2014 Oscar Fashion Photo Contest — Update 1

After two weeks, things are moving about average for the OFPC; a dead first week that makes me wonder, has anyone read the silly announcements, and then the entries start coming in.  Including invitations I’ve made on Flickr and Koinup to get things going, I have 20 entries at this writing.  So I should have a good pool to judge from come March 3.

Also, to tackle other aspects of the contest, the poll I held to get a feel for whether or now I should start allowing non-human entries came up tied:  two for, two against.  For now, you still need to be human to enter, I’m afraid.  But I’ll have a year to think about it more, and I may allow more a more diverse morphology in the future.  I should probably take into account that we’re talking Second Life here, after all….

New to the contest?  Read the rules here, and get your entry in!!

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I think I’ll start a fresh tradition with my first update for the Contest, and do a little photo montage of the looks that I liked from last year’s red carpet walk.  Let’s set the Wayback Machine for about a year ago, then, and drop down to the fan stands outside the Dolby Theater, and see who’s coming in:

Anne Hathaway 2013 Prada

Two wonderful women stole the moviegoers’ hearts in 2012, and made fashion sensation in February 2013.  Anne Hathaway, of course, is usually very fashion forward; witness some of the choices she wore for the various city premieres of Les Misérables.  (Take a look at the Givenchy halter and the draped Tom Ford — the one that caused such a ruckus — at one of my updates for last year’s contest.)  But she can also carry classic lines most nicely, as shown here in her red-carpet walk: a pale pink Prada sheath, nicely fitted to her shape and set off with a diamond choker and bracelet.  Pretty as a picture for the woman who stole our hearts with a wrenching performance as Fantine in Les Miz.

Jennifer Lawrence 2013 Dior

The other young woman was, of course, Jennifer Lawrence, who has been making a name for herself in the Hunger Games series, but was nominated and won Best Actress for Silver Linings Playbook.  Jennifer chose for her freshman outing this full-skirted Dior ball gown, and stole our sympathy at the same time she made us laugh; in her excitement at winning, she tripped on the hem while trying to get up the stage steps, and joked it off as everyone gave her a standing ovation.  (She later said that her stylist told her to “Kick, walk, kick, walk,” to “whack” the dress’ front out of the way, and she somehow turned it into “cakewalk” in her head as she was listening to the list of nominees, and so lost her rhythm as she hit the steps.  Then she hit the steps.)

Daniel Radcliffe 2013 Prada

You know why the women get all the attention?  Because they get to indulge in fashion.  Men get to indulge in…a new tuxedo.  But a good-looking guy in a well-tailored suit can be a hit as well, and Daniel Radcliffe proves this quite nicely in this Prada tux.  He looks every inch the powerhouse actor that he has proven himself to be, over and over again, on the screen large and small.  In contrast, Quentin Tarentino displayed his usual apparent disdain for the standards of the world, and arrived looking like he’d dressed after the full Radio City Music Hall chorus of Riverdance had done a rehearsal session on his evening clothes.  Yeeeech!

Halle Berry 2013 Versace

Oscar winner Halle Berry demonstrated she still has it, appearing in this Versace dress with the perfect amount of transparency — on the arms — and a nice rear split on the skirt.  I’m not thrilled with the bars down the décolletage front, and I just realized it’s because it looks like someone’s tried to fix the dress after it split too far.  I’d say either use less slit on the bodice, or display it in full and take your chances; this halfway measure didn’t succeed in my book.  But that’s the only real mark I’d put against Halle’s choice.

Fan Bingbing 2013 Marchesa (China)

Fan Bingbing, a Chinese actress, caught attention in this sizzling fuchsia taffeta strapless from Marchesa.  Her bouffant hairstyle and lack of jewelry only added to her swan’s neck beauty.

Kelly Rowland 2013 Donna Karan Atelier

“Structured” gowns are difficult to figure out at times.  I love them when done right, but it takes a master of the technique, such as the famous Charles James of the Fifties, to pull the trick off.  The dresses look either fantastic or confusing, but they’re almost always interesting.  Kelly Rowland wore this black and white gown from Donna Karan Atelier, with a full train behind.

Robin Roberts 2013 Marc Bouwer

Finally, a dress that is not only beautiful, but joyful to behold for different reasons than great style.  Robin Roberts of ABC’s Good Morning America had just returned in front of the cameras from a long battle with bone-marrow disease, and the brilliant blue Marc Bouwer she wore was as much a celebration as a dress.

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That’s all for now.  Watch for the next update!

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