Have Mercy at The Social in Orlando, FL: Photo Gallery


The room at the popular Orlando music venue, The Social, filled up quickly as the doors opened and the house lights dimmed. After the opening band finished their last song and exited stage left, Baltimore’s Have Mercy entered. They did one last 30-second soundcheck as the crowd crammed into the small space in front of the stage to witness Have Mercy deliver a raw, intimate, and passion-driven set.

Though the area was small, the heart for music was massive. Frontman Brian Swindle sang with everything he had and so did the people in the audience, and the rest of the band put all of their energy into creating a melodic space where fans could have the experience they had been waiting for since the announcement of the tour.
Watching everyone connect in the room and sing lyrics that meant something to each person individually, but meant so much more collectively, was an incredible sight and sound. There was no doubt that strangers that entered The Social left with a sense of community.
Moments like these are what make concerts what they are.

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Have Mercy at The Social in Orlando, FL: Photo Gallery by Imani Givertz

The Most Iconic Grease Moments to Capture on Canvas or Frame


Grease is an iconic film that depicts American teenagers in the 1950s, and it’s by far one of the most famous and loved musicals. Grease fans—and those who have never known the joys of watching this beloved musical—recently got to indulge in a television special Grease: Live. Audiences were treated to relive their favorite musical with a one-night live performance featuring a modern cast. There are so many iconic moments in this musical, so why not choose one of your favorite moments or characters, upload it, and keep the film alive on a canvas or frame? Here are some iconic moments that you could choose from.
Opening Credits
The first iconic moment in Grease is of course the animated opening credits this depicts and creates nostalgia from 1950’s America. Any one of the animations could be uploaded and printed photos to canvas, but if you’re a true Grease fan, the best one would be the blue car with “grease” written on it, which was also featured on some movie posters.
Classic Greasers
The T-Bird group represents Greasers, which was a popular type of group in 1950’s America. Any one of the T-Birds could be framed individually, but Danny and Kenickie are probably most popular. Or if you can’t choose between just one, why not get a canvas made with all the T-birds together as a group with their famous jackets? The best choice would be with them on the bleachers, right after they’ve belted out the number they sing alongside the Pink Ladies.


The Pink Ladies in GREASE © Courtesy of the Kobal Collection

Pink Ladies
Each Pink Lady has a different style, but they are all connected with their iconic pink jacket. Grease lovers who are looking to add a pop of color to their wall should have a canvas made with all of the Pink Ladies wearing their famous pink jackets.
The Drive-In
All of the teens at Rydell High collectively group at the movie drive-in at weekends, and a classic moment that would look like an amazing piece of art hung on your wall is of course a shot of Danny and Sandy in Dann’s banged up car.
Dancing Fever
The high school dance that takes place in Rydell High, as any Grease fan will know, is imperative to the film. There are lots of shots of Danny and Sandy dancing, which would look amazing in color or black and white framed and placed on your wall.
GREASE, Jeff Conaway, Olivia Newton-John, John Travolta, Stockard Channing, 1978. © Paramount Pictures/ Courtesy: Everett Collection

GREASE, Jeff Conaway, Olivia Newton-John, John Travolta, Stockard Channing, 1978. © Paramount Pictures/ Courtesy: Everett Collection

The End
The ending to Grease is the most iconic moment you want captured on a canvas or frame. There are many best moments you have to choose from. The first, which is also the movie’s poster, would be Sandy dressed up in black with her new perm hugging Danny. Another is the T-Birds and all the Pink Ladies together as a group. These moments can be in black and white or color, but it’s probably best to get one of the end shots in color to really appreciate the different colors the carnival offers. The last moment, which comes right at the end, would be Danny and Sandy going off together in a flying car.
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The Most Iconic Grease Moments to Capture on Canvas or Frame: Featured image courtesy of Paramount Pictures/Everett Collection

Celebrities with the hottest vehicles of 2014


8361624305_4055875d03_zYour car says a lot about you, and for a celebrity – where the gaze of the public and a waiting photographer or smartphone owner is never far away – it might a part of the overall package that is ‘you’. Stars around the world, whether they drive a Maserati in Monaco or a Mitsubishi in Middlesbrough, are usually only too happy to park in front of the cameras.

Stars and Their Cars

Famous figures do not have to worry about costs of their vehicle, spending the necessary costs to make the car their own. Some don’t even stop at one; for example, world champion Floyd Mayweather isn’t known as ‘Money’ for his savings technique, and recently posted a twitter picture of a cavalcade of hot cars outside including at least three Bugatti Veyrons – worth around $3m each.
Mayweather isn’t the only celeb to satisfy his Veyron vice. Arnie was spotted  driving one recently, a real contrast to his huge Unimog U1300 which is up for sale. Simon Cowell also doesn’t tighten his belt when it comes to fast cars, complementing his Veyron, Ferraris and Bentleys with several other high-powered beasts including a reputed £650,000 on a Jaguar E-Type recreation earlier this year according to MSN. The next generation of Veyrons are due for 2017 – and no doubt celebs will be clamouring to get their mitts on the steering wheel.
Kim Kardashian’s roll call of cars also reads like a petrolhead’s dream. She’s been spotted in a Ferrari 458 Italia, several customised Rolls Royce cars, Bentleys, Lamborghinis, Porsches and Range Rovers. We don’t know whether the motors to die for are Kim’s or her hubbies, or even whether she’s just borrowed them for a weekend – but we know they’re nice.
That’s certainly in comparison to fellow celebrities who have taken classy original automobiles and changed them in hideous ways. Hulk Hogan’s 24-inch pythons are6277751627_0c92f74127_z needed to power a personalised red and yellow Dodge Viper which divides opinion, while Paris Hilton’s Barbie pink Bentley is clearly the stuff of nightmares. But we can’t be too hard on her, as she’s also recently acquired one of the first stunning 650s McLaren Spiders in the US. She can regularly be seen touring Beverly Hills in the black monster, with her little Pomeranian dog, Mr Amazing, in tow.
Some celebs go for quirky rather than outright power, such as Britney Spears. You’d expect the petite beauty to perhaps take a coupe such as a little Audi, Lotus or Ferrari – but instead her car of choice is a hulking 5.5 litre supercharged Mercedes Benz G55. She’s also driving a smart car and Mini, among others. Other confirmed fans of the mini include Elijah Wood, Geri Halliwell, Jimmy Fallon and Goldie Hawn.
One final question needs answering: where do you put your fleet of cars as a celebrity? In the case of Beyonce and Jay-Z the answer might be an eye-watering $85m mansion that they’re considering in California, according to the New York Daily News. It boasts a ‘candy room’, 15 bathrooms and views of Los Angeles, but also a 16-car garage – ideal for their fleet of Mercedes Maybachs, Jeep Wranglers and Bugattis. That’s how to park in style.
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Isa Grassi Interview


Polaroid photography is not dead, and Isa Grassi is one of its leading resurrectors. When the 23-year-old San Francisco-based artist incorporated instant photography into her personal recreation, she did so without the intentions of it evolving into what has since then become known as The Polaroid Project. While the rest of the crowd desperately tries to get that one perfect, soon-to-be-Instagrammed shot with their smart phones during the concert, Grassi gets up-close for a highly exposed, unfiltered snapshot backstage. Although her work has already caught the attention of many, and she’s interacted with musicians most could only dream of, Grassi is simply a passionate young artist who enjoys capturing other artists in a fleeting moment. Cliché talked with Grassi to find out more about her photo project, what draws her into the music scene, and of course, Peter, the alien mascot.

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Cliché: How did The Polaroid Project begin?
Isa Grassi: It’s something I’ve had in mind for quite some time, but nothing as elaborate as it turned out to be. Mostly I would say it was developed out of a need for a new creative outlet. I also paint and draw, and I focused most of my life cultivating those skills. However, that spectrum of the art world was lacking something that I was able to find in The Polaroid Project. I love music and have attended live shows since I was a kid; it’s a world I wasn’t part of and was extremely fascinated by. I use art as a way to process things and understand the world better, so I thought, why not take a glimpse at this industry that was so foreign to me and document a time and place in history, as well as in my life? Even though I don’t make music myself, it has always played a huge part in my life, so in a way, this project is my tribute to the people behind it and all the work that they put into it.
Do you go to live shows for the sole purpose of this project, or has it grown from your personal pleasure?
I grew up going to shows, and for that I have to thank my parents who have always encouraged my sisters and I to attend concerts. Of course, I wasn’t going to nearly as many shows as I am now. It’s a real commitment, both financially and physically, which I can now endure and afford compared to when I was 17. That’s why I started The Polaroid Project recently—I wanted to make sure I could give it the attention and development needed. Moving to America has also made the music scene a lot more accessible compared to when I was in Italy. We get international artists when they are at the peak of their careers, which implies big venues and a lot less shows in comparison to here especially because I’m a sucker for small venues and more intimate performances.

The green alien is pretty cool. Can you explain what it’s all about?
Since I knew it was likely of me to photograph bands I had already portrayed, I wanted the second run of polaroids to be different. The question was, what to do? I thought of doing a set of four polaroids per artists where they made different expressions, but that itself defeated the purpose of the project—artists portraying themselves as they want to be portrayed. Using a prop seemed the right way to go; the picture would have The Polaroid Project stamp on it while still giving the artist the freedom to deliver whatever they wanted. And that’s when my sister suggested Peter, and he has been the mascot ever since.


You take up-close and personal shots of band members. What’s it like meeting them? Do you get starstruck or have you gotten used to it?
It’s mesmerizing. It’s hard to say whether you get used to it or not; in a way, you do, but it’s always an adrenaline rush. Sometimes I’m nervous and others I couldn’t be more at ease with—it really depends—but it has allowed me to fully see these individuals as people, which they are. They are just people. We are so used to putting them on a pedestal, forgetting their most obvious attribute, and that’s what I try to capture with my polaroids. I want people to see them for what they are and not necessarily what their status is among my peers.

Why did you choose polaroids as your form of photography?
I wanted the portraits to be as raw as possible, and polaroids seemed to be perfect for that reason. I wanted the pictures to be what they are without the influence of outside forces or the possibility to apply changes afterwards. You can’t plan the shot ahead of time as much as you would with a DSLR for example, and I like that. It’s unpredictable—you never know how the picture turns out until it’s fully developed. At times you frame the shot in a specific way and it still comes out cropped completely different, or the exposure is wrong, and that’s okay. The accidental becomes a key element, it adds to the final product. The whole project is about artists portraying themselves however they want to, without my influence. That’s why I wanted a medium that would keep the pictures as untouched and unedited as possible. The less I do, the more the picture is pure. If I had the choice of planning the outcome of the photograph, it would lose its authenticity.

What is it about the live music scene that draws you in?
The atmosphere; it’s like being teleported into another dimension, with its own vibe and flavor, where time ceases to exist. It’s a place where you can let loose, embrace yourself, and explore the worlds within you while sharing it with others. It’s a natural high. It’s magic. The different energies that explode from each performance and create the unique reactions of the crowd are a beautiful event to be a part of, and in those moments, in a multitude of people that you don’t know, you can still feel united as a whole, connected by the invisible thread that is music.


Which bands/celebrities would you absolutely love to capture on polaroid that you haven’t already?
The list is infinite. From upcoming bands such as Phoria, Aquilo, Years and Years, Kwabs, to more established acts like Ellie Goulding, Alt-j, Lorde, Disclosure, James Blake, and of course the old gods of music such as Peter Gabriel, David Bowie, and The Rolling Stones.

What was the best concert you’ve ever been to?
Each concert is special in its own way, so it’s tough to pick just one, but there have been a few highlights: SOHN’s set at The Independent was majestic—the performance, vocals, and visuals were on point. The light work was absolutely stunning. Also Sir Sly’s opening set for The 1975 has to be one of my favorites—definitely the best act of that night in my opinion. MO’s debut in San Francisco is another show that will be hard to forget; she has so much stage presence and energy that’s contagious. It really brought to life the entire venue, and she’s an exquisite person.

What was the best meeting experience you’ve had so far?
As it is difficult for me to choose a concert among the ones I’ve attended, it’s even more difficult to pick a meeting experience. There have been bands with whom I have clicked more, but each artist is unique and has brought something different to the table. To pick one wouldn’t be fair. All of them—artists, management and staff—have been extremely nice towards my project and me. I’m extremely grateful for the support and welcoming feeling I’ve always received from them.

The cool thing about The Polaroid Project is that it can be an ongoing thing if you want it to be. Do you plan to quit it at some point and move onto something else?
To be honest, I don’t think The Polaroid Project will ever come to an end. It’s something I can see myself doing for the rest of my life, whether full time or not, especially since I do not plan on quitting the live music scene. It could very much bloom into something else and take different directions. I thought about extending the project to videos, capture little snippets of artists, and maybe turn it into a short movie, sort of like Vivienne Dick’s “Guerillere Talks.” I’m also very interested in depicting other types of artists (writers, designers, visual artists), but I wouldn’t necessarily use polaroids. I think each field has a medium that has the ability to represent them better. Collaborations are something I value a lot. There’s a lot of talent out there, and when you combine forces, astonishing things come to life. I have a couple of ideas I’m working on, so it should be interesting to see where they will lead. I like to have variety in my art forms and I’d love to keep exploring other mediums that I am not comfortable with or that I don’t know much about.

To see more of Isa’s work, visit her website, and follow her Instragram @isagrassi 

All photos by Isa Grassi
Isa Grassi Interview “Polaroid Project” originally appeared in Cliché Magazine’s Aug/Sept 2014 issue.

The Forgotten Artist


Game of Thrones
Wow …. HBO’s Game of Thrones never looked so good, thanks to the photo/film retouch artists. It’s amazing how much work it takes for a magazine photo shoot. Yes, you have the photographer, fashion stylist, makeup and hair artists, but a sometimes forgotten member of the team is the retouch artist. Meet Alyssa June, an extraordinary photo retouch artist and editor, creating magic when the photo, makeup, hair or fashion aren’t quite perfect.
During a recent interview, Alyssa mentioned, “I’ve always had an interest in photography, the act, the result, the unexplained feeling you get when you capture that perfect moment. But sometimes life gets in the way of a photo shoot and gives you a present in the form of a zit! Or maybe everything was just right for the perfect shot and someone walks past in the background. There are things we can’t always be in control of and that’s where retouching comes in.”
“I think a lot of society look down on retouching and think it’s all a big hoax to make a person look like something they’re not. While some forms of post processing can be much more detailed and super natural, that’s not always the case. I do my work in a non-destructive way. Most of the time it’s natural and you wouldn’t be able to notice. Sometimes I go for a little more of a dramatic look. I work with photographers from around the world who each have their own styles and desires. Retouching is definitely not something you can sum up with one word!”
She is one of the best. Check out her work at
sultan photography combine

Frida Kahlo, Her Photos


Near the end of her life, Frida Kahlo was escorted by ambulance and laid in a bed in the middle of her solo exhibition held in Paris, France. That moment manifested a life in which, despite all her pain and misfortune, she managed to transcend herself into works of art and become an embodiment of strength. Since her death in 1954, appreciation for her work and legacy has escalated as there have been biographical films, auctions of her art, and exhibitions.

From March 16th to June 8th, Frida Kahlo, Her Photos, will be displayed at the Museum of Latin American Art which will be featuring over 200 photographs taken by, of, and for Frida Kahlo. The MOLAA will also be hosting a weekend filled with Frida-inspired events to shed light on the artist’s personal life and iconic image. The exhibition’s opening party will be held March 15th and will feature food, dance, and live performances by bands such as Quetzal and Metralleta de Oro. On March 16th, the Museum will be hosting their Fridamania Festival, which will celebrate not only Frida and the exhibition’s opening, but also Women’s History Month. The festival will feature art by local women artists and celebrate women’s contributions to art, music, and movements. To make things even more interesting, there will be a Frida look-alike contest! To read more about this exhibit and details of the ensuing events, visit the MOLAA website.
Photo Credit: Frida Kahlo by Lola Álvarez Bravo via