Saturday, December 31, 2011

Wish You Happy New Year 2012!

Wish all of you a great New Year 2012, full of happiness, good health, and prosperity! I hope the New Year celebrations around the world bring in a conflict-free peaceful world too!

Watch this great video of Sydney Harbor fireworks celebrating the New Year 2012. It is one of the best I found on the web and hope you enjoy it too!


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Brazilian model Camila Alves

Photo: Brazilian model Camila Alves at The Heart Truth's Red Dress Collection Fashion Show, 2011.

Brazilian model and television performer, 29, moved to New York to pursue a career in modeling at the age of 19, and her profession as a fashion model took her to such destinations as Paris, Milan, and many other destinations in various countries including in China and African countries.

She also designs and markets handbags through her company, Muxo. As a television performer, Alves hosted the third season of the reality show, Shear Genius for Bravo Network.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Lucy Punch

Lucy Punch by gdcgraphics
Lucy Punch, a photo by gdcgraphics on Flickr.

Actress Lucy Punch at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival.

Taylor Swift rules at American Music Awards

Along with the British singer-songwriter Adele, the country music star Taylor Swift dominated at the audience-voted American Music Awards. Adele and Swift bagged three awards each, while Lady Gaga and Lil Wayne went home empty-handed, reports said.

Swift beat Adele, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Lil Wayne to win the artist of the year award at the awards ceremony held in Los Angeles. Besides she won the best female country artist for the second year in a row and also the best country music album award.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Britney Spears performs 'Gimme More'

Untitled by carnivalridexx
Untitled, a photo by carnivalridexx on Flickr.

Britney Spears performs "Gimme More" at the Femme Fatale Tour on July 26, 2011.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Saaya Irie, the Japanese junior idol

bikini modeling by saayairie
420, a photo by saayairie on Flickr.

It was a few years ago that I first came across the photo of Saaya Irie on the internet. At that time I was surprised that teenager, who is 17 years of age now, started modeling for bikini and lingerie at the age of 11. She soon became so popular that anyone searching for photos with keywords such as ‘chidol, Japanese actress, voice actress, junior idol, singer, low teen idol, etc., would come upon Saaya in the top of the search results pages. Perhaps, she was the youngest ever model to pose in bikinis and lingerie for the most popular brands in Japan.

Born on 15 November 1993, in Kitakyushu, Fukuoka, Japan, Irie Saaya, has been appearing various media including movies, TV, etc. She was also a member of the Japanese musical group Sweet Kiss that was disbanded in May 2006.

In Japan a junior idol (or chidol, abbreviation for child idol) is defined as a child idol or an ‘early teenager’ who is pursuing a career as a photographic model, including gravure idols and AV idols. Apart from them, child actors and junior pop singers are also included in the category of junior idols. In addition to the regular known work or profession of such idols, they are also featured in photobooks and DVDs, and these are equally popular as any other media in Japan.

What is particular about Saaya is her innocent looks, equally complemented her natural grace and attractive looks and her ability to pose for the camera as naturally as any seasoned, matured model can pose while doing full justice to the brand or cause for which she has taken up the responsibility.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Laura Goncalves at Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary

Laura Gonçalves, Miss Universo Portugal 2011, was born on February 10, 1989 at Baruta, Miranda, Venezuela, and Laura was raised in Caracas, Venezuela. To pursue her modeling career she moved to her parents’ country Portugal, where she was crowned Miss Universo Portugal 2011. She represented Portugal at the Miss Universe 2011 beauty pageant and ranked in the Top 10.

Sheldry Saez at Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary

This video features Sheldry Nazareth Sáez Bustavino, Miss Panamá 2011, at the Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary. Born on 15 January 1992, Sáez started her modeling career in 2007. She competed in Miss Panamá 2011 winning the title of Miss Panamá Universo, and represented Panama in the Miss Universe 2011 pageant held in São Paulo, Brazil on 12 September 2011. She was placed in the Top 10 and also she won the Best National Costume Award.

Laury Thilleman at Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary

Miss France 2011, Laury Thilleman, born on 30 July 1991, represented her country in Miss Universe 2011 pageant held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and was placed in the Top 10.

Scherri-Lee Biggs in Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary

This video features Miss Universe Australia, Scherri-Lee Biggs, at the Miss Universe pageant held in São Paulo, Brazil on 12 September 2011. Born in 1990, Biggs, the South African-born Australian model immigrated with her family to Australia at age 12 and eventually won the title of Miss Universe Australia. Representing Australia, she contested at the Miss Universe pageant where she was placed in the Top 10.

Shamcey Supsup at Miss Universe 2011

The 25-year-old Filipino beauty Shamcey Supsup, who held the Binibining Pilipinas-Universe title, represented her country in the Miss Universe 2011 pageant held in Sao Paolo, Brazil, on September 12, 2011. Supsup was declared the third runner-up in the beauty pageant. Watch her in the video above.

Priscila Machado, Miss Brazil Universe 2011

This video clip features Priscila Machado, Miss Brasil 2011, who represented her country at the Miss Universe 2011 contest held at the Credicard Hall in São Paulo, Brazil on September 12, 2011. She finished the event as the Second Runner-up.

Olesya Stefanko of Ukraine at Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary

Here is a short video of the Miss Universe 2011 Preliminary event held at Credicard Hall in São Paulo, Brazil, featuring Miss Ukraine Universe 2011, Olesya Stefanko. Born on 25 June 1988 in Kolomyia in the Carpathian region of Ukraine, Stefanko was pursuing a law degree in Odessa. She competed in the Ukrainian beauty pageant held in Kiev on 11 December 2010 and won the title ‘Miss Ukraine Universe 2011’. Representing Ukraine in Miss Universe 2011, Olesya Stefanko became the 1st runner-up.

Leila Lopes: Miss Universe 2011 - Video

This video shows the crowning moments of the Angolan beauty pageant titleholder Miss Leila Lopes as the Miss Universe 2011 in São Paulo, Brazil on 12 September 2011. She was crowned by Miss Universe 2010, Ximena Navarrete of Mexico.

Born on 26 February 1986 in Benguela, Angola, Leila Lopes was a business management student in the United Kingdom where she was crowned Miss Angola UK on 8 October 2010. Later she won the title of Miss Angola 2010 at the Miss Angola 2011 contest in Luanda, where she also won the Miss Photogenic Award.

Leila Lopes became the first Angolan Miss Universe and she is the fourth African to win the title since the beginning of the Miss Universe pageant. She is also the second African beauty of African descent to win the Miss Universe contest following Mpule Kwelagobe of Botswana who was crowned Miss Universe 1999.

Miss Universe 2011 Finalists - Video

This video clip presents the top five finalists of the Miss Universe 2011 pageant held at the Credicard Hall in São Paulo, Brazil on September 12, 2011. Leila Lopes of Angola was crowned the Miss Universe by her predecessor Ximena Navarrete of Mexico. Out of 89 contesting beauties from 89 countries, the judges selected top five contestants, out of whom the top placements were:

  • Miss Universe 2011: Leila Lopes (Angola)
  • 1st runner-up: Olesya Stefanko (Ukraine)
  • 2nd runner-up: Priscila Machado (Brazil)
  • 3rd runner-up: Shamcey Supsup (Philippines)
  • 4th runner-up: Luo Zilin (China)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Pattinson bags the Best Kiss MTV award

Robert Pattinson by rrobertpattinson
Robert Pattinson, a photo by rrobertpattinson on Flickr.

Twilight: Eclipse (the third installment in the series) which had won nominations in eight categories swept up 5 Golden Popcorns at the 20th annual MTV Movie Awards ceremony in Hollywood. The awards were for the Best Movie, Best Male and Best Female Performances, Best Fight and, of course, for the Best Kiss, which Pattinson celebrated in style with an embrace of his male co-star Lautner. But he got it for his onscreen thing with Kristen Stewart, who is also his off-screen partner?

Friday, April 15, 2011

The illusionary world of the cave

Image source: painting by Marko Stout

Here is special cave, in fact a website of the contemporary New York City artist Marko Stout, named ‘The Cave’, which you may like to enter. I love it and visited it many times.

Interestingly, the artist Stout holds a degree in biology and doctorates in metaphysics and medicine. Though Dr. Stout may not accept it, I find the influence of his knowledge and experience in biology and medicine, equally complemented by his philosophical quests, in most of his works, whether it is in the forms of mutilated human organs or, the X-ray vision of the bones, nerves, etc. He has aptly called his art site the ‘The Cave’ because, in his own view, the cave is not real but an illusion.

The first impression that I get is that art has neither any definition nor any language or borders. And art need not portray the near photo-realistic depiction of subjects as you find in the works of the 19th century French Academic painter William-Adolphe Bouguereau. Nor does art need the distorted figures and images that the Cubist Picasso and the later modernists and post-modernists projected in their typically compartmentalized versions of art.

To me, art is something that makes me stay riveted to what is displayed before me, and what sends signals to my brain to make me think. If art cannot achieve this end, I feel it does not have anything particular to convey to the viewers. From this point of view, the art of Dr. Stout is something special, as it deviates and rejects all established concepts and schools of art. Look at the painting reproduced above, an untitled painting found on The Cave.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Claudia Ciesla photo-shoot with Indian jewelry in Calcutta

Claudia Ciesla jewelry Calcutta
Photo by Kadenphoto (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The above photo features the gorgeous German model, actress, and singer of Polish descent Claudia Ciesla, posing for a photo-shoot for showcasing Indian jewelry designs, in Calcutta, India.

Ciesla is popular in India as she has acted in some Indian/ Bollywood movies, and appeared in a number of Indian television programs too. She was as an inmate at the Indian reality show Bigg Boss (season 3), in October 2009, and was evicted after 10 weeks. Also, she was in the TV show Zor Ka Jhatka, the Indian version of Total Wipeout.

The Indian newspaper The Times of India reported ‘Claudia Ciesla of the 38DD fame’ is in the news for her decision to convert to Hinduism. The paper reported her as saying, “I have many Indian friends who are into this religion and I've discussed Indian philosophy and the Hindu religion and its gods."

Claudia Ciesla believes in Karma and reincarnation, and she considers Lord Ganesha as her savior.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Hollywood actress Jane Russell passes away at 89

It was sad to hear the news of yesteryears’ sex symbol and one of the most acclaimed Hollywood actresses Jane Russell (June 21, 1921 - February 28, 2011) passing away at the age of 89.

Some of her most memorable performances include films alongside another international sex symbol of all time, Marilyn Monroe, notably in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” (1953).

Watch this video containing clips of some of Russell’s memorable appearances. Jane Russell's debut performance in The Outlaw (1944) is said to have shocked the censors, compelling them to ban the film for two years. The censors of those times seemed to have been still trapped in the memories of Victorian prudery.

Also see snapshots of her most noticed scenes and photos. This great classic star rocked the hearts of men and women in the 40’s and 50s, and continues to inspire new actors and others.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The King's Speech won the Best Picture Oscar

Filming Colin and Helena
Photo: Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter filming The King's Speech at Queen Street Mill Textile Museum - by (Flickr: Filming Colin and Helena) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The King's Speech (2010), a British period drama film directed by Tom Hooper and written by David Seidler, won four Oscars including the Best Picture at the 83rd Academy Awards, out of 12 Oscar nominations it received. The other three awards the film won are the Best Director (Tom Hooper), the Best Actor (Colin Firth), and the Best Original Screenplay (David Seidler).

The King's Speech was nominated for fourteen BAFTAs (64th British Academy Film Awards), of which it won seven awards including the Best Film and the Best Actor (Colin Firth), the Best Supporting Actor (Geoffrey Rush), the Best Supporting Actress (Helena Bonham Carter), and the Best Original Screenplay (David Seidler). It had also won seven Golden Globe nominations out of which only it bagged only the Best Actor award for Colin Firth. The film also won several other awards.

The British film was produced at a Budget of only $15 million, but it was a huge box office success, compared to its very limited production cost, as it grossed revenue of over US$245 million worldwide.

The main actors of the film include Colin Firth (King George VI), Geoffrey Rush (Lionel Logue), Helena Bonham Carter (Queen Elizabeth), Michael Gambon (King George V), Guy Pearce (King Edward VIII), Timothy Spall (Winston Churchill), and Derek Jacobi (Archbishop of Canterbury Cosmo Gordon Lang).

The plot of the film is about how King George VI (Colin Firth) fights to overcome his embarrassing stutter, and how a speech therapist Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush), helps him in his efforts. In the process the two men become friends. The film also tries to portray the psychological roots of the king’s stammer, including his childhood pressures possibly caused by his strict father, his left-handedness, his knock-knees, etc.

The King's Speech received widespread critical acclaim, and most critics widely appreciated Colin Firth’s masterly portrayal of the central character. The film was also highly rated for its visual style of the depiction of the historical scenes and its art direction.

Friday, February 4, 2011

A strange combination of art, science and philosophy

Image source: painting by Marko Stout

The above image, one of 22 paintings found at Dr. Marko Stout’s site, immediately made me recall the works of Pablo Picasso, may be because of the touch of cubism I associate with the main figure on the image. It also reminded me of the eerie surrealism of Salvador Dali. A further look at it gave the impression of a psychedelic painting exhibition that I visited a few years ago.

Not only this image, but all the images of the paintings I found on the site strongly stirs one’s mind and reminds of the contradictory realities of thoughts and actions of the life in the modern world. At one side there is the superfluous vanity that is the byproduct of American consumerism, and on the other there is the feel of tragedy and misery that are inflicted by wars, natural calamities, etc.

Even the diehard fans of American consumerist life will turn metaphysical when the realities of life stare at their faces. That is the message I get when I was looking at these paintings.

Interestingly, Dr. Marko Stout holds a degree in biology, a doctorate in medicine and metaphysics, and strangely he is a renowned artist. And I think, his study of biology and medicine also reflect in his works of art, as his metaphysical background does. More interestingly, he claims that he rejects the dualism of René Descartes. But I find that Stout only complements the “Mind-body dichotomy and dualism” of Descartes. At least a closer study of the paintings suggest that only.

A more positive side of Dr. Stout’s is the use of vibrant colors that are refreshing and several themes and contradictions of modern day materialistic life that he consciously or subconsciously builds into each of his work.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Meet Oprah Winfrey’s half-sister Patricia

The news - Click to watch the short video - that the media mogul Oprah Winfrey has a half sister, as revealed in ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’, is really shocking in the sense that her mother kept it as a secret. In the show Winfrey introduced the half sister as a very special guest, a woman named Patricia.

As is known, Oprah had a very poor and very difficult childhood, and struggled hard in life to become what Forbes' international rich list has described as “the world's only black billionaire” (2004 to 2006) and “the first black woman billionaire in world history” with an estimated wealth of over $2.7 billion.

In the video, Winfrey says she shook when she learned about her half sister Patricia whom Oprah's mother Vernita Lee who put up for adoption after birth. Patricia spent time in foster care since age 7, and her search for her family ended in meeting with Oprah Winfrey during the Thanksgiving Day. More interestingly, Patricia first came to know Winfrey was her half sister in 2007, and she too preferred to keep it secret fearing media frenzy.

Top Canadian actress Emmanuelle Chriqui

Will the the Canadian actress Emmanuelle Chriqui, who topped the’s Most Desirable Women of 2010 list, having rich experience in acting from the age of ten in a McDonald's commercial, keep up her status in 2011 too? Well, the poll is going on and in the beginning of Feb AskMen will declare the top Top 99 Most Desirable Women Of 2011. In the meanwhile they have declared the the top 10 least desirable women of 2011, and interstingly Sarah Palin tops the list of the least deasirable wpmemen of 2011, followed by Snooki, Khloe Kardashian (#3), Miley Cyrus (at #4, for all the wrong reasons she may not like), Ke$ha (#5, Kesha Serbet), Heidi Montag (#6), Lindsay Lohan (#7), Madonna (#8), Holly Madison (#9), and Danielle Staub coming at number 10.