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A primer <br />The Manfattan Project<br />Melissa Campbell<br />
PREMISE<br />Fat bodies are absent from any discussion of fashion or aesthetics .<br />When fat bodies are present, they a...
GOAL<br />The aim of The Manfattan Project is to showcase large, beautifully dressed people in order to counter the endles...
A look at what the manfattan project has done in its first week <br />http://themanfattanproject.tumblr.com<br />SO FAR…<b...
CONTENT<br />Content is gathered on the street—real photos of real people<br />Images are shot either with a simple point ...
REACTION<br />So far, the blog has between 10 and 15 followers on tumblr. <br />Only one person has declined to be photogr...
CHALLENGES<br />Photography: I’m not exactly skilled. I’ve been getting around this by getting photographer friends of min...
CHALLENGES<br />Fetishization: Any entirely image-based look at bodies runs the risk of fetishizing those bodies—I’ve alre...
FUTURE PLANS<br />Promotion: I need to get the word out. Online, I’ve done so by promoting on facebook, twitter, and my ow...
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The Manfattan Project

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The Manfattan Project

  1. 1. A primer <br />The Manfattan Project<br />Melissa Campbell<br />
  2. 2. PREMISE<br />Fat bodies are absent from any discussion of fashion or aesthetics .<br />When fat bodies are present, they are almost always cast in a negative light—the “before” photo in a weight loss advertisement.<br />There are few, if any, genuinely positive representations of large bodies in the media.<br />
  3. 3. GOAL<br />The aim of The Manfattan Project is to showcase large, beautifully dressed people in order to counter the endless barrage of negative images associated with fat in the mainstream media. <br />Through a microblogging site like Tumblr, The Manfattan Project is able to easily distribute images of large bodies into the mediascape, where they will, with any luck, be blogged and reblogged and reblogged once again.<br />
  4. 4. A look at what the manfattan project has done in its first week <br />http://themanfattanproject.tumblr.com<br />SO FAR…<br />
  5. 5. CONTENT<br />Content is gathered on the street—real photos of real people<br />Images are shot either with a simple point and shoot camera (I take these ones) or with a classier dSLR (my photographer friends take these ones). <br />Participants are informed about the blog’s title, content, and purpose before they are photographed. <br />
  6. 6. REACTION<br />So far, the blog has between 10 and 15 followers on tumblr. <br />Only one person has declined to be photographed after hearing about the blog’s content.<br />Response from participants has been overwhelmingly positive. <br />The blog’s “tumblarity” has been growing daily. <br />
  7. 7. CHALLENGES<br />Photography: I’m not exactly skilled. I’ve been getting around this by getting photographer friends of mine to go “photo hunting” with me. <br />Participation: though response has been positive, I’ve been a bit conservative with the sorts of people I’ve been asking. As I become more brave, I expect to be turned down more often. <br />Gender: it’s difficult for me to draw a distinction between “average” men and “fat” men, partially because there is a wider range of acceptable male body types. <br />
  8. 8. CHALLENGES<br />Fetishization: Any entirely image-based look at bodies runs the risk of fetishizing those bodies—I’ve already been invited to two “bbw” meetups based on this blog, which reminds me that I need to be careful about my own use of bodies. This should be, first and foremost, a fashion blog, and not just a dumping ground for images of fat women, because the latter leaves too much space, I think, for fat bodies to become objects.<br />
  9. 9. FUTURE PLANS<br />Promotion: I need to get the word out. Online, I’ve done so by promoting on facebook, twitter, and my own personal tumblr, as well as by following other fat-positive blogs (especially image-based tumblrs that are likely to reblog my images). <br />Expansion: While “on the street” is a great start for now, it has its limitations—I’m considering switching up the format about halfway through the semester and allowing for user submissions as well as continuing to use street photography. <br />

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