Monday 4.6.09

How stupid are we?

I was cleaning out my yahoo mail a while ago and could not help but notice the creepy advertisement to the right of the screen. It seemed to be morphing or changing, so it caught my eye. Here is a screen capture of how it started and how it ended…

Are you freaking kidding me? Are we really THIS stupid? I find this whole thing very interesting because I think that it does somehow relate to me, what I do, photography, photoshop, advertising and trying to do something that generates some kind of revenue.

First, there is no way that some cream, other than maybe acid and a shitload of spackle would ever transform the woman on the left into the woman on the right. Some of us out there just might believe that if it could only do half of that it would still be worth it. The advertiser needs to sell this stuff and I suppose that a cheesy gimmick like this works. It seems so extreme.

We all want to stay young, look good and be the people that we see in magazines, movies or television. We are pounded daily with things that tell us how to look, how we SHOULD look, how we should feel, think, eat, shop, entertain, be entertained, what we should read, watch, listen to…

And I take part in some of this. I take pictures of people and put them into an unreal reality. I retouch skin, lengthen torsos, adjust colors, manipulate bodies, put people into different settings. People want this. Some woman does not want to take an edgy lingerie shot and forget to remove the zit that blew up on her face on the way to the studio. I fix the zit. I usually fix a lot of other things as well but what I will never do is tell you that the woman on the left could be the woman on the right after applying some cream to her face. I do present you with a fantasy image of sorts and I hope you know up front that this is what I do. In the end, if the image is liked by someone or inspires someone to do some other great thing then I guess I did ok.

I was going to write today about how I am feeling like I don’t suck as bad as I thought. In cleaning out that old email I came across a message from Pictage telling me that I only had a couple days left to order some images. I guess I should have checked that email account a while ago as this message was several months old. The images were from a private function to meet then Senator Barack Obama in a home in Madison in the fall of 2007. As I was one of the attending people, I also took my camera. To those wondering if a Gary Fong LS works, that day it did very well.

I was not an official photographer, I was just a GWC in a suit with a big lens. (and the GFLS) Around the time of the oath of office, the Cap Times ran a special section marking the Madison connection to getting Obama elected. In the section was an article with several images that I had taken that day. I was credited as “Submitted Photo”. I had sent the cd of images to the host and somehow she turned this over to the paper instead of the shots taken by the official photographer. The email from Pictage linked me to the images that the official photographer had taken. With out getting all snarky about it… Ha. Your pictures sucked.

Not all of mine were gems either but I know I had a lot less crap than this guy. I also know I was not offering crap pictures for sale.

In the end, there is really no point to any of this. These are simply a few observations that I have made today… when I should have been doing other things.

If anything: You look fine. It is a crap economy, so do not spend your money on face spackle. What you do is probably a lot better than you think it is. Good job.

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