If you've been with me for a while you might remember a post I did where I shared photoshoots and interviews that caught my eye, well, this is me rebooting that. I spend a lot of my time reading books and magazines for inspiration on anything from styling to poses for my own images. They're a portal of creativity and I can't resist buying one every now and then. There are some stories or photo sessions floating around that may have been forgotten about, or you may not have had the chance to read, so I'm going to start it up again and talk about some spreads I adore from the many publications I own. What better way to start then the new issue of Another Man, featuring one of my favourite humans, Harry Styles. Sadly, I can't share all of the images with you but it only takes one quick Google to find them. Or hey, be old-fashioned and buy the real thing!
Although Styles is the star of this issue, it also includes many elements from other aspects of the music industry. As the three different covers suggest, expect 'Elvis Presley, punk pin-ups and a special document curated by Harry' - I'm sold! When the rest of the world and I waited in anticipation for the magazine to be released after seeing the three blank Instagram posts from the man himself, I knew it would be an issue I would be completely in love with. It's no secret that I have a lot of time and admiration for Styles, so obviously I was going to be sold as soon as the news broke. I'm a regular reader of Another Man and that took my expectation to a whole new level. Harry could have gone in so many different directions by choosing a different publication to go for like GQ, or maybe an all round music magazine like MOJO, but he went for the artistic route which was the perfect move. Being a creative person who appears to write in his journal, have a fascination with his film camera and a dress sense that is more than flamboyant and out there, it only seems right to choose Another Man as his first solo project.
It's obvious why I am so head over heels with the photoshoots in this issue, styled and shot like Mick Jagger was when he first hit the scene in the late 60's with his shorter mop and occasional grandpa sweater, to his 70's get-up of wacky blazers and longer hair. The styling is pretty much perfect, one image from the 'Anything That's Part of You' section in particular sending me into a frenzy with the over-sized floral Gucci suit and converse that have definitely been around for more than a decade. Not only are the main points to the image perfectly Jagger, but even his painted black (I want to see it painted, painted black. Black as night, black as coal - The Rolling Stones - Paint it, Black) nails and dog collar by Fleet Ilya are the greatest accessories that would make any rock-star leap with joy. It's magical when men embrace a commodity typically bought by a woman and wear it like they've been doing it for years like it's no big deal, it certainly shouldn't be and Styles is making that known. That is one of my best-loved aspects of Rock, both the music and the movement, it embodies an attitude and lifestyle that is naughty, adventurous and completely free do be yourself in.
It's clear that Harry would wear all of the pieces used for the images, which makes it a breath of fresh air. When brands or magazines style a well-known person, they tend to forget about how they actually are. They choose them because of their attributes and distinctions but overshadow it with clothing that they would never be seen in, but this time round the great Alister Mackie has styled it perfectly to fit with Harry's own approach to style, knowing he would of course wear the numerous wacky trousers on show.
Pages 200 - 220, which feature the shoot 'Tomorrow is a Long Time', are more subtle and very much influenced by Paul McCartney, with hints of Mick Jagger thrown in. If you know much about Jagger you may have seen the photograph of him getting his hair cut much like the one seen in the spread. As well as that, the coat Harry is wearing on one of the first pages (and seen above) is a replica of one that Mick apparently bought for £4 from Carnaby Street in 1965, later to wear for a performance. Can you see why I adore this issue yet? Quite literally everything I love sprawled on to 56 pages inside of my favourite magazine.
As much as the styling is a huge part of the document for me, I also find it fascinating that Paul McCartney has a part in it also. The phone interview between them is almost run by Harry asking Paul for advice, as you would when on the phone to a former Beatle. What I find funny is that I feel like it's our time experiencing something similar to what Beatlemania was, and I wonder if Paul thinks the same and is happy he's handing his knowledge of fandom and success over to someone new. The other written pieces are just as fascinating like the article by his sister, Gemma Styles, who often writes her own journals for major publications for The Debrief and many others, now ticking Another Man off her list. She gets real about him as a person as any sister should stating "Everything he does seems to be effortless, even now; watching him leap around a stage in front of thousands of people he seems untroubled and free from self-doubt. It's easy to be jealous - he's one of those people who are just good at things, we all know one - but to assume this means he takes it all for granted, or doesn't worry, or try, would be oversimplifying him unfairly." a declaration we can all understand having people who are just the same in our own lives.
It seems hard to get to know someone who is in the public eye, as the majority like to keep their personal lives under wraps, but that's a trait I really admire about Harry (and the rest of the One Direction boys, come to think of it). Many 'celebrities' do want their lives on show and that's up to them, but for me, I like the element of the unknown and it makes me look at them like normal human beings which they still are. Fair enough, they have bigger paycheques than you or I may ever dream of, and a lifestyle of jetting around with other showbiz friends, but strip that back and they are just like us, wanting to get away from the madness of life back at home or listening to Stevie Nicks to take the edge off. We are more like them than you think, and reading this specially curated document by Harry Styles has made me realise that even more. To have so much in common with a boy from Cheshire that once worked in a bakery, who is now a full blown super-star makes me feel like maybe one day I can achieve such amazing goals in life like the many people we see around us.
A huge thank you to Another Man for tugging at my heart and making this an issue that will forever stay with me.
All photographs used are from the Another Man A/W16 issue. Full list of creatives involved in making the story:
Styling - Alister Mackie
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