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DPChallenge Forums >> Challenge Results >> Offensive Purple picture?
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07/12/2004 05:37:53 PM · #1
I was just reading through the comments on my Purple picture and found that several people found my picture offensive. When I took the picture, I had no idea that anyone would be offended by it. I wasn't trying to portray anyone from television as someone has suggested. I actually got the idea from a similar picture. It was of a girl painted black and she was holding a paint brush with red paint dripping from it and her lips were red. It was taken by an old friend who is now a profesional photographer. It won first prize in a contest.

I was just trying to make everything fade into the background so that purple was the main focus of the picture. The easiest way to acheive this was to paint my face black.Actually, to come to think of it, It would have been easier to use the burn tool in Adobe.lol (it was hard getting all the paint off)
I thank everyone for the comments they left me. Good and bad. Once again, it was not my intent to offend anybody.

Bassie
07/12/2004 05:41:55 PM · #2
Anyone who's offended by your image for Purple probably does not see photography as a form of art.
07/12/2004 05:51:21 PM · #3
Offensive?
Some folks are ridiculous !
Photo is very funny and superb done...
Nothing offensive about it.

86011.jpg

Lot of people found this offensive too,like I broke the doll and hang it there,some people never heard of photojournalism !
07/12/2004 05:55:45 PM · #4
What in tha world can one find offensive in that???
07/12/2004 05:57:12 PM · #5
your Photo is Kool & well done. Who knows what went thrue their dirty minds... I found this pic FUNNY! ;-) and great for the purple contest.
07/12/2004 05:59:10 PM · #6
It's unfair to the other popsicle colors. Shame on you! ;-)
07/12/2004 05:59:22 PM · #7
Originally posted by pitsaman:


86011.jpg

Lot of people found this offensive too,like I broke the doll and hang it there,some people never heard of photojournalism !


Now thats awfully offensive you killed the doll dude!!! poor doll...
07/12/2004 05:59:47 PM · #8
//www.npr.org/features/feature.php?wfId=1919122 or any other history of blackface acts you'd care to read - to understand some of the reactions.

Message edited by author 2004-07-12 18:02:00.
07/12/2004 06:00:40 PM · #9
I think it's a great picture...

I suspect that those who did find offence took it as a kind of mockery of blackface - when white folk used to paint their faces to imitate black folk for "entertainment".

Your image didn't make me think of that at all... as you said yourself, the black paint struck me as a way of fading the face into the background so other elements really stood out.
07/12/2004 06:00:42 PM · #10
While I personally don't find the picture offensive, I see the possibility for others to be offended. I would like to hear from individuals who did find it offensive, though. The best way to understand and appreciate differences is to fully (and appropriately) discuss them!
07/12/2004 06:03:20 PM · #11
this should have been top three.....i did get the chance to vote but i would have gave it a 10!!!!.......some people don't see the art in this pic. i think that the purple is well balanced.
07/12/2004 06:04:08 PM · #12
I didn't find it offensive per say but the image just didn't sit right for some reason. I looked at it again and I think it was the white teeth. They are too white, almost translucent, it really took my attention away from everything else.

Though honestly, the Al Jolsen reference crossed my mind the first time I saw it also but taking a longer look at it, it was the teeth, they are really kind of scarey looking to me.

Deannda
07/12/2004 06:05:39 PM · #13
painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US. Dunno where you are but I was a bit put off by it, not knowing how to receive it.
Nothing to loose sleep over tho. at least not for me. but then again, i am not african american & that stuff does not resonate as deeply for me as it might for others.
Something to consider tho
07/12/2004 06:05:53 PM · #14
Kevin, that was an outstanding picture, plain & simple. One of my favorites!

Well Done!
07/12/2004 06:10:33 PM · #15
Originally posted by Rooster:

painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US...


Why? Is there a reason for it or it just is, just like that? Where I live you can paint yourself in any color and nobody would care about it.
07/12/2004 06:10:49 PM · #16
The blackface thing never crossed my mind...I just thought it was great the way the purple stood out and the rest of the face just blended away into the background, and the play on words for the title fit it so well. I loved it...and can't imagine that it would ever have been posted if it were meant in some demeaning or derogatory way.
07/12/2004 06:14:18 PM · #17
Shamefully stole this off another site:

First, are people aware of what blackface is and what it means, historically? The first instances of blackface occurred during the mid-1800s when white entertainers painted their faces black and mimicked Black Americans. Whites used blackface to portray blacks as inferior. Blacks were often portrayed in menial roles, such as maids, cooks and shoe shiners. By portraying blacks in such stereotypical roles, whites contributed to the common belief that blacks were inherently inferior to whites.

Secondly, do people understand why some might find blackface offensive? When consideration is given to the history revolving around blackface, it may be easier to empathize with that thought. People find blackface offensive because they had hoped that respect would have flourished by now - respect for each other's history, heritage, and culture.

Finally, we have to ask, what was the real purpose of wearing blackface? Where was the real fun? And at whose expense was the entertainment? If the people who painted their faces did it for fun, then it should be noted that the first minstrel shows were a form of leisure used to perpetuate stereotypes and rationalize racist oppression. And if it wasn't done for fun, then what was the point?

The first step towards progress becomes everyone's responsibility to embrace, respect, and learn about this university's diverse cultures so that we can work for reaching a common understanding.

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Just to reiterate, I didn't find the image under discussion offensive. I felt the black face paint was used to blend the skin into the background not to imitate or mock naturally dark skinned people.

Message edited by author 2004-07-12 18:16:23.
07/12/2004 06:28:12 PM · #18
Originally posted by frumoaznicul:

Originally posted by Rooster:

painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US...


Why? Is there a reason for it or it just is, just like that? Where I live you can paint yourself in any color and nobody would care about it.


well there were slaves here from africa & there used to be shows & stuff (weak on the actually history so sorry) where white cats used to paint there faces black to pretend to be black people. These days stuff like that is really offensive.
07/12/2004 06:30:31 PM · #19
Originally posted by goodhart:

While I personally don't find the picture offensive, I see the possibility for others to be offended. I would like to hear from individuals who did find it offensive, though. The best way to understand and appreciate differences is to fully (and appropriately) discuss them!


My gut reaction was that I was a bit suprised to see that image and at first I was a little offended by the black face but then I figured it was not intended as 'blackface' but as a way of simplifying the color scheme to bring out the purple. I assumed the photographer meant no harm. While I'm not black, my father is half Mexican (his mother was a mestiza). If he didn't have straight, Indian hair, he could easily be mistaken for African-American. I spent a few of my childhood years in Arkansas and experienced racism on a very mild level. As a child, I spent a lot more time in the sun and my skin was quite brown. "Why are you so dark", was something I was asked more than once. As an adult, I'm far paler but I still field harmless conjecture about my ethnic background simply because people like to [i]place[i] a person in some kind of context. I empathize with the reaction of someone who has had harsh experience with racism. Don't be too hard to label these folks as inflexible. The level of outrage probably depends on the part of the US someone is from. On the other hand, we have to remember that this is an international forum and not everyone is familiar with culture of racism in the US.


07/12/2004 06:31:25 PM · #20
Originally posted by Rooster:

Originally posted by frumoaznicul:

Originally posted by Rooster:

painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US...


Why? Is there a reason for it or it just is, just like that? Where I live you can paint yourself in any color and nobody would care about it.


well there were slaves here from africa & there used to be shows & stuff (weak on the actually history so sorry) where white cats used to paint there faces black to pretend to be black people. These days stuff like that is really offensive.


Yep, just ask Ted Dansen (Sam from CHEERS) when he was dating Whoopie Godlberg and showed up at an event with is face painted black.

Deannda
I do believe she dropped him shortly after that
07/12/2004 06:33:12 PM · #21
I gave it a 10 (one of 2 in the challenge)... very well executed -- I was surprised to see it lower than the top 3, personally.
07/12/2004 06:39:35 PM · #22
Originally posted by Rooster:

Originally posted by frumoaznicul:

Originally posted by Rooster:

painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US...


Why? Is there a reason for it or it just is, just like that? Where I live you can paint yourself in any color and nobody would care about it.


well there were slaves here from africa & there used to be shows & stuff (weak on the actually history so sorry) where white cats used to paint there faces black to pretend to be black people. These days stuff like that is really offensive.


Ok I start to get the picture from what you and what Kavey quoted, but I kinda see that as a reverse racism. I don't know if I can explain it clearly, I understant that's something really bad that happened in the past around 1800's if I get it right, but today shouldn't that be put all behind and live our lifes as if it never happened? I mean if we go and suspect everyone who does something that might be racist but might most probably be not, a form of reverse racism? To me it is 100% obvious that the photographer not only didn't had that in mind but that it never crossed his mind. It is verry obvious that all the man whanted whas a few contrasts.
07/12/2004 06:45:07 PM · #23
currently in theaters in the states is a movie titled "White Chicks" in which two black actors portray white women; eddie murphy frequently wears white make-up to portray different characters in his movies yet no one decries these as being offensive. many years ago, laurence olivier wore black makeup to play the part of Othello and, as far as i'm aware, it was not considered offensive.

this photo is a far cry from minstrel shows and i think that the content of this image shows nothing that should be considered stereotypical or derogatory. it's a fun and well shot photo with a technique that was obviously used to spotlight only certain features and make the rest blend into the background. i can't think of any other way it could have been achieved.

just my opinion.

07/12/2004 06:46:15 PM · #24
Originally posted by frumoaznicul:



Ok I start to get the picture from what you and what Kavey quoted, but I kinda see that as a reverse racism. I don't know if I can explain it clearly, I understant that's something really bad that happened in the past around 1800's if I get it right, but today shouldn't that be put all behind and live our lifes as if it never happened? I mean if we go and suspect everyone who does something that might be racist but might most probably be not, a form of reverse racism? To me it is 100% obvious that the photographer not only didn't had that in mind but that it never crossed his mind. It is verry obvious that all the man whanted whas a few contrasts.


LOLOL! ROFLMAOPIMP! You're not from here are you? In the USA you have to be politically Correct at all times, God forbid you offend someone or hurt their feelings!

Seriously though (the above was said with tongue in cheek) sadly you have to be so careful here in the US about certain things so you don't offend others. What may be totally acceptable in Japan might be totally offensive here and vice versa! :)

Deannda
Remember the period where all the books came out telling you to be politically correct? OY!
07/12/2004 06:51:24 PM · #25
Originally posted by Rooster:

painting a white face balck is certainly offensive in the US.


And yet painting a black face white as in the recent US movie 'White chicks' is perfectly fine. I understand that racism still exists even to this day, which is a shame, but people need to stop seeing color as the first thing they notice about someone. I think there are a lot of 'isms' that are projected onto situations, including sexism, ageism, and all the others. I'm not saying that it never exists, but I'm sure it doesnt happen as often as a lot of people would like. My interpretation of the image that he used the black paint to isolate and enhance the purple. I doubt it would have received the same score had it been a 'normal' person with a purple tongue.
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