"Behind every successful man stands a surprised mother-in-law."Hubert Humphrey
In my life, I have not attended a single official ball or prom of any institute I've ever studied in. Back in my days in Taylor's College, my entire class boycotted the college prom in favour of a private party at Prego's in Westin because we felt that the Student Council overcharged for the tickets (and also we didn't like the hotel they were hosting the damned thing). We did alright, I think - we even have some people from other classes present at our mini-prom. Yes, I know we are damn cool people and you wish you were in our clique - no need to say it out loud.
Here in Manipal, I have already skipped the previous two Supremo Balls because... look, I'm not going to pay good money to attend something called the Supremo Ball, okay? I think I've mentioned this like about a million times already (and at least twice in this very blog). I can imagine how it was first conceived; some Student Council President of yore decided that our young college ought to have its own black tie affair and he thought it'd be neat if he's the guy who instated it. I said "guy" because he's obviously a dude. No girl with a normal level of testosterone would consider the the name Supremo with any seriousness.
The scenario probably went like this; The college clown said 'I know! Let's call it Supremo!' and struck a cheesy pose for laughs. Student Council committee members laughed. Then Prez went 'Okay, enough horsing around. Any real suggestions?' and he was met with twiddling thumbs, blank stares and awkward silence. A pen dropped and clattered noisily on the table because the moron twirling it was a noob. Then finally, someone piped up and go 'Y'know, Supremo isn't that bad, really. Let us just run with that till there is someone from the future batches of this college who is smart enough to think of something cooler join our brain-dead Student Council.'
How about Monsoon Ball? I mean, it's always held during the monsoon season anyway (probably because that same Student Council Prez thought it'd be awesome to see the girls who took hours to do their hair and makeup and months to design their ball dresses get soaked by the vicious monsoon downpours - something which I'd very much like to see too). After all, they got away with naming the Winter Ball after a season too. Or hey, what about Julian Ball, after the month it's customarily held in? Julian Ball has a nice ring to it.
Perhaps, we can do what Inti College did - they named theirs IntiBall, after their college's name! Since we're in Manipal, we can call ours ManiBall! Hey, it even sounds like Manipal!
Okay, I'll admit that the lack of hard consonants in Mani made it sound kind of weird - not to mention that it made me laugh every time I said it out loud. Also, 'air mani' means semen in Malay. Brings a wholy different meaning to the word Ball, eh?
Well, as I was saying, I skipped the previous two Supremo Balls (haha, Ultimate Testicles), even in spite of the fact that I had a free pass to get into the second one last year - a sort of token of appreciation from the Student Council of the time not only because I designed the the college T-shirt (the sales from which helped to fund the ball), but the ball ticket as well,
What seriously ticked me off was the fact that the free ticket to last year's Supremo Ball excluded a pass to the buffet table - something which was explicitly explained by the Student Council representative who gave said ticket to me. I took that as a personal insult, actually, which was why I politely declined to appear. Even if I did go, what would I do there? Play with my dick while everyone eat? Maybe if they have assigned a hot Student Councilwoman to play with my dick for me while I watch everyone eat, I might have seen things differently. But no, they did not.
A batchmate of mine also designed some pretty nice college T-shirts but he never submitted any of them, choosing instead to sell them on his own and keep the earnings for himself. I toyed with that idea too earlier this year but I thought that it would seriously hurt that avenue of profit for the Student Council if there were two rogue students working independently in the T-shirt business. After all, how many college T-shirts can the student body buy anyway? Demand is a finite creature.
And what would the official college T-shirt look like when every single person who knows how to use Photoshop declines to be the Student Council's designer bitch? Yes, there is an estimated grand total of three students who actually know how to use Photoshop to design stuff in Melaka Manipal Medical College - a sad poverty of techno-talent, I agree. To be perfectly honest, I'm a rank amateur of Photoshop myself but yet I have won the Supremo College T-shirt Designing Competition twice already. So here's a lesson to everyone who have ever participated in this contest; it doesn't matter how mad your art skillz are. Nine out of ten times, some talentless prick who spent a couple of hours on his computer is going to shoot all your sweat and effort down like a duck. Has anyone seen the 2006 T-shirt? That crappy one which served my ass on a platter? I learnt my lesson right then and put away my crayons.
Not wanting to sabotage the official T-shirt sales because I'm just that stuffed full of moral fibres (prevents conscience constipation, they do), I submitted my own T-shirt design this year to the Student Council again. It was also done out of man-love for my good friend and ex-roomie, Inn Shan, the current Prez. According to the sales statistics, if I have sold the T-shirt on my own, I would have been able to replace my dearly departed digital camera twice over with a model twice as good, and still have enough money left over to throw at each Student Council member until they die. If the bank doesn't have that much change, I can throw one of my brand new digital cameras instead and still kill one of them.
Anyway, to Inn Shan's credit, he promised me a real ball ticket this time, one with buffet privileges and all so nobody needs to play with my dick. Or maybe it's just that the Student Councilwoman who was assigned that job decided that she would rather pay for my ticket than play with my dick - we may never know the truth now.
However, this time I did decline to design the ball ticket, and told Inn Shan he should look for someone else to do that. Truth be told, I'm sort of busy these days, but I did tell him that I would help out if any photoshopping work needs to be done on whatever ticket design he managed to glean from whichever student who agrees to do it because I'm just really nice that way.
Some Batch 20 girl (I said girl because boys really suck at drawing stuff) was nice enough to sacrifice her time to do one but unfortunately, she did it the old fashioned way. Yeap, poster colour and black and silver pens,
When I saw it, a wave of nostalgia hit me and I went, "Hey, I used to do it this way too!" I do sincerely think it's very nice. Stop pointing that Sarcasm-o-meter at me! I really do mean that.
There's that obvious problem of contrast though - It's pretty hard to read the words, especially the theme of the ball; Red Carpet (find it if you can). And the fleur had one foot firmly in the realm of overkill.
I was approached with this by Inn Shan to "do something about it". At first, I imagine that I could clean it up with Photoshop or something but I soon realised that I couldn't make the words more readable without significantly altering the colour scheme (even then, the result wouldn't be very much better). It's either that or reworking the fundamental design. Anyway it's really not my style to modify anyone's work because I hate it when people do that to mine. I call that art rape - and I certainly won't perpetrate art rape on a fellow artist.
So I borrowed a single element, the fleur, from her ticket and and built a whole new design around that,
Just so everyone knows, there's no "Create Work of Art" button in Photoshop which can instantly pop out a finished product. I had to draw using my hand first in the back of my
It's certainly harder to do than last year's design because there's no repeating patterns in it. Excepting the letters and number, everything was painstakingly drawn by me. And get this; the clock, its hands and the décor around it were done completely using a mouse because I only thought it up halfway through working on it and couldn't be bothered to sketch it out on paper first and then borrowing Josephine's camera (again) to turn it into a JPEG.
And, I'm quite pleased with how I managed to incorporate the date and time of the ball into my design. The only flaw was that the time is really 6.30 pm instead of the 6.23(?) pm shown there but superimposing the hands didn't look very nice. So what the hey? Artistic license coming through!
Anyway, everyone's still going to arrive after 7 o'clock like they did last year. It's not like the designated time actually means anything to them. Assholes.
You might notice that the overall effect of the design is quite emo, which was not an accident, by the way. It's because Phoebe can't attend the ball with me since she'll still be in Salem at the time. You can also factor in the fact that I was listening to an infinite loop of My Chemical Romance songs on my mp3 player when I was working on it - which also explains why the spilt wine looked so much like a torrent of blood (that was no accident either).
Sigh, this will be the first official ball I'm attending in my life - and my girlfriend can't come with me.
P.S. So can I get some feedbacks on my design? I worked pretty hard on it.
Official Designer Bitch for the Student Council,
k0k s3n w4i