A Last Minute Change

Alright then, so going over the ads for the presentation, I noticed that the ad I posted for fusion-opposition falls more readily into the replacement category. Here’s a different one:

ImageStill creepy, I know. Fusion-opposition was surprisingly hard to find, since advertisers don’t often like to associate their products so closely with negative aspects.

This ad is for the Beijing Women and Children’s Development foundation, so their service is the safety and health of the child, which is manifested through food in this case. However, the fusion of dangerous or just plain nasty things with the apparently safe food also provides opposition.

The Final Puzzle Pieces

I revisited the ads already posted, and the two positions that remained unaccounted for were: juxtaposition-similarity, and juxtaposition-opposition. So, with the time I have before my next lecture, I tried to find ads that would work. I got the idea that maybe an easier way to find multiple juxtaposition-utilizing-ads in one place is to search for “Two Page Print Ads.” These, I figured, would display a juxtaposition from one page to the next.

1. Hawaiian Tropic Tanning Oil Ad. The ad uses juxtaposition to show the differences in tan you can achieve by using the product. Now, this ad can work as either opposition (can keep you from looking pink), or, similarity (can help you achieve a dark tan). This makes the ad an easy conversation piece for our essay. I suggest we label it as Juxtaposition-Opposition because the product is located on the darker side, opposing the pink, and also because juxtaposition-opposition is a hard type to find.



2. DHL Ad. (Another shipping company like FedEx.) This ad has a page of transparent film bound between either side of the delivery process. The original location is juxtaposed beside the final destination that the parcel is being shipped to. The transparent page depicts the DHL employee delivering the parcel. This is a simplified portrayal of the service that DHL provides, so I shall label it Juxtaposition-Similarity.



This is just the first iteration of the poster, so I say, we just put all these together in a PowerPoint in time for tomorrow’s lecture. I’m sure that we can change our minds about the ads over the course of the next week. (Also, we can find the ads in higher quality/ greater size.) So, according to my counting, we have found all 9 slots in the grid. Who wants to put this together?

Ads, continued.

Let’s see if I can bridge some of the gaps in our ad collection. There’s a couple here that I’m not sure about, but we can discuss their positions in the grid later on, if they work.

First: Lego


I’m still not sure at which degree text becomes an issue and begins to interfere with our interpretations of the image. Technically, that tagline beside the logo provides the context, but with a little bit of thought, you could get the same message just from the image. It’s interesting how the Phillips and McQuarrie analysis begins to fall apart when the image consists of more and more elements, isn’t it?

Moving on to the analysis itself, the ad clearly depicts the fusion of Lego with the grandma’s dentures. However, you can’t say that the product is connected to grandmothers or teeth, nor is it similar or opposed. The fusion is literal, but it also represents the boy’s creativity, implying that nothing is really that bad when you have Lego to fix it. So there is a connection, but the connection is to an idea rather than something physical in the image.

Verdict: Fusion-Connection

Next ad: Itchy Scalp Shampoo


This ad is clearly going for shock value. I shudder when I look at the image, and I get the feeling that I’ll be reminded of it every time I itch my head from now on, imagining ants crawling over my scalp… Definitely effective.

Besides the obvious effect of fusion, I’m going to call this a controversial opposition. While you might consider the comparison of an itchy scalp and a hive of ants a pretty good example of connection, shampoo itself is as far from this as it gets. Think about the example Prof O’Gorman gave during his lecture: a dog’s face replaced with its backside, signifying bad breath in an advertisement for breath mints. I think think ad provides the same kind of association.

Verdict: Fusion-Opposition

And one more: Anytime Fitness

anytimefitness2Juxtaposition seems to be the hardest category of complexity to find, even though it’s the simplest on the spectrum. Guess people are just too smart these days.

I’m going to say this is an example of connection. Having a membership with this gym means you don’t have to take time away from other important things in your life, so it makes a connection with busy people.

Verdict: Juxtaposition-Connection

NOTE: Whoops, for some reason I thought we were missing connection, not similarity. Well this isn’t useful at all.

That’s it for now, see what you make of these.


Hey again, I’ve been informed that we’re looking for some examples of Opposition. I’ll be sporadically updating this post as I go along and find relevant examples.


The opposition exhibited in this ad is probably felt as an ironic appeal by the viewer – the ad turns against its own message by appearing on those stairs, but this advertising agency/tabloid promises that its services are more effective than conventional ways of marketing. Do we have a Replacement – Opposition here? It replaces what the ad would have been if it were just another staircase ad.

Other possibilities – ray_ban_bronx_never_hide_1956



Typology of Visual Rhetoric

Hey everyone, sorry for this delayed post I’ve been really sick for the past few days despite stocking up on medication and undergoing hibernation-like states of sleep. I’m still under the weather so bear with me as I try to write in a cohesive manner. In the meantime (and on a more positive note) I’d like to share a few ads I’ve been looking at and their relevant analyses.

Before I begin sharing these ads I’ve noticed that Phillips and McQuarrie’s classification of visual rhetoric is best applied to advertisements that only have relatively few levels of signification (in terms of semiotics). I’m bringing this up because Prof O’ Gorman briefly brought it up in class when we first looked at the article. Anyhow, I’ve noticed that the less steps that a viewer has to undergo to derive meaning from the image makes it a more likely candidate for Phillips and McQuarrie’s method of analysis. For instance,

I would argue that this advertisement has difficulty finding itself into the nine categories because there are at least three levels of signification at play here. Firstly, the viewer must associate the meat product with its animal counterpart in its natural environment; secondly, the viewer must associate the cheetah as the referent of the term “carnivore”; and thirdly, the viewer must associate the cheetah in the winter jacket with the frozen food department. Whereas Phillips and McQuarrie can only offer us an analysis that posits A in relation to B, this ad might require processing that puts A in relation to B as well as to C and so forth depending on each ad’s “layering” of meaning.

Moving onwards – the first ad (of the three that I will post for now) is this one:


This ad depicts the destruction of two ceramic figures and the super glue bottle with the word “Rewind” suggests that the super glue can make the destroyed figurines as good as new. I would say this image is a Replacement because it represents the act of reparation and subsequently, its meaning operation is Connection since the act of repair/product is associated with moving backwards in time. The reason I say it’s Connection is due to the relationship between the degree of destruction and the passage of time and here, the product serves to modify the passage of time. What do you guys think?

Second ad:


This one is interesting. At first it appears to be a Fusion of chocolate and grumpy woman perhaps through Opposition but on second thought, Kit Kat isn’t trying to assert itself in relation to the woman, it is trying to position itself in relation to the breaking of the woman and more specifically, with the aim of dismantling her grumpiness. The ad might be trying to say that Kit Kat chocolate dismantles tense people/situations. If the latter is true, then this ad might be Replacement – Connection? I would not go so far as to suggest that this would be Replacement – Similarity since the literal breaking of humans does not bode well for chocolate goodness.

Third one:


This is the last Replacement example I will post for now, I promise. The mini camera is replacing the much larger, standard DSLR cameras which explains why the model’s nose is contorted. The ad is telling the consumer that the mini camera has all the functionality of high end cameras despite the absence of physical bulk. In some ways, it can be said that this add connotes both Similarity and Opposition because in some ways it is both similar and dissimilar to the bigger cameras.

Here’s a link which you guys might be interested in checking out for more ad ideas – http://www.presidiacreative.com/75-award-winning-creative-advertisements/

Baroque Scopic Regime


As soon as we started to talk about the Martin Jay’s Baroque scopic regime I began to visualize scenes from Where’s Waldo. As a child I didn’t just love trying to find “Waldo” and his pals, but also all of the chaos that cluttered the pages. The image that I have created is, admittedly, hard to look at and frustrating. It is cluttered and the text orientation is shocking. However, that’s what I was going for because that’s what I took away from the Baroque scopic regime.

Update: Waldo is still very much at large.

ALSO: I know what we have posted isn’t final for our poster, but after looking back there seems to be a lot of repetition as to where are ads are falling on the grid. So far we keep coming up with Juxtaposition-Connection, Fusion-Similarity, and Replacement-Connection (we also have a Replacement-Similarity). So, we’ll talk before class but we should start looking for what’s missing! Particularly, opposition.

Martin Jay & scientific objectivity


Although this probably isn’t what Prof. O’Gorman had in mind, I think it still fits.  I’m working with Jay’s view of Cartesian perspectivalism as seeing a scientific view of things.  From my interpretation, modern-day examples include technical drawings (namely manuals), in the sense that it shows the steps to complete a task without an actual participant, implying the viewer’s participation.  This is why I chose to go with a minimalist approach, reducing the amount of detail (reflections, etc) and the amount of salient colours.

Let me know what you think.

Innovative Print Ad Technology

This is pretty cool. Definitely a step up from the interactivity of bar codes that can be scanned by smartphones in print ads. I wouldn’t have thought new technology was being created for print advertisements, considering print isn’t exactly a booming industry today. This made me think of some of the topics in the first two chapters of Dr. O’Gorman’s “E-Crit.” It seems print as we know it won’t just be modified in purely a scholarly context, but in advertisements as well.

Also, I found a site that has some pretty high quality ads (size, clarity): http://www.creativebloq.com/inspiration/print-ads-1233780

From this site, I thought this ad was creative. The drill is so powerful it twists the lines in the wood (although, I’m not sure that is desirable). The drill is not immediately present, so I’d say that this is replacement. Also, Connection, because the drill “could” do this. (link below).

Some more ads!

Warning: this post may be longer than intended. I keep finding more and more thought-provoking ads, and I can’t seem to narrow them down – but like Matt said, it’s good to have variety when it comes down to the actual project. I also focused generally on print ads, since it’s much easier to find high resolution images for those as opposed to photographs of billboards and the like.

A quick sidenote: I wonder how many of our ads will overlap with other groups’ selections…

First off, let’s have some minimalism (these aren’t actually high resolution, but the Jeep image would be fairly easy to resize).


Combine the off-road capabilities of a camel with the ferocity of a wolf, and a Jeep is born. Using very simple colours and silhouettes, the ad manages to say everything it needs to without resorting to text.

It’s hard to place this one, however. At first glance, I want to say fusion, since we see the outline of a Jeep in the layered silhouettes – however, does the silhouette actually mean the Jeep is present? Or does that not count? Otherwise, it would be replacement. I throw this one out to you guys: I’m leaning towards fusion, but what do you think?

No matter which level of complexity this ad exhibits, it’s clearly a comparison of similarities, since it’s attributing the characteristics of these two animals to the Jeep.

Next up: Haribo Gummy Bears


This one is definitely replacement. Why? Well, it’s not juxtaposition or fusion, so that’s all we’re left with.

It’s also comparing the flavour of the candy to an orange, essentially saying there is no difference between the two, placing its meaning operation under the category of similarity.

That was easy!

Next: Fortis Bank: Plastic Surgery Loans


I realize this one has text on it, but since I assume none of us speak Turkish, it shouldn’t be much of a problem.

Two images side by side make this a juxtaposition, simple as that.

Its meaning operation is a bit more complex: you get our loans, you get to look however you want. That is to say, not like the girl on the left. At first, I thought this was opposition, since the two images are clearly opposites. Then I remembered that the product has to provide opposition, and that’s entirely absent from the image. Instead, I’m going to call this a connection: our loans will lead you to this.

Last one for now: Senior Self Defense Academy


Not too sure about this one since the text pretty much explains what it is, but it’s also just a logo. Thoughts?

Again, this is an example of replacement, since we’re seeing the aftermath of the fight. However… is this a connection? As in, the defense classes are connected to seniors beating up thugs with their walkers. That seems to make the most sense to me, but if you guys don’t agree, it’s open to interpretation.

Alright, this post is getting too long, so I’ll continue this in a part 2 later on. Give me your feedback!

Ads and such

To begin; a disclaimer.  I realize that this exercise uses primarily print advertisements, but I found these ads of mixed genres particularly interesting.  I can post more print ads later so we have plenty to choose from for our project.  Also, Quinn is right… this is a lot harder than it looks.

I’ll start with the difficult one for Mars bar.  Image

By definition, this is a juxtaposition (two images placed side-by-side). 

For this one, I’m going to say its a connection, seeing as the tongue guy’s billboard is directly interacting with the frozen Mars bar.  Without the Mars bar, the tongue makes no sense whatsoever.  It is also pretty clear that the implied temperature of the Mars bar justifies the reason why his tongue is stuck to the candy.  If there were no ice cubes or text in the Mars billboard, an argument could be made for replacement.

Next up:  FedEx (theme for today apparently)


This ad I would say is a replacement, seeing as the package being delivered is not seen, nor is a delivery person (however, is represented by the van).  The ladder leading to the sky represents a recipient of a package, implying that FedEx delivers everywhere, no matter where it is, AND they will go to lengths (get it?) to deliver to you.  In addition, the ladder into the sky in combination with the white colour scheme suggests a ‘heavenly’ feeling, suggesting that FedEx is good and nice and is someone you could introduce to your mom. 

Last up:  Some juice packaging (zipp?)


This is a fusion of the bottle’s container, suggesting that it is full of fruity goodness.  Note how the zip is barely opened, and how it is bulging so much that the zip cannot be closed (yes, I noted the joke here too).  I would say that this is a similarity in the Phillips/McQuarrie matrix, suggesting that this drink IS LIKE opening a zippered pouch full of fruit (although, that doesn’t really sound like a good time). 

Let me know what you think.