The perfect image of a wholesome, all American girl, Lively has been photographed for the cover of W magazine. Presented and packaged as the USA’s national treasure. Unconventionally beautiful in her face, the photographers have made a point of her exquisite body. Her waist and bust the focal point in red, her waves of hair pop with yellow. It is a primal picture in primary colours. She says “Look what I’ve got – don’t you want a piece of me?”
Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin have captured Gossip Girl star Blake Lively at a powerful moment in her career. With a leading role in a hit show and two independent films under her belt, the actress’ star is in the ascendant. Wearing a tiny flame red dress with a cheerleader-short skirt, Lively assumes a posture of absolute control. The viewer is eating out of her hand. And why shouldn’t they? Aged 21 in 2008, a very bright future lies ahead for the young actress. She possesses all the ingredients for success.
Memories of the 1980s film Supergirl and Wonder woman abound. The red, white and blue of the US flag. Loud and confident, the picture stimulates and excites. The perfect photograph for a magazine cover. Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin have played upon Lively’s bombshell beauty. She has a look that is all about fertility, youth and colour, not an enduring bone structure or strange prettiness. She is all about the power of now.
With heavy lidded eyes looking down and towards the camera, Lively is not flirting with the viewer. There is no need for coquetry; she does not even have to try. Like moths to the flame, her body and clothes ensure all eyes are on her.