Date Archives December 2011

Do We Lose The Longing For Self-Expression As We Age?

It is the opinion of some that as we age, we should become more conservative and not express ourselves in the same ways. I once had a woman email me to say that her grandchildren didn’t want her to dress colorfully any more.They thought that she was too old to wear clothing that would make her stand out in anyway.The problem with this is that the longing for personal expression, and the need to be creative don’t end at a certain age. 91 year old Ilona Royce Smithkin will tell you that she still feels young inside. It is only when she feels a slight pain, that she is reminded of her age.

The streets of New York are a wonderful place to look for inspiration. I love to walk around and scan crowds of people passing by, looking for something that catches my eye.  Whether its a woman with neon dyed hair, or another with a great pair of purple glasses or still another with arms full of handmade accessories.There is something glorious to see on every corner.

What I love about the ladies I photograph is that age has allowed them a renewed sense of freedom.Their rule, is that there are no rules.They dress for themselves and feel comfortable in their own skin.That’s not to say that they would all dye their hair pink or don eccentric accessories. They do what is right for them and wear what makes them feel good.As 80 year old Joyce says,” To age is a privilege”. I hope that the images I present are a reminder that we should never stop living life to the fullest and never stop having fun.

A Perfect Winter Coat

I saw this woman walking down Madison, and I’m so glad that I stopped her for a photo. Not only does she look stunning in her amazing winter coat, but she had such a wonderful spirit. She told me that she is in band that performs all that great old classics. I can’t wait for her to send me their information and I’ll share it with all of you as well!

An Advanced Style Short

[A Short by Lina Plioplyte and Ari Seth Cohen]

I started Advanced Style a little more than three years ago. When I first moved to New York I was living in Williamsburg, working at The New Museum book store, and shooting stylish ladies and gentleman on my days off. Almost everyday I would get sandwiches and tea from a local cafe, down the street. I met an awesome young woman by the name of Lina Plioplyte. She was working at the cafe and interning for Nylon Magazine, doing film and editing. One day I came in to get a sandwich and told Lina, ” I just moved here will you be my friend.” She laughed, but I knew that we would become great friends one day.

Lina got a job with Nylon and I saw her once in a while at art shows. One day she sent me a message over Facebook saying, ” I want to make a film about your stylish older ladies.” I was excited to meet with her and hear all of her ideas.Two and a half years later, we have been filming the Advanced Style ladies in all their sartorial splendor. We have compiled wonderful and inspiring footage, that will not only change people’s perception of aging, but will also make us all look forward to the freedom that comes with getting older.

Last March we posted a short trailer of our work on NOWNESS. Here is an extended version of our edit, which debuted in October, at Diane Pernet’s, A Shaded View On Fashion Film Festival in Paris.Lina and I hope to complete our film by next year, but for now I hope you enjoy the new edit above.For more great work by filmmaker Lina Plioplyte CLICK HERE.

“Look Good, Feel Good. Feel Good, Look Good”

Debra Rapoport is one of my favorite ladies to shoot. She always has fun with what she is wearing and believes that style has the power to heal. Debra lives by the statement, “Look Good, Feel Good. Feel Good, Look Good.” Advanced Style is not only about living a life of style but living a full,active, and healthy life as well. Style begins with a healthy mind and body.