oh hey blog!

November 15, 2006 at 11:34 pm (Uncategorized)

Soooo.  I’m waiting to do the virtual class assignment, but theres no groups. I decided to play mahjong, but then I lost and got a little frusterated so I stopped. Then I checked my email… nothing new since 3 minutes ago. Nothing new on facebook either! So I was all, what should I do? I almost gave up and went up to the cave (aka my loft) but then I was like oh, then I won’t be able to do the assignment at all, and since this is the only class I’m doing like, super super well in, i figured i might as not wreck that. wow, i did the proper grammar for awhile there, but its just not gonna last. i feel that capitol letters are oppressive against lowercase letters. just because they’re first doesn’t make them more important! especially d’s, which is dully noted on kyle’s facebook. hm, i wonder if the nest has raspberry frozen yogurt again. that was good. slash i didn’t get it, but my friend emily did and i tasted it and it was really good. usually im more of a chocolate ice cream afficionado, but i found the raspberry quite refreshing. hmm, what else? im pretty sure the groups aren’t up yet. but they could be, because kyle gave up and started playing collapse. i have to fight that urge, because once i start i just won’t be able to stop. like today during sabrina, i got to level 23! I KNOW! it got super super fast at the end, and i just couldn’t handle it. slashhhhh i was hungry, and it was 5, so smellco was open for dinner. and i thought i had to eat so i could come and do english, but i guess i was wrong about that. i should probably be doing something productive… aka something on my to do list. its not that long though, so i think i can let that slide. slash its still early, and ill probably be up til like, 2 am again because im a complete insomniac. throw up, i know. not that i went to sleep super early ever, but i like to go to bed around 1-2ish. i hate not being able to sleep, its so frusterating. because im just laying there and im like “this is freaking AWESOME” and then ipod dies, and thats lame. ok, so i just checked and theres no word on the groups. bum mer. everyones kinda tweaking out about it. i get where theyre coming from. i just dont want to get flustered, because that is never pretty. but i guess everyone else is able to show their concern without getting flustered, which is something i admire. i kind of have the urge to just read everyone’s and comment on it. that might be interesting. i dont remember what everyone’s topic is, so it would be nice to figure that out. im pretty pumped about my paper actually, it should be sweet. i like writing papers where i like the topic, its so much easier. like in high school for the last two years when i basically wrote all of my papers on the same topic, just using different books. its not my fault that i enjoy satire, and that this happens to work well with projects! slash junior year i read some richard russo too, to go along with my satires of colleges. prarie really liked that paper. and then they went and turned empire falls into a mini series. but it was actually kind of good. like, it had paul newman in it, how could it NOT be good? mm, kyle just busted out the m&ms. yum. speaking of paul newman AND yum, have you ever had his cookies? those things are BANGIN! ohh, especially the ginger snap ones with the creme inside. oh man. the people i babysat for had them, and i would always eat them with a nice glass of organic milk. organic milk tastes SO GOOD. i want to babysit for them over christmas just so i can have a glass.  maybe not. do they put brown food coloring in brown m&m’s? because in the wedding planner, matthew mchoweveryouspellthat only eats the brown ones because they have less artificial coloring… but is that true? how would you find that out? would they tell you that? maybe i guess. doo doo da doo. i guess im running out of stuff to talk about. thats upsetting. i covered a wide variety of topics already, but random things aren’t really popping into my head anymore. whenever i have to randomly think of a word, i always think of watermelon. im not really sure why. it is a fun word. but not as fun to say as henna. hennnnnnnnnn-na. so fun. and pudding. puuuuuuuuuuuuuuu-ding. im pretty sure theres more, i just don’t remember. ok, so i think im going to go actually accomplish things. if you read this, you probs deserve a metal. slash it might not be that bad, i don’t remember what i talked about. umm, kbuh

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Research Paper

November 15, 2006 at 12:02 am (Uncategorized)

I have decided to focus on the evolution of the music video in accordance with MTV. Music videos can be looked at like advertisements. They help to sell the artist, cd, or a certain genre of music. The original music video was just live footage of the band in concert, but they have come a long way since then (mostly with the aid of MTV.) As time elapses, the videos have gained more hidden meanings and intent with the better graphics and editing techniques. I will be trying to trace the evolution of the music video and their importance to both MTV and art in general. I will also be trying to decipher the future of the music video, since MTV has moved past playing music videos nonstop.

I have found a lot of research regarding the music video in general, mostly from the time when they first began (the early ’80’s) I have also found some things about MTV and its importance to pop culture.  One book  Rocking Around the Clock: Music Television, Postmodernism, and Consumer Culture by E. Ann Kaplan focuses on MTV and their relationship with the music video. She describes a music video as “rock promos” for the record company and artist.  She discusses how showing music videos at all hours of the day is just like pelting the audience with advertisements over and over again. She also discusses how MTV itself has changed, like how in the beginning it was ultra-conservative about the videos and artists it would endorse. She also discusses the advertising of MTV and the subliminal messages behind their ad campagin (ex the man on the moon, I want my MTV! etc.) This information fits in nicely with tracking the evolution of both the channel and the works. By showing MTV’s conservative beginnings it is interesting to try to figure out how MTV became the provocative channel we know of today.

Another source I used was a book titled Experiencing Music Video: Aesthetics and Cultural Context by Carol Vernallis. She focuses on the process of how the music video was born, and how it is created. She looks at things like editing, the song lyrics, the setting and the artist itself and it’s affect on the video. She discusses the two types of video, narrative and antinarrative and how they get their point accross. This information will help in unmasking the real message behind the music video to figure out what they are really selling.

I still have a couple of books to check out, as well as some articles. There are also some movies that I might watch, particularly one documenting Spike Jones’ work on music videos. These things will further help me to figure out the art of the music video and its importance to MTV.

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Freire Second Reading

November 7, 2006 at 3:58 am (Uncategorized)

1. Most of the teachers I had in high school fully embraced the subject/object theory of education. They talked at the students instead of engaging with them. Typically, this is mostly in the math-science subject area. This may be because this area is seen as something that is more cut and dry, black and white with hardly any grey area to speak of. The teachers take advantage of the lack of wiggle room with their subject matter and fully take it as their own. This makes it easier to deposit the information directly to the student’s heads, because a formula is a formula and it will not change. One of my teachers, however, taught not by depositing information but creating a concious of what the information he had could do for us. My junior year english teacher, hereafter affectionately known as Prarie, used information not as a bank deposit, but as a tool for exploration of higher thinking. In my opinion, Prarie just may be the smartest person alive, not just because of his vast knowledge within the educational spectrum (i.e. in the areas of typical learning, like english, math, science, etc) as well as his knowledge of popular culture as well as life experience in general. By taking Prarie’s class I was “conscious of my consciousness”. This means that instead of listening in order to understand the facts to be able to regurgitate them back on a test, I listened because I knew that this information was actually pertinent and could one day really help me in life.

2. As used in the essay, alienation is used to describe the educational system as hollowed. The words used in the educational process lose all of their meaning in the subject/object scenario. This is because the words of the subject are changed to become meaningless because they no longer have value, they just become an idea that is expected to be regurgitated with no effort. In education, alienation is apparent when the teacher talks down to a student. They are alienating the student by forming groups: the informed and the unknowing. Information can be looked at in two ways in general: either enlightening or alienating. Information can help those who have it to become something better, while it can alienate those who don’t have the information and are unable to obtain of what the enlightened have.

3. Freire  embraces his topic and does not speak down to the reader. He explains all of his theories on the educational system but not in a way of just feeding it to a consumer. There are spaces for the reader to either contradict his points throughout the reading as well as add more to them. In this way it is more of a dialouge between colleges than that of a forcing of knowledge from a subject to an object.

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Research Topic

October 31, 2006 at 9:44 pm (Uncategorized)

For my research paper I’m going to focus on MTV. I am going to research the evolution of the channel as a whole. This can include the types of programs that have started on MTV and the ones that are now. (music videos to reality tv) Also I may look into the different ways that MTV has advertised these programs, if the research potential is there. There are many books in the library that discuss MTV, from it’s affect on politics to the generation of a style of television. There must also be things online in data bases but i have yet to figure out the proper keywords in order to find it. MTV is much too broad a search, and I’ve tried MTV network as well.

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Options for research paper

October 24, 2006 at 11:48 pm (Uncategorized)

So the first thing that came into my mind when we were supposed to pick an advertisement to trace through history was coke. It’s been around for a pretty long time, so theres a lot to trace. They also have had an extremely large campaign to advertise anywhere and everywhere. But coke seems pretty generic, so I kept thinking. The next thing I came up with was ciggarettes. It would be interesting to see how one manufactures a product that will slowly kill you. It has to take a lot to sell that kind of thing, (other than the burning addiction that comes attached) because if it were easy then people would be selling murderers or something equally lethal. I also thought about Barbies, although I don’t think that would go very far, it seems too specific. Maybe dolls in general, because they’ve been around about as long as little girls have and someone had to sell it to them.

bballads-coke.jpg taryton.jpg greitai_barbiepreview.jpg

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Second Reading Susan Bordo

October 24, 2006 at 9:04 pm (Uncategorized)

1. I like how Bordo wrote this essay. Usually written speech and spoken speech are two completely different things. But this essay is written more like how one may talk. There is structure to the essay, but it is loose and free-flowing. Bordo makes sure never to stray from her point, but to explain it thoroughly instead of short and straight to the point. This is much like a conversation that is spoken from one person to another. There is a point to every conversation, but it is never just a stating of the facts and then walking away. This type of writing makes the reader seem more involved. Instead of just listening to what the author has to say, they are more like the recipient of this knowledge as if they were able to speak back to her with their own opinions.

2. The subtexts of the essay are split up in a way that Bordo is able to convey how the perception of males in society has evolved over time. The first one introduces the beginning of when the general public first noticed that men were beginning to be subject in the same way women have been in the media for years. It then moves on to discuss how the fashion world was not the first to model men in a sexual manner, but that when this started it became the most main stream. Then she goes on to discuss the different types of ads that use men in a sexual way to sell their products. The next couple sections talk about how there are different types of men, ones who depend on their wife to get dressed and others that actually put an effort into what they want to wear. It also depicts the societal changes throughout history in men’s and women’s fashion. The last section talks about how instead of society changing for the better, it is changing for the worse. Since women are overexposed in the media and the general public is becoming more aware of it, it would seem that this practice would slowly dwindle out of use. But instead, the same rules are now applying to the opposite sex, which is not the type of equality women have been asking for.

3. Bordo uses the opinions of others infused with her own in order to make her opinions stronger. She uses the wisdom of Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, and Berger to describe the Calvin Klein ads. She also uses the opinions of the general public in order to supplement her own opinions of the new ads that surfaced. These differences help to prove what she feels about men in ads and in the media in general.

4. men_blacklabel.jpg

This ad adheres to the business men of America. This group is the young bachelors who work a 9-5 every day in a plush office and drive home at night in a really nice car. They feel that a nice suit can be the thing that gives them the edge over their competetors. It gives them a sense of power and prestige that can’t possibly come from hard work.

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Deconstructing Ads

October 10, 2006 at 11:24 pm (Uncategorized)

1. These two ads are selling the same product, but in completely different ways. The first ad is from a time where sex and other “private” aspects of people’s lives were somewhat taboo to display for everyone to see. This is why the product is not even the center of attention of the advertisment, but seemingly an afterthought. For the second ad, the 1970’s was a time where sex was talked about in every aspect of life, and advertisers used this fact in order to make their products more desireable. By using Sybil Shepard in their ad, they have made Kotex more desireable just because of the fact that this beautiful woman wears them. The amount of writing in the ads also shows the type of time period these ads came from. The first ad has a large amount of writing that people most likely would have read, not because they had nothing better to do but because advertisements were less frequent. But by the 1970’s the amount of advertisements increased, and the corresponding amount of words in each ad had to decrease in order for the message to get accross.

2. 13443.jpg

13870.jpg

(adflip.com)

Both of these ads are trying to sell shoes. The first one, from the 1950’s, does this by showcasing the shoes and providing a write up about their qualities and attributes. The second ad, which is current, is selling “classic” shoes by providing a “classic” image.  Although this ad does not exude sexuality, it is still there. Cubism was a movement of art that could convey many different images, not just one of a naked woman. By using a naked woman they have added the sexuality and appeal of the shoes.  The difference of the ads show the difference of importance within the time periods. In the first ad they are using the actual product’s attributes to sell the item itself, while in the second they are using underlying sexual tones to put their product ahead.

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Narcissism as Liberation

October 3, 2006 at 11:00 pm (Uncategorized)

1. Susan Douglas values a woman who is independent. Although the media is trying to portray an independent woman as a result of feminism, but their independence is not completely so. Their independence depends on the fact that women are still a slave to their appearance. Douglas admires a woman who may still want to look beautiful but does not put that above all else. No where in this essay is Douglas conveying her disdain for makeup in general, but the fact that advertisers make the general public feel they need the makeup to be better than who they are. Instead of suggesting products that can make people feel better about themselves, which perhaps was the initial purpose of makeup, they force products on people so that they need to be more attractive. “Americans were desperately insecure, consumed by self-doubt and self-loathing, and totally obsessed with competing with other people for approval and acclaim” (pg 119) Advertisers have picked up on the American way and have fed off of this in order to turn these weaknesses into needs. This is the problem that Douglas has with advertising. She does not advocate for the deceipt of women in order to make a few dollars on skin cream that in actuality does nothing.

2. Douglas decides that the advertisers of the 1980’s are to blame for turning feminism into a marketing ploy. “Women’s liberation now became equated with women’s ability to do whatever they wanted for themselves, whenever they wanted, no matter what the expense” (pg 117). They have turned women from being free to being dependent again. No matter that women have the right to their own choices, they are now a slave to their choice of being beautiful, which is not being free at all. Even though this has started in the 1980’s, there are no signs of the media getting better. Even today advertisers are taking advantage of women’s “needs” to sell their product. This will not change until the group that these products are being sold to changes. Only when women are able to realize that they do not need these products in order to be beautiful, then the advertising market will remain unchanged.

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Real Women

September 27, 2006 at 2:14 am (Uncategorized)

http://images.google.com/images?q=tbn:PrdeBF2qJ00ZVM:http://www.mindonthemedia.org/GirlCaught.jpg

(www.mindonthemedia.org/GirlCaught.jpg) Although this ad does not directly portray women, it is a pretty revolutionary idea. To have a whole campaign that is rallying for the correct representation of women in the media is both exhilirating and upsetting. This is a good thing because it shows girls that they do not have to succumb to what the media is forcing on them, that they can be their own person. The sad part about this campaign is just the fact that it is necessary. Women should not be pressured into looking and being a certain way, but should have the right to choose what would make them look and feel their best.

(wthunderthighs.jpgww.mindonthemedia.org/girlcaught.jpg) This nike ad is going against everything that was discussed in Susan Douglass’ essay. Instead of stressing the importance of not having cellulite and legs that dont rub together, this ad blatantly praises the “thunderthigh”.Although the women’s legs in the ad are not exactly those of the average woman, they are not the legs of the super skinny model that advertisers seem to favor.

fatfab.jpg (www.flickr.com) This poster shows that a normal woman can be beautiful too. Since this is not a formal advertisement, it makes it seem that the advertisers are not understanding the concept that the mass public is not responding to the usual models. Since this took a “normal” person to put up and not a company, it shows that women are rallying more realistic women in advertisements.

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Second Reading of “Ways of Seeing”

September 19, 2006 at 11:32 pm (Uncategorized)

1. Berger does not look at history as a concrete concept. Instead, he feels that history is ever changing due to the interpretation of those referring back to history. Only at the exact present are people able to understand what is happening. And even in that moment, people will understand in different ways due to different perceptions of each account. But when one looks to the past, it is almost subjective of what is perceived. This is because people are given the option of omitting or embelishing when remembering the past. Paintings are a perfect way in order to do this, because although a picture may be one thousand words, it is unable to cover everything. If a picture only focuses on one aspect of the time period, then in many years to come this may be the only thing that is remembered.
2. Mystification in art is a concept that is unable to be overcome in some respects. For some pieces of art, it is impossible to know all of the facts because they simply are not present. But this is a different type of mystification. This is the mystification that is unable to be helped because of the lack of facts. The other kind of mystification is the kind that the “experts” pin on a painting. They create a mystification by reading too far into a piece of work. This happens when the art historian describes the painting with intense adjectives. He gives the painting a whole new life by his own personal feelings. It is true that perception is altered with the amount of knowledge that is known in one given area. This is why that art historian’s account is presented in the way it is, because of the amount of research he did on the artist and painting itself gave him the information he needed in order for his perception to change. Berger’s account of the picture was different because he had a different amount of knowledge of the subject. This is not to say that there are certain levels of “knowing” and that once one level is surpassed perception is altered. It is much more subjective than that. That is why perception will always be up to each specific person, and the reason that mystification exists.

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