This 1,000 word essay requires you to analyse the relationship between ideological message and aesthetic strategies in any advertisement of your choice, drawing on ideas from 3 readings in the uploaded materials.
The Relationship between Ideological Message and Aesthetic in Advertisement
Media has evolved over the years a demonstration of the widened application including portrayals of the cultural changes in society. Different organizations targeting different audience reach and persuade their target customers or audiences through different advertisements. The aesthetic strategies applied relate or endeavors to achieve a desired end. The ideological message inherent in the advertisement usually coated and amplified through the associated aesthetics. This paper discusses the relationship between ideological message and the aesthetic strategies in the cover page of London Evening Standard (ES) magazine bearing the photo of EVA GREEN on 29 March 2019.
Briefly, the media portrayal of advert appearing on the London Evening Standard issue dated 29.3.2019 exemplified the ideological message on feminism and post feminism. The sterling yellow dress worn by EVA GREEN, 38 years old, a beautiful French born, London based actress. The photos have words, “EVA GREEN” The Gallic goth on sex, power and the bright side of life” superimposed. Other teasers read, “IS IT OVER? Why the young are falling out of love with Corbyn”, while other insertion reads, “Chic gifts, Caribbean cuisine and a heavyweight MY LONDON” (see figure 1).
Figure 1: Evening standard magazine cover
According to Gill (2016), a successful advertising imagery from the aesthetic point of view captures audience attention with its form and content. This therefore means that the content of the advertisement imagery is also relevant for the sent message, product it advertises for the targeted audience. The symbolic dimensions together with aesthetic strategies manifest a psychological impact on the audience, which the cover page meets.
The image of the woman, EVA on the front cover of the magazine speaks a lot about the ideologies in this contemporary time especially in regards to the feminist and pro femininity of cultural aspects. According to Dosekun (2015) a growing number of feministic cultural and media scholarships pays more emphasis on the post feminism, a term understood as a contemporary cultural sensibility that proclaims that women are now empowered and celebrate and encourage their consequent ‘freedom’ to normalize feminine pursuits , which makes feminine look like it is no longer desirable or needed. Pro feminism also advocates or portrayed women as having the freedom to choose, freedom to sexually self-objectify, and women disciplinary consumption of fashion and beauty. The image on the cover indeed portrays all these attributes of a modern woman who has the freedom to pursue their dreams and choose their sexual pathway. Eva is an actress that has achieved in her career path. She therefore, epitomizes the bold and the outgoing women who aspire to achieve more. She is also beautiful manifest through her fine clothing and neat hairstyle. The face is also fine.
From the photos, feminism is communicated in various ways in the magazine. First is through a warm and enthusiastic embrace of all things female. It is championing the women character and at the same time glorifying their intelligence, confidence and beauty (Gill, 2016). The tonal quality of the magazine would definitely leave a positive glow, on the audience. The audience or the target consumer of this magazine can easily be persuaded and moved just be getting in touch with the page, even without digging deeper into the rest of the details in the story. The aesthetics, which includes, tone, value, balance, shape, form and colours, unity makes the design so attracting and appealing to the eye. The woman is bold and appears intelligence, a real aspiration and portrayal of the women by media in this pre-feminist era. Feminism is also signified through an attitudinal pose of assertiveness and defiance clearly illustrated in the image. Eva who is the face of the magazine and the medium to sale the magazine expresses blondeness and courage, hence assertive.
The mainstream magazine for women normaly would be framed around a perspective located in the worlds of media, fashion and corporate culture (McRobbie, 2004). This aims at celebrating this kind of feminism to show that women have become crucial in various aspects. For instance, the photo belongs to EVA, an actress. She is portrayed as someone that understands herself and ready to take over issues. The teasers, on ‘power’ provides interludes on the increasing number of women ascending to power and some at taking over the leadership in their various organizations.
Another motifs of post feminism exhibited in the magazine front cover is empowerment and choice. Choices underscore the neoliberal fantasy that women can achieve anything if they take the right choices and correct disposition is adopted. For instance, women have the freedom to wear trousers, run in heels and to have long or short hair. According to Gill (2016), femininity is a bodily property; the shift form objection into subjectification, an emphasis upon monitoring and self discipline, self surveillance a focus on choice, individualism, empowerment, make over dominance and idea on natural sexual deference.
According to Patterson & Elliot (2002), bodies have long held a position of importance within society in various disciplines. For this matter, the advertisers have resorted to capitalizing on the same. Men would fancy about photos of sexy women and this triggers curiosity and a sense of belonging that leads to wider readership. The photo of EVA is appealing and attracting. The body appears physically fit, which acts a center of attraction to many other girls that would aspire to be like her. Similarly, the use of aesthetics such as color of the clothing and the pause , capitalizing some headings and forth aims at conveying a message to the audience.
Finally, those sensitive to post feminist should not contest that indeed equality has been achieved (Gill, 2016). From this photo, it is true that women can earn more than men can, women can undergo or take initiative to manage their bodies and they have the freedom on issues of sexuality and have can posses power. The aesthetics including the pause and the background, which clearly illustrates that woman, has achieved to substantial levels the power to make decisions and to leave the kind of life that she feels befits her.
In concluding, the media and advertising industries employ different strategies to get their products or services consumed. However, media largely actively continued to participate in forming and disclaiming the feministic attribute of the women. The way media projects or portrays the images, photos or people and objects, they have an intended meaning that they want conveyed. Therefore, using these strategies becomes the best alternative to achieve their goals. It is true that feminism appears as identity that most young woman hope to have- including funny, stylish, beautiful, champion and confident, something that might have informed the decision to user her in the front cover. In this modern transitional world, feminism is changing and it is prudent for advertising companies using women to try as much as possible to embrace reality to demonstrate the actual occurrences through aesthetic strategies that project reality.
Dosekun, S. (2015). For Western Girls Only?, Feminist Media Studies,
15:6, 960-975, DOI: 10.1080/14680777.2015.1062991
Gill, R. (2016). Post-postfeminism?: new feminist visibilities in postfeminist, Times, Feminist Media Studies, 16(4): 610-630.
McRobbie, A. (2004). Post‐feminism and popular culture, Feminist Media
Studies, 4:3, 255-264, DOI: 10.1080/1468077042000309937
Patterson, M., & Elliot, R. (2002). Negotiating Masculinities: Advertising and the Inversion of the Male Gaze, Consumption, Markets and Culture, 2002 Vol. 5 (3), pp. 231–24