This week we’ve listened to a discussion on the importance of geekdom and fanfiction for LGBTQI+ folks, worried ourselves silly about how those endless internet tabs might be affecting our brains, and pondered over the ethical concerns of using technology to create impossibly beautiful fashion models.
- 1 These days, it seems that everyone with a smartphone and an internet connection can call themselves a street photographer—but there’s more to being a professional than knowing a bit of Photoshop. If you’re looking for some inspiration to make your images “pop,” LensCulture, one of the most authoritative resources for contemporary photography, just presented the winners of this year’s Street Photography Award. Photographers from over 170 countries entered the contest, and 39 photographers from 22 different countries made the cut.
- 2 Is your computer ruining your concentration? Writing for The Guardian, Maryanne Wolf, author of Reader, Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World, details how “deep reading” processes—such as empathy, analogical reasoning, and critical analysis—are increasingly under threat as skim-reading becomes the new norm. The article makes for a sobering read: In the age of ‘fake news’ our diminishing ability to critically analyze what we’re looking at could leave us even more susceptible to false or misleading information.
- 3 How did New York-based sculptor James Wines go from “designing turds in a plaza” to creating playful, postmodern storefronts that drove proponents of “fine architecture” to distraction? In this article for Camera Obscura, Daniel Richards traces the history of the unlikely collaboration between a multidisciplinary artist collective and the 1970s retail chain store Best Products, which transformed select showrooms across America into works of art and courted lots of controversy in the process.
- 4 It’s been over a decade since Alexander McQueen famously turned Kate Moss into a hologram for the runway, but a new generation of CGI-created models and influencers have the fashion industry talking about technology again. In a piece for British Vogue, Alice Newbold looks into the ethics of brands using humanoid avatars to promote their products in an industry that’s already accused of creating unrealistic beauty standards for women.
- 5 Kalia Hale Stern, from the “female-focused geek” site The Mary Sue, and Marvel writer Leah Williams, discuss the importance of fanfiction to queer and minority communities in an interview with The Fandom Files podcast. Who wouldn’t want to find out why Harry Potter is nothing but Jesus fanfiction and Shakespeare is the genre’s most famous (queer) writer?
Hopefully you enjoyed the reads from this week’s Link List, but if you’ve still got an internet itch to scratch, you can find more here.
Also, be sure to check out the FvF Mixtapes for some tunes mixed by our friends and favorite artists, and subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with FvF stories.
Text: FvF team
Photography: Michael Wickham