Thank you to everybody who participated with comments on the original article, here and on twitter. All the “Thank You’s” made it worth while. I feel I owe it to all parties involved to explain some aspects further and to bring better closure. I hope everybody will take it in the spirit it is done, as some of it went a bit haywire with the first post. Things were said in general and some people might actually have been arguing about totally different subjects. There was also a request for constructive criticisms and this is my attempt towards that. But lets start at the beginning…..
As you can see by the name of our site, we study Alex O’Loughlin intensely. How did it happen? Alex is a really cute actor that caught my eye one day. I started reading about him and before I knew it I became friends with other people who found him cute. I landed in a fandom for the very first time, mainly because of certain circumstances in my life. I am fairly sure, it will also be the very last fandom I will ever be part of!
Over the years I have admired lots of actors and of some of them, even have all their movies. But have never been part of any form of fandom. Actors and people in general just fascinate me.
People have always intrigued me and I have subconsciously been studying them and their body language since an early age. Although I haven’t studied body language as such, I know I have a fairly good natural instinct in regards to what I see. As it happens to be, I am studying Alex O’Loughlin now, because he is the common interest to me and my cyber friends.
For me Alex is an actor who have spent 3 years of his life learning and training how to be an artist during his studies at NIDA. He creates art with his whole being. With every role he plays, he becomes a character with his entire body. He shows different mannerisms and general body language according to that person’s character. The whole of him creates art for me. As with his roles, he has also created as a model, painting pictures with his face and body. The photographer gives him a script of what they need and he “talks” with his face and body to them and together they create.
But also on set and in private and public moments his whole body talks to me. People might see a smile and say he looks happy, but I look at him as a whole, to find the truth to what I think he is feeling. I can also be wrong because one snap shot of a moment in time can be out of context. So I would also take context into account if I can. That is just who I am…….
I know it might sound pathetic to people but I am spending my time in “The art gallery of the life of the actor Alex O’ Loughlin” at the moment, and that is who I am! This gallery consists of his work on-screen, interviews, articles, video clips and photos. Hundreds of photos that are all around in our cyber space. A lot of fans make their own little galleries to present this work of art to the world. Websites, Facebook pages Pinterest boards etc. Everyone display what they can find and present it to the rest of the world in their own unique way. Some just re-post things they find, others fiddle with it creating, fan videos, wallpapers and all sorts of interesting and beautiful things. Some spend hours, finding that perfect screen cap or picture and create their own pieces of art with it, treating others with them on daily basis.
I visit a lot of these galleries and every once in a while I am presented with a piece on display that looks out-of-place and I realize this is not an original “Alex”. A photo that does not fit…….. Some of those fakes are really good but there is always something that seems out-of-place in them. I study it to find out why they feel wrong and when I see what it is, I discard it. But some of these pieces keep popping up and people keep presenting it as originals and it pisses me off!
I feel the need to warn unsuspecting new and old Alex O’Loughlin ‘art collectors’ about these fakes. And I have in the past done so when these pictures present itself. I do not try to protect Alex or to speak on behalf of him or his PR people, because this has nothing to do with them, this is the fans creating our own world and how we conduct ourselves in that world.
I have a little home here of Alex O’Loughlin art, that Paula and I created. I asked her if it would be okay to present the public in general with these fakes to create awareness, so that they can have the knowledge and maybe remove them from the Alex O’Loughlin galleries as originals. Her answer to me was, that she really do not think it is going to make a difference, but it is worth a try……
I knew it would bring some negativity to our home, but I wrote my story anyway, trying to be funny and maybe ended up looking sarcastic about it all. Presenting it to the public in as much of a good spirit as I could find myself doing. And so Alex O’Loughlin ……Is the real man good enough for you?, was published. I knew what I was doing and that it would annoy some people. A lot of fans frequently use some of the picture in, what I call “photo conversations” on twitter. I always follow these conversations and enjoy them very much. Most of you might not have any clue what I am talking about and those of you that have them, might not be aware that I follow your conversations regularly.
Two or three fans will have a conversation about Alex and with a statement post a photo with it, to illustrate the point. (most of the conversations tend to end up naughty at some point 😛) They are very funny and entertaining to follow – thanks to those who have them, I enjoy you all. But then every once in a while one of these fakes make its way into the conversation to illustrate the point and I get it. But on twitter everybody can follow these conversations and those photos stay in the photo gallery. People see these photos and save them, not knowing they are fake. And there the cycle continues…….
The one thing that clearly came out from the discussion on the original article, was that in our over eagerness to get that newest or most interesting pictures, people just randomly save and redistribute pictures in their own little galleries. Some people knowingly take pictures, crop signatures from the picture and either just save it or put their own watermarks on there. In this process, pictures that were intended as art, now gets status as just a picture and to the untrained eye, they are perceived as original Alex O’Loughlin photos.
Sometimes the first person that saves the picture does mention the original source, but like a message that waters down from one person to the next, the origin and the authenticity gets lost. I have seen many pleas from people to please always quote the original source, then for a while everybody does it until it just start happening all over again.
Angel, I really do hope that this little storm in a teacup that I caused would also result in people honoring your work by not taking it as their own……. it is worth the try.
For me when an artist creates, I evaluate their art by how well they have captured the essence of the original subject. Alex usually becomes the characters that he portrays and therefore I regard him as an exceptional actor, creating beautiful art. This is also how I subconsciously evaluate everybody that uses Alex in their art. Do they capture the essence of the man or that moment or character.
Please know that I have no permission from any of the people who created the following and that I have marked the photos because I do not want to be the source of anybody stealing or reposting these unto their pages or sites. I still do not know who created all these, because the discussion got into general terms, when Angel just said most of the photos I posted belong to her.
I am giving you my thoughts about these very shortly, taking the above criteria into account. I am no art critic, I just go by what I think has been done with the subject used. They are all the photos that I originally posted as well as the ones that were sent to me because people were confused about them or asked questions about them. To guard against confusion I am giving each creation a name – Please note the names are NOT from the creators.
Boy against the wall:
There is no identification mark on this photo, therefore one of the most confusing creations – I still do not know who created it. My main problem with this photo is that it is everything Alex is not – body shape and size as well as pose, gives me no recognition of the original subject apart from his face. There are lots of these type of real photos of Alex, why manipulate one with another body? It just serves not purpose in my eyes and nobody offered any explanation towards its existence.
This picture is also not marked and from there also very deceiving to the untrained eye. I understand why people like it so much…..it gives us what we all would like to see. The image in total looks good, but on closer look, it is just not Alex. I do not think it was made to be a piece of art, but just illustrating a fantasy. And I also apologize to the creator of it if my previous attempt at being funny about it was in poor taste.
This picture is also not marked and I presume it has been cropped more than once. We all would like to see sexy seductive Alex, from there the appeal for this one. But once again, it so not Alex or how he would create his art of seduction for me. As far as I can see the photo was also turned around, because to me it looks like we see the right side of Alex’s face and therefore I think it adds even more weirdness to the photo. I presume this was originally created by Angel, because there are similar creations in her collection
I will write my thoughts about ‘Spike’ and ‘Couch Hunk’ together. Both of these pictures created an uneasiness with me that I struggled to pin point. Why do they make me feel uncomfortable? The answer to that came with another revelation as well. I have a feeling Alex has got a kink in his armour of roles that he is able to play.
For me the facial expression, together with the body language and maybe the clothes as well, portrays some sort of slyness. I think James has that in the original bike picture as well. I do not know if that was what the pieces were commissioned for, but that is what they look like to me.
I realized that I have never seen it with Alex – not even in one of his performances as serial killers did he ever manage any form of sly look. I am afraid that maybe he doesn’t have it in him. On the one hand I hope we never have to see it , but on the other hand it would be interesting to see if he could ever pull it off?!
One thing in each of these at least count in their favor. Spike is on a bike and I think Alex would like it and we all know about Alex’s history with couches…… (If not, read this article: Alex O’Loughlin is having an affair with couches) 😀
For me this is one of the most beautiful creations from Angel. Although I could see that it was created as “art” in some way, it has been saved on my computer for quite a while, because I like it (I actually have both the original and the stolen remake copies saved).
Two of the reason why I like it:
- Alex’s face does the talking and the body does not show anything distinctive that says it is not him.
- The subject of the creation is about something that we know Alex loves. He is a motorcycle man.
Believe it or not, people thought this was a real poster of Alex. For the old fans it might sound strange, but if you do not know that Alex never played a role like this or had hair like this, it can be confusing. Although it is clearly marked by Angel, most photos of Alex are marked by somebody, so it does not really mean that is a manipulated picture. A well created piece of art that seemed to create confusion amongst fans.
Navy SEAL in ‘Whites”
According to the very clear marking, this photo was created by Pam. Unless the background is totally erased, it would not be easy for people to crop this signature out of the picture.
One of the pro’s about this photo can also be a con. Alex in uniform – even new fans would know that he plays a Navy SEAL but not all of them might know that there is no real pictures with him in the white uniform yet.
For me with this, Pam is celebrating the current role Alex is playing and therefore honoring it. May the powers that be, hear our request and put him into the Whites as well…….
(BTW, something also looks strange in this picture. I haven’t gone looking for the original face of the photo yet and haven’t really studied it well, but sometimes it also looks like the face is turned around? Maybe it is just the way it looks like on another body. I will have to go and study it further, unless Pam tells me of course )
As I said in the original post, for me this picture does not have any merit, because of all the similar yet authentic pictures of these two. The creator of it did an exceptional job in creating a fake, but it is just not Alex!
One thing is for sure, there is great talent out there for creating, and all of the above photos clearly illustrate it. The problem mainly lies within our evaluation of the merit of the existence of some and of the artistic beauty of it.
During the comments on the original post, I asked people to think what Alex would think if an unsuspected newbie presented him with one of these fake Alex’s to sign? I did not ask it because I think I know what he would say. I asked it because of something specific I had seen him say from before. At an autograph signing he was presented with the picture of Stan. He joked and asked the person if they knew that it was not his body, but his body double. I know of at least one other occasion where he signed the Men’s Health for somebody with more or less the same words.
I do not know if he is self-conscious about his beautiful body on display and if in the case of Stan he feels like, him without his tattoos, is not him? But he for sure notices what he signs and it matters to him to some extent….
Update: April 2013 I often see this picture posted on Alex O’Loughlin boards – It is not him!
To JLopie1 – Angel surely has a good friend in you. Thank you for defending your friend that felt under attack, without finding the need to twist my words of to make wild assumptions about what I mean and who I am.
To those of my own friends that found themselves comfortable enough to speak on my behalf and vouch for my character and intention – Thank You.
To Paula – Thank you for putting up with me and my wild ideas on a daily basis. Every day that goes by, I really wish to one day have the opportunity to meet in person. I can already feel my sides and jaw hurting from all the laughter. (Ps. We really need to make a plan soon, we are not spring chickens anymore :grin:)