Trend film for my 4th year Graduate Collection at Heriot Watt University (BA(Hons) Fashion Design for Industry).

The Juxtaposition of a Beautiful Disaster - highlights the devastation of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster, juxtaposed with the surprising beauty found there.

On my October research trip to London, I picked up “I Love You” magazine in “Good News” newsagents at the corner of Noel Street and Berwick Street. Overwhelmed by contemporary Arts and Fashion magazines, it caught my eye with a strong front cover... a model holding a sturdy pose, looking sweet and sexy; a few pretty hand illustrations layered across the page; and most surprisingly was the size 10 and 12 font which subtly skimmed the edges. Most magazines load their covers with flashes of text to catch your eye, and draw you in with what their magazine offers this issue. By contrast, I Love You stood out.

This is not however, what inspired me the most.

Humour; that’s what got me interested. Silliness. Like a cheeky “F*** you” gesture to all the ostentatious ‘artsy’ fashion darlings, the magazine is laden with uniqueness. With sprinkles of sarcasm and a tongue-in-cheek attitude to break up the beautiful quotes and images, there’s a definite and deliberate use of the peculiar and random – not to be cool and edgy, but because it’s fun.

It juxtaposes typical fashion magazines that aggressively promote the ugly phrase of ‘must have’ items. In fact, the fashion is almost secondary in I Love You, an aside. Instead you feel the contributors’ genuine joy from creating stories throughout; stories that so happen to involve clothes some way or another. There’s an essence of innocence.

It’s playful.

It’s refreshing.

It made me chuckle and smile, reminding me I don’t want to create something I am not. Pretentious.

Let’s inject more personality...

Having grown up listening to a wonderfully wide array of music, including Johnny Cash, I was delighted to stumble across “Don’t Go Near the Water.” Not only did the lyrics encompass the very ideas I was exploring (oil and pollution ruining even life’s simple pleasures, such as enjoying a day at the seaside and fishing with your children) but the buoyant rhythm also captured the idea of irony that I had tried to address through my collection. Using such a deceptively cheerful track appealed to my wry sense of humour.

Inspired by
• Deborah Pasternak – ‘oil slick’ art piece; Pasternak creates art from rubber ducks
• Janine Antoni – dips her hair in bucket of oil and paints the floor;
• Chrissy Angliker – Oil Drip Portraits;
• Carl Bengtsson FT shoot – industrial setting, silver reflective light;
• Steven Meisel – Water and Oil vogue Italia shoot – models coated in oil lay like dead creatures of the sea on rocks and washed up on the shore.
• Nick Knight
o Lady Gaga Shoot (Vanity Fair) and video – dancing, movement, wind machine, powder explosion
o Fantasia – movement, texture, humour, fun, bad dancing, lively
o Sleep –Beautiful, intimate, relaxed, informal
o Dolls – colour, abstract
• Milena Silvano – Dip Dyed in Dusk – serene, out of focus, glow, soft, water, movement, texture, layered frames.
• Mickey Ashton – Tonne – Graphic and bold, mixed with serenity and beauty.
• Jarhead (Directed by Sam Mendes, 2005) – based on war in Afganistan; features burning of crude oil, interesting hazy desert shots.

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