models

Past and present photos of Japanese fashion models make us wonder, where have all the gyaru gone?

For much of the 1990s and 2000s, it seemed that you couldn’t walk down a street in any major shopping district in Japan without spotting a group of gyaru chatting enthusiastically about…something. But in recent years, the number of tanned young women with the very colorful (some might say “loud”) gyrau fashion style seems to have dropped almost to zero.

With the shutting down last year of fashion magazines Koakuma Ageha, which will be restarting publication in April, and egg, it seems that gyaru might soon be owacon (“owatta contentsu” or something that doesn’t sell anymore). While we wouldn’t be too quick to sign any death certificates, these before-and-after photos of one-time gyaru models are a sure sign of how things have changed.

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Father and son turn car parts into profit by building amazing, enormous, Transformer models

What do you do with a background in fine arts, an empty factory, and used car parts? Make realistic models of Transformers, of course! At least, that’s what this father-son duo in Hunan Province, China decided to do, and they’re making a very lucrative living do so.

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Model Miranda Kerr is hungry for tonkatsu in her new Japanese commercial, but what’s she selling?

While a certain amount of God-given natural good looks are generally necessary to get your foot in the door of professional modeling, there’s a lot of hard work that goes into making a successful career out of it. Having your whole livelihood tied up in being physically attractive means sticking to beauty, diet, and fitness regimens, and we’re sure Miranda Kerr’s are stricter than most of ours.

Of course, Kerr is only human, and apparently she too feels the pull of a filling, fortifying meal of tonkatsu pork cutlet, as shown in this new Japanese commercial starring the Australian fashion icon. In a twist ending, though, the item Kerr’s pitching isn’t clothing, cosmetics, or even the delicious Japanese food she’s seen chowing down on.

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Want to relive all your horrifyingly awkward high school dates? Now you can with this photoshoot.

A recent photo shoot uploaded to the photography site Pakutaso has gotten a lot of attention online for its somewhat bizarre theme and pretty model. The photos, which were provided by “Timeslip Joshi Kosei” (or “Timeslip High School Girls”), depict a model 19-year-old model travelling “back in time” to her high school days and going on a date.

The photos, which are all shot from the point of view of her date, portray a pleasant high school romance. Which makes us think that whoever organized this photo shoot doesn’t actually know what dating in high school is like…

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Want your mecha models to look amazingly realistic? Don’t stop at the robot – Make the buildings!

Whoa, hold on a second! We know Amazon Japan now sells giant robots, but we didn’t know someone else had made something this big! This mecha looks like it’s at least twice as tall (and three times as awesome) as the one offered by the online retailer. Don’t you need a permit to build something that huge?

Actually, the only legal paperwork involved in this photo was for model-making supplies, as that’s not a real giant robot, but a scale replica. What’s more, the way it appears to be standing with its head almost in the rafters of the structure housing it isn’t thanks to a mere trick camera angle, but rather the considerable skills of the modeller who also crafted a miniature hanger for his compact mobile suit.

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Secrets of the Japanese swimsuit modeling world: Fake breasts and lots of pee

So breasts seem to be popular these days. As a matter of fact, walk into any Japanese bookshop or convenience store and you’ll find magazine racks full of photo collections of gurabia, the country’s term for sexy but not-quite-naked models. Almost always busty, the sight of gurabia posing suggestively, often while relaxing in a pool or frolicking in the surf of an island paradise, has helped generations of men in Japan through a lonely winter’s night.

But while the men who run their eyes (or whatever other body parts) over their photos are obviously enjoying an escapist fantasy, one gurabia recently revealed some things fans might rather not have known about the industry. Her claim about the prevalence of surgically enhanced breasts gels with many people’s preexisting assumptions, but what’s shocking is what she claims is the true reason for some of those sweetly seductive smiles.

In case it wasn’t clear, we’ll be talking about/showing pictures of gurabia up ahead, so unless you’re employed as a swimwear designer, this probably isn’t safe for work.

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After 23 years, Sailor Moon figures are more amazing than ever at Wonder Festival 【Photos】

We recently made the trip out to Chiba Prefecture for the winter 2015 iteration of Wonder Festival, where we could have spent all day admiring the awesome anime, video game, and movie cosplay going on. But as eye-catching as the outfits were, Wonder Festival is actually an event for showcasing new figures and models, and taking a look around the booths taught us something about the anime industry.

Trends may come and go, but Sailor Moon is here to stay. More than two decades after the phenomenally successful magical girl series made its anime debut, modelers are still making new figures based on its characters, and they’ve only gotten better in the twenty-plus years they’ve had to practice.

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Amazingly youthful meteorologist-turned-model heating up Japan with her swimwear debut at age 43

There are certain lines of work that you generally have to get into pretty early in life. For example, while many professional athletes have had careers that continue into their 30s and even 40s, if you haven’t broken into the National Football League by your mid-20s, you’ve probably missed your chance at becoming a starting strong safety for the Pittsburg Steelers.

Bikini modeling is another field that becomes harder to break into the older you get. In Japan, where youth has long been considered a vital component of traditional feminine beauty, it’s not at all unusual for models to make their professional debuts while still in their teens. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, and exceptions don’t get much more surprising than Yuko Nakagawa, who’s making her swimwear modeling debut at the age of 43.

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Artist creates incredibly lifelike 3-D models of anime characters (and Sexy Rilakkuma)

Have you ever imagined what your favorite anime characters would look like in real life? While there’s some talented cosplayers out there who can make that dream come true, sometimes they end up more like hilarious nightmares instead.

But thanks to the computer graphics artist Naoto Ikeda, now there’s another way for us to see anime characters brought to life in three dimensions: through his jaw-dropping digital artwork.

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Man attempts to create ancient moss-covered Gundam ruins: “It’ll only take a few years.”

Japan has an interesting relationship with moss. From the “Moss Covered Forest” that inspired Princess Mononoke, to the marimo “moss balls” found in Hokkaido, to MOS Burger that has tragically deterred foreigners for decades by its name alone.

But it’s one man’s quest to use moss in a new way that has recently piqued the interest of the internet. In the hopes of creating realistic figurines that look like they’ve been abandoned for centuries, he wants to get them covered in moss the old fashioned way: by waiting for years.

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Mr. Sato goes to Tokyo Auto Salon 2015, forgets to take photos of the cars…

While Japan makes some rather unique cars, itasha aren’t the only custom cars in the country. From oni-kyan wheels for drifting to Chibatman, it sometimes seems like half of the vehicles in the country have been modified to extremes. But to get an idea of just how popular custom cars are in Japan, you’d need to head to Tokyo Auto Salon, which saw nearly 300,000 attendees last year!

This year, not wanting to miss out on all the fun, our brave Mr. Sato donned his most garish, chinpira outfit and headed down to look at some cars…and the women who get paid to stand next to them.

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Beautiful models and actresses delivering boxed lunches in Tokyo with new bento service

Bento, Japan’s multi-dish boxed lunches, come in a variety of styles. While it’s most common to make your own or pick one up at a cheap takeout joint, there’s also a whole sub-industry of high-class bento delivery services that cater business conferences and other high-rolling events.

Of course, rich and powerful clients tend to have demands as high as their positions on the corporate ladder. They expect the food to be delicious, the service to be impeccable, and now, with Platinum Lunch, they can expect their bento to be delivered by beautiful models and actresses.

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Pretty Indonesian sisters share everything including good looks and sweet style 【Photos】

Sisters Elle and Jess Yamada from Indonesia do everything together, and that includes making a name for themselves on the fashion blogosphere. The lovely ladies are in their early twenties and have a combined total of nearly 250,000 Instagram followers, write for their popular blog on their website, and run a clothing line called Gowigasa. They’re also apparently really awesome at hulahooping, and won their high school’s hula hoop competition.

But we know what you really want is to get a good look at these two beauties, so read on to find a selection of photos after the cut.

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Mall in China holds a fashion show in mid-air, men rejoice while women scorn

Fashion, as with any other sort of art or design, can be a very subjective matter. What one person considers beautiful and thought-provoking may be unappealing or just plain odd in another’s eyes.

But a fashion show recently held in China invited controversy not due to the apparel being exhibited but the way in which it was presented. The event featured models suspended from the ceiling as if walking on air, offering the audience below an entirely fresh perspective…

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How do you divide? Intriguing models of long-division problems from around the world

Love it or hate it, long-division is a necessary and practical skill to learn. While I certainly don’t use any of my high school calculus in daily life nowadays, I do occasionally whip out a pen and paper to calculate how many cat sushi figures I can buy for my yen’s worth, for instance.

Recently, our minds were blown when we stumbled across a picture that illustrates the ways that people in different countries calculate long-division problems. Which style were you taught to use in school?

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Time to get wet: Underwater photos of girls in sailor suits and… plastic exoskeletons?

Underwater photography can produce some pretty spectacular images of everything from exotic fish to magnificent submerged landscapes. It can also give us a new spin on old ideas–like the images of girls in knee-high socks underwater that were so popular last year.

In anticipation of a new photo collection of more models underwater in knee-high socks, photographer Manabu Koga has posted more photos of an underwater model–this time wearing a school uniform.

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Ao-nyan: Japan’s super-feminine model who’s, yes, actually a guy 【Photos】

Earlier this week, we talked about Thailand’s Tom subculture. Stemming from the word “tomboy,” Toms are women who follow the fashion trends and speech patterns of men, oftentimes so completely that they win over the romantic affections of other women.

Today, we’re crossing over to the other side of things with a look at rising Japanese celebrity Ao-nyan, whose feminine looks and girlish style are winning fame and fans, even though the model is a guy.

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Anime all-stars combine in fan-crafted Mobile Suit Yo-Kai Watch 【Photos】

In recent months, there’s been no video game or anime franchise more popular among Japanese kids than Yo-Kai Watch. The story of kids teaming up with traditional youkai spirits (some of whom look like adorable kitty-cats), seems to have landed right in the sweet spot between adventurous, cute, and traditional, making it a huge hit for creator Level-5 (and promotional partner McDonald’s).

As a matter of fact, Yo-Kai Watch has even been gaining traction against Pokémon, the reigning champion of kids’ entertainment in Japan for the last decade-plus. Now, one fan seems to be turning Yo-Kai Watch’s towards another anime institution, by combining its characters with the giant robots of Gundam.

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Japanese Twitter users have discovered ArtPose, and they can’t stop playing with it!

Being an illustrator is definitely one of the coolest jobs in the world. It requires a ton of work and dedication, but there’s something undeniably magical about the way artists create something out of nothing but ink and pencil. However, even the best artist sometimes needs a hand when it comes to anatomy, which would explain why poseable models are always popular. After all, the morgue would be packed if every artist had to cut open a corpse to learn how the body works!

So it’s little surprise that an app for the iPhone, called ArtPose, has recently been making waves on Twitter in Japan. But the reason for its popularity might not be what you expect!

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Godzilla…is…BATMAN!! (And Sailor Moon, and Luigi too, apparently) 【Photos】

We have a hard time imagining that anyone but the dimmest Gotham City resident would be especially shocked to learn that mysterious millionaire and occasional shut-in Bruce Wayne was the man behind the Dark Knight’s mask all along, but we doubt anyone saw this coming.

This series of fantastic photos taken by a blogger known only as Gigabeetle features modded Godzilla figures in a variety of hilarious poses. As well as revealing the true identity of the Big G, the pictures show a side to the monster that we never knew existed, catching him dancing around wearing top hats, doing his best Sailor Moon impressions, and, um, indulging in a little bit of nose powder

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