Dermatographia is a rare skin disorder in which the skin is extremely sensitive to touch. Following the slightest abrasion, the skin swells into raised, red welts that are sometimes itchy. Although it is unknown what causes this condition, it is thought to be an allergic reaction, lacking in the appropriate antigen.
This skin disorder can be an artist’s unique medium, as is the case for Ariana Russell, who showcases this disorder in her artwork:
Fashion photographer, David Jay, has raised awareness of breast cancer by documenting the battle scars of survivors.
The “SCAR project” is a series of large-scale photographs, graphic in content, meant to “raise public consciousness of early-onset breast cancer, raise funds for breast cancer research/outreach programs and help young survivors see their scars, faces, figures and experiences through a new, honest and ultimately empowering lens.”
David Jay started this project as a means of helping women portray breast cancer in real life. However, towards the end of the project, he began to see his work as more than just a cancer awareness campaign. Though the women affected by breast cancer had lost a large portion of femininity, self-worth, sexuality and power from their cancer scars, the process of posing for the project aspired a beautiful transformation back to control in these areas. “For these young women, having their portrait taken seems to represent their personal victory over this terrifying disease.”
“Through these simple pictures, they seem to gain some acceptance of what has happened to them and the strength to move forward with pride.” -David Jay
…and now I’ve taken pictures of them. Fetal skull and adult skull in my closet. Yep, they’re real. In order to disillusion anyone who thinks I’ve got random bits and pieces of human remains lying around, I should add that they are on loan from the Craniofacial Department at my University, but I digress.
Stumbled upon this as I was researching for my upcoming animation on smoking; so interesting and artsy that I had to re-blog it. Basically the same idea as to what I’m going to be portraying in my upcoming 30-60 second animation. I am planning on portraying a poetic piece on smoking using a beautiful model as my backdrop. From there, my medical illustrator side will take over and delve the viewer into the mouth, the trachea, the bronchi, the bronchioles, and finally, the rotting alveoli. My goal is to create an animation displaying an irony between looks, society, and the obvious dangers hidden amongst a beautifully (depicted) dangerous habit. There may be more clothing involved, though. Maybe.
A black modern chamber is filled with the amplified sounds of breathing. A large scale floor-to-ceiling black and white wall projection alternates between a single image and split-screen. A four inch stainless steel stiletto fills the frame on the left, exemplifying the art and architecture of both foot and shoe. On the right stands a female form, monumental, part mountain and woman combined. She is smoking in a formal, dramatic, hyper-stylized manner. She occasionally pauses, arm raised with cigarette poised at the tip of her fingers, pointing directly towards the ceiling. Omnipotent and purposeful, this female colossus continues repeating this single action. Both man-made artifices, shoe and cigarette are contrasted against the natural, physical structure of the body, all elements perfect in both form and function.
Vividly present in the smoke filled air is a sense of nihilism, decadence and luxury. Lungs and ribs adjust to expand and contract, inhale and exhale an ephemeral white substance, satiating a self imposed need. Naked but for a pair of stilettos these women are presented as anatomical smoke stacks. Human machines extracting nicotine time and time again, stimulating the automatic nervous system and provoking the release of Dopamine.
Inspired by the ‘SMOKING KILLS’ labels found on European cigarette packaging, artist/director Stephen Blaise states, “I was struck by it’s absurdist clarity, so matter of fact… no gray area with room for interpretation… very different from the way this message is communicated in the U.S.” Blaise also references Helmut Newton’s ‘Big Nudes,’ atomic age drive-in movies, the formality and elegance of August Sander’s portraits and the glamour of old Hollywood.
In this remodernist vision, the process of breathing, synonymous with life, takes new form in this high-end public service announcement. Parallels are drawn between: human behavior and fetishism, light and shadow, beauty and horror, strength and weakness, appearence and temporality, cause and effect, intellect and desire. ‘Smoking Kills’ explores the dichotomy that exists between the visual impact of smoking on film and the well established scientific fact that smoking kills.
…that would be great. This Nikon D3X, also known as the “boss” is just, beautiful. Unfortunately, it is a tad outside my budget.. *sigh* Here’s to hoping this 3D modeling business pays off. Some of the specs (yummmmmm): “Extreme-resolution photography … Continue reading →