Visual Essay Final Outcome And Thoughts

The publication is officially complete and open for the eyes of the world to look through. It has been a tight race, but I managed to make it to the finish line just about in time. (With the help of the extension, of course) “DBYELT” represents a community of people who have had their slice of culinary misfortunes handed to them.. and have eaten it too. “DBYELT” is a line of zines which indirectly tackles the issue that is “food-shaming”, something that is surprisingly very prevalent in modern times. At the end of the day, we all have cooked up an atrocity in the bounds of our kitchens, if not there, then in someone else’s kitchen, the point stands. Who is anyone to say what is the correct and what is the incorrect approach when it comes to making food. Especially when it comes to making food for yourself. As someone who has had his fair share of people questioning my methods and processes, I wanted to create a publication that would maybe open up a conversation on the matter. And I am very well aware of how it may come across – “people are talking about mental health, people are talking about injustices, people are talking about this and that, you must be incredibly ignorant to just resort to talking about food and how some people get smack for eating atrocious-sounding meals” and to that, all I have to say is – I didn’t really plan on making my final project on food-shaming. If anything, I had a big ol’ questionaire set up about covid and how that has affected people throughout the last year, it got a good amount of responses too, enough to make a whole publication on. However, due to time constraints and a rather poor mental posture throughout this module, I was simply not in the shape, nor did I have the means to go forward with it. That’s not to say, however, that I will not return to the idea later on, I still have conducted a good amount of research, I cannot just let it go to waste like that. It will see the light of day eventually. Perhaps I can do more reading up on it and propose a more thorough analysis and presentation of the project.

The publication is made in a way that it would share likeness to a cook-book that you’d find laying around in the house. I’ve made it my mission to present the most unpresentable recipes in the most presentable way possible. That might even evolve into a tagline should this go further into production! In each volume, 3 recipes would be presented to the reader, all coming from a different source, a different “character”. Alongside, there is the “author” of the book, the critical and condescending individual who questions everything, makes remarks about these people’s creations, capturing the essence of a dirty look in the form of a text message. The viewer is looking at this publication through the lens of a shamer but are programmed to recognize the flaw within their behaviour and attitude, seeing the contributors as normal people that are there to just present their ideas to the world, despite how outrageous they may first appear. Through this publication, I want to allow for there to be an opportunity for growth and development of an understanding of one another. I want people to feel more confident about themselves and be more loose when it comes to making mistakes as well as not to be too serious about everything. It’s perfectly fine to make mistakes, everyone should trust the process and see where it takes them, then, based on the result, you can decide on whether you are satisfied with it or is there something you could improve. In the chance that the satisfaction is not mutual among your peers, friends or even strangers online, evaluate that, ask yourself “Who am I doing this for?” Who was this made for? Me or the rest of the world?” and from there you can stem further into a scenario that benefits you most – self satisfaction or approval from others. Do what works for you and don’t break your back over the opinion of someone who wouldn’t go about changing something about themselves for you. This is what I would like to be the main takeaway from the publication. If I were to create a more refined version of this and have an official release of it, I would like to add more text that would hint at that reach for those less aware. Or, better yet, leave it all open for interpretation. Let people see what they want/need to see, let them feel like they have power over the narrative!

How does it change someone’s day? – it’s fun, it’s encouraging, it’s engaging, it’s a read that doesn’t take a long time but leaves a nice feeling in the reader. If I were to put it anywhere, I think placing it on tables around restaurants (fast food or regular) would be a fun way to introduce it to the public. People go to restaurants for (mainly) 3 reasons – either they can’t cook, they don’t want to cook or they are having a special time and would rather have someone cook for them. In all cases, having a comedic zine laying on the table could possibly help lighten the mood, open a conversation, allow people to reflect on their past recipes, share a laugh or maybe even start a family discourse – perhaps Nancy has had enough of Jim’s infamous tartar sauce stuffed muffins, that certainly ought to shake up a portion of a family tree.

I am generally satisfied with what I’ve been able to create, I think the idea behind it is generally strong, a few tweaks here and there would not be in vain but besides that, I think I was able to take it far, especially given the circumstances.


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