From Iceland — Why So Many Covers, Reykjavík Grapevine?

Why So Many Covers, Reykjavík Grapevine?

Published June 18, 2012

Why So Many Covers, Reykjavík Grapevine?

For this very special presidential election issue, we decided to run six different covers featuring every candidate in the 2012 Icelandic presidential elections emulating incumbent Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson’s pose for his 1996 official presidential photograph, which was shot right after he took office. Even though we would eventually only run five different covers, this is still some sort of record for us. Hurrah!

But why? We’ll tell you: It is local advertising industry lore that Ólafur Ragnar won the 1996 election on the strength of having taken out a full page ad in the papers on the day before election day that featured him decked out in full presidential regalia. As the story goes, the ad allowed voters to visualise Ólafur Ragnar as their president, ultimately selling them on the idea that he was the ideal candidate.

We thought: “This story makes a lot of sense. As much as people like to use reasoning and research to make their decisions, visual aids sure can help.”

So we decided to provide the voters of 2012 with some visual aids of their own. We thus took the most iconic image of President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson in full regalia we could find, the one which is featured on the Office of the President’s official website (not his campaign website, mind you), and printed that on our cover, as well as having all the other candidates emulate his pose for their own photoshoot (for the female candidates, we also used former president Vigdís Finnbogadóttir as a reference). This would enable our readers to get an idea of how the different candidates might look were they voted into office, perhaps helping them reach a decision in the end.

Don’t get us wrong. We don’t believe you should make your decisions based on how a candidate looks. Don’t judge your books by their covers, etc. However, it’s patently unfair that one candidate would have an advantage over the others just because people are used to picturing him as president. So now you can picture (almost) all of them as president!

Now go read what they have to say! Starting here!

Cover by: Döðlur
Photography: Sigurgeir Sigurjónsson –
Styling: Elísabet Alma Svendsen
Make up: Vigdís Jónsdóttir
Hair: Nína Kristjánsdóttir

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