Thursday, 19 November 2009

Image Analysis exercise task

'The Uncle Sam Range' (1876) advertising image by Shumacher & Ettlinger, New york

Poster by Saville Lumley (1915)

‘The Uncle Sam Range’ V’s ‘Daddy what did you do in the Great War?’

The choice of font in the advert for the ‘Uncle Sam Range’ is not dissimilar to the text associated with the wild west, it is bold, strong and recognisable as American. The way it is organised suggests granditure and importance and the colour which is a yellow-gold represents wealth, instantly implying that this product is for those who might see themselves as being ‘posher’ than they may actually be.

The font in the Saville Lumley poster is a simple and straight forward no nonsense style, the italic style reflects the question asked in the way it flows and the colour white may suggest innocence from the child who is asking it. Also the underlining of the word you makes the question personal along with the fact that the man in the poster is looking directly at the viewer. The question asked is very ‘matter of fact’ suggesting that everybody goes to war to fight for their country and if they don’t they will be frowned upon.

The purpose of the ‘Uncle Sam Range’ image is to advertise a cooker. The emphasis on the product being aimed at wealthy white Americans is being supported by the use of the colours red, white and blue, giving a positive image to the target audience the image attaches the idea of an American dream to the product. There are many aspects of this image which imply American greatness and the inferiority of the rest of the world, for instance the clock which has the dates 1776 and 1876 on the dial is a celebration of 100 years of American independence and the central figure who is tall and grand in his appearance is meant to be ‘Uncle Sam’ and is modelled on Abraham Lincoln. Also through the window you can see Centenary Hall in Philadelphia. There are stars from the American flag on the carpet and also the children in the image have the words Dixie, West and New England written on their chests. These are all places in America, Dixie being the Deep South, West being the Wild West and of course New England being New England.

The purpose of the Saville Lumley poster is to recruit new people into the Army to help fight against the War. This is done in a very emotionally manipulative way using the children as a catalyst to this. The children are both engaged in activities linked to the War, with one of them seemingly reading a book about the War with her father and the other playing with toy soldiers. This along with the question they are asking almost glorifies the War, making it seem like the right thing to do to go to War and if you do you will come back unscathed and a hero. This poster is very English in its appearance and is designed for the more gentile, educated male whose first choice may not be to go to War. There are red roses on the curtains and the fleur de leys on the chair – both are symbolic of England giving an impression you are fighting for King and Country.

Although the subject matters contained within the images are very different from each other there are also many similarities. Both images are very patriotic in their design with symbols of their Country of origin rife throughout. They are both aimed at middle class white people and both are very manipulative in their approach making the viewer feel that they should buy that cooker or they should go to War and if they don’t they won’t be the person they would like to think they are.