I like those Dove Beauty ads putting normal-sized women in front of the camera. So much of what we're shown as "beauty" features heroin-addicted pre-adolescents, it's refreshing to see real people every now and then on the screen.
I think most of us underestimate how much manipulation goes into the models shown in ads, as seen in this 60-second commercial about what goes into making a billboard, starting with an actual human model. So much of what we see in media images is more a painting of reality than reality itself.
What I do with super-heroes and science fiction action scenes, advertising companies do with real women and products. Each has about the same relation to reality, but because the latter is set in our familiar world, it is much more convincing. When you see a painting of a big ol' barbarian wielding a sword, surrounded by dragons and goblins, you know it's not real because it's in a fantastic setting. When you see a fashion model parading through the streets of New York in a magazine, you assume it's real because you're looking at a photograph. But as the video shows, in many ways that model is just as much of a fantasy as Conan ever was.
(Hat-tip to Matt Yglesias)
Monday, October 16, 2006
- 10/16/2006 12:28:00 PM