For model I used as resource a DeviantArt stock via PersephoneStock. The stock picture is here. Thank you to them.
For the background I used as resource one of the shots I took in November of 2006 when visiting Katrina-ravaged NOLA and Mississippi. In the painting I kept the flood lines apparent on the buildings.
The stock image struck me as the model seemed well prepped in modeling styles featured in Antonioni’s “Blow Up”.
Preoccupation with style is annoying, but I can’t discount its importance in identity. Take someone and put them in another person’s clothes (especially forcing them into another person’s style) and you’ve got an identity crisis at hand. Style can be an expression of the individual’s creativity and one’s values but can also submerge the individual in identification with a group.
Perhaps there are some unfamiliar with Betsy McCall, which was a fashion paper doll for children. Don’t know if it’s still around, but when I was a a little girl it came out once a month in McCall’s magazine. One was given the impression, even as a young child, that with the right clothes, Betsy McCall was prepared for anything.
It’s style over substance, in replacement of substance, that I was thinking about when working on the above, and how the legacy of Betsy McCall–who always had the just right clothes for every occasion–continues, and how it separates from experience, one’s own and that of others.
I’d been holding onto these NOLA pics since November, wanting to do something with them, and when I saw the Blow-Up styled poses at PersephoneStock it occurred to me to paint them as settings for fashion shots, reflecting on the above.
There you have the basic thoughts, in as few words as possible.
Worked on this series back in February.