Thursday, January 29, 2009

Censorship is alive and well

Two posts ago I posted about my Valentine's Day special and used the actual advertisement I was going to have published in two local newspapers. Well surprise, surprise both the Bucks County Herald and the Penny Power refused to run my ad. The Penny Power said the photo was to provocative and they go to too many conservative households where that wouldn't be acceptable. The Bucks County Herald said the photo was ok but the web linked to images containing nudity and their are people who pick up their free paper who might not like that. Remember, they would have to see the ad, then go to a computer and punch in the website. So if they didn't want to see it, why would they go through all that. And besides, these are probably the same households who's kids go hunting and kill defenseless animals for sport and play Grand Theft Auto all day. Violence is ok but a bit of skin, OH NO.
So now that we've entered a new era of change in the White House, will anything change? I doubt it. The ultra right winged conservative element, at least in this part of the county, has a death grip on the social and economic attitude of the people and politics here so tightly that it will never change. I sometimes feel I am fighting a battle that I can never win. But that doesn't mean I will ever stop trying to wake them up. Everything from movie ratings to advertisements to the social consciousness is slanted so that people are afraid of nudity, afraid that being nude, or seeing the nude portrayed artistically is immoral. But please don't try to take away their guns. You do that they start spouting the Constitution of course they forget the whole freedom of speech part.
So as a photographer whose artwork is primarily the nude figure, I have a bit of a conundrum, do I start photographic landscapes, covered bridges and puppy dogs or do I keep true to myself and photograph what I believe in, knowing that I probably never will get shown in a major gallery, never enjoy any success or recognition for my art and probably be the iconic starving artist? The answer of course is Yes, be true to yourself as an artist. I can take heart that I have wonderful support from my beautiful wife who backs me 100% of the time. Even when I am wrong, (ya gotta love her!)
So I guess for this week, it's time for me to step down from my soap box but I'd like to thank the Bucks County Herald and the Penny Power for censoring my ad, if you didn't I wouldn't have a blog this week.
By the way, the title of the photo above is "Liberties Revoked"

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