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ILLUSTRATED ESSAY GRACE JORDEN

FIGURE 1, ABSTRACT, OWN IMAGE 2013

WHAT IS BEAUTY?


CONTENTS What is Beauty? (Pages 2 to 5) Photographic Shoot Analysis (Pages 6 to 11) Editorial Analysis (Page 12) Conclusion (Page 13) Image References (Page 14) References (Page 15) Bibliography (Pages 16 to 19) Appendix (Page 20)

WORD COUNT:

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WHAT IS BEAUTY?

FIGURE 2, CREAM, TEA, 2013

‘Despite an increase in the population of the older demographic,

age-related stereotypes are still very much alive in today’s society’ (Butler, 2006) whether this be within magazines or on television, the representation of older generations within the media is distinctively lacking. This idea fuelled the initial inspiration for our photographic shoot; as it became a recurring theme when discussing the ideas behind ‘what is beautiful’.

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Despite all five of us being

young and relatively content with the way that we look, we all admitted that already, we were trying our hardest to fight any possible signs of ageing. Whether this be using the same anti-wrinkle cream as our mother, or consciously trying never to frown; or in some cases smile. We understood ageing to be a prominent taboo for our ever increasingly selfconscious generation, and decided to confront our fear of the inevitable, and ask why?

‘One suggestion is that we aren’t

forced to face up to our own ageing process because the elderly are deftly airbrushed out of our lives by an ageist media and a business culture in thrall to youth’ (Anon, 2012). With the use of plastic surgery up 4% from 2010 (Jalabi, 2013), what ever happened to ageing gracefully, and what’s ugly about a few wrinkles here and there?

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From this, we began to look at artists who had incorporated the ageing

process within their work for inspiration, and came across the ‘Coming of Age’ exhibition that took place at GV art in London during the summer of 2012. The exhibition combined both the art and science of the ageing process; allowing artists such as Carla Bromhead, Andrew Carnie and Jennie Pedley to ‘examine the effects, the wisdom and achievements of ageing’ (Anon, 2012). We loved the literal interpretation and acceptance of ageing within the images, but wanted to combine a similar message within a more inventive visual stance.

FIGURE 3, UNTITLED 1, CARLA BROMHEAD, TEA, 2012.

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After

researching the artists involved within the exhibition, we found that Andrew Carnie often used projections within his work. Visually, we felt this could create a really powerful aesthetic in conjunction with our concept and began researching more and more projection artists. From this, our main visual inspirations came from the work of Linder Sterling - an artist known mainly for her post-punk controversial collages combining pornographic images with every day, household items (Banash, 2013), (Figure 4).

Along with Davis Ayer; an artist most famous for his ‘time travel’ projections that feature different cities and scenes from around the world - projected onto the body (Figure 5). The above artists all take a literal approach in terms of art direction, whether this is with the aid of projection, collage or via postproduction. We wanted to combine these mediums to create a sense of reality versus surrealism within one image, allowing us to portray a literal confrontation to ageing.

FIGURE 5, TIME TRAVEL, DAVIS AYER, 2011

FIGURE 4, UNTITLED, LINDER STERLING, 1978.

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PHOTOGRAPHIC SHOOT

The

final images from the photographic shoot feature the projection of various collage images - made up of aged facial features onto a naked youthful body. The models face is particularly prominent within two of the three final chosen images, with the third showing just the mouth area of the face. We took a very direct and literal approach to the confrontation of the ageing process; we wanted the model to appear content with the idea that ageing is a beautiful and natural factor of life. The photo shoot was taken in a dark room, on a DSLR with the flash turned off and the camera mounted on a tripod. The only light came from that of the projector, allowing the projection to appear the most prominent and vivid within the image, whilst creating intense shadow in the curves and creases of the body.

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FIGURE 6, AGEING GAZE, OWN IMAGE, 2013

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FIGURE 7, CONTENT WITH AGEING, OWN IMAGE, 2013

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We made a conscious decision

not to use props in this photo shoot. We felt that the use of props could have drawn away from the strength of the images we were projecting, not to mention the natural form of the models body. In conjunction with this, the decision not to use props was made simpler by the fact the photo shoot took place in a dark room, with the only light being that of the projector. Any props would therefore not be visible unless they were within the path of this light source. The decision to have the model without clothes was made in order to show her vulnerability. The various lines and creases within the images projected interact with the shape of her body in unusual ways, the use of clothing could have distorted these qualities. As she was wearing no clothes, the final poses chosen for the images were essential. We were extremely careful not to over sexualise the images, as this was not the original aim and could detract from our theme that ‘ageing is beautiful’.

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FIGURE 8, AGEING GAZE OWN IMAGE, 2013

Within

FIGURE 9, AGEING GAZE, OWN IMAGE, 2013

our final images, the models gaze represents that of contentment, confronting and embracing the images of ageing faces that are projected onto her youthful body. Her gaze is purposely different in all three of our images whilst consistently being neither dominant, nor submissive. The first of the three images shows the model looking straight into the camera, here the gaze purposely represents strength and acceptance of the ageing process, allowing the viewer to feel she is looking directly at them, although powerful, we purposely only included one image with a direct gaze, as not to appear too forceful. The second image purposely features a slightly more submissive gaze from the model, as the eye from the projection appears to staring straight at you. This image works particularly well as the model appears to be contemplating her future, addressing the social taboo.

FIGURE 10, COMFORT IN AGE OWN IMAGE, 2013

The final image features no visible gaze, the model appears to be comforting herself, again, accepting and embracing the ageing process projected onto her. This image is particularly strong due to the red tones featured within the image. Red is known to symbolise life, survival and passion. The models half smile shows contentment, whilst the projection of a smile represents happiness is to come.

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FIGURE 11, COMFORT IN AGE OWN IMAGE, 2013

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I-D MAGAZINE

In

terms editorial use, we decided our images would work best within the ID magazine publication. Established in 1954 but adapted in 1980, and well respected within both fashion and lifestyle sectors (circulating 83,054), I-D’s readership is that of 18-35+ year old style leaders and opinion formers (Bradinsight, 2013); a group not only perfect for the generation we are trying to target with our images, but also those that would appreciate the artistic approach and inspiration used to achieve them. I-D as a publication is not scared of taking risks, allowing us to incorporate

our main references to controversial artists such as Linder Sterling without fear of causing offence. The images used would be easily incorporated and adapted to fit perfectly into the layout and overall design aesthetic used within the publication. We felt publications such as The Gentlewoman and Vogue, had far too wide a target audience (18-46 year old and 20-44 year old respectively) (Bradinsight, 2013), to be suitable for our images. In addition to this, we felt our images would be lost within Vogues classic and tight aesthetic.

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IN CONCLUSION

As a whole, I am extremely pleased with our three final images. I feel

they directly address and question the essay title ‘what is beauty’ in a unique and diverse nature. Ageing is an inevitable factor for us all; our images represent a beautiful woman born within an overly self-conscious (more so than any previous) generation confronting the unnecessary social taboo of fearing getting older. The images are powerful and prove our message that ageing is beautiful. ‘After all Wrinkles are the calligraphy of our lives. They identify us as respected elders, wise mentors, ancestors in training. Each wrinkle tells a story.’ (Harvey-Warren, 2010)

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IMAGE REFERENCES Figure 1, Abstract, Own Image, 2013 Figure 2, Cream, Tea, 2010 Available At: http://www.t-crumpets. com/2010/04/abcs-of-summer-accessories.html , Last Accessed 1st December 2013 Figure 3, Untitled 1, Carla bromhead, 2012, Available At: http://www. coming-of-age.org.uk, Last Accessed: 1st December 2013 Figure 4, Untitled, Linder Sterling, 1978, Available at: http:// lareviewofbooks.org/essay/in-the-cut-the-art-of-linder, Last Accessed: 1st December 2013 Figure 5, Time Travel, Davis Ayer, 2011 Available at: http://www. davisayer.com, last Accessed 1st December 2013 Figure 6, Ageing Gaze, Own Image 2013 Figure 7, Content With Ageing, Own Image, 2013 Figure 8, Ageing Gaze, Own Image 2013 Figure 9, Content With Ageing, Own Image, 2013 Figure 10, Comfort In Age, Own Image 2013 Figure 11, Comfort In Age, Own Image 2013 Figure 12, Figure 13,

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REFERENCES Anon. (2012). The Art and Science of Ageing. Available: http://www. coming-of-age.org.uk. Last accessed 1st December 2013. Anon. (2012). Why are we Scared of Growing Old. Available: http:// www.stylist.co.uk/life/why-we-are-scared-of-growing-old#imagerotator-1. Last accessed 25th November 2013. BradInsight. (2013). I-D Magazine. Available: http://www.bradinsight. com/BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD000000B2bYrMAJ#circulation. Last accessed 1st December 2013. BradInsight. (2013). The Gentlewoman. Available: http://www. bradinsight.com/BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD000000IwvfrMAB#overview. Last accessed 3rd December 2013. Bradinsight. (2013). Vogue. Available: http://www.bradinsight.com/ BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD0000008ju5zMAA. Last accessed 2nd December 2013. David Banash. (2013). In the Cut: The Art of Linder Sterling. Available: http://lareviewofbooks.org/essay/in-the-cut-the-art-of-linder. Last accessed 24th November 2013. Dr. Robert Butler. (2006). Beauty Comes of Age. Available: http://www. dove.co.uk/en/Tips-Topics-and-Tools/Articles-and-Advice/Too-youngto-be-old-Dove-Pro-Age.aspx. Last accessed 1st December 2013. Mary Harvey-Warren. (2010). Each Wrinkle Tells a Story. Available: http://journeyintoelderhood.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/each-wrinkle-tellsstory.html. Last accessed 2nd December 2013. Raya Jalabi. (2013). Plastic surgery on the rise – with Botox and breast implants most popular. Available: http://www.theguardian.com/world/ us-news-blog/2013/jan/30/plastic-surgery-rise-botox-breast-implants. Last accessed 29th November 2013.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Anon. (2012). The Art and Science of Ageing. Available: http://www. coming-of-age.org.uk. Last accessed 1st December 2013. Anon. (2012). Why are we Scared of Growing Old. Available: http:// www.stylist.co.uk/life/why-we-are-scared-of-growing-old#imagerotator-1. Last accessed 25th November 2013. BradInsight. (2013). I-D Magazine. Available: http://www.bradinsight. com/BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD000000B2bYrMAJ#circulation. Last accessed 1st December 2013. BradInsight. (2013). The Gentlewoman. Available: http://www. bradinsight.com/BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD000000IwvfrMAB#overview. Last accessed 3rd December 2013. Bradinsight. (2013). Vogue. Available: http://www.bradinsight.com/ BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD0000008ju5zMAA. Last accessed 2nd December 2013. David Banash. (2013). In the Cut: The Art of Linder Sterling. Available: http://lareviewofbooks.org/essay/in-the-cut-the-art-of-linder. Last accessed 24th November 2013. Dr. Robert Butler. (2006). Beauty Comes of Age. Available: http://www. dove.co.uk/en/Tips-Topics-and-Tools/Articles-and-Advice/Too-youngto-be-old-Dove-Pro-Age.aspx. Last accessed 1st December 2013. Mary Harvey-Warren. (2010). Each Wrinkle Tells a Story. Available: http://journeyintoelderhood.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/each-wrinkle-tellsstory.html. Last accessed 2nd December 2013. Raya Jalabi. (2013). Plastic surgery on the rise – with Botox and breast implants most popular. Available: http://www.theguardian.com/world/ us-news-blog/2013/jan/30/plastic-surgery-rise-botox-breast-implants. Last accessed 29th November 2013.

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Figure 1, Abstract, Own Image, 2013 Figure 2, Cream, Tea, 2010 Available At: http://www.t-crumpets. com/2010/04/abcs-of-summer-accessories.html , Last Accessed 1st December 2013 Figure 3, Untitled 1, Carla bromhead, 2012, Available At: http://www. coming-of-age.org.uk, Last Accessed: 1st December 2013 Figure 4, Untitled, Linder Sterling, 1978, Available at: http:// lareviewofbooks.org/essay/in-the-cut-the-art-of-linder, Last Accessed: 1st December 2013 Figure 5, Time Travel, Davis Ayer, 2011 Available at: http://www. davisayer.com, last Accessed 1st December 2013 Figure 6, Ageing Gaze, Own Image 2013 Figure 7, Content With Ageing, Own Image, 2013 Figure 8, Ageing Gaze, Own Image 2013 Figure 9, Content With Ageing, Own Image, 2013 Figure 10, Comfort In Age, Own Image 2013 Figure 11, Comfort In Age, Own Image 2013 Figure 12, Gaga Cover, I-D Magazine, 2013, Available At: http://www. highsnobiety.com/2011/03/18/id-magazine-the-exhibitionist-issuecover-lady-gaga-for-mugler/, Last Accessed: 1st December 2013

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BIBLIOGRAPHY WEBSITES http://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2012/06/art-ageing http://www.gvart.co.uk/coming-of-age-the-art-and-science-of-ageing1-june-18-august-2012.html http://www.gvart.co.uk/press/GV%20Art%20-%20Coming%20of%20 Age%20-%20Press%20Release.pdf http://lareviewofbooks.org/essay/in-the-cut-the-art-of-linder http://www.bradinsight.com/BRAD/Profile/Title/a0HD000000B2bYrMAJ http://www.psychologicalscience.org/index.php/news/releases/doeswisdom-really-come-with-age-it-depends-on-the-culture.html http://www.theguardian.com/film/2000/feb/19/1 http://www.davisayer.com http://journeyintoelderhood.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/each-wrinkle-tellsstory.html http://sylviaplathnotes.wordpress.com/mirror/ http://qlil2.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/charlotte-niel.html https://www.lensculture.com/articles/vee-speers-immortal http://fashioncow.com/2012/09/how-do-we-face-the-future-withcollective-dysmorphia-steven-meisel-vogue-italia-september-2012/ http://www.perspektivet.no/en/utstilling/love-me/

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BIBLIOGRAPHY http://www.brandrepublic.com/news/630600/ http://thebigslice.org/a-successful-woman-of-a-certain-age-cindysherman-and-the-stereotypes-of-middle-aged-women/ http://artwednesday.com/2013/03/21/linder-sterling-femmeobjetwomanobject/ http://i-d.vice.com/en_gb/ BOOKS Bodies - Susie Orbach Linder Sterling - Linder Sterling, Philip Hoare, Morrissey

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GRACE JORDEN ILLUSTRATED ESSAY - WHAT IS BEAUTY? N0432752 FASH20031



What is beauty illustrated essay