05/21/2008 07:46 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Haven't I Seen That Before?

Just as its becoming harder to find a new movie that isn't a remake of an old movie, hasn't anyone noticed magazines are plundering their pasts more and more rather than actually creating something new. Esquire, no doubt because of the terrible shortage of Barack Obama images out there this month has recycled a Time Magazine cover rather than come up with something new and dare I say it? Fresh? 2008-05-21-timeesquire350x229.jpg
Thanks to PDN for catching them out.
Vanity Fair, not content with just recycling old film imagery for its annual Hollywood issue actually assigned Art Streiber to plagiarise himself plagiarising Alfred Hitchcock (he did the same shot with Ernest Lehman back in 1998). Time was that photography was supposed to portray the subject, not allow the subject to be someone, anyone but himself.

And this month's Los Angeles magazines cover shot (by Blake Little) of Abigail Breslin bears an extraordinary resemblance to a wonderful Peggy Sirota image of Jodie Foster, who perhaps only coincidentally was a child star. Editorial meetings must consist these days of staff frantically searching through old magazines looking for images to plunder.

Somewhere the great Alexey Brodovitch is rolling over in his grave. The man whose dictum was 'make it new!' and who gave us the format for the magazine as we know it today would be aghast at the imagery that now saturates the 21st century. No wonder print is in such crisis.
Do people really not want to see anything they haven't seen before? Are there no new ideas anymore?