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I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-13-2005, 08:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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<CENTER>
A shot of the Miami skyline a few nights ago from my balcony</CENTER>
I love South Beach. Season is almost upon us and the weather is starting to turn. I felt a light breeze today, and I swear for a few minutes the humidity dropped into double digits. And the babes are coming, the babes are coming! I got an email today from a beautiful Ukrainian model who wants to shoot a test with me (by the way, just for future reference, "beautiful Ukrainian" is redundant). Now, as Christian or any of my makeup artists will explain, I apparently have "Kick Me" written in Cyrillic on my forehead in some secret KGB ink that only the Russians can see. This girl will use me, abuse me, and kick me to the curb while I mumble "thank you" in Russian. (Spaciba!)

<CENTER>
The new South Beach Local stopping in front of Southgate Towers</CENTER>
Any way, as part of our preparations for Fashion Season, the local government actually did something worth while (quit shaking your head, it could happen!). They canned the toy Jitney bus that used to run up and down Washington Avenue at irregular intervals and replaced it with a real bus service. These little buses run a great circle route down Washington and back on West Avenue (and vice versa!) every 10 to 15 minutes from seven in the morning to one o'clock at night. This means you can go virtually anywhere in South Beach quickly and in comfort for....ta da!.........25 cents (yes, a quarter)! The buses run as far south as South Point (the southern tip of Miami Beach) and then to the Publix grocery stores at the north end of South Beach (around 20th Street). Washington Avenue runs basically along the ocean side of South Beach, while West Avenue runs along the Biscayne Bay side of the island.

<CENTER>
The Local Bus route here in South Beach</CENTER>
I'm going to digress from this digression for a moment. Miami Beach is not a beach in Miami. It is a long narrow island off the coast of Florida, roughly across from greater Miami. (Miami is a very small city, what we call Miami is really Dade County which is very large!) And there really is no "South Beach", it's just a made up name for the southern tip of Miami Beach (I live in South Beach, my address is Miami Beach). I often say I don't live in Florida, I live in South Beach. We have our own (very strange) rules here. Our community standards are, well, "different". We get Fashion TV (all the fashion shows from all over the world, 24-7) on our regular cable (only in Miami Beach, but not in Miami). No one else in America gets FTV on regular cable. Why? Real fashion, which means a lot of nudity (no squiggly boxes over the naughty bits like they do on the Style channel!). And since a lot of this comes from Europe, not everyone is...over eighteen. Madonna's "Sex" book was shot by Meisel here in South Beach. One memorable image from that book has Madonna out hitch hiking in the middle of the day on Alton Road, wearing nothing but high heels. So as you can see, South Beach is special (and now we know how special we are, we get to ride the short bus!).

<CENTER>
Oops, another "Wardrobe Malfunction"! (Not.)</CENTER>
Our summers are hot and humid (you knew that) but not as hot as you might think. The highest temperature ever recorded in Miami Beach is 98 degrees, the highest temperature ever in Detroit (as an example) is 108. But from roughly May through mid/late October it is hot and oppressively humid every day, it drags on you. But now the glory days are coming! From November through April we have arguably the best shooting weather in the US, highs from the mid 70's to mid 80's. The humidity drops like a rock in November, and the lows are usually in the low 70's to high '60's. That's one thing that separates us from LA, we have delightful evenings to sit out and enjoy Lincoln Road. And that's why we have our Fashion Season. Everyone from all over the world comes to South Beach in the winter to shoot their advertising and catalog work. Dan Norton once described South Beach to me as a "location, not a market", and I have to agree. But still, if you are a serious model or shooter, this is a premier "location" to work! Another thing that works for us is that beyond the plethora of modeling agencies, there are many professional studios, production companies, and equipment rental outlets which are critical for those wishing to do big budget campaigns.

<CENTER>
Let's see...Fashion Editorial? (Check.) Shot in South Beach? (Check.) Russian model dangling gutted Fish? (Checkmate!)</CENTER>
Just from the calls I've been getting I think things are starting to ramp up for this year. We normally start cranking around the first of November and things get really silly in January. The work cools down in mid March, and by April everyone is booking out to Europe or New York. We do work here all year round, but the big dollar print work is done during Season (we are a location, not a market!). I came down here in 1999 on assignment and was supposed to go on to Chicago, but when the time came to leave it was December. I remember thinking: "Miami in December, or Chicago in December?" Ah well, that was six years ago, and I don't think I could find Rush Street or Lake any more with out a map.

I was at the Publix last night (our local grocery chain), and there were three young 5'10" girls wearing four inch heels and speaking Russian in the check out line. Gotta love The Beach in Season.

Fish
--
John Fisher
Couture Model Management
900 West Avenue, Suite 423
Miami Beach, Florida 33139
305 534-9322
http://www.johnfisher.com
http://www.couturemiami.com
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Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-13-2005, 08:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
Now, as Christian or any of my makeup artists will explain, I apparently have "Kick Me" written in Cyrillic on my forehead in some secret KGB ink that only the Russians can see. This girl will use me, abuse me, and kick me to the curb while I mumble "thank you" in Russian. (Spaciba!)

[/ QUOTE ]

Ah Fish, don't feel bad...they seem to be darn good at that.
I know of several here in NY who've done that.
One particular case of a young Ukraninan girl who came here as a J1 VISA holder and was told she shoult try modeling. A friend of mine let her stay in his studio for free and did some test shooting with her and hooked her up with some people.
One day she just left without saying good bye or even thank you.
Go figure.!

Howard
 
 
Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-13-2005, 08:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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hey fish! do you think the cold war would've been over a lot sooner if our capitalist propaganda machine hadn't kept showing us pictures of russian lady shot-putters and hags-in-babushkas (playing them off as typical russian women) and, instead, they showed us the real goods?
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Only you could make me come out of the shaddows....
Old 10-13-2005, 10:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Fish,

Many have tried, you just for you, I'll come out of the shaddow from whence I lurk!

Ya, Chicago in Jan, So. Be in Jan.

My wife says I had a similar conversation:

"Photograph barns?

Photography women?

Okay, women.

How about birds?

Ya, how about women?

Maybe Sunsets?

Or, maybe women?

Okay, women it is!"

Anyway, glad you "took one for the team!"

Great post as always.

Joel
Joel Stensberg Photography
Appleton, WI
My Abode
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Thank God For Brother Fish....
Old 10-13-2005, 11:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I was thinking of a way to describe South Beach to people who haven't been here before. I've saved the post you wrote... and fully intend to pay you a qwuata each time I email the link.

I can feel it cool off outside... and it restores my hope in something grand for the year.

christian

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Bravo....
Old 10-14-2005, 10:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Fish,

We aren't you writing for some publication somewhere? You are the MasterProse o' Fashion Photography. And you know where to buy the best burgers in town.

That's an unbeatable combo.

Jim



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Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-14-2005, 10:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
I love South Beach. Season is almost upon us and the weather is starting to turn.

[/ QUOTE ]

When I lived in South Florida we always knew when the season had started --- it's when the license plates start to change color... [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
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Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-14-2005, 11:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Fish,

What a great piece of writing! Thanks for sharing an interesting bit of the world.

Cheers!
Glenn K.
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Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-14-2005, 04:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Ah yes, my favorite "location" [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

Since I've been wearing a jacket on a regular basis, and it's been raining for the last week or more in NYC, I'm once again longing for the warm nights sipping coffee on SOBE with the "Lincoln Road photo club" [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

Won't be long now before you'll see this vagabond photographer returning to the sands on Miami Beach to shoot some half nakid chicks.. I mean fashion models...

The new bus alone makes it worth while, now I can buy my chocolate milk along with the super models at the uber publix [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

Here's a memory, shot at South Gate Towers..

Boobs up, Girl Happy...





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Re: I\'m tellin\' ya Morty, it\'s only a qwuata!
Old 10-14-2005, 05:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yum yum.......I know where I'd like to spend my off season.. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

BTW, the skyline shot is just fantastic!! Hmmm.....that would make a good desktop photo.. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] Could you make that a little more square and bigger..? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

J/K..

JP
 
 
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