Image URL: http://blog.talenthouse.com/2014/05/13/morgan-motor-company-advertisement-design-winners/
The main components of the image are the car, the text and the sky.
There are multiple signs which can be interpreted within the image, one sign is the car, it represents an icon sign. The second sign is the text “Every journey should start with a Morgan”, which acts as a symbol sign and as an Anchorage. The third sign is the logo which is a symbol. The fourth sign is the sun, which is an icon sign and the last sign in the sky which is an icon.
Sr = Signifier
Sd = Signified
Car, Text, Logo
The car, text and logo, are very straight forward in their representation, further interpretation isn’t not required.
The sky (Sr) in general is positive (Sd) in its colours and feel. The three contrails (Sr) which spread across the sky represents direction and opportunities (Sd).
The sun (Sr) initially could be seen as either sunrise or sunset but in relation to other signs it is a sunrise, either way it can represent a new cycle and therefore new beginnings (Sd) .
The relationship between each sign
The Car (1) creates new beginnings (2) with opportunities (3) which bring you on a journey (4)in the right direction (or, where you soar high) (5)
Social Semiotics Analysis
Symbolic structures is a structure that defines the meaning or identity of a participant (Jewitt & Oyama 2001). For this image a symbolic structure is the sky, the colours are of a sunny day, there a some white clouds but not a lot and overall it has a positive, and peaceful atmosphere. It is symbolises freshness and peace. The sun is the primary use of lighting, as stated it represents a new beginning but also works hand in hand with the cloud and creates a heavenly effect.
Although, it is a part of a Narrative interpretation and not Representational, it is worth noting the vectors involved. The image has a few vectors that connect the main components of the image. One is the pedestrian type lines underneath the car and also behind the car. These all draw into a single vanishing point, which leads to the sun.
In terms of point of view, the viewers eye line is horizontal at the sun. This means that the viewer looks down at the car and looks up the at sky and logo. The car is below so it is not overpowering but it interacts in a personal way because it is close up in terms of distance compared to the rest of the scene. It is set u as if the viewer was standing a couple meters away from the car and the viewer could simply begin a journey, all they need to do is walk towards it, bend down to sit within it and drive off. The only place shown to drive off is the in the distance which by the vectors and signs lead towards the logo which is above. It is above, but the ad frames it in a way that, if you had the car you have that power.
The placement of the elements within the composition primarily have a bottom to top relationship.
As mentioned before the scene is set up as if the viewer is standing at the car, making as if that the real situation, and the choice is for the viewer to choose the car or not, where then the image draws an upward focus that insinuates choosing is the ideal choice.
The sky has a wide open space which connect the viewer to have a sense of freedom also come with the car.
The salient elements of the images appear to be the shinning sun with the white clouds and the text.
The text is clear to see and is one of the first recognisable forms within the image. Although the car is the main feature, its not a stereotypical shape of a car and blends with the road so it isn’t initially recognised. The bottom part of the image has a road which give it a rougher texture and from the sky onwards there is a fluffy soft texture given by the clouds and lighting.
The image has a natural modality but it is clearly edited as can seen by its high saturation and filters. The image has artificial flavour, in that it is a possible scenery but one that is too perfect for anyone to truly think it’s of high natural modality.
Producers: Government Campaign
Type: Advertisement/ Campaign
Image URL: http://webneel.com/30-brilliant-anti-smoking-advertisements-your-inspiration-best-print-ads-and-posters
The main components of the image multiple cigarettes and the accompanying text .
There are multiple signs which can be interpreted within the image, one sign is the cigarette itself but it also an index sign for smoking. The second sign is the text “The more you smoke, the faster you disappear”.
Sr = Signifier
Sd = Signified
A cigarette (Sr) represents smoking (Sd). All the cigarettes together (Sr) in context to the ad as a whole represents death (Sd).
The text (Sr) emphasises death (Sd).
The cigarette is associated to smoke and smoking many cigarettes over comes to be associated with death .
The relationship between each sign
Smoking cigarettes (1) leads to (2) death (3)
Social Semiotics Analysis
The image uses a conceptual structure but more specifically a symbolic structure. The cigarettes are made salient by being in plain sight because of the plain white background and clean lighting. The image is targeted to people who smoke and the audience’s identity is defined by a cigarette. The image symbolically links smoking to death.
Although, it is a part of a Narrative interpretation and not Representational, it is worth noting the vector involved. A vector can be made out of the edges of the cigarettes, if they are all viewed as a whole. The top and bottom vectors lines draw into a vanishing point of nothingness which can be last referenced by the smallest cigarette.
In terms of point of view, the viewers eye line is directly facing all cigarettes, except perhaps the one that diminish which are too far away. This suggests that the cigarettes are creating direct symbolic reflection of the viewer, this amplifies the message on a viewer making impact on a personal level.
The image also has a play on distance, a cigarette is duplicated many times from left to right; by western standards the left cigarettes is intended to be the first cigarette which is the closest, the further to the right the more the cigarette falls into the distance suggesting a disappearance of identity or death.
The text is relatively small in terms of the overall proportion of the image and is viewed from a high angle. Whilst the message is generally sadistic, the text can be interpreted as still having a sense of power now to make a change before it’s too late.
The placement of the cigarettes within the composition primarily has a left to right relationship and therefore it additionally is culturally designed for a western target audience. The left is representing the current state of the viewer and the right progressively moves into the final result.
The framing of the image is very opened ended, there are no borders and there is a lot of white space. This minimalist approach actually cleanly connects all the elements of the image.
The sky has a wide open open space which connect the viewer to have a sense of freedom also come with the car.
The salience of the elements of the image is quite clearly distinguishable because the minimalist approach. The cigarettes are clearly the first element that is recognised and second to that is the text. More specifically it is the orange butt of the cigarette which first recognised more so than the rest of it because the rest of it is white blends into the background.
The cigarettes within the image are of a high natural modality but this lessens as each one progressively becomes smaller and less realistic. The image as a whole is clearly artificially constructed and edited.
A clear difference between the images is the how the direction of attention for is the viewer is drawn spatially across the image. The car advertisement uses a bottom to top relationship and the cigarette ad uses a left to right relationship. Another difference is the use of white, both images use white but with different intentions. The car advertisement uses white as a means to creates a positive, heavenly feel and the cigarette advertisement uses white as a means for a clean look and simplicity.
Relation to Practice
The differences recognised in the previous comparison and through the semiotic analysis, I had a deeper understanding of the concept of Information Values. I can easily see how this can be effectively applied in further graphic design by strategically placing elements of a message within an image to create a flow or to further illustrate a point. I’m currently working on graphic design project for a leaflet and there are couple pages where the bottom to top concept can be applied.
Jewitt, Carey and Oyama, R, (2001). Visual Meaning: A Social Semiotic Approch.