Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Big Love?

When I heard that V were doing a plus size issue, my first fear was that they would just be using fashion industry definition 'plus size'- thats a size 12 and up to you and me. Yup. size 12. But actually, they seem to have used ladies that do qualify as plus size even to non-fashiony types- huzzah! However- and this is the big but(t)- is it really ok to do novelty issues? There's been huge controversy in the past about all black model issues- is it patronising?Is this like, ooh, look, the fatty girls get naked! Bless.
Personally I think there's a bigger problem. These pics are JUST as unrealistic as the normal size zero stuff- there's surely just as much if not more airbrushing; I can assure you that if you're a size 14/16 like me there are plenty of stretch mark/cellulite/broken vein/gravity related issues that would mean I didn't look anything like these shots if I got my kit off. Also how are they all so curvy everywhere but still have killer cheekbones?I need to learn how to do my make-up like that. If you look into the world of plus-size modelling you'll find there are very strict rules about how fat you can be and where- you have to be super tall for a start, then have certain ratio fatness in certain bits of your bod. Which means that ultimately, you still look like a model, just on a bigger scale. In real life, most women aren't built like that- I know people with size 16 tops and size 10 bottoms, or people with a whopping arse but no tits. C'est la vie.

I know its as unrealistic a demand as the problem it faces, but couldn't we have some, you know, normal looking people?Yet even as I say this I hear the journalist/PR voice in my head yelling 'The NORMAL issue?No selling point, no selling point!' And the fact is that we all like to look at beautiful people.We just need to learn to separate fact from fiction.

1 comment:

{Tara} said...

Wonderful post! And you raise some very important questions. I have mixed feelings about these special issues -- while on one hand, they deserve some kudos for stepping outside of the box, they do still run the risk of seeming patronizing, as if to say that women of color or plus-sized women can't possibly intermingle with the normal models in the regular issues, but we'll give them their "own" issue to appease them. Fascinating topic!

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