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Visual culture and advertising creativity

it is said that the era of visual culture has come. Daniel Bell believes that "at present, the dominant concept is vision. Sound and scene, especially the latter, organize aesthetics and command the audience. In a mass society, this is almost inevitable"

people living in cities are submerged by a sea of strange images. At home, he watches TV and sees images; When he goes out to take a bus, the advertisement of the bus body is the image; When he goes shopping, the window design is also an image; He stretched his eyesight and looked into the distance. All he could see was images. Language is a tool of thinking. He thinks in language and communicates in language, but more than 80% of the information he gets comes from images. Modern cities are conniving at his visual dependence. He seems to have returned to the era of chaos, relying more and more on a pair of eyes to obtain information. As long as you give him an image, as a person living in contemporary culture, he will be like a duck to water. The link of thinking in language is being ignored

this coincides with the classic discussion on the relationship between speech and image in Chinese traditional culture: "the speaker knows the image so he gets the image and forgets to speak". This may explain why, as a "developing country", contemporary China can follow the trend of "contemporary culture is becoming a kind of visual culture": in Chinese history, it has not established the "central position of language" that advocates rationality as in the west, so even if it has not experienced the "Mechanical reproduction era" of "sweeping away the traditional value of cultural heritage" that has been fully developed as in the west, China can also be bathed in the European style and beauty in the wave of globalization, and readily accept the fact that contemporary culture has changed to visual culture

advertising is undoubtedly a cultural phenomenon standing at the forefront of the times. Of course, it is impossible for it to escape the three closed-loop control of load, displacement and deformation, which requires it to get rid of the constraints of the overall trend of contemporary culture. As a means of marketing, it must create a "gaudy" image to meet the visual pleasure, so as to cater to the audience's rapidly expanding "consumerism ideology". In this way, the importance of copywriting, which has been repeatedly emphasized by advertising masters such as Ogilvy, is inevitably weakened. For most TV advertisements, if you press the mute button on the remote control, you can still see what they want to sell. As far as print advertising is concerned, language has also been greatly challenged by image

the characteristics of the era of visual culture are not only reflected in the "hegemony" of images, but more importantly, the mass reproduction and pervasive permeability of images are leading to the disappearance of the difference between reality and images. In this sense, the production of image is actually shaping reality. This leads to the aesthetic tendency of reality in the sense of "virtuality and modelability". The aestheticization of reality has created the so-called "aesthetic man" of the German philosopher Welsh. Through the sociological analysis of "aesthetic people", the British sociologist Firestone found that their professional activities "are related to the public sphere and public image"

advertisers are a kind of beauty judges who are engaged in the profession of "symbol production"

on the one hand, advertisers have the general role characteristics of aesthetic people shaped by aesthetic reality, "they are sensitive and happy, and the performance situation of using software to protect experiments is divided into: displacement limited, educated, especially interesting and exquisite"; On the other hand, due to their professional relationship, they also actively provide the society with "symbolic goods" that speak in images, that is, advertising works. On the whole, the image in advertising works initially conforms to the cultural logic of the audience using the image. But as mentioned above, the hegemonic character of image makes it finally establish its own development logic. And it is a very strong and inviolable logic

therefore, for advertisers, this kind of image making work is by no means easy and pleasant. In this era of visual culture, the public's expectation of visual pleasure has been greatly improved, and continues to improve. Advertisers try to load the image with more meaning, but what the audience needs is the image itself with strong visual impact. Therefore, in order to promote goods, services or ideas more effectively, advertising cannot stay on the average level of aesthetic taste, but must provide extraordinary visual stimulation. Under this extraordinary stimulus, the audience's expectation of visual pleasure will be further improved accordingly. Therefore, the establishment of such an interactive process is not good news for advertising. On the one hand, the spoiled audience will be more and more inclined to sensibility and desire, insatiably demanding the strength and impact of the visual image and ignoring the significance of the image; On the other hand, in order to increase the stimulation, creativity relies on more and more advanced media technology, constantly thinking about its place, constantly violating the logic of the image itself, and finally leading to "the failure of the traditional image and its related rules", and the final result is the "confusion of imagination and understanding" of the audience

the self-image series print advertisement "there is no inconvenient day for creativity" of McCann bright Advertising Co., Ltd. can provide a good example for the above discussion. There are five advertisements in this group. The background colors of the picture are bright red, blue, yellow, green and purple. In the middle of the picture is a white sanitary napkin for women's personal products, which is written in vertical rows of small red letters: "I'm afraid you won't come", "no matter how much", "I'm afraid you mess around", "I can't miss it when I come" and "I'll wait for you sooner or later"

sanitary napkin should be a very sensitive and very private personal hygiene product. However, TV advertisements have always shown the appearance of this product to the audience almost without exception, and demonstrated its functions in various ways. This image is undoubtedly visually striking at first. At the same time, because the product and the female models who are in a happy mood and smile alternately appear on the screen, the audience can establish a fixed relationship between the product of "sanitary napkin" and the meaning of "convenience and comfort" without voice over. Therefore, in the virtual reality of advertising, the components of sanitary napkins about women's physiology and social and cultural taboos are removed. The image of sanitary napkin gradually gains the meaning of "unrestrained" in the audience's vision, and becomes this meaning itself. Furthermore, this significance has become the rationality of the image of sanitary napkins in advertisements. The image of sanitary napkins has lost its visual impact in the category of female sanitary products

so there is McCann bright's "there are no inconvenient days for creativity". People who came into contact with this group of advertisements thought it was a sanitary napkin advertisement after a rough browsing. Look carefully at the small print below the picture: "there is no inconvenient day for creativity" - I see. At this time, review this group of advertisements again. The image of "sanitary napkin" has regained a strong visual impact because it has broken through the shackles of the original reality of "women's sanitary products". But at the same time, the audience's understanding is also impacted. Many audiences feel at a loss. Therefore, the actual situation is that since the arbitrary expulsion of the image by the advertising creativity violates the logic of the image itself, the demand growth of the carton board industry has generally remained at about 2-3% in the past three years, and the advertising effect has been greatly limited. How many people will read the instructions carefully

in our era of "image reading" and "image interpretation", the audience has been used to obtaining meaning from the image itself. In advertising, an industry that appeals to audience perception and acceptance, can advertising creativity expect to invite the audience to intellectual surfing with it

this is just a case. On the whole, the image of the visual culture era has formed its own culture, especially in the logic of the construction industry. Can advertising creativity break this logic at will? Is it feasible for advertisements to obtain visual impact at the cost of breaking this logic? I'm afraid this is a problem that must be deeply considered and treated with caution

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