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Alvaro Nates

James Andrew with Alvaro Nates

James Andrew with Alvaro Nates – photo Alvaro Nates

Having been quite smitten with his bold photographs posted on Instagram, I’ve managed to become “Insta-friends” with the brilliant Mexico City based photographer Alvaro Nates.

I was desperate to work with him and jokingly wrote him asking when he was going to put his “big fat lens on me.” Well, providence was smiling, and miracle of miracles, Nates had already scheduled a trip to New York City! As you might have surmised by now, he also joined us here on WIJW for a spectacular photo shoot!

Alvaro Nates self portrait — James Andrew interior

Alvaro Nates self portrait — James Andrew interior

Nates was born in Columbia and as a child he tells us he had aspirations to become a clown – I am happy to say that despite never becoming one, his humor is well intact—he exudes such warmth, energy and infectiously charming playfulness!

Nates’ sister was quite the “it” girl on TV and a young handsome Alvaro was quickly discovered while accompanying her on casting calls. He had a long stretch as a successful model. On his travels he became increasingly interested in the view from behind the camera, and a Poloroid camera he happened upon became a new vehicle for the sort of creative expression Nates yearned for. Fast forward—working for NatGeo, Nates continued his travels, meeting amazing people and perfecting his art. Portrait photography, drawing, and videography are all now a part of his artistic quiver.

photo Alvaro Nates

photo Alvaro Nates

While in New York City, Nates and I came up with the concept of playing “Tom Ford” by referencing a makeover segment Ford recently produced. I dressed our friend, Nates, in Tom Ford and we set about creating a WIJW photo drama. It not only captures Nates’ professional eye, I think, but demonstrates a good deal of technical prowess, since many of these are pairs of individual shots seamlessly spliced together.

James Andrew and Alvaro Nates - photo Alvaro Nates

James Andrew and Alvaro Nates – photo Alvaro Nates

Fortunately we were the exact size so all my clothes fit my friend quite exquisitely.

Nates and I had the most divine time together playing dress up, and we celebrated our production with martinis followed by oysters and champagne at Wild Edibles followed by burgers and more martinis at Blue Smoke—needless to say, we had quite an evening!

Cheers! - photo Alvaro Nates

Cheers! – photo Alvaro Nates

I dressed Nates in a Tom Ford green tweed windowpane suit, plaid cotton shirt in browns and purple, purple wool knit tie, brown and purple polka dot silk pocket square. I’m wearing a Tom Ford amethyst wool tri-color window pane “Country Jacket,” lavender and white striped cotton shirt, brown wool knit tie, brown and ivory glen plaid silk pocket square, brown corduroy pants, brown leather belt with rose gold buckle and brown suede and crocodile cap toe shoes, antique moon stone cuff links and my fragrance is Tom Ford Oud.


  1. Danny says:

    Oh James!
    There’s nothing appropriate that I can write when looking at this fragrant, tweed, hirsute cocktail man-in, so I’m saying nothin’
    But you can’t stop me thinkgin’ it, or enjoying it…

    x Danny

  2. Ooh!
    What a fab Christmas gift this post was!
    C’est Chic, Le Freak!
    James, your creativity is MAGNIFICENT! Perhaps you are an incarnation of the late Jean Cocteau, and also of Bebe’ Berard? The love child, so to speak… you are FABULOUS!

  3. ALVARO NATES says:



  4. I think I just fainted…

  5. CD says:


    I love all photos, especially number 4.

    And 5. And 2. And 3. And 1.

    There’s always magic in seeing a photographer’s image as well.


  6. Regina says:

    As someone whose family is historic to Mexico, from a Viceroy to the 1st
    Saint…Señor Nates is the PERFECT face of Mexico to show her Beauty and Glamour to the World. Gloria Guinness was another, Maria Felix and her Cartier baby crocodiles and snakes while dressed in Custom HERMES ponchos too! Perhaps the face of legalizing Immigration needs this beautiful man and his soigné manners!

  7. James Andrew says:

    My Dear Danny,

    I can only imagine!

    Well enjoy your most delicious thoughts!



  8. James Andrew says:

    Mr Farris,

    As you know our late friend/mentor Albert Hadley loved to celebrate artists and artisans.

    I am thrilled to follow in his path and use this venue to celebrate the brilliance of these people!



  9. James Andrew says:

    Querido Alvaro Nates,

    Well my exqusite friend it was my great pleasure to have you!

    We can’t wait to be have your big fat lense on me ASAP!

    Let’s make a plan!



  10. James Andrew says:

    Darling Reggie,

    Alavaro Nates is so delicious!

    I can’t wait to have him again.



  11. James Andrew says:

    My Dear CD,

    Alvaro is a dream and so very talented!

    I am thrilled and honored to have worked and played with such a creative genius!



  12. James Andrew says:

    My Dear Regina,

    Alvaro would make a fabulous ambassador of the arts indeed and bring a beautiful face to the growing artistic community that Mexico is attracting.



  13. I have enjoyed this feature coming back to admire numerous times, and it leaves me breathless -defining that word, breathtaking -in that is arresting in its sensuality, verve combined with high artistry. This is a pedal to the metal post. I love the letter A in the bookcase -referencing perhaps my two favorite A-listers Alvaro and Andrew. I must say that what takes it even higher is the incorporation of Nates’ own photography -the best of what is happening right now in contemporary fine art photography. I hope you have a print for your personal collection.
    Loved it all.

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