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Inspired by a chapter in his 2014 book, "Bare Strength," which featured wounded amputee Marines, celebrated photographer Michael Stokes has created an entire photographic volume dedicated to U.S. Gulf War veterans. Always Loyal, a large-scale, hardcover coffee table book, showcases the beautiful side of wounded soldiers, whose injuries and/or lost limbs are detailed in intimate, exclusive photographs and information that provide a highly unique appreciation for those brave souls who have fought for the United States of America. The goal of fitness photographer Stokes-who, inspired by a shoot with veteran and amputee Alex Minsky, wanted to put a different spin on how wounded veterans were depicted-was to create a book via crowdfunder KickStarter.com. “I met this veteran, Alex Minsky, and talked to him about different approaches to a portrait session,” says Stokes. “I had already studied as many amputee photos that I could find. I noticed that most of them emphasized the lost limb, and that the mood was often sorrowful. That was not the vibe I was getting from him, so I decided to simply photograph him as if he were not an amputee, photograph him exactly the same way I would any of my fitness models.” The result of the book is pure art. Always Loyal received praise from CNN, Cosmopolitan, The Daily Mail, Metro, MTV, and many others around the globe. Stokes donated $20,000 from Always Loyal sellings to the Semper FI Fund, a charity that benefits wounded warriors.
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"Raised in Berkeley, California, Michael Stokes is now a Los Angeles-based photographer. He graduated first in his class and Phi Beta Kappa with a Fine Art degree through the film department at California State University, Long Beach. Before changing his career path to filmmaking, he was a photography major, learning pre-digital photographic techniques and using darkrooms and silver gelatin film. In film school, he wrote and directed a short film, Alien, that screened in film festivals around the world. Michael's first coffee table book, Masculinity (2012), was a glamour-styled, photographic male figure study book that is currently out of print. In the same style as his first, his second book, Bare Strength (2014), is already in its third printing and is available on Amazon. It features a chapter on wounded veterans of war, specifically amputees. From the sales of this book, he has donated $10,000 to the Semper Fi Fund, a charity that benefits veterans of war and their families. Also in 2014, Michael collaborated with the publisher Taschen to produce My Buddy, supplying the publisher with his collection of vintage photos of nude WWII soldiers. Michael's third and fourth books, Exhibition and Always Loyal release November 1, 2015. Exhibition continues the exploration and celebration of the male figure, while Always Loyal is dedicated exclusively to wounded United States veterans. Before the end of 2015, from pre-sales of both books, Michael will donate $20,000 to the Semper Fi Fund. Michael's photos of wounded veterans have been shared around the world and have been featured on television: Good Morning America, The Today Show, The Tonight Show, The View, and The Talk. They have been featured in several major newspapers and online periodicals around the world, including: The Independent UK, The Mirror UK, The Drudge Report, The Huffington Post, The Huffington Post (French Edition), Cosmopolitan, People magazine, BuzzFeed, and Vanity Fair Italy, just to mention a few. Michael's fashion and fitness photographs have been featured on America's Next Top Model, have twice been the cover for Men's Health Italy, and are used for more than twenty-five novel covers. Michael has also made personal appearances on television's The Insider and Inside Edition. You can follow him on Facebook for updates and previews of his latest work and projects. https://www.facebook.com/MichaelStokesPhotography"Review:
"His no-holds-barred photography has captured dozens of young wounded vets in ways the public is not used to seeing them: fit, happy and proud to show themselves." - CNN
"Those Sexy, Naked Amputee War Veterans Are Now Part of a Sexy, Naked Book" - Cosmopolitan
"""Stunning photos of the heroes who have lost their limbs in war"" - Daily Mail
"Instead of portraying male and female amputee veterans as broken soldiers, these sexy, nude photos celebrate their strength, helping to change the way we see their disability." - Metro
"Gaze At These Brave (And Naked) Veterans And Feel Free To Let The Thirst Take Over" - MTV
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Book Description Bruno Gmuender, 2015. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M395985014X
Book Description Bruno Gmuender, 2015. Hardcover. Condition: New. Brand New!. Seller Inventory # VIB395985014X
Book Description Bruno Gmuender, 2015. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX395985014X