Thursday, 27 May 2010

the end

The magazine is finished! Had some problems with the binding - it is very fragile - something to look into in future (book-binding). However, overall outcome has succeeded! I realised that I didn't get to experiment/investigate the idea of codes though, my time was not planned well enough. Hoewever, this was a recurring theme in my research so could be a possibility for future investigation.

Front Cover

I decided to call the magazine or rather 'zine' as it seems to have turned out, 'SPECTRE'. This seems appropriate to the content of the magazine, and having it printed on translucent paper, it describes the physical quality of the magazine itself.

And have also decided to call it the 'Long Live Fashion Issue' - I think this is quite ironic as I am talking about the death of fashion, yet how it still seems to hang over us...

The photograph I chose for the front cover is the image that I find most striking and eye-catching, but it also has a 'haunted' look about it which I think will give the reader an idea of what it is all about.

Photoshoot no.3

I think the positions of the model work well and layering the images also went well as they do seem do show an idea of 'specters', 'ghosts', and 'shadows'. However, there were a few problems along the way. When making a cutout of the body to exclude the background, a line appeared around the cutout which when layered looked even more prominent. Therefore for certain images I will not use the cutouts although the background will be layered as well as the figure. One of the main problems I have had with manipulating the images is that as I do not have Photoshop at home, I have been using two online programs ( and and these tend to not be as reliable or sufficient in terms of time management. It takes a while to upload photos and occasionally freeze which means what I am working on will have been lost and I would have to start again. So this is something to look into for any future projects - GET PHOTOSHOP!

Friday, 21 May 2010


Now that I have considered the content of the magazine as well as the quality of the paper, one of the most important things to think about now is book binding, so this is what I will look into next...
Although I want to use tracing paper to print some of the photographs onto, I think that with the photograms, the glossy photo paper gives them such a bold and eye-catching effect that I am considering having different qualities of paper in the magazine. I also found some A1 sheets of paper today that feel something like a mix of tracing paper and newsprint which would be perfect for the magazine because some pages look better when you cannot see through to the next page. Also, placing a photograph printed onto tracing paper and then placed over a photogram printed on glossy paper looks interesting...


I spent Thursday in the dark rooms at Camberwell creating photograms which was incredibly fun and I think they worked out really well! I placed translucent dresses on the paper so the images came out very haunting and ghostly. I also tried making photograms of the photos which I had printed onto tracing paper, and these also worked, although the images came out very faded and not very sharp, but these could add to the effect I am trying to produce. The main thing I need to decide is how to display these in the magazine because I had to use 6 sheets of paper on which to place the dresses, so the images are lifesize. The question is wheher to place these in as seperate sheets or shrink the whole image down to one sheet of paper. I think that the lifesize version is especially effective and do not want to shrink it down though. A series of these would be very eye-catching at the exhibition, however for the purposes of the magazine, I was thinking of putting them in as a fold-out poster or possibly as seperate sheets which could be used as pattern pieces, but this requires a little more thought...

Influence of Freud

I read a few essays by Freud, two of which I found had particular relevance to my project, called On Transience and The Uncanny. In The Uncanny he spoke of doubles being uncanny, in the sense of if you have a double of something, how can you be sure which is the double and which is the real thing? Much of what he wrote related to ghosts, spirits or shadows, all of which are 'doubles' of something else. This related primarily to what I have already researched, however On Transience helped form a relevant but new idea.

In this essay, Freud tells us about his friends view that everything that is beautiful is doomed to death and therefore he felt no joy in it;
"...all this beauty was fated to extinction, that it would vanish when winter came, like all human beauty and all the beauty and splendour that men have created or may create."

However, Freud's view was that just because something beautiful may only last a short time, makes it no less valuable an experience; in the contrary, it makes it all the more special because we must not take it for granted and must hold dear every moment that we have with it.

I felt that this really could relate to fashion because in a sense it is so ephemeral. Styles and trends come in and out of fashion so fast that there is little time to appreciate what is 'in' at the moment, but that certainly does not mean that we do not embrace the 'current' fashion collections, for sure we can see that by the worth magazines still have in this age where fashion seems to either be repeating itself or constantly be looking for something new. In an interview my tutor, Susan Postlethwaite, did with Tracey Neuls in The Measure, she thought about the idea of fashion being over because 'it is so self-referential now, fashion repeats itself so quickly,' and I think it is true that fashion has become self-referential now, but this seems to be an age where more than ever fashion has become one of the most important aspects of culture. This may be because it is so readily available now, but that is another topic. It just seems to me that season collections temporal limitations does effect its value.

Considering all of this, I decided to use the idea of flowers in showing the 'death' of something beautiful. I picked some flowers and left them to die over a few days. It was interesting seeing how they drooped and became flaccid over time and shrunk too. Then I organised a photoshoot where the models wore the dead flowers in their hair:

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Crit No.3

Ideas/feedback that came out of the discussion:
  • My FMP is effectively an homage to magazines and publications and my research file will become my magazine
  • What will the contents be? photoshoots, interviews of foundation fashion students, editors letter
  • The editors letter is not going to be written by me. So far, the letter from the editor of all the first issues of magazines I have looked at have set out who their audience is intended to be and what they are trying to do. I have photocopied and annotated these and highlighted parts that are relevant to my magazine and I think it would be a good idea to use these as the 'letter from the editor'
  • Aside from doing the actual photoshoots, I need to investgate binding now; this is another area that has a relationship to fashion - exposed and raw edges and unfinished seams etc. I should visit the book arts course at Camberwell to get advice on this