#Project60 by Jimmy Niggles (Beard Season) and Mr. Elbank

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  • 24 september 2014

#Project60 by Jimmy Niggles (Beard Season) and Mr. Elbank

A life-saving portrait series featuring some of the most admirable beards in the world. Brainchild of Mr Elbank for Beard Season.

This is your chance to own and be part of beardsmithing history.

B A C K G R O U N D :

G’day, I’m Jimmy Niggles, and many moons ago a photographer by the name of Mr Elbank insisted I visit his studio and sit for a portrait. He said beards were one of his specialities, and although mine was only a year or so old (and I’d never really done anything like this before), I soon found out just how special his talents were.

Within a matter of hours of releasing my portrait onto the internet, Mr Elbank’s image had been reposted over 545,000 times (and this was just on Reddit). All of a sudden ‘Jimmy Niggles’ started popping up everywhere. On fashion blogs in Norway, oil paintings on Wall St, profile pages on Tinder, look-books in New York, news articles, advertising pitches and social media feeds all around the world – all doing huge things for Beard Season and our skin check message. My friends even found my mug – painted on a mug at a market stall in the Greek Islands. It was seriously astounding. Though not at all surprising…

The thing is, Mr Elbank’s photography has a huge a cult following. All you need to do is google the word ‘beard’ and you’ll no doubt recognise many of his iconic shots. They have a distinct and powerful style, unmistakably Mr Elbank.

So when he approached me with the idea to create a monumental campaign to help launch Beard Season in the Northern Hemisphere, I was understandably very honoured.

T H E   I D E A :

A life saving portrait series featuring some of the most inspiring bearded characters in the world.

W H A T   W E ‘ R E   P R O D U C I N G :

– A London exhibition and launch party to celebrate the start of winter*

– A high quality coffee table art book

– A limited edition set of prints, a selection of which will be autographed

T H E   G O A L :

To create an enduring body of art which could not only save your life, but the lives of your friends, family or anyone who may encounter the #Project60 story.

W H Y   W E   N E E D   Y O U :

Four years ago I lost one of my friends to melanoma at the age of 26. His name was Wes Bonny, and at his wake a group of us decided to start something which would encourage more people to have regular skin checks (an important piece of the puzzle in the fight against melanoma, one of the world’s deadliest though most preventable cancers).

Not many gentlemen our age had beards back then, and because Wes’ melanoma was on his neck, we decided to cover up from the sun and let our facial follicles flourish, sharing Wes’ story with everyone who asked about our beards – then challenge them to book a skin check.

Since then we’ve discovered the people most at risk of melanoma are men aged 18-45. They think they’re bullet proof and are the hardest to get in to see a doctor, let alone a dermatologist. So by growing our beards and having these conversations, we’ve managed to target the people who need to hear this message the most.

So far we’ve managed to share this message at TEDx in the Sydney Opera House, on morning TV with millions of viewers, at festivals, on Reddit, Buzzfeed, The Guardian, Huffington Post and some of the biggest publications and social media networks in the world. Thousands of people have visited their GP or skin clinic because of what we’ve started, and every week I’ll receive messages from people who might not be here today if it weren’t for our friendly advice.

T H E   I M P O R T A N C E   O F   # P R O J E C T 6 0 :

#Project60 is a celebration of people coming together around a worthwhile cause. A cause which until now – has never sought funding or support from people like you, companies or philanthropists. All of the magnificent work done work so far by Mr Elbank and the participants has been voluntary and self funded, and as I’m sure you will agree, the passion and dedication shown by everyone involved will produce something very special, to own and cherish for the rest of your life. A photographic and artistic monument which will inspire and honour the life saving growth of many more beards to come.

For more information on the project, please visit the #Project60 Kickstarter page or follow @beardseason and @MrElbank on Instagram.