Notable Revolutionaries: How Many Can You Name?
I came across this image on Tumblr. I started counting how many I could name. I named 13.
I asked my 10 year-old cousin and she could only name one person; Bob Marley. My cousin and sister named four between them.
How many can you name?
10:50 pm • 18 April 2013 • 5 notes
Barbara Nicoli and Leila Ananna: Asian Models Are Less Sexy.
I read through the article ‘5 Top Casting Directors Explain Why Runways Are So White’, which was very insightful. Casting directors James Scully and John Pfeiffer gave some great and encouraging points such as ‘a beautiful model is a beautiful model’.
I got to the very last casting directors, Barbara Nicoli and Leila Ananna (CD’s of Burberry, Gucci, Saint Laurent and other brands…) and they shared a few of their thoughts (I cut it down for simplicity):
- Sometimes what I disagree with is putting a black girl [in a show] just because you need diversity.
- But when you do a casting, [you see a lot fewer black and Asian models than white models]
- It’s also true that, for example, Caucasians have a specific body type, black girls have a specific body shape, and Asian girls have a specific body shape. So I guess there are some collections where it’s more perfect for an Asian body shape because they are more flat and less sexy, in a way. Asians, they are not curvy, so to put an Asian [who’s] very flat [with a] baby body shape in a show where normally the designer knows they love sexy, beautiful, curvy girls, it’s a bit of nonsense.
- Regarding the representation of various faces [on runways], we think fashion shows have already shown it. Don’t you? There are plenty of different faces in a show.
- We think we need to keep in mind that these are shows. A show needs to make you dream, and it doesn’t necessarily need to represent reality.
Oh, so now we’re going into the whole science of model selection…
The differences between black, white and Asian models would probably be true if the models weren’t size zero. Size zero no matter what race, all have pretty much the same body type so I don’t buy into that cop-out.
Furthermore (pertaining to the very last point, which I sort of concur with…), the fashion world isn’t a mirror that reflects society. ’Real girls’ are underrepresented in the fashion world and only over the past few years has the fashion world attempted to change that due to the backlash the industry has received for using mostly size zero models.
The third point really stood out to me. It’s clear that Barbara (the person who said it) was playing into racial stereotypes about Asian women. Her statement was also very telling; Caucasian models are just the standard for any fashion show or job.
Barbara and Leila have attempted to defend the lack of ethnic models on the runways of London, Paris, Milan and New York by using racial stereotypes. It’s clear that they prefer Caucasian models and that they view them as the standard.
There are many women of colour living in North America and in Europe, why should we be underrepresented on the runway? We buy and like the same things that Caucasian girls do.
2:37 pm • 24 March 2013 • 1 note
The First Ethiopian Miss Israel And The Forced Sterilisation of Ethiopian Jews.
Without a doubt, the first Ethiopian Miss Israel is a beautiful young woman with a smile so charming, that Obama even invited her to a White House gala dinner.
Major congrats to Miss Yityish Aynaw. Her beauty was definitely unparalleled at Miss Israel 2013.
I really don’t want to take away from her incredible achievement; it’s a major record breaking, history making, achievement. However, I can’t help but notice how convenient the win was for the Israeli government/propaganda machine.
Because a number of weeks ago, reports came that the Israeli government had been using long-term birth control on Ethiopian Jews under false pretences. For years, female Ethiopian Jews were injected with Depo-Provera; a long-term birth control that lasts for three months. Scare tactics were used to terrify these women into taking these injections, even when it went against their will.
According to Haaretz, Health Ministry Director General Prof. Roni Gamzu has ordered for these birth control injections to stop, unless the recipients understand the implications of taking the birth control.
While I understand the importance of consent, (i.e. medical treatment and scientific research, both of which depend on consent in order to be carried out), I’m quite infuriated about the fact that these women’s opinions and feelings were never taken into consideration
No kind of thought was given to how this infringed these women’s human rights.
And as if ignoring the feelings of these women wasn’t bad enough, some writers have had a ‘what’s the big deal?’ attitude about this. Remember, Depo-Provera is a long-term birth control and not a permanent sterilisation treatment, but some writers think that makes it ok because the women aren’t permanently prevented from having children. These writers have completely missed the point here.
My main issue with this is the fact that these rights that so many Western and Israeli Jews take for granted, are not being given to these women who are very worthy of being in Israel. They’re not told the truth, they’re not given the opportunity to choose and they’re being prevented from doing what most women desire; have children and raise them.
Just to conclude, I’m pleased that the Depo-Provera prescriptions are being stopped and that it was never a ‘permanent’ solution to begin with. However, I’m quite aware of what Israel’s intentions were with this and I know for a fact that Yityish’s win served as a great distraction, more so because her win got more media attention than the actual birth control issue. Furthermore, perhaps this win was Israel’s attempt to prove its diversity and progressiveness when it comes to co-existing with people of other races. I’m happy for Yityish and her accomplishments, but I haven’t forgotten what they’ve done to her people… our people; women and Africans.
10:28 pm • 22 March 2013 • 2 notes
The Bad Attitude of Bloggers.
The topic at hand has been on my mind for quite some time…
I’ve attended a number of natural hair related events (most of them in London). These events had an amazing atmosphere overall, but I couldn’t help but notice the clear divide at some of these events; non-bloggers remained together and all of the bloggers remained together.
Of course I can’t fault people for staying with their friends or with others that are more ‘accessible’ (yes, accessible because I have seen bloggers get together like a clique and it can be quite intimidating), but the divide was clear.
I have met bloggers who were really friendly and approachable, but then I have also met some who were kind of stand-offish or who gave off an ’holier than thou’ vibe.
At the time it really bothered me. How can you blog and have so many supportive followers but be so antisocial? Then I figured that who you are online is probably different to who you are offline; perhaps some of them just aren’t social or friendly at all.
Perhaps they have this attitude because of blogger arrogance? Arrogance because of the number of followers or hits some of them have? Or maybe because they’re having a bad day? If your day is so bad that your attitude is affected, should you really be attending the event? Go home and recuperate.
I can’t pinpoint the reasons, but the bad attitude is really off-putting and I have stopped supporting some bloggers because of this. If you can’t appreciate your followers or subscribers, why should they continue to support you?
I believe the very last straw for me was when I saw some bloggers gossip and laugh about other people at some of these events. I found this to be incredibly immature and unwarranted. Not just because they are grown women, but because they are bloggers and they rely on those people they’re gossiping about to keep them in ‘business’ so to speak. Needless to say, these people have lost all of my support. Attitude is everything.
Have you had any good or bad experiences meeting some bloggers?
10:34 pm • 21 March 2013 • 3 notes
Regrading Brandon Stanton of HONY, Businesses Need To Stop Exploiting Art
If you haven’t heard of Humans of New York, your Facebook feed is seriously missing out.
Brandon Stanton is a street photographer who snaps shots of New Yorkers for Humans of New York. The shots are candid and untouched but very nice to look at… particularly because New Yorkers have so much individuality and ‘culture’. Humans of New York shows just how diverse the city is and how different New Yorkers can be from one another.
Given Stanton’s very popular and impressive shots, it’s unsurprising that DKNY stole the images after he turned down their offer to purchase them .
- DKNY wanted to use Stanton’s images and offered $15,000 in exchange for 300 pics
- Stanton’s friend said $50 per pic from a company worth millions is not enough
- Stanton rejected DKNY
- DKNY used his images anyway
- Fan sends picture of Stanton’s images in a DKNY store in Bangkok
- Stanton demanded that DKNY donate $100,000 on his behalf to a Bed-Stuy YMCA
- DKNY explains the situation, offers an apology and donates $25,000 on behalf of Stanton to the Bed-Stuy YMCA
DKNY has clearly crossed the line in this case and their ‘compensation’ wasn’t nearly enough for a million dollar business.
Furthermore, violating copyright is punishable by law. I’m guessing they didn’t think anyone would notice the photographs in a DKNY store in Bangkok so they proceeded to violate copyright laws anyway.
From an artists’ point of view (if you regard writers as artists), it pains me to see plagiarism and counterfeiting of artists’ work. They put the time into it, they put the struggle into it, they put their passion into it… only for it to be passed off by someone else as their own work.
The work of artists is here to be shared (that’s what artists do, share their work) but that doesn’t mean their work should be regarded as ‘free’ just because it is shared.
The irony of this entire situation is that DKNY is part of the fashion industry; its entire basis is on art. From artist to artist, DKNY should have accepted that
- their offer was abysmal; $15,000 for 300 pictures is nearly nothing
- Stanton rejected their offer; they should have respected his decisions
- they couldn’t use his images without his ‘go-ahead’
But like most iconic and major fashion companies, DKNY are now just in the business of making money. So it really wasn’t that surprising that DKNY did what they did.
Like everything else, art is a trade, people don’t do it for ‘free’ unless they say they do. Don’t assume that it is ‘free’. Artists have to make a living too.
Artists who have got to a stage where they deem themselves valuable, should start demanding incentives for their work. You can’t keep doing free work for people if your artistry is your only source of income.
Artists also have to go out of their way to protect their work. I sometimes like to post art but if I can’t locate where or who it has come from, I can hardly add a source to it. It’s not that I don’t want you to get your recognition, sometimes it’s hard to say who it is from.
Artists should keep their watermarks/signatures on their work because people will attempt to pass it off as their own; protect your work and use a good watermark/signature so that it can’t be easily exploited.
Stanton’s reaction in this is commendable. He wasn’t asking for money for his personal use, he was asking for it to be donated to an organisation that does good for children.
Stanton started a fundraiser
to raise the remainder of the $100,000 he requested from DKNY and he got about $103,710 (last time I checked).
Artists, protect your work. Demand incentives.
8:10 am • 4 March 2013 • 3 notes