Philadelphia, Pa 2013
Vaunt and I spent so much of this year on the road this year we hardly had a chance to shoot in our new house before we were gone for months at a time. One of the first things we did after the car crash, after our bruises and bodies had healed was take a moment to enjoy our home. We wanted to shoot something in our own bed, one of our favorite places, so Vaunt put on some of her most beautiful lingerie and we went to work, and then we passed the hell out.
So delicate and lovely
Teruha 照葉 (Shining leaf) (also Takaoka Chishou 高岡 智照) (1896-1994) at New-York with her american friend and lover Hildegard - 1920
VINTAGE VAMP | 1920
—- Josephine Baker, Paris, 1920s
Morocco (1930). First onscreen kiss between two women.
I’m aware that this is, much like a lot of ‘lesbian erotica’ from this same era, often hailed wrongly as authentic queer history, simply a titillating performance for the male gaze. The characters in question are a showgirl and an audience member; the kiss is for thrills, both for the specators in the film and for the film’s audience. Yet the inclusion of the kiss was a deliberate addition on Marlene Dietrich’s part. Dietrich, who herself was bisexual, insisted on the kiss and wrote it into the script with a very particular eye for continuity as to make it impossible for the censors to cut. This was her first American film. For her to be so gutsy and to show that much agency as to include a history making few seconds of kissing, is certainly worth talking about. Even if the characters themselves aren’t necessarily queer, or the rest of the film is pretty regressive with respect to all sorts of issues, this is a fantastic moment.
And that is why I want to embody Dietrich’s character this halloween.
Billboard demonstrating gender stereotypes as most people automatically assume that Alex is the boy.
Actually, I’ve studied design and advertising, and I can tell you that the reason people would look at this and immediately assume Alex is the boy is because, quite simply, the boy is the focal point of the ad.
English-speaking readers’ line of sight goes from left to right and up to down. This ad leads the viewer from the words MEET ALEX etc straight to the boy and then over and down to the girl. I didn’t even notice there was a set of parenthesis with words in them in the ad until I looked the fourth time.
This is a fallacious confirmation bias, as anyone looking at it will assume Alex is the focal point (i.e. The Boy) and then if they’re perceptive they’ll notice the words at the bottom. Aha! Those damn gender stereotypes gotcha again! Except no, because the ad literally forces you to read it as “Alex is the boy” by the visual language and lines of sight.
A better ad would have been structured from top to bottom instead of left to right, and wouldn’t have pushed the girl, the real subject of the ad (who, by the way, has been VISUALLY PUSHED OUT OF HER RIGHTFUL SPACE ON THE AD BY HER BROTHER) off to the corner as far away from her identifiers as possible.
Here, I’ll make you a better ad.
Bam. Shitty stock photo but you get the point. If anyone sees this and assumes Alex is the boy, they don’t have the the ad layout to use as an excuse for their internalized gender shittery. Likewise, the ad isn’t actively trying to make you read it a certain way and THEN making you feel guilty for interpreting it the way they designed it to be.
Reblogging again for the excellent deconstruction and commentary.
doctor who: moffat era + the worst muse