Saturday, June 13, 2015

Gallery Guide, Part IV: How to Make Your Own Lifelike Magazine Cover

Equipment & Materials: One (1) high-end laptop; one (1) graphics editing program; one (1) magazine cover template, preferably preset with transparent background; three (3) pictures of O.J. Simpson; three (3) pictures of a woman with long, lustrous dark hair.

Preparation Time: 40-60 min.

Result: Priceless.

Instructions: First, assess your materials. Open your graphics editing program and access the image file with your magazine cover template.

Next, study your available pictures of O.J. Simpson. Does he look too old? Too young? It doesn't matter--choose from your heart.

Pro tip: try to avoid a courtroom shot. Look for something more elegant.

No, not that. Besides being inappropriate, aim for the "mature O.J." look.

There--that's a little friendlier! Next, prepare O.J.'s hair. Look for something long, youthful, and beautiful.

That might be a bit too much. How about--

There! The Juice is gonna be lookin' good, soon!

Next, use your graphics editing program to add a liberal dose of lipstick to O.J.'s lips. Aim for a warm red-based shade, without too much from the blue end of the spectrum, to compliment his tonal position on the L'Oréal complexion chart (in this case, mature O.J. is #14C, Autumn Espresso). Make sure not to overdo the makeup.

Carefully trim the hair picture to remove the model's face. Arrange the resulting hair over O.J.'s head and shoulders, and adjust shading correspondingly, to create a seamless, lifelike image. If you wish to add a bustline, do a Google™ search for "plastic surgery before after breasts," select the most desirable pair, then use your graphics editing program's layering setting to paste the desired breasts under O.J.'s shirt, creating the impression of his sumptuous new form.

OPTIONAL: using a soft brush tip setting, smooth the Juice's jawline to create a more feminine appearance. If your program possesses advanced arcing calculation capability, plump his nares so that they correspond to the curve of his cheekbones at a 0.87 angle--the ratio suggested by the University of New Mexico's recent facial compatibility component of modern bodily symmetry research.

At this point, O.J. will resemble a very attractive woman. Be sure to save your work before moving to the next step.

Now it's time to think of a tagline for your magazine cover. If you've been properly applying layers since Step 1, you should be able to experiment with a number of options. Brainstorm. Take advantage of your friends and colleagues. If other artists in your area have been developing their own O.J. covers, set up a networking event at a local guava bar where everyone can bring copies of their own work to discuss presentation methodology. Consider contacting local schools and offering them the opportunity to host tagline competitions to raise awareness.

If you prefer to work alone, or if local media are already covering too many other hypothetical transitions, don't get worried--just start simple. Designing your own tagline can be both fun and easy. Prepare a foreground text layer and ask yourself what would best express the message of your new O.J.

It's not as hard as it sounds! For example, "Call me Angela." would strike an obvious chord. However, the obvious chord isn't always the right one. For a more subtle effect hearkening the end of days, consider employing the tagline, "Yes, me too." The juxtaposition of a familiar celebrity visage, the magazine cover, the transition, and the implication that this is all only the beginning of a trend that could go as far as Barbara Obama or Henry Clinton, might prove more amusing, in the long run, than merely renaming O.J. "Angela."

When your cover has found its proper tagline, it's time to share it with the world. It wouldn't be appropriate to interfere with the self-styled magazine covers of transpeople who have placed themselves on covers in courageous and selfless public statements. Your cover should be something more--it should be a show of support for not only O.J., but for any other neglected person wishing to share him, her, or tranself. Consider approaching your local anthromorph community and making your work the starting point for a portfolio of acceptance. Angela Simpson could be just the beginning: use your well-tested graphics-editing skills to assist the anthromorphs in developing their own successively more supportive transition covers.

"Call Me Octopus." Suggest that the second cover portray a post-op cephalopod, and the third show a hybridized version. Later individuals might incorporate cybernetic elements, while more striking covers might appear to be empty, and speak to the need of air itself to be respected and heard. It's these kinds of theoretical transmeta studies that keep us one step ahead of ISIS and Jeb.

Whatever you do, have fun out there. If the only thing you can manage is to print up a few dozen versions of your O.J. cover on fine glossy stock, and sneak them onto the magazine rack at the local drugstore, the world can only be the better for it.

1 comment:

  1. Well, all this aside, I have often asked myself why every - and I mean EVERY - 'lifestyle' magazine cover is formatted exactly, Exactly, EXACTLY the same: a mugshot and some titles on the sides. Doesn't matter if it is cosmopolitan, or Maxim, or something 'higher end'. No difference at all.