TOM OF FINLAND (1920-1991) WAS, AND STILL IS, WORLD FAMOUS FOR HIS STYLIZED HOMOEROTIC FETISH ART. THE MORE THEN 3,500 ILLUSTRATION HE MADE OVER THE COURSE OF FOUR DECADES HAVE MADE AN INDELIBLE INFLUENCE ON LATE TWENTIETH CENTURY GAY CULTURE. INDEED, MANY GAY MEN GREW UP DROOLING OVER AND FINDING INSPIRATION IN TOM’S ART, SOME GOING EVEN SO FAR AS USING HIS VISION OF SEXY MAN AS A REFERENCE FOR THEMSELVES.
You can say a lot of things about Thomas Evans but not that he is boring. On the contrary. Thomas, who first learned the craft of photography in front of the camera before taking place behind, is a man of many creative visions. Hi photography work and his Photoshop skills often push his work over the edge, creating images that are both playful and strangely chic. For Thomas, photography satisfies his creative needs and brings the control that allows his imagination to come alive. Not seldom in close collaboration with his subjects.
Brawny, hard, and hairy, Joe Z began his physical transformation from twink to muscle dad nearly twenty years ago. As a teenager, he was fascinated by Tom of Finland’s intricate drawings and sought out to become a real-life version of the muscular men depicted in the artist’s work. Maintaining a larger-than-life presence is something he enjoys doing. “I love working out and being in the gym,” Joey said. “Nothing excites me more than some hard lifting and heavy sweating. It’s a rush – I really dig the hard work.” An intense chest workout is his favorite. “I’ve always been attracted to big pecs,” he said. “For myself, I wanted to have the chest that grabs my own attention. Well-defined, beefy pecs you can’t resist touching when you see them.” The massive chest is complimented by equally intense back and lower body lifts each week. “Big pecs are hot, but you gotta have the firm, round ass to match them,” he said.
The erotic illustrations made by Tom of Finland have inspired not only fellow artist but also many of the men growing up with Tom of Finland’s art. Such as Joe Z. Joey has worked hard to achieve his objective, but achieve he did. And as the illustrations of Tom of Finland evolved over the years, so did Joe Z, becoming what he is today: a strong, masculine, mature man with a high level of sex appeal. Leave it to Thomas Evans to frame a man like that in his own setting. In this case simple black and white with strong lighting that creates a very Hitchcockian style. So here we have two men who shaped the look of twentieth century art imagery: Hitchcock and Tom of Finland, brought together in a photographic essay by the always surprising Thomas Evans, featuring Joe Z. Same same, but refreshingly different. –BM-
THOMAS EVANS | BEAUTIFULMAG