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Old 5th January 2007   #1
HSG
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Default Ashley Graham: The heart beats . . .


It's been a source of some regret that while Ford model Ashley Graham has a shapely, size-16 figure, few photographers have ever celebrated her beauty to the fullest. Until now.

These new tear sheets, possibly an early Valentine's-themed shoot, not only present Miss Graham is a more attractive manner than she has ever been featured before, but are shining examples of ideal plus-size photography and styling.

The first image, which should be Ashley's new e-card cover, shows her in a rich red shirt with a vintage-looking bustier, and an opulent hairstyle. The floral motif injects femininity into the look, and having the top open shows off the vintage piece underneath, and is a far more interesting manner of wearing the shirt than simply keeping it buttoned to the top. The model looks slightly flushed, in keeping with the altogether rich hues of the images, and their rather romantic nature.

The most celebratory new photograph is this breathtaking profile shot, which is by far Miss Graham's finest image to date. The empire-waist shoulder-baring dress is highly flattering on the model, and suggests the alluring contours of her figure. The hair is a little wilder here, the model's expression more dramatic, entirely in keeping with the gently daring nature of the pose. The red handbag adds just the right splash of colour to what is already an intensely passionate picture. Everything about the image indicates that the photographer meant to prove that the model is gorgeous because she is full-figured, not despite this fact.

In keeping with a styling strategy noted in our recent post about "the European fit," what makes the following image so successful is the close fit of the jacket, and especially, the glimpse of a soft midriff. That, and the hint of decolletage, adds just the right element of sensuality to what would otherwise be a conservative look. Here, the red motif is carried over via a ribbon-like belt (which is much more attractive, and better positioned, than the horrible, suffocating waist belts that the straight-size industry is currently adopting).

And finally, Ashley adopts an appealingly languid pose in this fine picture. The rich red of the top draws the eye, and although skirts are always preferable to slacks, at least these are well fitted. Again, the ribbon belt adds a welcome dash of femininity, as does the romantic hairstyle.

Kudos to the model for her exemplary work, and to the photographic team for presenting her beauty in such a size-positive way. The source of these tear sheets is unknown (perhaps from the forthcoming issue of Figure?), but at least everyone involved realized that if a model has as curvaceous a figure as Miss Graham does (36-34-49), one should definitely make the most of it.

- Ashley at Ford


Last edited by HSG : 5th January 2007 at 10:40.
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Old 12th January 2007   #2
MelanieW
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Default Re: Ashley Graham: The heart beats . . .

No, wherever these exciting images are from, theyre not from the latest Figure. Actually, I found the Jan/Feb issue of Figure very disappointing. Still with models size 14 and up, which is essential, but the overall quality of the photography & layouts seems to be slipping.

Worse, the issue is just filled with health-scare articles. Its a perfect example of what the book Spin Sisters called the "Female Fear Factor" - one article after another warning of impending death. Who wants to read this? I dont.

And on top of everything else, the low-calorie ads have multiplied. Theyre all through the issue now, like fungus. Frankly, theyre almost as bad as diet ads. They just hammer the idea that people should be counting calories. There is even a phramaceutical ad, for heavens sake.

This is NOTHING like Mode, which was all about enjoying life, and which always gave me a positive outlook, and a warm vibe. It was such a perfect magazine - why cant anyone simply duplicate it? Why do other magazines keep straying away from it?

These pictures of Ashley are the kind of images that a plussize magazine SHOULD be publishing.
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