My entry for MDI, Miss Spain: Aurora Fernández García. (Fdez. is the common abbreviation for Fernández) - Baseless
I had several designs where I tried to combine North and South in an entry, but failed. Since the portrait had to incorporate some pattern, I initially thought of a mantón de Manila, a big shawl with flower patterns and frills which everyone loves. It’s originally an Asian— Chinese, I think— garment the Spaniards fell in love with through The Philippines— hence it’s name. It was taken to Spain and soon, due to its popularity among all classes, it was adapted to Spanish tastes: the Asian flowers were replaced by roses, carnations, lilies and the fringe of tassels was added to give it more dynamism when women danced with it. It’s mostly associated with Southern Spain, mainly the Romantic vision of Andalusia, and with copla and flamenco. However, not so many tourists realise that it’s also worn in central Spain, as is the case of las chulapas de Madrid. Since I wanted to go for the classical image of el mantón, I decided to go South with my portrait and based it on copla singers, mainly young Rocío Jurado. The dress was going to be based on Asturian traditional dresses, but I didn’t manage to make it interesting enough, so I’m saving that idea for the future rounds. Instead I decided to go for a second mantón, this time in the shape of a dress. Also very common in Spanish fashion and again, tightly linked to the South.
I admit that I know nothing about flamenco or copla, except for listening to my mom’s records at home and watching videos with her, so the flamenco pose may not be too correct to people who do know what it is about. However, flamenco is very powerful visually and I wanted to break away from the typical ‘standing there in a cute dress’ pose. I wanted to make a difference with my fullbody, and hopefully I did. For the better. I tried to avoid drowning the name in so many details by framing it with floral motifs, although it’s so small that they’re random blobs of colour. And the font for her name, which is hand-made as you can probably tell, is based on the pretty common tiles used throughout the whole country but they do have some Southern feel. The Miss title is based on the original Miss España logo, and the Spanish flag behind it was a way not to make it too plain with respect to the rest of the image.