The Seven Deadly Sins - My concept used on America's Next Top Model (Cycle 4, 2005).
The Process :
Toward the end of cycle two of America's Next Top Model in 2004, they had a promotional contest "Viewer's Choice Challenge Competition." The contest was to come up with a photo shoot concept that if you won, it would be used in an episode on the following cycle of the show. As well as you would receive an autograph from Tyra Banks, the cast, and a trip to Los Angeles to attend an America's Next Top Model Party.
They were looking for a concept that would be: challenging for the girls, interesting for the audience to watch, that could be done within a certain time frame, and would meet other criteria . They then would select the top ten ideas to be voted on by the fans on the official America's Next Top Model Website for about two months time. The winner would get the grand prize and have their idea used on the show.
The Alchemy behind my idea and reasons for entering:
I was a fan of the show, and saw the advertisement for the contest on one of the episodes from cycle 2. I decided to enter. I thought "Perhaps I could win this" on account of the fact that it wasn't a random drawing contest, it was a contest based on ideas that they would go through and decide. Plus you could enter as many ideas as you wanted, which for someone with an overactive idea generator for a mind was slight torture.
I started thinking of the two cycles that had already been completed . I thought about what I "the viewer" wanted to see them do, and I thought that the idea that would most likely work would be an instantly recognizable theme that a lot of people would get, and that they could turn into a photo shoot.
I started thinking of ideas. I was in the shower when I thought that each model could embody one of the "Seven deadly sins" in a grave site. That idea would be one of my first, of five ideas . I then would go on and submit thirty ideas anyways, because I couldn't stop the ideas from coming. I really wanted a chance to win.
I wanted to win because I was twenty-two at the time, I was going to college for Graphic Design, and I wanted some validation that I had at least the ability to come up with concepts to be able to become a graphic designer. I didn't care about the party, or the autographs that came along with it. I just wanted validation and to see my creativity come to life.
I made it the to Semi- Finals :
I made it to the Semi- finals. The top ten ideas were posted on the site, and were up for voting as many times as you wanted for about two months. I asked everyone that I knew to vote for my idea, as I sat there obsessed with hitting the select and enter button. Then the two months of voting was over, and I had about a month to wait to see if I had won or not.
And The Winner Is:
Not me... Apparently... The Zodiac idea won. While I thought that was an idea along the lines of what this show would want, lets be honest I thought it was pretty predictable and an outright bore.
Tyra Banks and The Producers Want Your Idea:
Sometime had past and I forgot about the competition that I set out fighting tooth and nail to try and win. Then I got the phone call. The guy asked me if I was sitting down. (Really?) . I said "Yes, why?" He told me "Because Tyra Banks and The Producers want to use your idea and have decided to award you the Grand Prize as well!" He asked me how I felt about that, I said "I think it's fabulous." Insert second hand embarrassment here at my response. "Fabulous" ? Really ? What drag queen possessed me to say that? Well to be fair I had been watching "Sex and the City" lately, and that word popped up quite frequently that I suppose it thought it should pop right into my mouth at that moment. I'm not really the bubbly girl with a smile on her face type, so if an excellent drag queen phrase was all I could muster on the spot, then hey it would be better than saying "Ok" and not pulling out a response anywhere close to the one that the guy wanted out of me.
The Fancy Affidavit & Seeing my idea used on the show:
They sent me official rules, an affidavit for the trip, which was now a New York Cover Girl trip. My mom looked at those papers and said "No" to the trip. Quite unfortunate, as I thought perhaps I could network... However the papers where written to cover that companies ass within an inch of its life and wasn't a "free" trip per say that it was probably better off that I didn't go anyways.
The episode for my idea was episode eight of Cycle 4 and it was titled "The Girl Who Gets The Bad News." How fitting that one of the models friend just passed away and she had to push through those emotions, while portraying "Wrath" at the bottom of a dug out grave at a cemetery in Los Angeles.
All eyes were on me indirectly as my immediate and extended family and friends watched the episode with me. They called afterwards and told me how great they thought it was. I sadly couldn't muster another wonderful drag queen phrase.
This photo shoot turned out to be one of the most memorable ones:
Till this day, every time I mention to someone who has watched the series that, that was my idea they go "That was you? I really loved that photo shoot." And many sites and youtube videos still remain focused on that shoot. That for me is the second most rewarding thing to coming out of winning the contest.
I edited this video clip of an example of how they translated my idea with one of the girls, and all of the photos at the judging table at the end of the episode.
The Seven Deadly Sins Clip:
Here are screen captures of the voting system, with my idea on the shoot, the photos of each girl embodying one of the "Seven Deadly Sins" and a layout I did for it, that was included in a small booklet project for Intro into Computer Graphics course at CSULB.
How the photos were composited , below are close ups of each model:
Iconoclast of the Day - Fiona Apple - This World is Bullshit:
Fiona Apple is one of the artist of whom I tried to write songs like when I first started writing at thirteen. This speech to me epitomizes her as an Iconoclast figure. Willing to say exactly how she felt, even if she was highly misunderstood.