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One of these models doesn’t exist

One of these models doesn’t exist

Imma is the creation of ModelingCafe, a CGI firm that has worked on Kingsglaive Final Fantasy XV, Shin Godzilla, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and this insanely good tourism video for the Kyushu region. It created Imma with astounding attention to detail, including dark roots on her pink dyed hair.

The end result is a 3D model who’s more realistic than other virtual Instagram personalities. That’s in part because the company put female modelers in charge of Imma’s skin, according to SoraNews24. It also helps that the company paid close attention to details like lighting.

In the spread, she’s posing in a composite shot with human models Mayben and Aria, wearing real and virtual makeup created by hair and makeup artist Torii. The creators of the spread, fascinated by “Kawaii” (cute) Instagram fashion and style filters, wanted to see how far they could push the virtual boundaries by using a model who was 100 percent fake.

Imma virtual instagram model

To really sell the idea, the magazine did a typical advertorial interview with all the models, Imma included. The questions and answers (translated), went along these lines: Q: Who was affected by “beauty”? A: Björk. Her work always crosses real and unreal. According to the song of All is Full of Love, it is possible for AI to understand love, which can be anything that you imagine.

While these responses were no doubt crafted by humans, it’s easy to see a day where AI could create equally coherent, fluffy answers. In that way, both the model and its (her?) personality could be fully generated by machines.

As with many things virtual and AI, there’s a dark side to this development. To gain buzz, brands are starting to rent out virtual models like Imma and Miquela, depriving real models of paid gigs. And ModelingCafe wants to take it one step further, eventually creating ultra-realistic animations of Imma that would make her nearly indistinguishable from a real person.

SAG-AFTRA (the union representing actors) understands the threat, and recently held a panel to discuss it. “I grew up in an era where I was asked, ‘Did you hear it with your own ears? Did you see it with your own eyes?'” said actress Heidi Johanningmeier. “We’ll never be able to trust that again.”

Images: i-D japan

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Steve should have known that civil engineering was not for him when he spent most of his time at university monkeying with his 8086 clone PC. Although he graduated, a lifelong obsession of wanting the Solitaire win animation to go faster had begun. Always seeking a gadget fix, he dabbles in photography, video, 3D animation and is a licensed private pilot. He followed l’amour de sa vie from Vancouver, BC, to France and now lives in Paris.

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A profile of Lemonade, a millenial-friendly discount insurance startup, which has raised $480M in five rounds, the last one at a $2B+ valuation, says source (Forbes)

A profile of Lemonade, a millenial-friendly discount insurance startup, which has raised $480M in five rounds, the last one at a $2B+ valuation, says source (Forbes)

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Hey, Quick Question: What Is Glossier Play?

Hey, Quick Question: What Is Glossier Play?

Photo: Courtesy of Glossier

Photo: Courtesy of Glossier

Welcome to our column, “Hey, Quick Question,” where we investigate seemingly random happenings in the fashion and beauty industries. Enjoy!

Since its launch in 2014, Glossier has been heralded as a major beauty-industry disruptor, building its direct-to-consumer business through a strong aesthetic, smart branding and a unique social media presence. Founder Emily Weiss has won over scores of millennial shoppers who favor the brand’s approach to no-makeup makeup and simple skin care. The company has spent much of the last several years building on its core concept of crowd-sourced product development while simultaneously expanding its retail footprint and continuing to rake in staggering funds. So what’s next for the company? Glossier Play. Whatever that is.

On Friday, the brand posted an announcement on social media teasing the mysterious Glossier Play, a “new brand” that’s supposedly “two years in the making” for the company. 

Beyond noting that it’s coming in March 2019, there’s little (or really, no) information about what, exactly, Glossier Play is, but users can sign up to receive email updates on Glossier’s website. Glossier Play also has its own independent Instagram account, which is already racking up tens of thousands of followers. (So far the only post is a delightful, affirmation-filled video the brand re-posted from Instagram star Donté Colley — doesn’t exactly clear anything up.)

So, let’s do some wild speculating, shall we? The only imagery for Glossier Play thus far is the gold glitter photo that serves as its Instagram avatar, the satiny green graphic that appears in the confirmation email when you sign up and a spinning “G” in the Glossier Play section of Glossier’s website, which transforms from pink glitter to what looks like a red, creamy lipstick smear to reflective water to gold liquid. Given these context clues — and the fact that Glossier may be looking to break out of its shell and appeal to a broader customer base — our best bet is that Glossier Play may be a high-pigment, full-coverage makeup range. 

As competitors like Fenty Beauty and Milk Makeup attract the attention of Gen-Z and millennial shoppers with bold shades, intensely pigmented formulas and makeup that seems to exist primarily for the sake of fun, it would be a smart move for Glossier to take a step in a similar direction.

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Manila Luzon Has an Album (with a Barbra Streisand Tribute) Coming

Manila Luzon Has an Album (with a Barbra Streisand Tribute) Coming

Five down, four to go.

In a shocking twist that somehow seemed inevitable at the episode’s start for discerning super-fans, the patron saint of RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars season four, Manila Luzon, has somehow gotten the chop — with not so much a bottom two to her name before this week.

In this week’s maxi challenge which saw the queens making over their “good Judy’s,” Manila (and her husband Michael) presented a runway and performance that simply wasn’t up to snuff for the judges. “This is a little costume shop for me,” Carson Kressley said of their looks.

“And also no family resemblance; it’s like distance cousins,” judge Michelle Visage told them.

In the winner’s lip sync, Naomi Smalls edged out Monet X Change to gain her first challenge win of the season. For those keeping track, the win put the leggy queen well behind Monet, Trinity, and Manila who are tied with three wins a piece. In the bottom sat All Stars season one’s Latrilla.

“If this is my last day here in Drag Race … ever … I know that I still have my life that goes on and I have a great life and I’m blessed,” Manila told Naomi through tears. It was almost a pre-emptive goodbye speech, as minutes later, Luzon (not her season 1 partner Latrice Royale) was sent packing.

Here, we talk to her about the elimination, her Barbra Streisand impersonation being accused of anti-semitism and what’s next for her career.

In the episode you said, “I’m really hurt that Michael has to experience this and I just don’t want him to blame himself.” What was that moment like for you, having your husband and your best Judy by your side amidst such a high stakes situation?

I’m really excited that I was able to share this experience with my husband because Michael has been a fan of me and the show for a long time. In fact, he had been watching the show and then we met later on so it was a cool, full-circle moment to have him get to be on the show with me. It was a little heartbreaking for me because his experience on the show is him getting kicked off first so I feel bad. I just don’t want him to blame himself because really it has nothing to do with his performance or my makeup skills.

This is your first time having to deal with the lip sync for your legacy. What was it like taking on the role of RuPaul and having to eliminate your fellow queens?

It was tough. I mean, honestly, I only had one opportunity to actually eliminate a queen because I didn’t win the other lip sync and RuPaul decided to suspend the rules right as I was about to pull out my lipstick and send a bitch packin’. There was a lot of responsibility on me at the time, especially because it was early on in the competition. It was tough to decide what was best for my game, what was best for the competition, what was the reaction of the other girls going to be. It’s a lot of responsibility, but I love taking on responsibilities. I’m a grown ass businessman, okay?

This season has had so many iconic moments that will live on as GIFs and memes. Do you have a favorite that comes to mind?

All I know is that Farrah Moan’s dancing will always be burned into my brain. That’s the one that comes to mind first.

How has social media transformed the show since the time you were on it — and how has that impacted the fandom?

I can’t really speak for the fans necessarily. I mean, I’m a fan of the show but social media has become such an integral part of what we do. We go on RuPaul’s Drag Race and we’re just showing up in people’s living rooms every Friday. And it’s a compressed version of what people see. So social media is a great way to expand on the universe, interact with the fans, and it’s a great way for us to keep ourselves out there when the show is no longer … well, the show is still going … just not with me on it. Wah wah. But I love it. It also forces you to take responsibility of what you say in public, that’s for damn sure.

You were one of the first queens to release music after appearing on the show; “Hot Couture” still remains on heavy rotation for me. What are your thoughts on the amount of queens releasing music these days?

I love it! If the fans are going to be tipping us money for performing someone else’s music, they might as well listen to our own music. It’s our own point of view, it’s our own creation, it’s our art. I think it’s cool that a lot of the queens are getting into because it’s a logical next step.

You mentioned how much Michael helped you through in mourning the loss of Sahara Davenport in the episode. Without asking you to relive any trauma, I was wondering if you might share one of your favorite memories of Queen Sahara.

Sahara is still my ultimate diva. I feel bad that the world doesn’t get to see her in all of her glory like I got to see her, being together and witnessing her talent and the joy in entertaining she had. And the bitch could dance! I mean, you think some of these girls [doing dips] is fantastic but Sahara was the bitch to jump off the stage, hang from the ceiling and the jump into the splits. Everything was graceful with her. She was such an amazing, beautiful dancer and performer and I will miss that so much. But I’m really happy that I get to carry on her story, re-tell her story and remind people of Sahara. That’s one of the things I’m really proud of being on the show.

An article on an online publication, Alma, accused your Barbra Streisand impersonation of being anti-semitic, which I found to be quite the reach. I know you’re a huge Barbra fan, and this read to me as loving homage. Did you see this article and if so did you have any reaction to it?

Yeah, I did see some of the responses from a few people and honestly I feel that in this day and age there’s a lot of uncertainty and sometimes we feel like we’re not in control of things that are going around. And so sometimes we feel like we can make a difference by nitpicking on smaller details as opposed to the bigger issues at hand [cough, cough] like the government right now. So I understand why people will get offended by something and campaign or whatever. I actually did a live video on my Instagram and tried to explain myself.

My Barbra Streisand impersonation came from a place of love, respect, she is an icon, I love the fact that she has a huge nose and the fact that she says that she will never touch it; never get plastic surgery on her nose. And I love that idea because as a man who wants to get dressed up in drag, I don’t really feel like I need to change who I am to what other people’s version of what they think I should be is. Barbra Streisand is an amazing performer and she has a significantly striking look that she used to her advantage and if I’m going to pay homage to her, I have to do it in the biggest, silliest way possible. And, to add a button to that, on my upcoming album, I have a song tributed to Barbra titled, “Barbra, Can You Hear Me?” so there will be more Barbra Streisand and Manila Luzon in everyone’s lives.

Who are you rooting for now that you’re eliminated? And does it rhyme with Fructis?

You know I’m still team Latrice, you know what I mean? That’s my girl. I’m really rooting for her and am excited that she’s back. I’m happy that if I had to go, Latrice is still there another week. She deserves it. I’m also really rooting for Trinity. She is an amazing player at this game. Her drag is sickening. And we became really close. She’s the toughest competitor at this point, I think.

What’s next for Manila Luzon?

Well! I am releasing my new music video, “Go Fish,” so everyone please go and check it out. I have an album that’s on pre-order right now that will be dropping in a few weeks called, Rules, you know, because I rule like a fucking queen. It’s campy. It’s cheesy. It’s catchy. And my voice is really shrill so we’ve got a lot of auto-tune on top of her. And also I have a new line of fashion dolls. The Manilla Doll is now available and she’s going to be wearing all of my fabulous, iconic lewks starting with the spaghetti dress. She’s very, very fabulous. And cross-eyed.

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Shop the Editorial Adesuwa Aighewi – Runway to Real Life

Shop the Editorial Adesuwa Aighewi – Runway to Real Life

Adesuwa Aighewi has started 2019 on a high note. “Everything I ever hoped to do in this industry, I’ve accomplished over the last year,” muses the New York-based model. Born in Minnesota to a Nigerian father and a Chinese-Thai mother, her recent hits include campaigns with Versus Versace, Alexander Wang, and, to her surprise and delight, Chanel.

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Marc Jacobs. RIGHT: Marc Jacobs jacket. Current/Elliott tank top. Re/Done x Levis jeans. Earrings: Saskia Diez (top) and Winden. Moynat handbag. Hermès shoes. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Alexander McQueen. RIGHT: Brock Collection sweater. Alexander
McQueen pants. Sophie Buhai earrings. Moynat handbag. Y-3 sneakers. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

“I have tattoos and dreads, so I never saw myself as their type,” she says on the phone from an emergency salon trip (she’s having sand removed from her hair after a visit to Mexico). “But I watched this documentary about Coco Chanel, and she was this super-fire, powerful woman.”

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Moschino Couture. RIGHT: Sies Marjan blazer. Moschino Couture sweatshirt. Equipment trousers. Earrings: Saskia Diez (top) and Oscar de la Renta. Sergio Rossi shoes. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Prada. RIGHT: Max Mara blazer and pants. Prada top and belt. Saskia Diez ear cuff. Tabitha Simmons shoes. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

One could use the same words to describe Aighewi, who has been capitalizing on her breakout moment to spotlight issues she cares about through video projects (a recent one explores Muslim beauty) and a soon-to-début children’s book she wrote (about a lost boy journeying home).

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Givenchy. RIGHT: Sandro trenchcoat. Polo Ralph Lauren shirt. Givenchy pants. Moynat handbag. Chopard watch. Gucci shoes. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

LEFT: All clothing and accessories, Gucci. RIGHT: Re/Done jacket. Gucci dress. The Row top. Tod’s handbag. DSquared2 pumps. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

“I want to bridge the worlds of politics and fashion. It’s like Inception: You think you’re looking at a pretty image, but the joke’s on you. I just taught you something new!”

LEFT: All Chanel. RIGHT: Chanel jacket, belt, bag, and watch (on left wrist). Current/ Elliott T-shirt. Sportmax shorts. Saskia Diez ear cuff. Alighieri necklace. Sophie Buhai bracelet. Jimmy Choo shoes. Photographed by Jason Kibbler/ART.

Photographed by Jason Kibbler. Styled by Julia Von Boehm. Hair: Kevin Ryan for Art + Commerce. Makeup: Ralph Siciliano for The Wall Group. Manicure: Casey Herman for The Wall Group.

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