Back in business

After a long and quiet September, it’s time to get moving again.

It’s not like I’ve stayed still in the meantime, I’ve just focused on other things than writing: work, crochet, outdoors, sewing, and well, coping with the autumn. One of my all-time favourite how-to-cope-with-the-darkening-evenings tools is the West Wing. I’ve seen the complete series quite a few times already, but it doesn’t get old or out-of-date. Such good drama.

Anyway.

For a person interested and working with visual communications, the upcoming municipal elections have provided some great inspiration.

Let me start by presenting a website, Hel Looks, which shares snapshots of people, focusing on their clothing and style. People are photographed on the streets of Helsinki, on their way to work – or where ever it is they’re going.

Something similar came up some days ago in Tumblr: a site mimicking the name and style of Hel Looks, but focusing on candidates by True Finns, the rather populist and nationalist party in Finland. The site is called Per Looks, the letters P-E-R referring to the first three letters of the party’s Finnish name.

I don’t know who has created the site, what are the aims and goals this person has, but I’m sure s/he was not expecting what happened next.

Other political parties created their own Hel Looks sites to Tumblr, as a statement to the rather diminishing way of seeing politics and one specific party. The message is clear: whatever you think of the politics, whatever your opinion is, respect the people.

Many blog posts appeared on the topic and I’m still waiting for the remaining parties to share their sites.

I feel kind of proud of what happened. Hopeful, too.

If you want to take a look, check the links below.

From a communications point of view, it is interesting to see how visual our thinking easily becomes. Can we honestly tell the political opinions of a person by looking at their photo, or is it just our own mind creating the opinions for a person, who looks like someone or something?

[edit 9.40 pm: According to YLE news the graphic designer who created the Per Looks site refuses an interview, but has given some comments to one news agency. S/he has denied any political motivation, but instead the Per Looks website is meant to make fun of Hel Looks. Interesting argumentation. I don’t think we’ve heard the last of this quite yet.]

♠ In the meantime: Despite the rising mud level in the forest, I’m still trying to take my German Shepherd there for a walk. Next on my shopping list: wellingtons. Must have.

♥ Song of the day: Dave Gahan, Kingdom

4 thoughts on “Back in business

  1. I agree! Interestingly, social pressure seems to have risen enough and e.g. Social Democrats (or someone posing as them) have responded by creating their own Tumblr, but with a twist. See link: http://www.sdp-looks.tumblr.com. Translation: “Not anymore. First time was funny. Now it’s enough.” Is it just me, or could they have chosen their words a bit more carefully? Was it really funny, and if so, is it smart for a political party to say so (assuming the Tumblr account is theirs)?

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