The magic of Lane Bryant

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Posted by HSG on April 06, 2005 at 17:51:49:

In Reply to: Re: Why Terri Schiavo is dying posted by Melanie W. on April 01, 2005 at 23:25:52:

Your appreciation is understandable. From the moment that it debuted, the spring campaign has produced one masterpiece after another, and has never hit a single wrong note.

In a recent thread, we discussed how retailers can achieve "progress two ways" in their campaigns--both through increasing the artistry of their images, and in featuring models who are visibly full-figured. Lane Bryant has done both.

Here is another new image of Crystal Renn in Lane Bryant's dreamscape setting. It is almost hypnotic in its beauty, from the lush landscape in the background, to the flowers in the bicycle basket, to (naturally) the soft curves of the model's figure. In a sense, what Lane Bryant has been doing with this campaign is producing photographs of paintings-i.e., visual compositions that, in another time, would have been paintings, but today, are captured by the lens of the campaign's photographer (who obviously shares the love of idealized beauty that the great artists of the Western tradition have always displayed). This is a prime example of the aesthetic restoration.

And here is perhaps the loveliest image of Maiysha Simpson's career, showing off her rounded midriff and shapely figure. The image is intensely sensual, but chic, without a hint of vulgarity, and it is to the credit of the photographer's unerring visual taste that he knows the subtle but crucial difference between these tones. Lane Bryant also deserves praise for continuing to produce lingerie in natural hues (citrus, berry, and garden colours, for example), rather than the gaudy artificial royal blues and reds that used to make lingerie apparel so off-putting. This image perfectly captures the spirit of size celebration:

As we have said before, the history of the Lane Bryant campaigns over the past several has been a slow but steady upward climb from faux-plus modernism to timeless beauty. It is too much to hope that the company can match the success of its spring campaign in the future, let alone surpass it, but we nurture such a hope nonetheless.

Perhaps when more full-figured women come to view themselves as goddesses--thanks to campaigns such as these--cases as tragic as Ms. Schiavo's will become mercifully rare.

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