Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Freedom of speech

I have designed the cards for the guerilla campaign and now just need to find a way to print them and gather a group of brave friends to help me embark upon this mission.

I have to be careful in how I go about attempting this, as some have fear that I might be doing something illegal. I do not really see how this is illegal, as all I am doing is encouraging thought by posing questions of inquiry. How could this be illegal... does it not fall into the category of freedom of speech under the First Amendment? I am not defacing property, or vandalizing merchandise, I am just asking questions.

Okay. I just looked up the definitions of vandalism, defacement, and hooligan—none of which my mission or myself align with. I checked the laws regarding vandalism, and I feel that the only account for which I might be possibly charged is the decrease of economic gain. This though, is not my intent. All I am attempting to achieve through this campaign is to ignite thought—to make people pause in their moment of purchase and actually question where their current belief of fashion came from. I want to make people wonder how their belief was developed and think about who it was that told them what was or was not beautiful.

Is this illegal? I think not.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

A spark for fire

"The unreal is more powerful than the real. Because nothing is as perfect as you can imagine it. Because its only intangible ideas, concepts, beliefs, fantasies that last. Stone crumbles. Wood rots. People, well, they die. But things as fragile as a thought, a dream, a legend, they can go on and on. If you can change the way people think. The way they see themselves. The way they see the world. You can change the way people live their lives. That’s the only lasting thing you can create."

Thank you Natalie for sharing this quote, and thank you Chuck Palahniuk for this thoughtful insight.
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I am thankful for this life, for this world, and how, when you take time, even one moment, and look for beauty, it is possible to find it. Often beauty exists in the most unlikely, or unexpected of places. It is in perspective, it is a simple shift. Nothing changes, but the way in which we choose to see. Inspiration, therefore, is all around; it is just a matter of seeing.
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This is what I hope to do, this is now my mission, to shift perspectives and change the way people see. I am not attempting to revolutionize the world, as I had initially with collegiate spirit, but rather to propose a lens for those willing to see in a new light.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Back to the heart

Reviewing my presentations, I realize that what I set out to achieve initially at the beginning of last quarter when I started this project is exactly the direction I am currently pursuing today.

"Visual communication of ideas to inspire societal change and the way we define beauty."

Yes. This is from my first presentation, and I have stayed aligned with this goal, I just had no idea that it would take the form of a guerilla marketing campaign. Who knew?
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Throughout this project I kept asking questions.

I kept inquiring—my focus has been to ignite inquiry.

The topic I have chosen is a matter of perception versus reality. There is a monarchy that has existed within the fashion industry since the 17th century. Although the power, overtime, has shifted from France to America, and rather than being solely political, it exists within the realm of mass media publication and is based upon opinion that is exerted from the pages of Vogue.

The monarchy today, the one existing within the fashion industry, is it real, or simply a perception of reality? With either case, I have realized that clothing is nothing more than costume in context. It is not identity, but merely fabric to fit the varied roles that we play in our lives.

Irregardless of what the monarchy proclaims we should or should not wear, we are free. We have a system of anarchy, we just often choose not to fully realize and fully embrace this reality.
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Ok. So, how can I influence change here? There are infinite solutions to this, but the one I am pursuing is that of inquiry. I am going to present questions to the public that initiate thought.
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How do you develop your perception of reality?
How do you define yourself?
Where do you derive your self-worth?
What is beauty?
What is clothing—is it costume or is it identity?
What inspires you?
What is fashion?
Is beauty a universal concept?
What is our societal definition of beauty?
Are you confined by distorted ideas of beauty?
What is confidence?
What is individuality?
What is style?
If clothing is an expression of self, what are you saying?
What is dressing-up versus clothing?
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We should dress in the costumes of ourselves.
True style is the freedom to be unique.
True beauty is acceptance of self; it is individuality.
The original purpose of clothing is to clothe, but beyond this, clothing is a possible means for self-expression. Some people wear clothes for its intended purpose, while others wear clothes to make a statement.

What to say

Okay. So my project is going to be a guerilla marketing campaign.

Now I am moving forward, and to continue in this direction the next step is for me to identify the main messages that I want to communicate. What is it that I want to say—what is it that I want people to know? Once this is identified, how do I say it? One thing at a time now! I can only do one step before getting to the other. Focus.

I'm going to review my presentations and gather the main points. I hope this will make things become clear—at least clearer than they are presently.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Revelation to revolution

During my presentation yesterday, I had a moment of inspiration.

I realized that it's not a museum exhibit that I should be creating, but rather a guerilla marketing campaign.

I want to share information, spark something that changes perspectives, and inspire people to question the monarchy that reigns within our society. The context of a museum, although a great means for sharing information, is not the right context for what it is that I am attempting with my capstone.

If it is 'anarchy' that I am wanting to spark, anarchy from the fashion monarchy, looking back in history, anarchy was never achieved through the safe and structured walls of a museum. Never. Anarchy was ignited amongst the people, it was a stirring from underneath that shook the foundation of the system at the top.

I need to unleash a current that inspires change—one that makes people take notice, one that is bold, one that speaks so loudly that others begin to hear.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Presentation—takes initiation

The first of three for our final capstone projects, and number one is tomorrow.

Let's go.
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I have been thinking about this for many months now in theory, and the challenge with presenting tomorrow is that I have to be concise. Being concise is something I struggle with, as I love thinking thoughts, and thinking so many kinds of thoughts about the same topic, that I often think my way into paralysis when I embark upon too much analysis. Dad was right—paralysis by analysis actually occurs. Now, if I can find a way to combat this.

It is simple really, just keep moving forward. Yes, ok, so the real challenge I realize is in the implementation of this behavior...

To keep moving forward with this project, I need to answer a few questions as my presentation will consist of the results.

1. What is the problem I have identified?
2. What am I attempting to do?
3. Why is this important?
4. What is my proposed solution/ how do I achieve what I am attempting?
5. What do I expect to present/ what is my inspiration?
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1. Our societal relationship with clothing is dictated by a monarchy.
The problem that I have identified is that there is a powerful external source of influence that impacts the way in which we define beauty in regard to clothing.
Societies around the globe have been influenced by a form of this external force since the 17th century.
This began in the historic form of a monarchy, originating in France with Louis XIV and the court at Versailles. Today, a similar power exists with the monarchy established by Anna Wintour and Vogue.
The exerted opinions of those at the head of the monarchy, both historically and currently within society, influence those underneath them + shape the relationship they have with clothing in light of their personal opinions

Societal relationship with clothing is a consequence of the monarchy.

2. I will expose the existing monarchical system of Vogue.
I am attempting to reveal the impact that the fashion industry, as led by Vogue, has upon our personal relationships with clothing.

3. Our existing societal relationship with clothing is distorted.
We give too much power and regard the opinions as expressed by the fashion industry with too high esteem, that the words and images found in fashion magazines become our dictators—we allow them to dictate our relationship with clothing, (we allow them to shape our identity).

4. I am proposing anarchy.
The anarchy that I propose takes form within the mind of each individual. By revealing the parallels between Louis XIV and the French Court + Anna Wintour and Vogue through the medium of an exhibit, I hope that through this exposure to historical references and current societal observations, to empower others to desire change and realize that freedom from the monarchy is available to those who step out and make their own choices in clothing—realizing that clothing is not your identity, it is only a costume.

5. Let's begin a revolution—today.
My inspiration is the French Revolution. The people of France recognized that there was a problem, and they took action. They revolted against the injustice of their nation, and ignited change in the system. Today, let's do the same.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Anarchy + identity

"Understanding identity in relation to clothing and the consequence of
fashion."

Examination of the fashion industry through the monarchies of Louis XIV
from France + Anna Wintour of Vogue, to determine how we can develop a
sense of anarchy for our identity.

Fear

I really need to get over myself and this insane trepidation that exists within me. I realize how afraid I have been to simply post my thoughts in this space. Why is this? It seems crazy, but I think it is fear of criticism, now that I really look at it.

The thing is, there is no longer any time for fear... it is time for action!

Okay, so what direction am I going?

I was on the brink of abandoning Louis XIV and Anna Wintour altogether, but luckily, my professor prevented me from this as it would have had me pursuing further research in this rapidly diminishing sliver of time that I have left. Thank you again!

Bah! Why do I always do this? Is anyone else prone to abandoning ideas when it is time to move forward? Well, I am about to turn over a new leaf and for once, stick with my original idea. It is a good idea that I had! I need to remember this. It is not the best, and cannot be, but it is intriguing, and all I need now is to execute my externalization/deliverable in a way that invites others to learn about this topic. I need to make Louis + Anna relevant to those outside myself. I know I find this parallel interesting, but I have to invite others into this conversation in a way that is compelling.

What exactly is this conversation?

Mmm... time to think some thoughts on this one. The goal is to be concise in my answer—clear, and concise with a well-defined target audience. I cannot be all things to all people, so I have to stop trying. I just need to answer this one truthfully so that I can move on and move forward from here.

Here's to progressing forward!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

True Beauty

Moving on, finding a path

Beauty, clothing, fashion or identity...

Should I look at all of these, or do I need to pick one? If just one, which one?
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Revealing the heart of the fashion industry to find freedom from clothing, to develop an understanding of true identity, one in which we can find beauty.
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Is this clear? I understand it... will others, do you?

Polyvore, my revolution ally

As noted in the New Yorker regarding Polyvore...
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Fashion magazines are widely perceived to be snake pits, but the Polyvore community values kindliness, mutual affirmation, and tact. Most of the comments that users make about other people’s sets are full of smiley faces and exclamation points; flamers are quickly ostracized.

“It’s a very positive environment to be in,” Lee said. If MonChanel’s namesake once declared, “Elegance is refusal,” the site’s ethos is more like “Elegance is inclusion.”

Here the pimply teen-ager floats blissfully free from test-marketed cover lines promising a hotter body in ten days. “I really wish I’d had Polyvore when I was little, because when I was reading the magazines I would look at the models and be, like, ‘Oh, these people are so thin’—sometimes I’d just feel so horrible,” Lee said.

“To have some place where you can express yourself and get compliments and feedback—I think that’s really important.”

Evaluating, now making movement

Reflecting was lovely, but now to make actual movement...
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Information evaluation:
Client / the museum + me
Audience / individuals who wear clothes
Message / true identity is not looking like everyone else, it is looking like yourself
Client motivation /clothing is costume
Audience motivation / desire to embrace freedom from the idea that acceptable identity exists in conformity to the monarchy of fashion in our society
Competition / Dove campaign for real beauty
Environment / mis-interpretation of the exhibit message
Audience desired response / analysis of personal relationship with clothing
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I want to help individuals redefine their identity + find freedom from clothing, by revealing truths of the industry

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Reflecting toward movement

Where to now? I think I have asked this question before. So many times throughout this process have I wondered where I should go—what direction to take. Now is the time that I just need to move. I have researched this topic of fashion, beauty, and identity within our society and that of the past. I need to recognize that there will always be more for me to learn, there is so much out there, and so many people have developed thoughts on this topic long before me. In light of this, I also need to have confidence in all I have learned and in the ideas that I have for communicating my thoughts on all of this.

...I feel as though I as swirling in a hurricane of information, images, and ideas... STOP. The winds have quieted; I need to be still. It is time to process the information!
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Thank you Mark Oldach for writing about creativity + thank you Dominic for sending us his article. Processing the Information is a roadmap for the creative. It does not reveal the destination, but provides advice as to how we can reach our own amidst the torrent of information we travel through as designers.
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Now, insight as how to move forward...
Review. Reorganize. Restate. Readdress. Reword.

1. Review all notes and research.
2. Reorganize the information you have gathered.
3. Restate the information in various forms.
4. Readdress the project objective.
5. Reword the project objective as design criteria.

"Give yourself the luxury of time to let the information marinate in your brain." Effective results are the product of a specific message and a clearly identified audience...
Focused objectives. Specific audience. Defined expectations. Single message.

Do not be all things to all people!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Same thoughts, new community

http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/03/29/100329fa_fact_jacobs

http://www.polyvore.com/

The unoriginal

I have heard it stated that there is no such thing as an original idea. Whatever someone comes up with is a result of something that has already been done before.

For some crazy reason, I thought that my ideas about the fashion world were unique in some way and exempt from this. I have realized, they are definitely not. This was, initially, disappointing. I have not pioneered a new thought. I have not come up with an original idea. But I found peace in realizing that there is a community of individuals who also feel as I do about the fashion industry—an anarchy is already occurring...

This is so very exciting! These people are the ones who I can look to and analyze as I begin to develop a framework for the exhibit.
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On Thursday night I went to the SAM. I was exploring the exhibits and researching the spaces and how they are used to reveal, share and teach an audience. It was interesting to see how exhibit designers and curators used the physical space to tell a story about the artist. This is what I need to work on, developing the outline for my story so that I can begin to create.

But what is the story I am trying to tell...