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Friday, November 26, 2010

Featuring Vancouver Island Singer/Songwriter Georgia Murray

Last week, I had the pleasure of interviewing Georgia Murray. She is a wonderful singer, and has a lot of talent. Georgia's voice is very beautiful, not to mention that she looks amazing on camera :)

She has appeared on Boston Legal, opened for many other artists, and much more! Additionally, she received a lot of press coverage when her song “We’ll Never Know” was stolen by Lee Hyori, South Korea’s number one pop sensation. Well, this is proof of a very popular saying: "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery".

I hope you enjoy my interview with Georgia :)

Image Credits:
Photographer: Justin Tyler Close
Hair/Makeup: Negar Hooshmand
Stylist: Deanna Palkowski

AVIVA: How long have you been singing?
I started singing before I was born, and I'll still be singing long after I'm gone.

AVIVA: What excites you about being a singer?
I love the adrenaline rush I get from performing. I love connecting with an audience of people I don't know. Being on stage, the rush, the lights, the heat, the spontaneity of live performance and getting that immediate reaction from a crowd. You can rehearse your sack off, but it all comes down to the moment, and anything can happen. Everything stops, and it's all about the music.

Image Credits:
Photographer: Justin Tyler Close
Hair/Makeup: Negar Hooshmand
Stylist: Deanna Palkowski

AVIVA: Do you have any notable musicians that inspire/influence you; if so, who?
I have very many and it's hard to pick just one. I would have to say that Lauryn Hill has been a major source of inspiration for me. The Miseducation is one of my all time favourite albums...she's raw and real, and that is my favourite thing about an artist. Same with dear old Amy. Amy Winehouse, in my opinion, is one of the most talented songwriters and vocalists ever. I love being able to learn about people through their lyrics. I love artists that let you in, that aren't afraid to show you their flails and screw ups. I'm so not into the glossy gloss, we're big ballin, bottle poppin, kinda shit. I need something real in order for me to connect. So that's how I try to write my songs.....autobiographically.

I'm a big fan of Lady Gaga as well. She found that sweet spot between hyper pop town, and real gut wrenching truth. She's so brilliant because she was able to market herself as this generation's epic pop monster, but she writes her own songs, plays the keys like a mother, she doesn't lip sync, and her content is moving and revealing....unlike so many of her predecessors. Generally, when you're a pop star, you're kind of a vessel for someone else's vision, at least that's how I perceive it. But Lady Gaga is her own deal, and that's why I love her. People may disagree, but I embrace art....and Lady Gaga is art.

Hip hop has also been a huge part of my life. Everything from J5 and Blackalicious, to Atmosphere and Hieroglyphics to the Roots and Tribe Called Quest....Jay Z, Kanye, The Fugees, Pharcyde...all so ill...all so influential.

And of course there's the classics. I grew up singing with my dad and he introduced me to Johnny Cash, Simon and Garfunkel, Gordon Lightfoot, Stan Rogers, John Prine...all incredible songwriters. All these people have influenced my music in one way or another.

Oh! And I gotta give props to my brother Fraser for giving me my first ever cassette tape! It was a Christmas present of Pearl Jam's Vs. album. It changed my life. Eddy Vedor, yes please.

Image Credits:
Photographer: Justin Tyler Close
Hair/Makeup: Negar Hooshmand
Stylist: Deanna Palkowski

AVIVA: What would you say has been your biggest accomplishment in your career?
Hmmm....well, I've done some fun things. I've appeared on the ABC hit show Boston Legal as a lounge singer. David Kelly, the executive producer and head writer actually wrote a part specifically for me and I'd have to say that was pretty major. I got to sing for Candice Bergen, and she was great. I've also done a lot of anthem singing for the NHL and NBA. I performed the anthems for the Knicks and the Rangers in Madison Square Gardens, for the Canucks in GM Place and for the Predators in Nashville.
I was also invited to sing a private event for Warren Buffet in Wyoming, and that was super fun. I've opened for a lot of great performers, some of which I've really looked up to. Talib Kweli, KOS, Jurassic 5, Atmosphere, Shad and the Canadian Tenors amongst others.
So, its hard to choose one thing...they've all had a hand in shaping my career.

Image Credits:
Photographer: Justin Tyler Close
Hair/Makeup: Negar Hooshmand
Stylist: Deanna Palkowski

AVIVA: Do you have any funny/crazy/interesting short story related to your singing experience that you would like to share?
Haha. When I was in grade 3 I had a solo in "Oh Come All Ye Faithfull" at our Christmas concert. No one in our school had sung a solo before and I convinced my teacher, along with the help of my friend Crystal Zwicker, that I could do it and it would be awesome. The big day came and I was so intensely nervous to perform. I had that feeling where you think you have to pee, but you don't actually have to, it's just the nerves. Anyway, the time came to sing my solo, and my teacher started playing the piano, and I missed my cue, so I had to start again. I came in on time the 2nd time around, made it through the first verse, and then something went very wrong. I don't know what happened, but I went completely blank and forgot all the words. Stunned, I stopped and said, "I can't do this anymore" and ran off the stage. At first it was just complete silence from the crowd, then they erupted into applause and I came back out and bowed and re joined the choir and finished the rest of the show. So much for my promise to my teacher about how awesome I would be.

AVIVA: How has singing helped you develop as an artist?
I wasn't always a songwriter, I only started writing when I was about 17. My best friend Ashleigh Eymann was/is an amazing writer and a lot of my early writing influence came from her. For me, singing helped me develop as an artist because I was able to express myself, artistically, by songwriting. It's one thing to sing and perform, but it is another thing to sing and perform songs that you wrote. It adds a whole new level of excitement and fear and uncertainty to the performance. When they're your words, your thoughts, your deepest, darkest changes the performance from being about the voice to being about the person.

AVIVA: If time/money were no option, where would you like your career to go?
I have no limits. I want to sing for the world.

AVIVA: Do you have any additional comments?
I would like to thank my collaborator/producer/DJ D Whiz (aka Tony Day). He has been my main source of inspiration and we have been a team on this crazy musical journey. Hes an amazing drummer and producer and I'm so lucky to have him!! Also, big shouts to Fartie Artie!

You can check out more of Georgia on her Website, follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube :)

I wish Georgia all the best in her career.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

A few thoughts for models who are seeking to go full-time

This post is written by ShivaKitty. She is an experienced full-time freelance glamour and nude model from Boston. Please be advised that this post is based on her experience and in the modeling world, and that experience is different for everyone.

Here is what she had to say:

*Before you even consider starting to model full-time, you should be comfortable with the idea of accepting paid work from people whose images you feel are really pretty horrible, or at least mediocre. Understand that many of the people you shoot with will post unflattering images of you all over the Internet, and you will have no right to complain since you were fairly compensated, in cash, after the shoot.

*When you first reach a point where you realize you *can* make money from modeling, you will NOT just arbitrarily "set" a rate. When that time comes, you will start being offered certain amounts of money per shoot. Often, the amount you will be offered will seem surprisingly low. It isn't. As you model longer, build a diverse portfolio, and have a list of strong references, you are likely to be offered increased amounts of money. Eventually, you will have more control over the rate at which you work. In the beginning, the people hiring you will control your rate. You gain more control over your rate in accordance with experience level, and reputation.

*You cannot assume that every person who contacts you is creepy, or harmful. Understand that you will be shooting with a lot of people whom you probably wouldn't care to socialize with in your daily life. Some folks are unpleasant, stinky, have no social skill, etc. You will be shooting with some of these people, yes. However, if they are not disrespectful to you verbally, and if they do not engage in overt transgressions, you are going to be okay. Most people are good people. Most photographers and artists do treat their models very well, and with respect. Have some trust in the goodness of humankind. You will be pleasantly surprised with what you find.

*You should be comfortable setting personal limits, but also be flexible with those limits when you realize you have started outgrowing them --- and yes, many of the things you start off saying "never" to become okay to you, or even fun, after you have been shooting for awhile. Your personal values are likely to change, because modeling full-time will force you to grow in areas of challenge that many people never even encounter, let alone go out and face bravely.

*Do not let other people determine when you have outgrown certain limits and boundaries. You will know. You. You. You. You.Will.Know.

*Certain things, that modeling full-time kind of forces upon you, will increase your self-esteem, your street smarts, and your personal savvy. An example is travel. I never traveled alone until I started modeling. Now, I do it a lot, and I do it fearlessly. Modeling just changes you. It really, really does. It changes who you are, how you interact with the world around you, how others perceive you. You are either able to go with that natural ebb and flow - grow with it, rather - or not.

*People will often try to convince you that you are not worth the rate/trade/compensation you feel your work is worth. Either agree, or move on. You might find out that you're not so great after all, or you might discover that you are -in fact- talented, and great at what you do. Anticipate that your perception of yourself, and your perception of your work's value, will shift as you grow personally from your new experiences.

*Be willing to spend a lot of time on the road. In 2009, I was putting an average of 500 miles per week on my car, and I did additional long-distance trips (requiring airplanes). There are ways to travel cheap(er), such as trading shooting hours for airfare, but it can be difficult to wrangle up these jobs. Getting started traveling to shoot tends to happen naturally over time. It is not worth hurrying; when it's time for you to work elsewhere, it will happen.

*Time and time again, models you think are uglier, dumber, or less experienced will be selected for jobs, while you will be rejected. You will learn that beauty really is in the eye of the beholder, and you are the perfect model - for a DIFFERENT photographer.

*You will lose old friends who refuse to support you, but you will gain new friends within the industry, who understand where you are coming from, and care about your goals and development as a creative person.

*You will become jaded about some things, because -as with any job- the stress wears on you over time. You will become more open to many, many lovely things that you would have never experienced working in an office, or in doing retail work.

*You will likely evolve in a "hustler" of sorts. You learn to negotiate, bargain, weigh options, etc.

*You will become very good at managing your ever-changing schedule.

*You will need to decide, relatively early in the game, whether you want to keep your modeling life private, or whether you want to "come out" to your family and friends. If you are over 18, and living independently, whatever you choose to do with your body and likeness is your personal business, and yours alone. Just like your personal finances stop being your parents' business once you are working and out of their house, so does the ways in which you choose to use your body. If you choose to share the information, wonderful. If you don't, it's your heart/mind/body, and only you own it.

*You will be well-advised to use a stage name - religiously - for any nude, erotic or fetish work. No one should have to tell you that this shit can come back to bite you in the ass when you are 45, and running for mayoral office. Even if you use a stage name, it can still come back to bite. Just keep that in mind.

You can view more of her work on her website and Model Mayhem

Good luck everyone!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My most viewed image on Model Mayhem as of November 23, 2010

This image is called 'The Ankle Grab' for reasons non other than that I am grabbing my ankles...hahaha
It was taken during one of my first few shoots when I started modeling. I love doing poses that require bending and twisting. They are challenging yet different and they let the imagination wonder.

Photo by Ian Simpson of IMS FotoGrafix

On Model Mayhem, this image is on almost 100 lists, and has had over 9000 views.

It is also available as a signed 8x10 in my Online Shop.

Have a wonderful day!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Black Romper from Urban Lingerie

This is an awesome piece of lingerie. I like the way it looks :)

Photography by IMS FotoGrafix, Make-up/Hair/Model: Me
Wardrobe provided by Urban Lingerie.

I will be posting many more images from shoots, as well as articles.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Green Corset from Urban Lingerie

Photo by: IMS FotoGrfix, Model/Hair/Make-Up:Me
Corset Provided by Urban Lingerie

Occasionally, I like to use corsets in my shoots. :)

I'll be posting my collection of shoot wardrobe, articles, stuff I learn about fitness, and much more over the next little while.

Hope you like :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I Spy With My Little Eye Something That is Blue :)

Photo By: IMS FotoGrafix, Model/Hair/Make-up: Me
Outfit provided by Urban Lingerie

When it comes to outfits, blue is one of my favorite colours.

Where do you shop for your lingerie? What is your favorite colour? (Answer in the comments below)

Stay tuned for more interviews, photos from different shoots, useful links, and articles,
Aviva :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Awesome One-Piece Savilla Swimsuit

Normally, I wear 2-piece bikinis, but I love this swimsuit from Savilla.

Photo By: IMS FotoGrafix, Model/Make-Up/Hair: Me
Swimsuit provided by Savilla Swimwear

Savilla is great!

Stay tuned for more images, modeling information, industry people spotlights, and much much more!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

I am in Nifty Magazine :)

Hey guys,

I have finally got my tearsheet from Nifty Magazine, Fall/Winter 2010 Volume iii, issue 2.

My feature was titled Sexiest Figure #8.

Image Credits: IMS FotoGrafix, Model/Hair/Make-up: me :)

The photo was taken a while back, and I was very happy that Nifty Magazine editors chose this image.

It was taken in the cold ocean water of Victoria, BC.

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