Following my feedback I came to the conclusion that what I perceived as being decisive at the time about the choices I made for this assignment could have ultimately limited me. Rather than showing a weakness in my belief in the project, demonstrating my thought about various experiments for the work and the presentation could be seen as a positive and work to reinforce the rationale for my choices. This would also show that I had considered different approaches. As a precursor to potentially reworking the assignment, here are some of my experiments for different ways to do this:
- Changes to navigation and presentation:
Aims – remove image title which unbalances the image, reduce the number of clicks necessary to navigate, change captioning font size.
Removing the image title proved simple, as did increasing the caption font size. Using a link to a screenshot rather than the online newspaper article solved the issue of the link becoming broken over time as discussed in my previous post.
The problem remains however that further clicks are necessary to access the article. This leads to the question about whether this is necessary at all with further choices being to simply place the captions in quotation marks and list as a reference at the end of the introductory text?
- Improve recognition of adverts:
Aims – to allow viewers to recognise what the adverts were for/what they were of better.
One option was to change the thumbnail image to a photograph that was not blurred in order that the viewer could recognise what the advert was for. Clicking on the thumbnail could then lead to the large out of focus picture which could still achieve my aim of frustrating the viewing experience and being a subtle comment on the nature of advertising.
Another approach could be to have the thumbnail image as black and white which would not only transform the adverts from how they are originally presented and be a comment on the connotations black and white photographs have with realism.
- Analogue display:
Displaying the images in an analogue format would prevent any ability to use hyperlinks to the newspaper articles. One approach could be to show diptychs of two photographs of the same subject but with different treatments – one in focus but black and white, the other in highly saturated colour but blurred.
Another idea, which could be a further intervention that would suggest a news, could be to apply a halftone effect to the black and white image.
The display of the caption for these images is also an issue and one which I wonder if it is required at all. Another alternative could be to display the diptych without the caption and display the newspaper article separately.
4. Slogan approach:
A way of addressing the problem of being able to identify what the images are of could be solved by using a selection of slogans that have been used by each brand. The fact that these do not explicitly reference the companies means that they are signposts for the viewer while also rely on previous knowledge to be understood – something which fits with my original idea of obscuring the advertisers message – in this instance, it is the advertising language itself which is the obscuring factor. The finished rework experiment here also bears a resemblance to Rosler’s ‘The Bowery in two inadequate descriptive systems’ which was one of the works that influenced me for this assignment.