Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

NovaAlbion
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by NovaAlbion » Wed Oct 08, 2008 6:22 pm

Destani wrote:I have a hard time with the casting mostly because the vampires are supposed to be from different eras. I love old movies and photographs so I have a very clear image of what people from those eras looked like. It wasn't just hairstyles and clothes...their facial structure was often quite different from what we typically see today. So I created images of the characters based on features that I knew were prominent in the time period each one lived as a human.

For instance, actresses from the 20's, 30's and 40's had a rounder face than Niki Reed. My image of Rosalie is completely fabricated in my mind but it's based on some of the features of actresses like Veronica Lake and Joan Bennet.
When reading I tend to not particularly visualize the characters unless something draws attention to their description. So, if there is a screen adaptation, I generally don't have much of a problem with casting.

However, I disagree with the idea that "vampires" from different eras would have era specific facial structures. In any era, the source material is in the human DNA pool. Allowing for migration patterns and population shifts, perhaps, gradually altering percentages, all facial types, skin types, hair color/types are found in the gene pool.

The "look" of an era is determined by the artists who leave a record, from Greek statues to internet "self-portrait" photographs, including drawings, paintings, sculpture, photography and film/video. Vampires of an era would only have that look if there were either drawn from the pool of that era's artist/fashion models, film/stage actors or other exemplars of beauty. I suspect that newborns are more likely to be drawn from the larger mass of humanity.

una was correct in pointing out that "beauty" standards, as well as "hairstyles and clothes" vary from era to era; and that vampires are inclined to blend in. This means that if the fashion dictates a hair style, for example, that does not flatter their facial features, they do as mere mortals do; suck it up knowing that this too will pass, try to mitigate the, currently unfashionable, feature, or do something different.

Since 'Twilight' is set in our time, it makes sense, especially as the Cullens are trying to blend in, to use modern styles regardless of personal tastes and standards. For example, if a vampire had a round face and the current standard of beauty was a thin face, use a hair style that thins the face. No hair cutting though, it won't grow back.

I suspect that our definition of "beauty" is largely formed in our youth (before age 21) by what we are exposed to during this period, somewhat like our taste in music is influenced. (On a personal note, my Aunt Thelma, born 1905, died 1994, never wore a hairstyle that couldn't be found in a magazine or movie from the 1920s or early '30s.) Considering that Stephenie Meyer did state that, for conversion purposes, vampires were drawn to humans that were already attractive, what does this mean in the case of the Cullens?

Carlisle was converted incidental to the escape of a vampire from a mob. Beauty played no role in his "infection". Carlisle, if beauty was a factor in his "selections", probably used the standards of 1640-1650 lower middle class (protestant minister's son) London. However, he only "selected" Esme and Edward. While their inherent human "beauty" may have been a factor, it is not so mentioned in canon. The reason given was that they were about to die.

For Rosalie, her beauty definitely influenced Carlisle. Okay, so what were the standards of the period when his standards formed (the 1640 - 1650s) that influenced him to convert Rosalie? Here is a contemporary example: http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Venus-Bef ... 90296_.htm, Rubens, Venus Before a Mirror, 1614-15. (Please note that Rosalie was also considered "a beauty" by the standards of the 1930s by which time something more svelte than the classical Rubenesque figure was the standard.)

As a note, beauty, in one form or another played a role in the selection of Emmett, probably was a factor for Alice and, although not mentioned in canon, may have played a role in Jasper's selection. Maria was primarily looking for other traits.

It should also be noted that prior to the 1920s (in the United States), due to wide spread malnutrition and the intense physical labor required of most people, purely for survival, meant that a "pleasingly plump" figure, in both men and women, was considered, not only attractive, but as a sign of prosperity and good health.

So, while each era's standards of beauty may fluctuate, all skin, face, hair and body "types" remain in the population, even when out of "fashion". Thus the appearance of a given vampire would not necessarily correspond to a given era.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by jenni_elyse » Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:31 pm

Nima, that picture of Cam was awesomely hot and gorgeous! Thank you!

So, I've been a little MIA the last little bit. Life has been really hectic lately. Hopefully, it will calm down soon, but who knows. ;)

As far as images of the characters, I didn't like Rob at first because I just didn't think he measured up as Edward. Also, I imagined Edward a little older, so I didn't feel so pedophilish. And, my main man as everyone knows is Ewan McGregor, so, of course, I imagined him, even though he's Scottish and doesn't look anything like Edward. :lol: However, now that I'm seen the stills from the movie and also the posters, so that Rob is made up to look like Edward and he doesn't have his non-photogenic look about him, I think he's great. I'm really excited to see how he'll be in the movie.

I think Kristen looks a lot like how I pictured Bella, but she doesn't sound like I pictured her voice. But, I can deal with that. Obviously, there are a few minor characters that I never imagined as their actors because the director took some creative licensing, but I'm okay with that.

The only person I have a hard time with is Nikki Reed. I'm sure she'll do fine, but I just don't think she's the "most beautiful person in the world." But, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so who knows. I pictured Rosalie more like what Destani said, except a little more modernized.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Adam » Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:02 am

NovaAlbion wrote: It should also be noted that prior to the 1920s (in the United States), due to wide spread malnutrition and the intense physical labor required of most people, purely for survival, meant that a "pleasingly plump" figure, in both men and women, was considered, not only attractive, but as a sign of prosperity and good health.
NA, your comment is really insightful. It is true. Back in Carlilse's day, girls like Cindy Crawford would have been ye olde nasty wench.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Goodnight Elizabeth » Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:26 am

In class a few years ago, we discussed society's view on beauty and how men looked for voluptuous women. Voluptuous women were usually better at carrying/delivering babies, could work harder, and withstand the cooler climate. The professor, a male, asked the other males in class to name some attractive women in Hollywood. They named Courtney Cox, Jennifer Aniston, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Madonna. The professor then asked them to describe the figures of those women. Of course, they are all very skinny with small breasts (not that that's a bad thing), no hips, abs, and muscley arms. The professor pointed out that those physical characteristics also belong to teenage males. He asked the class - "How did we go from admiring full figured voluptuous women to admiring women who look like pre-pubescent boys?" Also, most females who are that skinny do not get their periods - another thing they have in common with boys.

My friend told me today that her 12 yo son --who is gorgeous-- likes bigger girls. He's not the only younger male I've heard that from. I'm wondering if biology has flipped again. Men liked fuller women just like women liked very masculine men - to keep the species going. I wonder if things changed because we needed to slow down the population. Now have things changed again?

On the other hand, since boys have liked girls who look like boys --- is this perhaps why a lot of girls like boys who look like girls.

Sorry for the rambling...it's late for me. :|
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by moon sidhe » Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:40 am

That reminds me of a really interesting article I read a while ago which was about masculine vs. feminine character traits rather than physical traits. Here's an excerpt:
It’s a stereotype, but in many cases, it’s true: On personality tests, women tend to score as being more nurturing, emotionally responsive, cooperative and cautious than men; men, on average, are more competitive, assertive, reckless and, as the New York Times puts it, “emotionally flat.” As John Tierney explains in a fascinating article on gender differences, these biases show up in childhood and never go away.

As anyone who pays attention to such things knows, there’s a name for the long-standing debate about where these differences come from: Nature versus nurture. But now, the Times reports, new research is showing that both theories may be wrong — or at least have different effects from what you might expect. An analysis of personality tests taken by men and women in more than 60 countries around the world shows that the size of the gender gap varies among cultures (bad for the “nature” adherents). And unfortunately for the “nurturers” who believe that if only societies were more equal, the differences between the sexes would disappear, it appears that the more traditional the culture (think India or Zimbabwe), the smaller the differences are, personality-wise, between men and women. As Tierney puts it, “The more Venus and Mars have equal rights and similar jobs, the more their personalities seem to diverge.”
And here's the whole article for those who are interested in some of the possible conclusions: http://www.salon.com/mwt/broadsheet/200 ... v_nurture/

I find the whole nature vs. nurture gender debate fascinating. My personal leanings are a splash of nature with a whole heck of a lot of nurture cause gendered behavior. But the two are so intertwined that it's virtually impossible to conduct an experiment to isolate them.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Valentina » Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:49 am

Nova - Remember too that Rosalie was human in the 30's... while a skinny, small chested figure was fashionable in the 20's, in the 30's there was some reversion back to the earlier beauty standards, as obviously the women who had curvy figures were the wealthier ones, and Rose was definitely from a wealthy family. So I tend to picture her a bit curvier. Maybe not as curvy as the painting you linked to, but curvy. I actually picture Scarlett Johanssen (sp?) when I think of Rose. Scarlett has a curvy, classic figure.

PS... as a curvy girl myself I have to say that the leaning back toward women who look like women is quite refreshing. Since I was a young teenager when 'heroin chic' was all the rage... this does wonders for my self esteem!

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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Lieziewiezie » Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:35 am

This is a really interesting convo. I agree a bit with the features of the time areas where the different vampires lived in play a big role. But then again we wouldn't find those on actresses right now. Accept maybe that one lingerie model/model but I totally forgot her name.

I just can't imagene that you don't picture characters at all whilest reading the books? I always see everything before me if it's very good written. The characters/ town/ houses,... really get alive whiles I'm sucked in good books. That could be a part of my very huge imagenation, but I can't picture reading books without that.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Valentina » Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:46 am

I actually rarely picture characters while I'm reading. Most of the characters I only knew a few features. Like Alice has short spiky hair, Jacob is Aboriginal and he had long hair... which I only noticed when Bella said he'd cut it all off. For a loooong time, I pictured Aro bald.

Its a good thing in that I'm rarely disappointed in casting for movies based on books.

As I reread though I catch a lot more and now I have firm mental images for all the characters... sometimes like the actors but sometimes images of my own creation.

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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by Lieziewiezie » Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:54 am

Yeah that is indeed a positive thing when it comes to movies.
I'm dissapointed most of the time, cause it kills the persons I had up in my head ;) For that reason I'm mostly sceptical for movies after I read the books cause I made my own movie in my imagenation whilest reading it. I think it's also something that comes of me being a writer myself, my stories are always alive when I put them down too.

But at the same time I'm also really excited for the movie, cause I want to see how they put everything together, and let it live. Hope it all looks real and believable.
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Re: Gutter Gals & Guys School for Cullen-ary Arts --Adult Thread

Post by nissanmama » Thu Oct 09, 2008 7:45 am

Valentina wrote:For a loooong time, I pictured Aro bald.
Aro was perhaps one of the clearest characters in my head and it was Bill Nighy from Underworld. It's him even with hair. Interestingly he's the same guy that played Davey Jones in the Pirates movies. The guy is a really good bad guy!
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