WonderBra Ads Analysis

WonderBra Ads Analysis - Semiotics and Advertising...

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Semiotics and Advertising Advertisements exist primarily as a means of selling products. They do this by appealing in various ways to their intended audience. “Most people use the media for pleasure and relaxation and so the media works hard to give us pleasure”(O’Shaughnessy pg 181). They allow the audience/inferred reader to imagine his or her life as if he/she were living the life of that presented in the ad. Without this pleasure audiences would not feel the need to consume the advertised product. The simplicity of the two following bra ad’s compositions, and synecdoche nature of the context, encourages the audience to actively interpret the meaning beyond just the given text. These advertisements offer its audience the pleasure of putting these connotations together for themselves. The audience does so by relying on inference, leaving for a vast array of interpretations. The ambiguity ignites the imagination of the viewer in an alluring way. Their imaginative thoughts can ask (perhaps even command) the viewer to imagine his or herself as that person. This is a form of ‘imagining de se’. “’Imagining de se’ is an imagining about doing or experiencing something or being a certain way”(Wright). Although the following advertisements are very similar in composition, they differ greatly in connotations as a result of their ambiguity. The ads’ inexplicit nature calls for them to use exaggerated examples of the results of their respective products in order to avoid being confusing; the intended implication of what is being narrated can pass from the obvious and acceptable result of the product to the extreme version. Ironically, it can become so ridiculous it becomes accepted. The implied message of the ad is understandable to the viewer, despite the ambiguous nature of the ad, because the text depicts the most exaggerated example of the potential effectiveness of the
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product. This extreme nature saves the advertisement from being confusing, while remaining ambiguous and alluring. The first advertisement initially appears to just be a man depicted from the waist down with pants that are too short. After closer examination it is a bra ad by Wonderbra. On a denotative level, purely observation, the ad depicts from the crotch down only, a man wearing expensive looking tan leather loafers and khaki trousers. The trousers are being pulled upward by something, causing bunching at a central point between his legs resulting in exposure of his smooth white socks. He is standing with feet shoulder width apart, on soft white carpet in front of an out-of-focus white wooden interior door. His shoelaces are neatly tied and pants nicely pressed, with exception to the bunching. In the right hand corner appears a small but bold,
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This note was uploaded on 05/04/2008 for the course COM ARTS 220 taught by Professor Lapointe during the Spring '08 term at Allegheny.

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WonderBra Ads Analysis - Semiotics and Advertising...

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