Shaking Up Social Media and How Women Are Portrayed

Women Run the World / Crafted in Carhartt
Women Run the World / Crafted in Carhartt
Women Run the World / Crafted in Carhartt

Women Run the World / Crafted in Carhartt

Let’s take a minute to think about women in media and how we’re portrayed. It’s a common enough topic these days. Many of us are aware that our society is continually bombarded with gorgeous glamazon women, thin and flawless, with glowing skin and shiny hair, perfectly positioned, sitting, standing still, just waiting to be admired.
We all know the wonders of Photoshop, the great works of make-up artists, and the phenomena of calorie counting. Even once the smoke and mirrors are revealed, it can still be hard to shake the conditioned image of what women are expected to be in this day and age. Of course what we need is an adjustment of those expectations. We say we’ll think differently and react on a more educated level when we see these constant reminders of what our culture demands of us. But it can be tough to stand strong against the nonstop barrage.
We need to start consuming media that shows us the real strength and beauty of women. Watch movies and read books that pass the Bechdel Test. That’s simply a work of fiction that features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man. Quite shockingly, there are few contemporary pieces that pass. Seek out the ones that do. Toss out the magazines that tempt you into the never-ending chase after a newer, thinner, fitter, happier, sexier you. Trust me, once you find your true path in life and do what it takes to follow it, you’ll be the better version of yourself that everyone hopes to be.
Don’t buy into the misconception that women are catty with each other and just want to compete at all costs. Stop perpetuating that behavior. We need to build each other up. Be inspired by the strong trailblazers who have left a wake that shakes things up. That’s my ultimate goal with Crafted in Carhartt. It’s a place in social media, where women are portrayed as the strong, capable, creative, and awesome people that they truly are. Let’s focus on the good we as women can bring to the world. Be challenged by women making art, building skills, making things, and getting business done. We can all learn from each other’s stories and advice.
I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather see images of women, who are masters of their trade, proficiently swinging a hammer, shoveling coal, and accomplishing something great than someone who is dead in the eyes, forcing a smile as just the right amount of wind tousles her hair. How about you?

Pictured above is Detroit artist, Kate Silvio. Read more about her and her work here.

 

Seeing Data as Something Beautiful

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria Scileppi and Carhartt

Maria is a dear friend of mine. When I first met her, she was the director of Chicago Portfolio School. She’s now on the path of a full time artist. That’s guts right there! She’s living at an artist co-op, Transamoeba, where she daily lives out her philosophy, “life is art.”

Maria’s work is in the geo-social realm. For the past few years, she has been visualizing communities with custom software and GPS data. Her goal is to reveal one-of-a-kind patterns shaped by a specific group of people in a particular moment of time. It’s exciting to see how it draws people together as they tell their individual stories and how they all fit together in the larger narrative.

I recently got the chance to help out on a project she did called Crossroads. Thirty-five Chicago residents participated in a daylong transmedia documentary based on their data. As per the stipulations, everyone went somewhere in the city they’d never been before and wrote a short story describing their adventures. All the participants’ movements were tracked and combined with their stories and photos. It all culminated into a happening, short film, prints, and a book.

The next project on Maria’s horizon is called Journey Home. Maria, Christopher Breedlove and Gordon Kummel, are going to visualize the emotional and physical journey to Black Rock City for Burning Man. People from all over the country will come together to contribute their metadata (their GPS data, pictures taken along the way, and the stories they write) combined to create a transmedia documentary. The final product will be a social app, a short film, prints, a book, and a happening.

If you’re going to Burning Man, you should be a part of Maria’s social art! This kind of thing has  never been done before- and it would be so exciting to get in on the forefront!

Check out Maria’s website here.