After featuring actor Rob Stone in my Blast From The Past piece on Wednesday, I received an e-mail from a reader about Rob's 1993 turn on Matlock. Not many actors can claim their sexiest role, the role they showed the most skin... was on an episode of Matlock, but Mr. Stone certainly can. The two part episode, The Fatal Seduction, cast Rob as a lifeguard, meaning in most of the first half of the story, he was shirtless on the beach.
Although when I visit my parents, Matlock seems to be on a loop on their television, I haven't actually ever seen an episode. That mean mean I didn't go a googling to find a copy of the episode after receiving the e-mail. Sadly, this is Rob's last official credit on IMDB before moving behind the the scenes with his directing and documentary company.
It was back in 1934 when Arthur Kneibler first got the idea for the white brief. It was after seeing a post card featuring a man in a bikini-like bathing suit, the undergarment executive came up with a new design of underwear. They were called 'jockey', to highlight the support they offer and on the first day they went on sale, with the help of a brief-wearing mannequin, 600 pairs were sold in just one store in Chicago.
I am not sure ole Arthur could have imagined that 82 years later, his original design would have taken so many sexy twists and turns in design. I can only imagine how many pairs might have been sold if, instead of that mannequin, model Jesse Thommes was sporting these teenie tiny undies in that department store display window.
Alex Hilbert always manages to create incredibly sexy and sensual images with his blend of fashion and skin. With 20 year old Jesse, the California photographer says he was happy that Jesse was willing to slip on the tiny undies, and with the visual results they achieved. Jesse's tiny tighty whities still offer the support Arthur originally had in mind, but as one reader on DNA said after seeing the shots, they also fully support that Jesse's got the goods!
2009 proved to be a transitional time for FH. Although I had not yet moved to the 5 post, magazine-style layout that I currently feature, I was starting to head in that direction. 2009 saw the beginning of regular photographer profiles with photographers Simon Le, Nicholas Smith, Bill McCaren, Dylan Rosser and Don Pollard being some of the first artists to contribute both images, and their stories.
2009 also marked the first posts from artists who have remained important parts of the site even today. David Vance, Prairie Visions, Chris Teel, Mark Grantham, Mike Tossy and Robert Colgan all first appeared in 2009. 2009 also marked the very first Sunday With Hans, featuring the work of Hans Fahrmeyer. That first piece featured then model Rowan Pierce, and Rowan remains one of my favorite shoots from Hans. Rowan has since gone on to shooting himself, and FH featured his work as a photographer in 2010.
Phil Fusco by David Vance
2009 was a year model Phil Fusco was at the height of his modeling fame, and Phil was in more POTD's than any other model. In 2009, The Boy, Paparazzo and G Magaine were still active on-line, with regular updates introducing readers world wide to some Brazil's hottest of men. Ricardo Villani's cowboy shoot remains a favorite! 2009 was also a year many models were using Myspace as their main link, and site to present their images.
Readership began to rise in 2009 and along with it, both positive and negative results. I was getting great reception from most artists I reached out to and was starting to get contributions sent in on a regular basis. 2009 also marked my first negative feedback with some pretty harsh e-mails and threats from artists who wanted their work removed.
Below: Image from Pedro Virgil
Because I always tried to give credit, images were easy to find on-line. I try to understand that many photographers must have their work shared without consent all the time, but some of the insults and threats were pretty gross, especially given I would remove anything if asked. These threats were especially annoying when they came from photographers who had sent on their images in the first place. I have only had 3 complaints go to Blogger, and 2, were from photographers who had submitted their images for posting...
Image below from Chris Teel
Models were usually a bit nicer, most used the 'starting school, or a new job' line when requesting removal of an image. Many claimed they wanted their images on FH, but that their wives or girlfriends were demanding removal. Thankfully, requests for image removal is rare, especially since when I can, I involve models in pieces which involve their images. More often than not, the feedback is positive. Although FH hasn't made anyone famous, it is great when I hear that models have connected with other photographers for paid work after being seen on the site.
Marcel by Hans Fahrmeyer
It has been gratifying that so many photographers who were open to appearing on FH in it's early stages, continued to share their work and passions again and again. I can't thank them enough, especially the ones who took a chance when I was just beginning doing fuller profiles back in 2009.