Fight Like a Handsome Man – Inside the Male Model Fight Club

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It’s called Friday Night Throwdown, but most know it as the male model fight club, an unlicensed underground event that puts pretty boys in the ring with street fighters and real boxers. As you can imagine, models almost never win.

“I think it’s hilarious that the whole point of their being is to make money off what they look like, yet they’ll come throw down for a couple of hundred bucks,” one of the Friday Night Throwdown organizers says about the pretty boys who sign up to get their asses kicked for around $150. But for the people doing the fighting in the ring, the event is no joke. “I definitely tell everybody, ‘This is no bullshit. You’re about to get in front of 800 people. Get ready—and if you don’t, it’s still going to be entertaining for you to get your ass beat,’” the organizer says. And most of the models involved in this underground phenomenon take that advice very seriously. They train hard, and the fights have gotten more intense during the last two years that Friday Night Throwdown has been taking place in various downtown New York warehouses. It’s in the models’ financial interest to put up a good fight, because if the crowd likes them, they might get invited back and paid double or triple what they earned the first time. Still, despite their best efforts, only one male model has actually won a fight against a hardened fighter.

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Man Builds UFO House to Prove His Ex-Girlfriend Wrong

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Thinking of going to Roswell in the hopes of spotting a UFO? Don’t bother, just head out to the southern coast of Puerto Rico where you’re guaranteed to see one. It may not be able to fly, but it’s bizarre shape and colorful decorations make it quite a sight.

58-year-old Roberto Sanchez Rivera has been planning his unique UFO house for about 40 years. In a perfect world, I’d be saying his inspiration for the project was love, but this is the real world and Roberto’s true motivation was sweet revenge. In his youth years, when he was just a dreamy, artistic student from a poor family, he courted a girl by sending her love notes decorated with drawings of UFOs, and telling her he would one day build a UFO-shaped house. Not the usual pick-up lines, that’s for sure, but he eventually made her his girlfriend, if only for just three months. After she broke off their relationship, the girl’s mother told Rivera it was because she thought he would never amount to anything in life. Rather than crying his heart out, drowning his sorrow in booze or burying himself in work, the man started plotting his revenge. The truth is he was so devastated that he even contemplated suicide, but then he said “No, I’m going to show her, this person, I’m going to work that much harder to show her who I am.”

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Artist’s Hyperrealistic Drawings Look Like Black and White Photos

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The first time you see Dirk Dzimirsky’s hyperrealistic drawings, you’re convinced they’re black and white photographs. In fact, that’s the feeling you get when you see them for the hundredth time, they’re that good.

I love this kind of ultra-realistic drawings. Ever since I first saw Paul Cadden’s graphite masterpieces I’ve been pretty much hooked on these photo-realistic works of art. Dirk Dzimirsky is another one of those rare artists who have the capacity to practically create a photograph with their own hands. Using photos just for inspiration, he sets up basic proportions and then draws layer upon layer until he creates something incredibly realistic. He uses light and shadow to capture the emotional essence of each human being he portrays in his art. “I want to capture and describe a persons precence and specific inner self. Similar to what a detailed writer might employ in their analysis of an individual, I portray not only the physical attributes, but more importantly the subjects inner presence of life,” the artist says.

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Russian Dude Has Successful Career as a Female Model

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Meet Stanyslas Fedyanin, a 16-year-old guy from Moscow, Russia, who has gained notoriety for his very successful career as an international female body. Stas, as he likes to be called, says he is heterosexual, and even has a girlfriend, he just has an androgynous figure that makes him perfect for female modelling.

There are definitely people out there who believe a guy measuring 1.80m and weighing only 45kg modeling as a woman is pretty pathetic, but for his fans and people from the fashion industry, Stas Fedyanin is perfect. The rising star of Russian modeling is often compared with Andrej Pejic, another androgynous male model known for posing as a woman. Pejic is currently known as the “king of androgyny”, but 16-year-old Fedyanin may soon been known as an androgynous usurper, as his popularity in the fashion is increasing rapidly. Ironically enough, Stas is represented by Dopamin Models, a German male model agency.

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Craig Tracy’s Unbelievable Body-Painting Optical Illusions

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New Orleans-based artist Craig Tracy is considered a trendsetter in the art of body painting. He spends hour painstakingly painting his subjects’ bodies with water-based paint, before taking photos of them in unique positions.

The first time we featured Craig Tracy on Oddity Central, was in January 2010, right after he created a jaw-dropping image of a tiger from the contorted bodies of several models. It was one of his most amazing works, but the American artist now has an entire collection of mind-blowing images painted on human bodies. Born and raised in New Orleans, Tracy always knew he was going to be an artist, in fact everyone else knew it as well. “There was never any question regarding my being or becoming a professional artist. It was always just obvious and understood,” he says. Craig’s parents, whom he describes as “working class hippies”, nurtured his creative development and gave him the freedom to mature as an absolute individual. At 15, he received his first airbrush, as a gift from his parents, and just a year later, working as an airbrush artist in a local shopping mall, he had already learned to draw almost anything on a vast array of surfaces. After graduating from The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, the young artist became an illustrator for advertising agencies and editorial publishing houses, and hated it. After six years, he left his career as an illustrator behind and started painting “murals, t-shirt designs and just about anything and everything possible”.

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Meet Hostgator Dotcom, Formerly Known as Billy Gibby, the Human Billboard

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If the name Hostgator Dotcom sounds familiar it’s because it’s also the name of a popular Internet hosting company. The man formerly known as Billy Gibby sold the rights to his name to the highest bidder, in addition to selling advertising space in the form of permanent tattoos on his face and body.

We’ve seen similar gimmicks in the past. Just last year we reported about Pat Vaillacourt, a Canadian man who charges $35 to tattoo people and business site addresses on his body, and earlier this year there was the story of Tina Beznec, from New Zealand, who auctioned off a portion of her buttock to be tattooed with whatever the winner desired, in an atempt to raise money for unpaid bills and a trip to Australia. But the case of Hostgator Dotcom is a lot more interesting. The Anchorage-based man started offering advertising spots on his body during the mid 2000s, in a time when the practice had become really popular. It was an easy way to fund his boxing career, so he could fight to support the cause of organ donation, and he even set his sights on claiming a Guinness record for most corporate logos tattooed on a human body. He’s still selling advertising space on his face today, in a constant selfless effort to support his family. In 2010, he took another extreme step and sold off the rights to his original name to the highest bidder, which happened to be Hostgator.com.

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Wacky Scientist-Turned-Artist Uses Bacteria to Create Art

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Zachary Copfer, a former microbiologist recently turned visual artist, uses bacteria like E.coli to create detailed artworks in petri dishes. His weird technique is aptly called “bacteriography”.

If you’re hungry for some out-of-this-world art, then Zachary Copfer’s bacteriography series should feed your appetite for a while. His photo-printing technique is unlike anything you’ve seen before, in that rather than using photo-sensitive papers, chemicals, or ink, Copfer uses live bacteria. The University of Cincinnati MFA photography student actually controls how the bacteria grows in order to form detailed works of art. Copfer stars his unique artistic process by turning bacteria like E.coli into a fluorescent protein and spreading it across a plate. A negative of the photo he wants to reproduce is placed on top of the plate and exposed to radiation, causing the bacteria to grow in strategic places and recreating a detailed image. Once the photo is replicated, the bacteriography work of art is coated in acrylic and resin to stop it degrading.

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World’s Largest Vertical Garden Grows on Italian Shopping Center

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A shopping center in the Italian town of Rozanno has recently claimed a rather unusual Guinness record, for the world’s biggest vertical garden. Growing on the walls of the commercial complex, the unique garden covers an area of 1,263 square meters and is made up of about 44,000 plants.

Just o be clear, the thousands of plants covering the sides of Rozanno’s shopping center were not planted in the ground next to the building and simply grew to cover the walls, they actually grow on the building itself. Italian architect Francisco Bollani, who was in charge of the project, says it took his team a whole year just to grow all the 44,000 plants, and another 90 days to place them on the walls of the commercial building. Although it might seem like the walls are covered with soil from which the flora grows, the walls were actually lined with metallic containers that hold the plants. Using these Lego-like metal pieces made the vertical garden a lot easier to build then with classic methods, but it also increased the cost of the project to a total of €1 million ($1.3 million).

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The Mind-Blowing Date Stamp Paintings of Federico Pietrella

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Italian-born Federico Pietrella uses an item usually associated with corporate offices to created incredible works of art. It’s simply mind-blowing how he can use a restrictive tool like the date stamp to achieve this level of detail.

Looking at Federico Pietrella’s artworks from a distance, you’d never guess they were actually executed using a date stamp. But that’s in fact all he uses to create these amazingly detailed masterpieces that look more like pixelated black-and-white photos. He has been practicing his date-stamp painting technique for the last 15 years and his skill level has reached a level where it’s very hard to tell one of his works from an old photograph. As you can imagine, his is a painstaking work. Each one of his masterpieces takes between 1 – 2 months to complete, which is easily verified considering the artist uses the current date whenever he uses the stamp. “Time is a mysterious thing.  For me it’s the most important thing from which everything is derived- work, existence, life,” the artist says about his bizarre choice of tools.

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Artist Creates Controversial Collages from Adult Magazine Clippings (NSFW)

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British artist Jonathan Yeo creates collages and portraits of various celebrities from adult magazine clippings. He doesn’t call them insults, but “comments on people who trade off their morality and sexuality.”

Yeo isn’t the first artist we’ve featured who uses the controversial medium as a means of expression. Brussels-based Tom Gallant creates intricate cutouts from hardcore adult magazines that make it hard for the viewer to identify the really NSFW parts, whereas Yeo’s art is more straightforward. All the viewer has to do is get closer to one of his original works of art and he’ll quickly be able to spot a series of reproductive organs from both sexes, lace panties, female breasts and other raunchy details. Jonathan Yeo rose to international fame in 2007, after creating a portrait of George W. Bush out of hardcore magazine clippings, and has since created a number of celebrity portraits out of the vulgar material. His “victims” include Sarah Palin, Sean Connery, Tiger Woods ans Sarah Palin.

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Talented Artist Paints on Discarded Pennies

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American artist Jacqueline Lou Skaggs uses tiny discarded pennies as canvases for her miniature paintings. The level of detail she’s able to achieve is truly awe-inspiring.

Initially these coins were going to be spent- nestled with other coins in an exchange of goods. Or tossed back to the sidewalks from whence they came. Nice thoughts. However, these works remain hoarded as art rather than currency or discarded, valueless copper.

Her series, Tondi Observations, consists of 12 pieces painted over the faces of presidents and monumental buildings.

This small body of twelve works consist of images painted on found, discarded pennies and reflect a decision to move away from making “pictorial” images. A grand finale of sorts paying homage to the binding ideologies that define our family, religious, social and political worlds. Paid tribute no less on the face of discarded coins these iconic images transcend the coins value while defacing it. 

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World’s Biggest Barbie Fan Collects 15,000 Dolls in 19 Years

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Bettina Dorfmann, from Dusseldorf, Germany, will be featured in the 2013 Guinness Book of Records for her amazing Barbie Doll collection which numbers 15,000 items. She started collecting Barbies in 1993 and doesn’t plan on ever ending her quest for new additions.

Ever since Barbie was created, in 1959, it’s estimated about 1 billion dolls have been produced, and there are over 100,000 passionate doll collectors all around the world, hunting for the rarest items. But none is more dedicated than Bettina Dorfman, from Germany. In the last 19 years she has amassed an impressive collection of over 15,000 Barbie dolls, from vintage items of the 1960s, to the latest models launched by Mattel. The 52-year-old Dusseldorf-based collector says she has loved Barbie ever since she was just a little girl. “They are great for children. You can wash their hair, change their clothes, buy new outfits”, she told the BBC, back in 2009, when she had “only” 6,000 dolls. But even after she grew up, Barbie still appealed to her, and since her daughter Melissa always seemed more interested in the new Barbies that came out than in the old ones Bettina had saved for her, she decided to keep them for herself.

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Artist Creates Incredible Portraits Out of Thousands of Tiny Colored Paper Dots

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I love it when artists go to great lengths to create extraordinary art. Case in point, Nikki Douthwaite, a young British artist who uses tens, sometimes hundreds of thousands of tiny paper dots to assemble incredibly detailed artworks.

Nikki Douthwaite is a master of dot art. She uses colored dots produced by a hole punch, and painstakingly sticks them, one by one, on a canvas layered with double-sided sticky tape, with a pair of tweezers. Can you imagine spending up to 12 hours at a time arranging thousands of colored dots to create just one of these amazing works of art? It requires mountains of patience, but for Nikki every piece is a labor of love. Inspired by the pointillism work of 19th century French painter Georges-Pierre Seurat, she came up with the unusual technique during her Interactive Arts degree at MMU. Seurat created images using dots of coloured paint, which the human eye blends from a distance, but Douthwaite developed her own unique technique, by replacing the paint dots with tiny bits of paper. The dedicated artist, from Timperley, Cheshire, has suffered repetitive strain injuries in her arm, hand and shoulder after spending hundreds of hours sticking hundreds of thousands of paper dots, but has never considered giving up on her art.

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Would You Give Him Your Vote? Tattooed-Face Man Runs for President

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Meet Vladimir Franz, probably the most tattooed man to ever run for president in any country of the world. The eccentric candidate is currently gathering signatures in order to be able to candidate for president of the Czech Republic in 2013.

53-year-old Vladimir Franz has what many people call a striking appearance. His face and body are covered with tattoos, which actually makes him look blue, literally blue. But that’s not all that makes him stand out from the rest of the candidates. He’s the perfect example of why people should never “judge a book by its cover”. You couldn’t tell by looking at him, but Franz is actually a drama professor at one of the most prestigious universities in Prague, a talented painter and a successful opera composer. As a young man, he also graduated from law school and got a doctorate in the field of law, but chose not to pursue a career as a lawyer or magistrate during the communist Czechoslovakian regime. Instead, he turned his atention towards art, and after studying painting and music, he became a university professor as well. He is well know in the Czech Republic for initiating a serious of cultural movements for the country’s youth, which makes him very popular among young voters.

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The Mind-Blowing Staple Art of Baptiste Debombourg

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For most of us staples are necessary office accessories, but for French artist Baptiste Debombourg the tiny pieces of metal are a unique art medium that allow him to create detailed masterpieces inspired by Italian Mannerism and the German Renaissance.

We first featured Baptiste Debombourg on Oddity Central in March, after he unveiled a monumental mural made with 450,000 staples, but he’s been keeping busy and now has an impressive portfolio of new awe-inspiring staple artworks. For years, the French artist has been gradually perfecting his unique technique taking to a level where he’s now able to create detailed re-interpretations of famous classic paintings. Instead of relying on the usual art mediums, like acrylic or oil paints, he takes these simple objects we use in our every day lives and creates thought-provoking works that blend classic and contemporary art. His Aggravure series contains hundreds of thousands of staples and is currently on display at the Krupic Krestig Gallery in Cologne.

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