Archive for the 'Sara Tomeo' Category

Sara Tomeo

January 17, 2012

Proposal Round ONE


First Impressions

What is it about meeting people for the first time automatically triggers you to believe your assumptions about them? Why is it that everyone is judged by the first impression they expel? You are visually communicating yourself to the public; rather it is consciously or subconsciously. From the style of your hair down to the shoes that you wear (fashion), from stereotypes and cultures (discrimination), to attractiveness skinny or appalling fat (beauty) it is your identity to the world.

I would like to explore more specifically about how women express themselves to the world. This idea sprung from Guerrilla Girls, which was founded because in 1985 The Museum of Modern Art in New York opened an exhibition, titled An International Survey of Painting and Sculpture and it only held 13 women artists out of 169 ( The objective of this thesis isn’t for it to be a feminism project, but more of a visual identity project based on how women are perceived to the public eye.

Proposal Round TWO



Are stereotypes still around? –Yes. Why are stereotypes still around, and why are they perceived negatively? These are the questions that led me from my original proposal from first impressions to generalizing the public. On AIGA’s website there was an article by Steven Heller The Science of Stereotyping: An Interview with Elizabeth and Stuart Ewen. ( ) They stated that many people think of stereotyping as a negative partly because stereotyping has played such a conspicuous role in reinforcing patterns of social inequality. But Heller asked the simple question to Ewen, “But are stereotypes negative?” And he answers back, “Actually, not all stereotypes are negative.”

And this is what I believe. I enjoy culture and learning about any type of demographic. It should be the person you learn (and if you learn) to like and dislike not a generalization. Technology was the huge impact on stereotypes. The invention of the printing press and then photography became the influencing link between the origin and modern day stereotypes. It seems that in human nature we tend to do things the simpler/easier way. It is easier to better understand a generalized group of people than take the time to individually educate yourself with each individual. From the text The Psychology of Stereotypes David J. Schneider comes to conclusion and says, “I do think that before we can make progress in this area, we have to bring stereotypes out of the musty rooms they have inhabited and give them a good airing out.” Basically saying that we have been lazy about educating ourselves the simple question why stereotypes happen. If we strive to learn and educate about the reasoning behind social inequality in the United States, we will be taking steps closer to accepting those differences and better understanding the people of the world.

Proposal Round THREE



These three questions that up.  1. “Are stereotypes still around? 2. Why are stereotypes still around? And 3. Why are they perceived negatively?” These questions are what drive me to finalize my thesis. There were two types of approaches I came across about stereotypes. One is controversial, the idea of being a racist. This isn’t my intention at all. Unfortunately as a white female, this is a risky topic to be dipping my feet in without proceeding with extreme caution. While my intentions are honest, and unbiased I definitely don’t want to be perceived as someone I am not. Therefore the other approach of discussing stereotypes is in an educational manner. People that were able to view my researching process jumped into conclusions of their own about who I am and not what I’m doing. People come to their own conclusions they believe without finding out the facts. Which is irony in itself considering I am learning about why people generalize others without knowledgeable information.

My final stages of this thesis will become a publication. As my teacher presented to me the April 2011 issue of WIRED magazine I began to look at it and that sparked this idea of using type and photography in an educating way. Magazines are used as communicative entertainment in a topic people enjoy while staying educated. Which is my exact intention. My first stages of research were to find out about the history of generalizing people. The invention of the printing press, and photography (both used in a magazine) were also the inspiring result and reason why I am deciding to do a publication. The magazine will be called Stereotype-o. Conceptually it will present the meaning that stereotypes have a truth and an error to understanding that truth.


April 2011 issue of Wired magazine cover

The Approach: Educational

The Answer: Publication

The Application: Stereotype-o

Proposal Round FOUR


Stereotype-o in action

Conceptually Stereotype-o presents the meaning that stereotypes have a truth and an error to understanding that truth. Which brought me to my next challenge. Rather it was designing covers or a whole magazine. Choosing covers is a more logical solution because the material that would go inside something of this caliber would take a lot of knowledgeable people and a large diverse group of people. Magazines are commonly known to be monthly, which I started to realize that there is more material that what lies on the surface. During the same process as the cover material, I found myself trying to conceptually find a solution about how the title needs to be typographically treated and found there is a reason why titles are always near the top. There are different ways to communicate an idea on the front of a magazine. Typographically, photographically, both, shape, and color. Going back to basic graphic communication, it’s the most important factor in understanding and learning something so complex such as stereotypes.

Here are a few sketches:

January: Politics

February: Love

March: St. Patrick’s Day

April: Misc

May: Cinco De Mayo

June: LGBT

July: Misc

August: Misc

September: Misc/Halloween?

November: Misc

December: Religion

June: Misc


April 2011 issue of Wired magazine cover
AIGA Article by Steven Heller The Science of Stereotyping: An Interview with Elizabeth and Stuart Ewen
The Psychology of Stereotypes David J. Schneider
In Love in the lead: The miracle of the seeing eye dog. New York: University Press of America

Influencing factors:

blindpimp Brian Celusnak 
Russell Peters 
21 Jump Street (2012)