Your Photoshopping sews socks that smell.
Yeah, sure, Poe once said “There is no exquisite beauty…without some strangeness in the proportion", but this slovenly digital Hydrocephalism isn’t that.
This is just awful.
And, most importantly, entirely avoidable.
So consider this your…iconogenitory intervention, because this is just embarrassing. I mean, you laid out seriously Big Cake to buy yourself a top-shelf blog. Popped for the Mark Levinson Lexus LS 430 sound system. Killer rims. The Guerlain’s KissKiss Gold and Diamonds Nipple Rouge.
And you get people like Alec Baldwin, Barack Obama, Walter Cronkite, Peggy Noonan, Jim Webb and most of the rest of the celestial chorus of Left, Center and Right Blogistan to write for you.
You’ve got Best Selling-book income. Speaking-gig income. Blog-ad income. And whatever you have left from the divorce.
And yet for all of the vast resources at your command,
you can't do better than this?
The story itself –
Microsoft Wants To Deal With New Yahoo Board, Yahoo Doesn't Want A New Board
Huffington Post | July 7, 2008 11:38 AM
Read More: Carl Icahn, Jerry Yang, Microsoft, Microsoft Yahoo Merger, Steve Ballmer
Carl Icahn's saber just got louder. The Associated Press reports that Microsoft has indicated that it would be interested in negotiating a deal with Yahoo once more if there were a new board of directors. The deal could include Microsoft buying just a portion of Yahoo, such as the search engine, or even buying the whole company if need be -- now likely at a steeply discounted price, after Yahoo's stock plummeted last week.
Microsoft Corp. threw its weight behind investor Carl Icahn's effort to oust Yahoo Inc.'s board next month, saying Monday that a successful rebellion would encourage the software maker to renew its takeover bid for Yahoo or negotiate another multibillion-dollar deal.
-- I could care less about.
But the “art” is a fucking disgrace.
Look, I have no formal training in graphic arts. None. And my first Photoshop efforts were, well,
nothing to blog home about, but shit, Arianna, I’m just a leeeeetle fella and I’m actually mortified for you. So as a public service to all the young ballplayers out there, let's break this failure down into coachable moments.
First, the web is a Visual Medium, so pick your palette accordingly. If you want to convey face-to-face conflict, pick some images where the story is already clear, sight-lines are clean and the choreography simple.
For example, would the average reader out there even catch on that the foundation for your graphic was this vid capture from
“West Side Story”?
I sure didn’t.
Second, pick a scene that matches the faces you have to work with and, where possible, pick versions of faces that line up with the scene you have chosen. If you don't, you're going to end up with the rampant Mr. Potatoheadedness that helped to ugly up the HuffPo pic.
Third, don’t clutter your scene with unknowns. This pic includes four paste-in characters, three of which are unfamiliar to the average reader (Hell, even Mrs. Ichan couldn’t pick Carl out of a lineup) and one of which -- Susan Decker –- isn’t even mentioned in the damn story.
To convey a narrative's underlying tension when the story is somewhat complicated and unfamiliar (as it is here), stick with a visual with a dramaturgically-supportable maximum of Two Characters in Conflict.
Fourth, if Steve Ballmer is one of the characters in the story, you are required to use him. Because,
A) Along with donating your organs to Microsoft high-dollar shareholders, its one of the terms buried in the ultrafine print of the license agreement you already unwittingly consented to when you last used Windows.
B) It'll save you work (Ballmer comes ready-made-out-of-the-shower as a big, loud cartoon.)
Fifth, get some fucking talent on the job.
For example, using only exactly those poorly selected raw materials your own Photoshopper used
(found on teh internets and composited above by me with about five minutes of well-defined searching from a regular, public workstation) and forty minutes using a laptop in a dim bar, skating my mouse between peanut shells and beer spills, here’s what modest skills can rough out:
If you want to relate blunt, face-to-face conflict, how about a little something from
"Inherit the Wind"?
Or perhaps "Reservoir Dogs"
would be a more relatable choice of visual shorthand?
And without doing the Photoshopping, surely anyone can see that
"12 Angry Men" would have made a much better, livelier selection.
Given your high profile, Arianna, and the resources you can bring to bear, there was no excuse for this shoddy workmanship; America’s coffeehouses, gentlemen's clubs, call centers, boxcars, and community college faculty lounges are full of unemployed and underemployed pixelslingers whose services are available for very reasonable rates.
Hell, available for reheated pizza and a pot of decent coffee.
Seriously, Arianna, how about bringing the visual content of your blog up to the same world-class professional level as the written content?
And to get you started in the right direction let me point you towards the proven graphic talents of these extremely gifted and politically-savvy artists:
Lower Manhattanite of the Group News Blog.
Mark Hoback at The Aristocrats
And Darkblack over at Darkblack
I guarantee you'll be very glad you did.