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Sunday, February 2, 2014

Nude Modeling

It’s been a whirlwind month.

It’s award season. That means that my trusty Canon and I have traveled the red carpets around Los Angeles and Hollywood at the American Music Awards, the Golden Globes and the Grammys. And let's not forget that the Oscars are only a month away... 

Lots more on Instagram
It also means that my Japanese television drama, Miss Pilot, started filming another season in Tokyo, fully replete the super Asian divas and a giant language barrier…

So you can imagine how delightful it was that I was finally back in my office hunkered down imagining another communication plan and wondering if my Clio nomination was going to gain any traction.

Yes, just another day at the office.

Then the phone rang shattering the silence of thinking into a million pieces. The call from my side went something like this:

“Modeling, huh?”

“Oh. Nude modeling?”


Twenty-five hours later I was in my car trying to find the art studio in the middle of North Hollywood’s newly fashionable NoHo Arts District. It was time to attend my first nude modeling art class.

The media guy in me was intrigued.

The male in me was intrigued even more. Would the next Marilyn Monroe be there? An unknown beauty perhaps? How would my drawing be?

So there I was, the only guy (read: The Media Guy) in the room. Blue pencil poised, ready to sketch the sleek lines of tan-legged, cash-strapped sorority co-ed and then, my world changed all at once. In sauntered a guy in a silky white robe. I hoped he was someone eccentric who painted his best in a modified smock of sorts. Then it happened. He dropped his robe and stood tall, possessed with the body of an Adonis.

I wondered what was going through his mind. Was a room full of people studying his nakedness appealing? Was it arousing? Was modeling lucrative? I let out a huge smirk as this scenario hit my mind:

I was very quickly distracted from my self-induced humor as I listened to the instructor explain the way she wanted him to pose.

“Lay on the floor on your right side with your back to the students.”

His legs were extended to my left and his right elbow was propped up on a chair, curving his spine and bringing his shoulders parallel with the floor. And guess what? His manhood was pointed right at me, staring me straight in the eye. I must say that he commanded the room as the nine women in attendance busily mapped out his body on their linen sheets. The students began to draw. And me? I began to meditate.

This was definitely not my gig—so far things were not going according to plan.

All of the sudden there was a commotion in the back of the class as the back door slammed open and there she was. Six-foot tall, also clad in a silky white rope (is that the art class model’s uniform?). So was an Amazon for sure. My savior angel had arrived; someone to distract me from the anaconda slithering in front of me. Oh goodness, I had never been so far out of my element.

At the end of the session, the male model shook hands with everyone but me. It seems I my little giggle at the top of the class was highly offensive (ooops!). However, Margrét, my new favorite Amazon model stuck around after class to look at the artwork created in her likeness. She was particularly interested in mine, as I drew her very modest and with an interesting angle.

I spoke with her a bit—I mean why not?—surely I wasn’t getting this account and I had offended nearly everyone who was in the room at the start of the class. Making a new friend was my only hope to salvage this day.

Media Guy: I noticed that you didn’t follow the instructor’s suggestions on how to pose, why?

Margrét, My New Favorite Amazon Model: She couldn’t expect me to really lie down like the guy. They was he was dangling like that was embarrassing for even me and I have seen it all! That and the fact that I was growing out my, uhhhhhhhhhh, uhhhhhhhm, “carpet” for a 1960s pinup photo shoot that had to be authentic for this insane French photographer, Dr. Y., who demands everything be about the details. Talk about swampy! That’s me and my jungle.

MG: At least it’s a good payday, right?

MMNFAM: Now, one thing about Frenchy Dr. Y is that he’s generous to a fault. Since our friendship has long transcended the What’s-Your-Price-rigamarole, he doesn’t pay me for my time anymore. He just flies me around the world and enjoys lavishing gifts on me. Aside from taking me to some amazing dinners, and plying me with Vegas’s finest overpriced booze, he also brought me a bag full of gifts — just like Santa Claus!

MG: And these 1960s pinups? Have you ever done them before?

MMNFAM: [Smiles] I did that ’60s pinup shoot before with a British photographer. Yes, I was growing everything out, and we did the shoot in this amazing retro car store, but the day of the shoot was super effing hot and humid. It was one of those 110-degree days, dammit! The place isn’t air-conditioned, only swamp-cooled. To make matters worse, I couldn’t really blast the a/c in the cab on the way there for fear of messing up my beehive. I was so freaking hot when I got there that the second I walked in the store I ripped off my dress and stood there nude, fanning myself madly with my appointment book. I didn’t realize that the store was still open to the public during the shoot. I made a lot of friends and a lot of enemies that day....Just like you did today! [more smiles]


Back at the office a few days later I had to report to my would-be client that I wasn't the the right guy to take this job. Alas, Margrét is going to join me on my next round of wedding crashing. At least I made a new friend.


UPDATE: March 9, 2015 ... PART II can be read here: Catching up with Margrét, My New Favorite Amazon Model