Category Archives: Art

Stick Aliens Drink Soda

It’s been awhile since I did a post on the trend in advertising campaigns to not just photoshop women in ads into skinny forms, but to literally make them physically alien and insectoid in their concentration camp images, as something that is supposed to appeal to women in purchasing considerations. And not in a SFF sort of approach where it’s deliberately supposed to be strange, but in ads where we’re supposed to consider them beautiful human woman who we’d want to emulate. If we had elongated spines that turned in ways human bodies can’t actually go.

Previously, these ads have not made much sense in terms of the elegant products they were pitching — upscale fashion, handbags, perfume. And that’s what struck me about them. But this time, it’s a product where skeletalization of the body is directly connected to the product — Diet Coke. That staple of acidic corn syrup and artificial sweeteners that the company keeps pretending starving models drink to look the way they do. Sales of Diet Coke are declining, apparently, (along with non-craft soda in general,) so Diet Coke has launched a new campaign called “It’s Mine” with women grabbing after bottles of Diet Coke now packaged in cutsey colorful graphics of the kind they put on kids’ plastic cups. (Including pink and purple!) That pretty much hits the trifecta: women are easily distracted infants, greedy harpies and obsessive shoppers chasing after purchases.

But it’s this image in particular that ultra goes for the stick alien look:

mymo

The dress of course is supposed to resemble Diet Coke itself in a sort of bottle shape. (Hey, they may even have the word “sex” in there subliminally.)

But the woman, oh where to start with the woman. First off, she has one hip that apparently can elongate and swivel outward from her body and around. Her upper torso can twist at a dramatic angle from her lower half, facing forward, while her other leg goes straight back sideways. (Maybe she does yoga.) Her arms are cadaverous and her fingers elongated. Her neck is also elongated, really giving the stick alien appearance, further enhanced by her blonde-ish hair which has been done short and appears in the photo as kind of spiky, in a manner resembling antennae tendrils. (You think they’d do curls for a soda foam resemblance, but I digress.)

She looks, in a word, kind of scary. You would not be surprised to see webbing or ichor or something coming out of her hands and snagging the Diet Coke bottle.

The photo is actually kind of a still shot from a t.v. ad that Diet Coke ran for the Oscars ceremony. (Hence, the ball gown the model wears.) But that ad uses CGI to make the woman’s body like pouring soda with the dress rather than human mobility, and then clearly the image was further photoshopped for print for graphic design reasons over human ones. (In the t.v. ad, when the model drinks the Diet Coke she has caught, her arms are not nearly as frightening.) The print ad is now showing up in various magazines.

Again, it’s one thing to do all the tweaking and glass polishing they regularly do to women in ads. (I can no longer recognize the faces of actresses on magazine covers because they turn them into life-size ceramic dolls.) But to turn a woman in-human, beyond skeletal, does this work to sell the product by just producing a striking image? Maybe it works for something like Diet Coke, but it seems again a fascination of photo editors indulging in surreal art. Rather than selling sex or elegance that might be desired, it’s wiping out the human woman from the image altogether into the otherworldly.

In any case, way to keep it regressive on the product re-packaging and sales pitch, Diet Coke. The soda still tastes awful.

 

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Filed under Art, Social Equality, Women

Humans will carve anything. Dragons!

While it won’t last forever, this video of watermelon carving by Italian artist Valeriano Fatica is fascinating:

 

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Some Music Videos to Accompany Snow. And More Snow. And Yet More Snow. (Enjoy the summer, Southern Hemisphere!)

Just to get things started (and clean out some files,) here are some music videos that contain great tunes and interesting video experiences.

First up is folk singer Shawn James, who decided to cover the A.A. Bondy song “American Hearts” in a wolf sanctuary near Fort Collins, Colorado. Some of the wolves came to check out the musicians, as hoped, but to their surprise, the wolves in the area also joined in for part of the song. You can check out the wolf sanctuary, which also takes donations, at:

http://www.wolfsanctuary.net/index.html

And Shawn James’ music at:

http://www.shawnjamesmusic.com

 

Next is the video from alt rock Franco-American band Hold Your Horses! for their single “70 Million.” In it, the band members and some pals re-create famous works of art. You can check out their music at iTunes and here:

https://holdyourhorses.bandcamp.com/

This additional video takes you through it with the paintings they copied:

 

And lastly, alt rock band OK Go, the king of creative silly music videos, had to come up with a doozy to top previous efforts. So they decided to go weightless for their new single, “Upside Down & Inside Out” from the new album Hungry Ghosts. You can check out their music at: http://okgo.net/

Bonus, a previous music video for their song “Needing/Getting,” which added a car to their Rube Goldberg machine style videos and is quite funny:

 

 

 

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Some Art To Peruse (Dumping Days)

Still cleaning out my closets, and here are some lovely and strange artworks and links to more.

Artist Carl Jara does amazing things with sand sculptures:

Carl Jara

I unfortunately couldn’t find out whose photo graphic art this is, so if anybody knows, let me know, but I utterly love it, with the ocean as a pup tent:

 

Then there’s the amazing cardboard sculpture art of Kai-Xiang Xhong:

Kai-Xiang Xhong

 

And because I love them, more 3-D chalk art!

 

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A Plethora of HyperRealism Art

Soo many things to talk about and I will soon, but in the meantime, I had earlier in this blog put up some art from hyperrealism artists, which is a style of art I find fascinating. Hyperrealist artists use paint, pencil, pens, etc. to create works of art that look like photographs. I had featured the work of Paul Cadden and Jason de Graaf. Here’s a piece at Dose about a whole slew of them and they are all quite amazing. Some examples:

 

Kevin Okafor

Ray Hare

Mike Bayne

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Maya Angelou Leaves Us

But we still have her words:

 

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Filed under Art, Women

Videos for a Rainy Friday Evening

My desk looks like a tube of paper exploded on it. So have some entertaining videos:

1) The wonderfully clever short film called Darth Baby’s Lightsaber. This is my new favorite Star Wars parody:

2) The amazing group Arstidir (close as I can get to reprinting properly,) sing an old Icelandic hymn in the stunning acoustics of a German train station:

3) Dan Newbie‘s rendering of the theme to Game of Thrones on water glasses, jugs and pans:

4) The trailer for the up-coming new t.v. show, Constantine, adapted from the comics and airing on NBC in the U.S., which looks pretty good:

5) The trailer for the new New Zealand mockumentary film about vampires, What We Do in the Shadows. I’m hoping it gets widely distributed:*    *Apparently, it’s not a film; it’s a t.v. series, which is even better.

6) And lastly, an amazing street performer reproduces Bumblebee from the Transformer movies in Michigan. I don’t know if this is the same guy as the one in New Orleans but it seems very likely, and I don’t know who he is but the special effects people in Hollywood should hire him:

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Art, Humor, Movies/TV, SFFH