Look again and think a head…

Creative Commons License
‘Look again and think a head’ by by Nurul Rahman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Australia License.

I was looking at some of my advertisement collections and try, tooth again and again to analyzed it. I started with a formal lenses, then change the roles to communication designer’s and then to a researcher. It is an interesting process. I had experienced and I have to admit that I’m enjoying every minutes of this process.

It is shocking and frustrating to imagine that everyday we will have to face and sometimes we might consume, images and ton of information each time we walk on the street. Accompany by billboard and posters, nearly every second we turn our head around, we look and unconsciously we gather this information in our memory bank. At home or sometimes in the cafe or bar, adding to this process we have other media such as television, internet and radio surrounding us. Just imagine that! How do we as a consumer cope with this? Our brain must did an excellent job then, recording and remembering these images and recall it again to view, every time we look at other object and managed to recognized it.

Such scene that I just describe is a normal scenario in most of the main city in the world. What actually influences us in consuming material? Do we need them? Is it important to have them or just because be like them, and want to own them? Even if we are aware of if, we cannot say the we can escape from this scenario.

Who are the people that responsible in this process? Advertising, marketing, company, artist and obviously designers. I would say graphic designers, communication designers and interaction designers are not much less responsible that others. Now, in a global world, this scenario cannot be stop. Information is at our fingertip and amazingly easy. We, as a consumer actually play a significant roles in this as we continue consume the product, and therefore there is a market for the product.

I’m not saying that we should not buy anything, but would be good if we take our step in slow motion and think a head before some rhetoric visual and text in the advertisements influences our thought and desire. Just try and explore this process, please be aware that it can be dangerous (dangerous as you might end up using your credit card or use your saving), you might end up buying something at the end.

I’m very interested in this process, investigating the communication designer’s position in this, and how we contribute in shaping the lifestyles. Are we deliberately use the rhetoric of images to communicate? or we didn’t actually think about the impact we created? Well, clearly we managed to see the product or at least we manage to get the information in the market.

Advertising is the mother of graphic design, as how Steven Heller claims in the ‘Eye’ magazine 1994. Clearly that graphic designer contribute most of their work in advertisements, that because at that time, there was not that much job available for graphic designer. Some might be in the printing company as DTP artist, some might be at the hotel as display artist etc. Is graphic designer’s role is minor in the process of creating the visual?

“The history of advertising is more interested in how Marlboro cigarettes tested a variety of trade characters before stumbling on the Marlboro Man as a symbol of manliness. While graphic design appears negligible in the cultural analysis of this campaign, understanding the relationship of this symbol..to the larger mythology provides insight into how the American myth was perpetuated.”Heller, 1994.

So what do this mean, that graphic designer are part of creating these myth? I will take further investigation in my research….it is significant..