Disney Can Do Better for Girls

Disney Can Do Better for GirlsThe other day I was sitting at the table with my upper-elementary school aged daughter. She started to tell me about how you knew it was time to break up with a boy, how hard long distance relationships were, how to choose a good boyfriend, etc. Now my daughter has never dated a boy (goodness no!) and I realized, these were all storylines from the Disney television shows she has been watching.

Now I have been tolerating a select few of the Disney shows because she really enjoys them and all her friends watch them. But after this conversation, John and I realized it’s time to put the brakes on. Almost every Disney show targeted towards girls my daughter’s age is based on the same formula…girl who can sing/dance/songwrite has situations in high school that often involve boys. They actually kind of make my head hurt.

But you know what? Disney can do better! Where are the shows about girl detectives, girl scientists, girl computer programmers, girl adventurers? Why does every show have to be about the same thing? Aren’t girls so much more than that? And haven’t the Disney writers proven themselves capable of writing about plenty of entertaining themes that have mass market appeal?

Now I understand that the Disney machine’s formula makes them a lot of money. Their little stars do a lot more than just act on the show…they go on tour, sell records, etc, and Disney gets a cut of everything.

But Disney owes our girls more. They are more than capable of making entertaining shows that don’t have 9 year old girls processing what makes a good boyfriend. There is more than enough time for that! Why not focus on showing girls the possibilities. All the many things they are capable of. Skipping the boyfriend conversation entirely. These are kids, after all!

What shows do you let your girls watch? Where are the shows that encourage girls to be all they can be and to embrace the possibilities? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments!

Smiling Thing (Part 1)

This art e-book was created to encourage people to smile. I use these images to remind my kids to smile more often and to easily explain to them why it’s so important. However, even though I had my kids in mind when I created these images, I encourage people of all ages to use these simple tips to improve their own outlook and harness the power of smiling.

My visual art e-book integrates images and concepts/ideas together to make them more playful, memorable, accessible, and user-friendly. I find that I intuitively mash the descriptive, sensorial, visual, and poetic things I experience into complete simple pictures that help me learn more effectively.

In many cases, my visual art e-books are very child-like because I’m trying to distill high level ideas into easy, quick, understandable chunks, so that I and everyone else can immediately apply what was just learned.

 

Playground Basics (Tips on making friends and networking)

This e-book was created so that a parent and child can explore the concept of friendship and the process of networking. However, I encourage people of all ages to use these simple tips to improve their own social and networking skills.

My visual art e-book integrates images and concepts/ideas together to make them more playful, memorable, accessible, and user-friendly. I find that I intuitively mash the descriptive, sensorial, visual, and poetic things I experience into complete simple pictures that help me learn more effectively.

In many cases, my visual art e-books are very child-like because I’m trying to distill high level ideas into easy, quick, understandable chunks, so that I and everyone else can immediately apply what was just learned.

Free Ebook: A Thank You Gift. It inspired me, so I hope it inspires you too!

I am so grateful for all of you that have supported me in my art this year. As a thank you gift, I offer you this free downloadable ebook of collages and writing. It inspired me, so I hope it inspires you too!

Click the image below to download the free ebook “Reflections and Visions”.

I wish you all the best!

John Fong

Go Fly a Kite

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First, you check the kite itself, untangle the string, and locate a large treeless field. Then map out your runway to get the kite to fly. Once on top of the highest flat hill, hope for a windy day. As we rushed out to midfield our kite began to flutter. We followed our flight plan and caught the first breeze. Up goes the kite. We yanked and tugged on the string to maintain control. At times it soared as high as the cotton-fluff clouds and in a sudden twist the kite crashed back to earth. Like in winning, it’s all about the preparation, building momentum, practice by doing, learning from crashes and heights of excellence.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″




Weeds in the Garden

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It seems like every day I was pulling weeds from my garden. I noticed that part of the problem was that it was coming over from my neighbor’s yard. First, I tried to create a fence to block it from coming over. That didn’t work for long. Then, I dug a trench, but somehow it was able to hop over it. Finally, I went to my neighbor and we discussed ways to get rid of the weeds in both our gardens. There are plenty of weeds in our towns, neighborhoods, communities, and if we want our wonderful lives to continue we’ll need to address these areas of decay that are underdeveloped and filled with hopelessness. Or one day it will reach our own garden.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″




It Will Pass

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It wasn’t my best. It blindsided me. It replays over and over again in my head. I can’t believe I made such a dumb mistake. I vowed not to let it happen again. So, what did I do wrong? What should I have done? How can I take advantage of the situation next time? I turned the inner beating to feed my inner flame. I flexed and stood up high like the tree I envisioned in me. I took a step forward. Tomorrow is a new day and this will pass. Like deja vu, this process happens again and again. In fact I encourage it. The faster I can run, the more falls I get up from, the quicker I will reach the finish line. No one cares about my falls, everyone wants to know if I finished the race.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″

 




In One’s Heart

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You follow a routine every day. You drive on the same roads to get to work. You see the same people. If you are going to do the same thing every day, shouldn’t you make sure it’s something you love, something in your heart? If you find yourself losing focus, getting lost, becoming more mechanical, and lifeless. Start dreaming about what excites you, find something that you’ll want to do every day. Be true to yourself, it’ll build you, give you purpose and fill your heart.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″




Passion Mutated

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When you get a fever you’re probably sick. It started as a small microbe that worked into your blood. Then it grew in your core as you nurtured it unknowingly. It pushed up from your gut into your throat, up your sinuses and into your gray matter. It made you sick, caused a fever and became an obsession. Now from every part of your being it feeds, improves, gets stronger as the years pass. It no longer resembles the seed it came from. It’s now a passion, constantly improving, serving others and doesn’t stop until success is achieved. Success is an ongoing mutation from a simple idea that follows a process of satisfying an ever-growing community.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″




Airbags and Seat Belts

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Before your kids ever drive, you teach them to buckle their seat belts and you make sure your car has airbags. Yet, they run down the stairs in the dark, jump from couch to chair, tight rope railings on the back deck, and ride their bicycle without helmets or hands! But you let them, not because you want to, but because they do it when you’re not looking. In the end they become so grown up with your love, guidance, your carefully orchestrated safety nets without their knowledge and because it helps them grow to be confident, inquisitive, healthy people.

Mixed media/collage signed print with verse. $40
8-1/2″ x 11″