Why Images Need Captions:

The Importance of Text with Images:

BOOM! A popping image draws your attention. It makes you wander what just happened. It instantly intrigues you!

This is because all images convey meanings. The BOOM image conveys to me: Look over here, powerful, and shocking. To my audience however, it could portray totally different meanings and an author must be careful with images. A reader could see this and think gun shots, war, or comic books; none of which I am talking about now. This is why it is important to always know what you’re image could convey before you use it. Also, captions are key. I do not have one, so you do not know what I am trying to say with this, but if I said, Boom: Images Call Always Attention to your Article,  you might understand where I am going with this.

Images convey two elements:

  1. How the viewer interprets it or experiences it
  2. The context in which the image is seen

The clique that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is true in this case. We all see it differently and find it tasteful or not deepening on our social nature.

Our Culture Effects our Taste:

Struken and Cartwright go into detail about our tastes in their book Practices of Looking. They claim, “taste is not inherent in particular people, but rather is learned through exposure to social and cultural institutions that promote certain class-based assumptions about correct taste (49). So when we say someone has good taste, we just mean they were raised in a culture similar to ours. This is relevant to my blog because I use images to portray that we have shifted in our cultural norms over the years. What I find vulgar in America may not be in other countries or vise-veras. So, my blog and my tastes may be different to other people who don’t view my pictures as so risqué . How do I prove to them that we have become more vulgar and it is not for the best?

I need to be as effective with my images as possible. To help, Garr Reynolds advises several tips in his book Presentation Zen.

Some of the few that I really focused on was:

  1. Simplicity is the key in presentations
  2. Use reliable typeface (Caslon, Garamond, Baskerville, Helvetica..)
  3. Rotate my text effectively on a full-bleed photograph for attentoin
  4. Make sure I have text with the image to convey MY meaning

Here is one example he used that entails all four of these points:

Notice how different the message is with different captions on the same photo.

Notice how different the message is with different captions on the same photo.

  1. Simplicity-  Just the image and the caption is shown
  2. The typeface is legible and clear on a full-bleed photo
  3. The text is tilted to catch the readers attention
  4. There is a caption to portray what the author means with the photo
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Pay Attention: Notice How Provocative Media Culture is

An on screen sex scene from the movie No Strings Attached

An on screen sex scene from the movie No Strings Attached

Advertisements are the center of our world. Every day we see them, hear them, and talk about them. A prime example, the Superbowl commercials. Some of us watch it just for the commercials. But, do we take the time to think about what we are seeing? The honest answer is no.  Most of us don’t think twice about 3000 advertising messages we see a day.

After reading my blog, I hope that will change. I want you to be aware of what is surrounding you. I want you to think twice before you leave the room with a child unattended and the TV on. I want you to take a stand against the vulgar, hyper-sexual, American advertisements in this day and age.

The Dick Van Dyke show. Notice how the husband and wife are in separate beds.

The Dick Van Dyke show. Notice how the husband and wife are in separate beds.

 

Have you heard of the The Dick Van Dyke Show? I hadn’t until I began my research. This show aired in the 60’s and when the married couple was shown in their bedroom on television, they were in separate twin beds. Them in bed together was too  inappropriate for Television. Wow… a lot has changed in 50 years.

 

 

Our current television shows  not only reveal sexual references, but also vulgar titles. Dating Naked, 16 and Pregnant, Sex in the City, just to name a few. We have not only changed the content, but also become unfazed by the vulgar show titles. How is it okay to have these titles and advertisements play when young children may be listening and exposed to it?

MTV's 16 and pregnant is a reality show about teenagers having babies and trying to raise them while being kids themselves.

MTV’s 16 and pregnant is a reality show about teenagers having babies and trying to raise them while being kids themselves.

TV is not the only dramatic change. We have a desensitized  our audience so drastically that music, advertisements, movies, video games, etc are all inappropriate. We have parental blocks on the TV and internet, and have created ratings for movies and games. M for mature. “You must be 18 or over to view this site. Are you 18, Yes or No?” That’s a great defense mechanism. Really keeps the kids out. I find it just shocking how much kids are exposed to today and do not feel that it is appropriate for this to be happening. Throughout my blog I will explore all of the areas mentioned above and show how big of a change has been made and how nice it would be if we could reverse it. I want the word conservative brought back into circulation.

About Me

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Hello! I am Hedley Jones and I am currently a sophomore at Furman University. I was born and raised in Georgia and am a true southern belle. I love everything about the south, especially the sunshine. You can usually find me outside enjoying nature or when I get a chance the beach! This is my first blog and I have focused it on the change in media, mostly the increase of provocative content, over time. Living in the south, a conservative nature was taught to  me from the start and because of this, I personally find it just shocking how provocative public advertisements have become. Throughout my blog I will be exploring how music videos, TV shows, movies,  and advertisement’s content has developed a more provacative nature and how we as a society have accepted it and become immune to it. This blog will seek to discover why so much has changed and contrast it to how conservative we used to be just fifty years ago.

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“UGH” our instant reaction when we see long paragraphs. “How many pages?” our first question when assigned reading. We have become creatures who only desire  instant gratification and crave short and to the point information. Because of this, we have become fans of the inverted paragraph.

The Inverted Paragraph:

Reading is hard for alinverted-pyramidl of us in this day and age. We look at words and just skim right over them. Because of this, the inverted pyramid has become the go-to with digital media. It is a system where the most important information is placed at the top and decreases in importance as the story goes on. Lynda Felder emphasizes in her book Writing for the Web that each paragraph should be based on the inverted pyramid as well as the whole essay (123).

New News:

With media being taken over by the web, we are leaving behind our ways of the past. Brain Carroll states in his bookWriting and Editing for Digital Media, “Newspapers     [are] the fastest shrinking U.S. industry” (212).newspaper-illo21

We no longer yearn for static information; interaction is what we crave. “We Media” is what we have become. We are literally part of the media. We comment, share, post, and have a part in what is going on. With more people online and a greater access to media however, we must be more alert.

Watch Out:

With everyone having access to the internet and breaking news instantly available, we must be careful what we trust. There are many false “breaking news stories”. One easy way to detect them is that anonymously sourced reports carry a high risk of being wrong according to BreakingNews.com (239). Also, do not trust anonymous comments. Some sites are even forbidding them. Huffington Post ,for example, makes users sign into Facebook or enter credit cared information to verify their identifty before commenting. This ensures that the comments don’t get out of hand. For my blog, I will be personally managing comments to ensure they are appropriate.

A Trustworthy Story:

How to tell if a story is trustworthy starts with ethos. We must trust the author and they must prove themselves credible to us. Check out their about me page, see if they have connections to other pages or previous credible work, and lastly how does their story look?

Elements of a good story:

Some things to think about while reading.

Does the story:

  • Start in the middle, and is it filled with action?Woman working at computer
  • Begin with a hook,  are you are instantly intrigued?
  • Use beautiful language like descriptive adjectives?
  • Does each paragraph ends with a cliff hanger, keeping you interested?
  • Is the Narration, Description and Explanation clear?

For the explantation in my upcoming blogs I will be following Lynda Felder’s advice by comparing and contrasting my ideas point by point. She recommends this because organization for the web is easiest this and also it creates short paragraphs which, as you know, readers prefer.

In Summary:

Types and techniques of news have changed just like advertisements and cultural norms have over the years. It is not news to us that newspapers are declining in popularity, but have we noticed that our conservative nature is too? Have we noticed that the word “news” has skewed from focusing on world issues  to focusing on what Kim Kardashian is wearing? Have we noticed how big of a change is occurring not in just the way we advertise, but in what we advertise? I have, and will be sharing my findings about this change in my blog. You can find it under Multimedia Projects.

 

Out With the Old and in With the New: Media and Advertisements

From Conservative to Provocative

It is shocking how much has changed in just 10 years…

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TV is just one example of how we have become desensitized by our newly found publicly provocative nature.

Other changes in media have been made in:

  • Music
  • Video games
  • Advertisements
  • Movies
  • Slang

These outlets have altered completely over the past few decades and because of this change: ratings for movies and games have come into existence, parental blocks have become available on TVs, and websites make you enter your age before visiting. How is this not a sign of change… and for the worst?

We have lost touch with the word conservative and have entered into a provocative lifestyle. This blog will explore how much we have changed and why it is not for the better through videos, photos, and posts.