You know, sometimes I amaze even myself.
That doesn’t sound too hard.


Carey Mulligan photographed by Stevie and Mada for Flaunt Magazine (2013)


Today in History | August 29, 1756: Frederick the Great attacks Saxony, beginning the Seven Years War

The Prussians invaded Saxony on August 29th, 1756, marking the beginning of the Seven Years War of 1756-63. At his accession in 1740 Frederick the Great of Prussia launched a struggle with Austria for the mastery of Germany which was not settled for another hundred years. Highly intelligent and cultivated, he had the advantages of a large and efficient army, a well-filled treasury and a complete lack of scruple. The contest with the Habsburgs was sharpened by the fact that Frederick and Maria Theresa of Austria personally loathed each other. Prussia gained territory in the War of the Austrian Succession in the 1740s. The Seven Years War which would involve Prussia and Britain on one side against Austria, France, Spain, Sweden and Russia on the other began when Frederick invaded Saxony in 1756. Frederick knew that a formidable coalition of European powers had assembled against him and decided to attack first. Announcing that Maria Theresa’s hostile intentions had forced him into action despite his well-known love of peace, he led 58,000 men into Saxony, telling his sister Wilhelmina that he was off to pay a little visit to his fat neighbour, the Saxon Elector. On the face of it, Frederick was not invading, but merely passing through on the way to Bohemia, which was Habsburg territory, but the Prussians swiftly took Leipzig and Dresden, while Frederick’s sanctimonious talk about protecting Protestantism pleased his British allies, as it was meant to. The Saxon army took refuge on the heights of Pirna, near Dresden, where the Prussians settled down to starve them out. They were short of supplies and the Prussian commander wrote to Frederick on September 12th: ‘I hope to get them cheap in a few days’ time.’ {x}


Test Shots by Rog Walker.

Test Shots is an ongoing series of portraits taken in the studio with photography couple Rog and Bee Walker. Each photograph, taken mostly of their close friends and fellow creatives, is as striking as it is simple.

Opting for a sombre and dark background, coupled with poised and pensive subjects, Walker’s shots manage to maximize on the simplicity of the traditional portrait style by making use of a medium format camera that provides an image quality which, despite the powerful stillness of each individual, vividly brings the details of each photograph to life. This brings out both a sense of strength and vulnerability in each picture, alluding to the intimate two-way dialog between subject and photographer.

"This is the most organic method of communication I have. Photography is the way I speak…It doesn’t get more personal than another human, and that’s what I’m looking to capture, that connection between humanity." - Rog Walker

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My Love (Moya Lyubov) is a paint-on-glass-animated 2006 short film directed by Aleksandr Petrov and based on Ivan Shmelyov’s 1927 A Love Story (Istoriya Lyubovnaya). It takes place in the 19th century Russia and tells the story of the sixteen-year-old boy Anton who is torn apart by his feelings for a pure and gentle girl and a femme fatale. Watch it here.

Paint-on-glass animation is a technique for making animated films by manipulating slow-drying oil paints on sheets of glass. Aleksandr Petrov is the most well-known practitioner of this technique; he has used it in seven films, all of which have won numerous awards. 

HBICs of history » Hürrem Sultan

Hürrem (1506-1558) was Empress of the Ottoman Empire and the wife of  Süleyman the Magnificent. She was born in Poland (today that territory belongs to Ukraine); in the 1520s, she was captured by Crimean Tatars during one of their frequent raids into this region and taken as a slave to Constantinople where she was selected for Süleyman’s harem. She quickly came to the attention of her master, and attracted the jealousy of her rivals, such as the concubine Mahidevran, who got into a fight with Hürrem and beat her badly. Upset by this, Süleyman banished Mahidevran to the provincial capital of Manisa, together with her son, the heir apparent, Prince Mustafa. After that Hürrem became Süleyman’s unrivalled favourite. Her influence over the Sultan soon became legendary; she was even freed and became his legal wife, making Süleyman the first Ottoman Emperor to have wed a wife since Orhan Gazi. This strengthened her position in the palace and eventually led to one of her sons, Selim, inheriting the empire. Hürrem also may have acted as Süleyman’s adviser on matters of state, and seems to have had an influence upon foreign affairs and international politics.

You can take away my suits, you can take away my home, but there’s one thing you can never take away from me: I am Iron Man.


Eniko Mihalik in 'Stardust'

Photographers: Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin

Dress: Alexander McQueen S/S 2009

W Magazine April 2009

chris evans or chris pratt?