Archive for October, 2011

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Rhetoric on the Town: Flow


Rhetorical Analysis:

The purpose of this particular ad, which is in the form of a poster, is, clearly, to promote the show Absolutely Fabulous and highlight what makes it a good show and to sell posters to people who have seen and loved the show.  I think that the intended audience would be primarily people who know and appreciate the show, and secondly, people who have never heard of the show but like to watch dysfunctional television shows. I feel as though these people are being targeted because of the fact that the poster/ad highlights key elements of the story’s plot that makes the show so comically dysfunctional, both in text and in graphic. The ad shows people what they can expect from the show and gives viewers a taste of the kind of hilarity they can expect from the show’s main characters. The taglines also enhance the comedic value of the ad by offering viewers a sample of the actual dialogue that is in the show (the characters always use the terms “sweetie” and “darling” in a condescending and ironic way).

Design Analysis:

The design element that is being utilized in this ad is that of Flow. The poster/ad specifically exhibits visual flow in that the text, while awkward with its sizes, actually has a cohesive sense of flow to it. The word “Chain” is the only word on the left side of the page that is larger than its right-side counterpart, which indicates to the reader that they should start there if they want to comprehensively understand the ad. The typeface itself seems to lend the adjectives it is being used to spell out a hand in exhibiting the dysfunction it spells out. The different sizes used also helps the visual flow by being an exhibition, almost, of what the text reads and helps shape the reader’s idea of what the show is about and what they can expect from viewing it. The graphic of the two main characters, Edina and Patsy, also helps with the visual flow of the article because their sizes somewhat mirror what the advertisement did with regards to the text (i.e. one smaller and one larger). I believe that the poster/ad does meet its target audience because it adequately boasts features of the show that people who have viewed it have come to enjoy and expect from it and it also piques the curiosity of those who haven’t viewed it by giving the reader just enough to make him or her wonder what goes on in the show.

MindMap Reflection

As far as the MindMaps go, I think the ones that stood out the most to me were the ones that looked the simplest. Not so much in terms of content, but just the fact that they were easy to read, like Tim’s. I also liked Becca’s in terms of content because hers included media other than text. I also liked Becca’s a lot because, even though it included other media, it was very well-organized and easy to follow. I think that would make hers the one that sticks with me the most, especially when you figure in the fact that she used a lot of color with hers, which I think I’ll start doing.

I am starting to like working in a mindmap, I think. I’ve been considering what I would use it for outside of this class and then I thought about my English 600 class where we are doing graduate level Lit Theory and I figured I could use  a mindmap to keep track of all the different theories and key points of each theory and see how certain theories are interconnected. I like keeping facts organized in a group and that aspect of MindMap is what I think about when I think of putting my Theory notes on a mindmap.

Wikipedia - T-shirt

CC image posted at Flickr by quartermane.

I learned more, I think, about Creative Commons than I did about Copyright or Fair Use in doing the readings for this week. I didn’t know what Creative Commons really was, I just thought that it was just a little box we checked in to use free pictures. But no, it’s so much more than a little box. It did surprise me, though, to learn that anything and everything we create is copyrighted from the minute that we start working on it. I thought that the copyright laws were just for 50 years after the death of the author. It empowered me to discover what, exactly, Creative Commons is trying to do with their initiative. I like the idea of collaborating with authors and artists and trying to make great works even better. It frustrates me that people haven’t been doing this all along…it seems like it is a great idea and I mean haven’t we been taught to share with one another since we were little kids? But I guess if you factor in money and all that commercial stuff, people tend to get greedy.

With regards to my experience with this topic, I used to have a friend who used to download stuff from Limewire all of the time and he would torrent television shows frequently as well. Apparently, it seems as though the Cox company found out or realized it somehow that he was doing this and they completely cut him off from their Internet service and he had to go through another provider to use the Internet. I didn’t know that companies could do that, but it makes sense. Another friend of mine was accused of Copyright Infringement when she forgot to include a “Works Cited” page on a paper, even though she provided all of the correct in-text citations for the paper and everything. Eventually, the professor just allowed her to turn in the Works Cited page separately from the paper so that she would be able to receive a grade for the paper.


Rhetorical Analysis:

The purpose of this particular ad is, clearly, to sell the game “Dead Island” for PS3, Xbox 360, and PC to gamers who enjoy zombie-apocalypse type games, making them the primary audience. This ad showcases what sets “Dead Island” apart from other games of the genre in that from the picture, the viewer can see that the game is actually set on a beautiful utopian paradise of sorts–the only problem being the island is infested with zombies. I feel as though these people are being targeted with this ad because it emphasizes the ironic contrast between the undead who populate the island and the tranquil beach setting of the advertisement itself, with the only hint of danger or the need to fight being in the tagline of the ad, the machete in the background, and the name of the game.

Design Analysis:

The design element that is being utilized in this ad is that of Repetition. What is being repeated here is the concept of the imposing threat of the undead on the island. The layout of the advertisement is what allows this repetition to occur. The tagline is laid out just so that the letters “D-I-E” are underneath the letters “D-I-E” in “Paradise.” The repeated emphasis on “Paradise” and “Die.” The machete in the background seems to link the last syllable of the word “Paradise” and the word “Die,” thus creating emphasis on the repeated word and sound to further highlight the concept of death and the undead. This concept is first introduced at the top of the advertisement with the red “Dead Island” title and logo with it. The design and message is simply further enhanced by the repetition of the words “dead” and “die” and the syllable in “paradise.” I believe that the ad does meet its target audience because it adequately depicts the seriousness of the undead aspect of the game with the game’s plot being ironically set in an island resort.

Wordpress Changes

I initially changed my theme at the beginning of the course because I hated the bland white background that WordPress defaults to, but today I changed it because I felt like I needed to play with the features. I don’t remember if the default had columns, but anyway, I decided to choose a layout that had two columns, which worked out nicely with my widgets. It’s more user-friendly because of the fact that, I feel, it is more visually-pleasing to the viewer and the text is a brighter color, making it more easy to read.

Project 1 Reflection

The purpose of this glog is to inform readers, specifically teachers and students, of the “Bookshelves” feature of Google Books. One of the two elements in the document that points to this purpose is the video link that is enclosed within the document. The video shows viewers how to set up a new bookshelf, add a book, add notes to the book’s description, leave a review, and compare online prices. Another area of the document which helps in the execution of the document’s purpose is the graphics that are included, specifically the screen capture pictures. These pictures highlight steps readers should take while carrying out this process on Google Books and other graphics on the screen point to areas that the steps are talking about.

Emphasis is used in the document to draw the viewer’s eye to the steps in the order in which they are to be read, starting with the bright red paper crane on Step 1 and then each subsequent crane is also a brighter shade than the cloud that it is on. Emphasis is also used in regards to the screen captures with the bright yellow border put around each screen capture to draw the viewer’s attention to the helping tool embedded into the instructional document. Viewers can also click on the pictures in order to make them larger, if they need a clearer view of what the picture is indicating.

Balance is used in the document in a couple of different ways. At both the top and the bottom of the document, very little space is left open, and I think that this element brings balance by creating almost a border for the body of the document. In the body, the clouds are evenly spread out into two columns and the graphics which highlight the steps the clouds read are also balanced fairly evenly. In order to maintain balance in the right column between steps 2 and 4, I put the curved arrow to fill in the gap created by the Step 2 graphic being vertically long.

Contrast is used in the document in regards to the cranes and clouds. The brightly-warm-colored cranes offset the cool-colored clouds which, I think, draw the reader’s attention to the order in which the document should be read. That, and they add a nice, funky element to the document. I also contrasted the title’s graphic against the rest of the document to make the title stick out and be the starting point of the document. I also used a bright yellow on any screencapture graphic to somewhat “sandwich” the cloud between two warm colors and let visual learners more easily see what the next step was, instead of just reading it and potentially missing the screencapture.



Rhetorical Analysis:

The purpose of this particular ad is, clearly, to sell Playstation 3 systems, and this ad showcases the cool features of the Playstation 3 that sets it apart from other gaming systems. I think that the intended audience would be primarily gamers who may be struggling with the decision of purchasing an Xbox 360 or a Playstation 3. I feel as though these people are being targeted with this ad because it showcases the seemingly limitless potential of the Playstation 3 gaming system, specifically stating that it does “everything” that a gamer could possibly want from a system. This ad shows gamers specifically what they can expect from the Playstation 3 system, probably its more advanced and “nerdtastic” features. Among these features listed are the words “Free” and “Online”–arguably the “Holy Grail” of gaming because most systems, the Xbox 360 for example, require for players to pay a monthly fee in order to enjoy online gaming. This truly emphasizes the “everything” that Sony claims the Playstation 3 does. The ad seems to beg the question “Would you rather have a system that does everything or a system that does some things?”

Design Analysis:

The design element that is being utilized in this ad is that of Alignment. It is clear from the layout of the advertisement that the designer used a grid system to place everything on the page in perfect alignment, although it is more of a diagonal grid than anything traditional that is described in the textbook. All of the graphics are placed along an axis that suggests a certain flow to the ad and it makes the ad look more visually appealing with big graphics on one side/column and large text on the other side/column of the ad. Speaking of which, the text is aligned flush-left in the right column and the Playstation 3 graphic is perfectly aligned with the top row of text in the “features” column (the word “DVD” is somewhat cut off). This alignment helps construct the border between the text and the graphics in the ad. The fact that the ad campaign slogan is built into the “features” column, aligned just like the regular features, is significant because it seems to enhance the message by saying “Hey this is a key feature, too.” I believe that the ad does meet its target audience because it adequately boasts features that are specific to the Playstation 3 and not other systems, which balances out the extra price one has to pay for a Playstation 3 because, why not pay a little extra for everything?