irritated. It was one of those minor distractions, like the movements on a TV screen in the corner of a pub – you can’t see the details, but the flickering movements on the screen compel you to look. Except there was no TV here. His telly was in the bedroom.

But there was the large mirror above the sofa to his left. In it he could make out the fuzzy shape of a person, half obscured up to waist-height behind metal railings, the rough stonework of red bricks partly visible, moving a hand to the face. Where was this coming from, he frowned. There were no houses opposite. He narrowed his eyes. Following the line of vision from the mirror, he turned his head to the right, in confusion, with a frown.

He cursed to himself, suddenly remembering his naked house-husbandly antics from earlier on. His next-door neighbour was having a fag on the fire escape, her gaze fixed on something slightly below his back. She was so close, he could see the blush spread all over her face as his eyes met hers.

All text © Guylty at me + richard armitage, 2013. Please credit when using excerpts and links. Images and video copyrights accrue to their owners.

~ by Guylty on October 15, 2013.

99 Responses to “*ooof*: Here’s Looking at You, Armitage”

  1. Naughty Aunt Guylty! Your ficlets are developing in a very interesting direction. Me like. 😀

    I have to pore over the lesson again when I’ve recovered – I learn so much from you (I’m barely able to take a pic myself).

    As for the photo, my eyes followed a different path. 1) hand and fuzzy forearm (omg), 2) thigh (hng), face (hello beautiful), 4) what’s that red distraction to the left?, 5) back to 1. I’m not sure what it spells. O for “obsessed”?

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  2. Now now, you forced me to watch the video again… 😛
    Very enjoyable *ooof* as usual dear Aunt Guylty! I must admit my eyes started watching the picture from the hands and went up to the face, then down to the *cough* bum and then knee and ankle and get stopped by the Fred Perry label on the sock. LOL!. Thanks for explanation on lights, we photograph “ignorants” don’t think nor notice the things you precisely point out in any *ooof* analysis.
    And the ficlet… well, I’d like to be there to see an unaware naked RA strolling in his home *blushing micra* I think we all are wondering how he had refurbished his new apartment and if he loves it and feels at home. I sincerely hope so, even if I preferred him to stay in good old Europe… But I wish him all the good luck in the world, I really wish [Bofur mode on].
    Thank you!

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    • Auntie Guylty is decidedly innocent. I mean, isn’t that what men do, prance around naked? I certainly had a couple of b’friends who were like that – happy and carefree in their skin when unobserved. I always envied them that.
      Interesting to see how your gazes wander. Everyone has their own priorities. We all come to it with our own ideas and interests.
      I based my imagined apartment on the bits seen in the clip, so totallyutterly imagined…

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      • Well, of course men have less troubles than women about their nudity. We are told ( until my generation, at least) that we don’t have to show our body, that nudity is sin and, generally we are put in a condition of not being comfortable with our bodies (how they could sell us all beauty products if we were sure of us?). Men perceive their naked bodies as something good to show, a trophy even. Or simply they don’t give a d**m. Probably something is changing since now male consumption of beauty products have overcome the female one. But I think there is still a long road to do before a woman can feel perfectly at ease with her naked body. Obviously, this is a very generalized consideration, people, cultures, countries all differ and have their own behavior.

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  3. Neighbours – such a pest! Lovely ficlet, Guylty – and maybe not too far away from the truth. How easy can it be to stay under the radar when becoming so popular? And how much control and discipline is required for constantly holding up appearances?
    I do not even dare to think about me peeping into my neighbours windows. The sight of my neighbours in the private would probably make me sick. No eye candy around in my place, rather eye cancer.
    The Glamourshoot was fantastic – thanks for pointing out all the flash stuff so detailled. I am so glad they found a stylist who made him look like a man (although a little bit too polished for my taste) and not like Paris Hiltons pinscher.

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    • Wouldn’t mind RA for a neighbour but decidedly draw the line at peeping through windows. In my story, she is meant to be an accidental witness to his naked antics. I think I would be too ashamed to peep myself…
      Yeah, I liked the look of this particular image, too, not so much the coat, though. The waistcoat looks bloody fantastic on him, especially when worn without the jacket.
      I’d love to see the other pics Overgaard took, especially the ones outside against the grid fence, but he hasn’t got Armitage on his website yet…

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      • Then lets hope the ladys from the Russian Army will somehow get their hands on the pics. Surely there is plenty of more goodness somewhere out there.
        I noticed that the poor lady in your ficlet was an accidental watcher. But I can assure you, if Mr. A. was my neighbour I wouldn‘t accidentally spy. I guess I’d rather be proper stalker. The number of fags on the balcony would explode. Not that I appreciate stalkers. It’s just a question of weak flesh over willing spirit. What can a girl do in such desperate circumstances?

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        • Hehe, yes, RA Bulgaria or Russia to the fore, please :-D.
          I have had experience with accidental peeping, and I can tell you, it was not pleasant. And not because the people in my view were not aesthetic enough… It just felt utterly wrong to me to be witness to something really private. I know from my own self that I even look away when I see celebrities fully clothed 😀 – there is just something in me that thinks they should be left alone. (Doesn’t extend to my urge to write naughty little RP ficlets, though *blushes*… However, I’d positively die if I ever stood in front of the man who inspires them…)

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  4. Thanks for this Guylty. This Ooof is one of favorite photos – I love the whole shoot aand the video. And now I know I can check out the photogs website for possible additional shots.
    The composition and line of sight theory – not to mention your fabulous gifs – reminds me of art lessons I had where the composition of a painting had to be an upside down V or an A, – alpha, as you point out, to trace the natural line of sight artists believed viewers to have.
    I bet that’s one pair of shoes the model wished he could take home with him – they have everything he likes-or a tleast wears often – wing tips with a twist. Would look great with jeans – the blue kind.

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    • I wouldn’t have classed this as one of my favourite images, but I have to say it is very nicely done and the composition is really interesting. The longer I looked at it, the more I got drawn into it. The thigh in the foreground is positively delicious. I wonder whether that was deliberate…
      It thrills me to read that my *ooof*s remind you of art lessons – I love art theory and history of art – I would love to teach photography, actually… (Maybe these *ooof*s have brought that particular dream out in me?)
      I am so ignorant when it comes to fashion details – I would not have noticed that the shoes are in a style he has been seen wearing before. It’s great to hear these details picked up on by you.

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  5. Using this to sign up for comment notices and correct where I needed and apostrophe – the RARMY (Photog’s).
    Do you keep a list of photographers who have shot RA and check periodically? Would you share if you do?

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    • I have not got a list of photographers written down anywhere, Perry, but I have all the names in my head – but maybe I should actually keep a list of the serious fashion/portrait photographers. I do check back, incidentally, but unfortunately I have never been lucky. I suspect the Bulgarian/Russian ladies are on the case, anyway ;-). If I do find updates, I would definitely share, Perry – no question. (How much fun is keeping such things to oneself… none! It only is fun when it gets shared with and appreciated by others.)

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  6. Great blog! Perry’s worried about photogs…. I worry about stories…. Did you copy the ficlet to the ficlet box?

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  7. I love this photo so very much! You know I don’t play favourites *whispers but this is my favourite*
    I really enjoy your professional analysis of photos, but with this one I’m just going to pretend that my lucky eyeball captured a candid moment of Richard getting ready to go out, tying his laces just as a nuisance pigeon sat down on the window sill 😉

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    • Aw, Agzy, if I had known, this could have been dedicated to you… And I would’ve made you the unsuspecting neighbour who was only having a quick smoke on the fire escape when she spotted her hot new house mate… *ahem*
      Hehe, go ahead and keep that little private moment for yourself. The picture is yours, whatever *you* make of it…

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  8. Cool…my eyes followed essentially the same path as yours did. I find it endlessly interesting that our minds can be directed so effectively with a few seemingly effortless positionings.

    Nice ficlet! I have never had such a great view from a fire escape!

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    • The female of the species is just as predictable as the male *coughs*. I mean, throw in a nicely sculpted thigh in tight trousers and *boom* gaze attracted and ovaries destroyed. (And then there are those freaks who go for hairy armpits… well…)

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  9. Great ficlet guylty. My eyes pretty much followed yours I’d say. Center to back, can’t resist that red and back again and down to the shoes and that blue ther but you made me notice more the color standing out as it does and the black. I love the photo really. In a way for me it makes him look slimmer, not that he is overweight or anything like that. He just looks so sleek like a cat. I’d love to see the photos outside too without the jacket. He just looks so good in red and blue and that shot to me is perfect. Thanks for the photo info and background. It is fascinating really how one gets it all together to make it work as it does. I, too, like that he is in NYC, though I’m here in California but I feel like he is probably happier in London closer to his real home. Still love the imagined apartment and I agree with others that men view their bodies in a completely different way than we do. They are allowed to see them in a far more natural way and are far more likely to do exactly as Richard does in the ficlet. I think you have something there even though imagined that he is a bit half and half in having some slovenly ways and some more designing sort. This fame has come later in life for him really so you don’t change a lot but now you have fancy clothes, shoes and yet years of frugality cannot be just tossed out either or ingrained habits as well so you do a little of both.

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    • There is something (almost contradictory) in tight clothes. When you wear them, you appear slimmer than you are. I often find that the case with men – rather than big jumpers hanging off wide shoulders, they suddenly have a moulded and sculpted body. I have to say I quite like the tight clothes RA has a penchant for. It is also quite titillating to think what is straining under the stretched fabric…
      Who could not like living in New York, I wonder? Sure, it must be quite different from my (or his) home, but NY has so much to offer, plus there is no language barrier… it must be a never-ending holiday, having a base there. Lucky him.
      The frugality (which I just conjecture, of course) is actually a really congenial characteristic, I think. It just seems so grounded and normal – to think that someone who has fame and fortune is aware of the cost of things or has a sense of appreciation… Modesty and humility – probably the most attractive characteristics I can think of.

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  10. I have always found it difficult to drag my eyes past his thigh and calf in this photo. They seem to be straining to get out of those tight pants and see the light of day. “Look at us, you can see his face in any photo,” they insist. So I do. Loved the ficlet, although I am married to an “unrestricted” man so my fantasy was intruded upon by RL. Horrors! Can you write one that is totally divorced from reality? Maybe he’s on a submarine or ice diving in Antarctica ?

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    • … or climbing Machu Picchu? LoL… Well, there we go with this teasing little ficlet intruding autumnly RL …
      Thank you, guylty – once again! Perfect entertainment in times of draught!

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      • You know what, Nell, I have been thinking that – is this the sort of thing we do to while the draught away?? Ah well…
        Macchu Picchu? Noted. I’ll see what I can come up with 😀 And thanks for commenting. x

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  11. LOL – I love how you put that, Kathy – straining to see the light of day. Oh, how we wish…
    You want a ficlet that is completely unrealistic, utter fantasy? But still with RA in it? Hm, if prompted by a picture, I will have to turn to some film stills, I guess. Could be done, though… maybe that is a challenge that will keep my brains working for a while. You can always suggest a picture, Kathy… 🙂

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    • Could you use a photo from his RL as a springboard to an unrealistic ficlet? How about the black and white one where he is striding though an airport sporting a leather jacket. Then he could be going anywhere to do anything. He’s just in transit on his way to a fabulously unrealistic adventure.Maybe his plane could crash on the way, and he is saved by a beautiful heroic pilot (female) on the uncharted isle where they are forced to bail out, surviving insurmountable odds. Insert any plot that appeals to you. My suggestions are just for cheesy fun. Macchu Picchu would work, too, and he is carrying a treasure map in his satchel. I like the idea of using film stills, but it would a lot more work for you and I’m trying to make this chore easier. Love everything you do.

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      • Oh Kathy, you *mwahmwahmwah* (those were happy, sloppy kisses, btw :-D) – how nice of you to say.
        After that, your wish will be my command. I love making people happy 😀 (a bit like Mr RA). Did you mean this image? https://pbs.twimg.com/media/A8tM8K6CQAAVAXP.jpg Haven’t seen a b/w version of it, but this was arriving in NZ for the TH premiere. And yeah, why not – a little *ooof* on some press photography with a completely OTT ficlet attached. The bar has been raised. 😉

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  12. Yes, guylty I agree the tighter clothes do make that statement and I think he is somewhat proud that he works out and keeps in shape as he should be. He looks great. Granted as part of his job that is necessary but still you work for it and he does. I’ve been to NYC and quite honestly had a great time but living there? No. I could but I would rather live outside of it as many do and come into the city really. I agree it is a city with so much to do but I can’t imagine living there year round really. For an actor it is fantastic I’m sure and if you can afford a place there, well even better but I’m not a lover of crowds and you do have to adjust to that and the noise and everything else. I think I”m just a wide open spaces type of girl though I do like London. With London however you can be in the city and not have to deal with thousands and thousands of people. It is just a bit harder in NYC to do that. Still I can see the attraction esp. for someone like Richard. Acting, modeling, theater and so much more. I think in a way it is good that all of this has come later in his life because much of what he has is set in his mind. So he will remain somewhat the frugal man while enjoying what he has earned too without letting it all corrupt him as unfortunately it does so many younger actors. At least that is what one can hope.

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  13. For me, the challenge was to try to look at this photo as if I had never seen it before, as it is one I have studied (cough) quite considerably. I would have said my eye goes straight to the thigh but I took a deep breath and tried to look at it with a fresh eye and do think my eyes followed more or less the same path as yours. Still major lingering over the bit highlighted by the star and I also took a long time over the cuff linked pushed back cuff (“I bet that isn’t comfortable…ooh arm hair…”) and then the blue of the shoe. This is a case where the stylist has it absolutely right- the clothes are beautiful but they also don’t detract from the man wearing them. I became interested in the clothing and accessories because they were so right – he made them more attractive and vice versa.

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    • Yeah, once we get familiar with an image, the whole gaze path thing doesn’t work so well anymore… I am familiar-ish with the pic. (I admit, I am more into casual garb RA), but this one is really very nice – the thigh is a major plus, of course, and the exposed fore arm. I agree that the stylist really hit the spot with this outfit.
      I think you can tell, too, that RA felt very comfortable in the outfit. He does not look awkward in any of the shots or any of the poses. (cf. the LV sweater abomination).
      Man, he’s handsome.

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  14. Excellent point Bollyknickers. It isn’t easy to do it but the clothes look great and on him they look better and he looks better with them on as well. We all know he would look fine without (okay we won’t quite go there) but how often can you wear something that looks great and looks even better on you and makes you look even better with them on. Not an easy task, ask any woman that one….

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    • Oh Peggy – now you have gone and put the thought of RA sans clothes back in my head just as I managed to scrape myself together after that ficlet!

      Actually, RA reminds me that anyone can look terrible in clothes (LV sweater) even if they are, in fact, absolutely perfect. This makes me feel not quite so bad when I try something on that makes me look like a sack of potatoes.

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      • I can really relate to that “sack of potatoes” thing – one of the reasons that shopping for new clothes is not top of my list of fun things to do! 🙂 Oh to be tall, slim and elegant! As has been noted before, Richard could no doubt wear a sack and look gorgeous in it. Life just isn’t fair at times 😦

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      • It’s really rare, though, isn’t it, I mean RA looking bad in his clothes? Even the most recent shoot in NY – ok, I didn’t like the clothes, but it wasn’t as if he was disfigured by them. They didn’t show up any nasty imperfections. But then again – he doesn’t seem to have any.

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  15. Nice *ooof* day Tuesday or the end part for me. I do love the color red, and was wearing it today at work (one of three of the uniform shirt colors for me). I am really still wearing red, in the form of slippers. I also noticed the red on the socks, tie and cufflinks too. My view path was all over the place, just can’t be helped. The face with those gReAt blue eyes, to the bum and the calf and the red, back to the face. Thanks for the gReAt end to the day!

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    • Just imagine, Katie – the end of the work day for you, and he is just getting ready to meet you and take you out for dinner. He has put on his nice suit and waistcoat, looking his best for you. Ahhhhh.

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      • Now if I ever remembered dreams, that would be a gReAt one. I really like this picture a lot. That is from me who likes RA more casual, maybe it’s the red hot red!

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        • Ha, talking of dreams. I had one of those very rare RA dreams last night. I think it was JOhn Porter, though. And not particularly favourable in the outcome. My dreams are always worst-case scenarios *lol*.
          And yeah, I love the red bit. (Red is my favourite colour.)

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  16. You could not have chosen a more perfect picture for this latest *ooof* guylty! I loved everything about it from the first moment I saw it. I found it breathtaking in every sense of the word back then and it still captivates me. I surprised myself that it wasn’t actually the thigh of sighs that first grabbed my attention but his face! I know! Unbelievable!! 😉

    To me everything is beautiful – the combination of colours, the clothes, the way the photographer got him to sit and of course Richard himself. As has already been said he looks very much at home with what he is wearing as they look “made” for him, the fit looks so perfect! 🙂 I wonder if he got to keep any of the clothes or the shoes? I’d love to see him dressed like that again as he looks absolutely stunning to my way of thinking.

    It was a delightful treat to read all the technical details – something I find I am enjoying more and more. Keep ’em coming!! 😀 Of course the cute little ficlet is the perfect ending! 😉

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    • I am not really sure why this particular Overgaard picture flew under my radar for so long. I think it all came out just as the RARA stuff was happening, and so I kept pushing it back. The images are stunning, particularly the ones taken inside. Apart from this picture here, the other one where he is standing on the sill, looking out the window, is also really, really yummy – the Arsitage in profile *ahem*.
      These figure-hugging clothes are actually really nice on him. I am quite surprised that I like that so much – on a man of his age (don’t shoot me – I don’t mean to be disrespectful, plus I am the same age…). But the tight fit looks simply stunning. He has the thighs, the chest, the arms, the legs, the arsitage for it… Wow.
      Yeah, I wonder, too, if he gets to keep stuff. The fashion shoots I have been on, the clothes always had to be returned to the designers/shops, even when we had celebrities as models. Well, celebrities of the “world-famous in Ireland” kind 😀 – maybe it is different with someone of Armitage’s calibre?
      Yay – I am slowly brainwashing you into enjoying the technicalities of photography? Ha! Job done :-D. Thanks for commenting, Teuchter.

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  17. Ahahaha! Love your ficklets, Guylty! Thanks 😀 (those fire escapes are not that bad)
    BTW,I’m grateful for “howtolookonthisphoto” instructions because my eyes are sore from jumping frantically from STAR to forearms..to STAR..to dainty ankels..to STAR..to ugly boots..to STAR..to fingers..to STAR..to my ceiling..to STAR..to my window..to STAR..to my desk..to STAR..to my hubby’s photo..to..oops!

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    • Poor eyes are getting a lot of exercise these days. Mine certainly did… Yeah, I will admit – the thigh/arsitage is really quite distracting. Honestly, I wonder whether that is deliberate… (Actually, I don’t think it is – it is incidental. The deliberate bit was that Overgaard wanted the knee to stick up to create a fuller silhouette, I would think.) Thanks Joanna xxx

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  18. Sorry about the Bollyknickers. Yes, he can wear clothes that do him little favor but look at that face and you just want to forget about it all. Still this outfit is just perfect and yes guylty there is that age thing. He can put on clothes, like this, that honestly make him look younger than he actually is and there you are. Don’t we all wish we had that trick? I think we ladies like to think we can do that but doesn’t usually work so well for most of us. He just looks perfect and wouldn’t you like to open your door to that one evening for a night out ( or maybe just staying in)?

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  19. Love this man. Love this pic. Love this whole shot. Love this clothes.Was actually thrilled to bits, when I saw this shoes for the first time. I’m a bit crazy about blue shoes…. Unfortunately we haven’t seen them again in any other later appearances of him. Well, that had to be said at first!!
    Guylty, for me the part with the big star is prime!! Ahemmm!! (Saw that Fred Perry label right away and those gorgeous shoes!!) Then his incomparable face (I knew even without closer looking it must be HIM! LOL) and then this remarkable, delicious, kissable knee and then… technically everything else at the same time… I’m a greedy glutton when it comes to Mr. A. One snatch…. Appreciation, glee and delight comes in one rush and ….realisation comes afterwards. You know?? 😉 Now as you put it all in relation, and in an abstracting perspective, giving us loonies(me!)/fangirlies a helping hand to focus and concentrate a little more on the real crucial things on hand, like (the sitter – yes!) light – no light, flashlights or not?, colours, poses, are there frames or framings, and most important, the story behind the picture we savour here…. Gawd knows! What’s all still in our minds!!! Junge Frau, I’m impressed, as always. 😀

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    • Linda!!!!!! Nice to hear from you! Oh yes, if RA were food, I’d be a glutton. 😀 I wonder whether it is possible to overeat? Probably. There are always some grisly bits, and he has hinted at that often enough. Fair enough.
      Isn’t it cool how we are learning bits because of this infatuation? I mean, I had actor crushes before, but they never made me feel more creative, or more curious about literature/history/photography/life/whatever. I really really appreciate that he has unknowingly inspired that in me and so many others.

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      • Grisly bits??? Which are those??? 😛
        Infatuation? Never heard of that! I’m only slighlty befuddled, simply muddled, fairly besotted, standing on my tiptoe in the midst of an oh-so-tweetle-beetle-poodle puddle(!), all woozy about this doozy… Interested in life sounds good….

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  20. You know just looking again at the photo, can’t help myself and I think you know it is just like a work of art. You can’t help but admire all the parts and the way it all comes together like a sculpture. It all just makes you feel so good. It is the man himself of course but it is also the colors that work that magic too.

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    • If the definition of a work of art is that it makes you think and makes you feel good, then yes, you could class this as art. Personally, I think that label applies more for the man himself than this picture of him. But I have a rather lofty, ethereal idea of art…

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  21. Nice contrast in the fic between the ultramodern clean lines of the apt and the dreg-drinking, scratching Richard Armitage.

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    • Hehe, exactly, Serv. He does not quite fit in. But then he never does, does he? At least his roles are often of outsiders, and a lot of characteristics seem to set him apart from his peers.

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  22. I`m a bit late with commenting, missed the ooof on Tuesday, find it now and my eyes are overflowing while I`m still drooling. This is one of my most favourite pics of RA. I was so delighted by the red waistcoat, the blue shoes (love blue shous and had got similar ones years ago), the tight trousers, the shirt and not to mention the arsitage that I purchased the Glamour magazine on ebay (don´t ask for the prize, it was horrendous).

    The ficlet was great, for the first time I regret being a non-smoker, what excuse could I find sitting on the fire escape and stalking at RA? 🙂

    To the photographic aspect of your *ooof*, there are still some “Böhmische Dörfer”, though I learn more and more every week.

    Ich ziehe in jeder Hinsicht den Hut vor Dir, guylty (I take my hat off to you, is that expression correct?)

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    • Thanks Ute – glad that you wrote even a few days late. It’s never too late to comment 🙂
      DISCLAIMER: This post was not meant to promote the intake of nicotine :-D. How about stepping out on that fire escape just to enjoy the view. Ahem, although that sounds unintendly pervy…
      Re. “Böhmische Dörfer” (or “it’s all Greek to me”) – not to worry! Maybe it is good when there is some mystery left for photography to work its magic!
      And yes, the latter expression does exist, and I blush at the compliment. Thanks Ute! x

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  23. […] gauntlet has been flung at my feet. A suggestion of a press photograph is one thing. But to also provoke some outrageous narrative from my dry mind […]

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  24. […] A typical photographic all-rounder, Overgaard does everything from portraiture via fashion to commercial and travel. His imagery is crispy clear with a lot of detail. ooof  ooof […]

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