zaterdag, januari 30, 2010


Mouse speak 03

Reworking of this picture.
Click to enlarge.
Copyright Villa La Repubblica 2010.

Usually pictures about politics are quite difficult to rework unless they are about a revolution. But most of the time they are either too meaningless or too subtle. The subtle ones are too complete to rework while the meaningless ones are open to any interpretation.

As i said in the first Mouse Speak i found quite a lot of pictures about the recent Massachusetts by-election when searching on ‘a’ (don’t ask me why). This by-election just passed my mind as a friend in Boston e-mailed me about it. The whole thing depressed him quite a lot while i regarded it as a provincial thing in a foreign country somewhere far off. Anyway, the election was won by the Republican Scott Brown.

My search engine found his picture in the NY Daily News. We see Brown using a megaphone while quite a few supporters, supposedly common American people from Massachusetts, are behind him. We can’t see whom he is talking to with his megaphone. More supporters? Journalists? Camera’s? Probably it’s a combination. Camera’s made it probably possible to reach undecided voters in Massachusetts who might have thought ‘well, i like the way this man is shouting and lots of common people like me seem to like him too’.

The central thing in the picture is of course the megaphone. In the picture Brown uses his left hand to hold the megaphone. So my first idea was to make the megaphone part of his face. That would only be practical for him, wouldn’t it?

But then, what about the rest of the picture? Lots of possibilities seemed to be obvious. The faces of the crowd behind Brown could be reworked. But how? And what would be the connection to Brown’s megaphone-face? And there was the backdrop: probably a park in winter, but it looked a bit like Siberia.

I decided that all these connotations had nothing to do with the composition of the picture. The only liberty i gave myself was the name Brown and the fact that Brown is wearing a brown overcoat. But in fact this could be any politician or union leader or demagogue of sorts. And the supporters are always the same kind of people who set their hopes on one person. They try to be one with their leader, even if he will deceive them.

And the Siberian background? Well, after all it wouldn’t have any meaning in the picture. Just the white with the brownish stains would make it look cold enough.



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    Blogger Claudia said...

    Truly like the megaphone being part of his face, the brown colour, the free opened hands, the undefined but existing background. The whole combination is working. Even without explanations, the photo spells strong public attempt at persuasion.

    zondag 31 januari 2010 om 07:06:00 CET  
    Blogger Sean Jeating said...

    It's such a pity I can neither blame my English nor my Dutch for being only able to say: Your 'Mouse speaks' could become a classic, Bertus.

    maandag 1 februari 2010 om 23:27:00 CET  
    Blogger VLR said...

    @Claudia. Thank you. What is true for one person is nonsense to another. But it was fun reworking this one.

    @Sean. I'd say; 'at last'.


    vrijdag 12 februari 2010 om 18:22:00 CET  

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