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Author Topic: Jonathan Klein on Why I Fell in Love with Pictures  (Read 22766 times)

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« Reply #25 on: June 18, 2014, 17:32 »
0
Here are 10 off the top of my head. But at least 3 I think could be further reduced and all of the headings could be better defined.

Freedom & Individuality
Style, Grace & Beauty
Success / Failure
Health
Complexity & Simplicity & Purity
Progress
Age - youth and old age
Quality
Power
Sex

Fear?
Anger?
Life?
Death?
Love?
Optimism/Pessimism?
Faith?

I was really hoping you had the definitive list, because Google as I might I can find no reference to the Hegarty quote or even reference to any quote that boils down all ideas or concepts to a list of ten.

I don't have a definitive list. But isn't that what this conversation should usefully be about.

Remember that this is not about coming up with all narrative scenarios. It's about the key concepts which an advertiser might try to communicate as a sell. I reckon 10 is too many.

Ironically I do think that sustainability should be on the list. But I think it probably comes under some other broader heading. And I cannot imagine any advertiser wanting to communicate a message of death per se. Anger, death, fear etc are not messages IMO - rather, they are narratives. For example an advertiser does not want to communicate death as a message. It's going to be used in a narrative about some other concept. Ditto fear, love, anger, frustration etc etc.

Eta: I suggested age - but that isn't a selling point either. It's a story. But I think trust should be on the list. I think advertisers sell trust.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2014, 17:40 by bunhill »


« Reply #26 on: June 18, 2014, 17:47 »
0
I think that whilst the narrative can be a negative the sell is always a positive. Here is my final 10. But that might change.

Freedom & Individuality
Style, Grace & Beauty
Success
Health
Purity
Complexity & Simplicity
Progress
Trust
Quality
Power

Shelma1

« Reply #27 on: June 18, 2014, 18:39 »
0


Ironically I do think that sustainability should be on the list. But I think it probably comes under some other broader heading. And I cannot imagine any advertiser wanting to communicate a message of death per se. Anger, death, fear etc are not messages IMO - rather, they are narratives. For example an advertiser does not want to communicate death as a message. It's going to be used in a narrative about some other concept. Ditto fear, love, anger, frustration etc etc.

Eta: I suggested age - but that isn't a selling point either. It's a story. But I think trust should be on the list. I think advertisers sell trust.


Tell that to people who need to advertise life insurance, cars with air bags, and funeral homes. ;) Having worked on a couple of life insurance accounts, I can assure you we want to sell death...or the fear of death...certainly the fear of what might happen to your loved ones after your death. Same with anti-smoking campaigns, for example. Overall, we see fear as the main motivator, which is what we'e been accused of for decades...preying on people's fears (of death, rejection, failure, etc.) and creating fear where there was none.

But I'm glad you insisted on this debate, because in my Googling I found a great video of Hegarty boiling down the essence of what he loves about advertising, which is irreverence...and then taking us through a history of reverence vs. irreverence in art, and the struggles all artists have with client revisions.

And a big contrast between this video and the OP's is Hegarty's humility...he acknowledges that advertising is trivial, after following directly behind a neuroscientist in giving his speech.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WXwT-gJhwG8

« Reply #28 on: June 18, 2014, 18:47 »
+1
Tell that to people who need to advertise life insurance, cars with air bags, and funeral homes. ;) Having worked on a couple of life insurance accounts, I can assure you we want to sell death...or the fear of death...

I do not believe that you are selling death in this scenario. Or fear. Fear and death in this context are narrative scenarios. What you are selling is trust in the product.

I believe that in all cases the sell is a positive. The narrative may be a negative.

Shelma1

« Reply #29 on: June 18, 2014, 18:58 »
+1
Tell that to people who need to advertise life insurance, cars with air bags, and funeral homes. ;) Having worked on a couple of life insurance accounts, I can assure you we want to sell death...or the fear of death...

I do not believe that you are selling death in this scenario. Or fear. Fear and death in this context are narrative scenarios. What you are selling is trust in the product.

I believe that in all cases the sell is a positive. The narrative may be a negative.

Watch the commercial Hegarty uses as an example at the end of his speech. Of course, in the end we want people to think in a positive way about the product...but we also know fear and negativity (and humor, relieving that fear) are what get attention. So the vast majority of that commercial is fear, fear, fear.

Fear is a huge motivator. Of every species, really.

« Reply #30 on: June 18, 2014, 19:04 »
+1
Yes fear gets you attention. That's what I mean about it being the narrative. It's the story. It's a powerful narrative.

But it is very clearly not what you are selling. What you are selling is a concept of trust.

Shelma1

« Reply #31 on: June 18, 2014, 20:10 »
+2
Unfortunately, this isn't really going anywhere. Neither of us knows what 10 ideas he's referring to. I can tell you why take umbrage to that statement, though: Because he's standing in front of a roomful of people whose only job is to come up with ideas, and he's telling them (not to diminish advertising, of course) that there are only 10 ideas in the entire world, without any form of proof or making any reference to where THAT idea came from.

« Reply #32 on: June 18, 2014, 20:12 »
+2
It's really disappointing that the intellectual merit of what was said is not being debated here.

As an illustrator, I usually feel left out when I see most of these guys speak. What they are saying usually doesn't have a lot of relevance and kind of concerns me that I'm not part of the conversation. I'll admit that I didn't watch the whole video, but just a general observation.

« Reply #33 on: June 19, 2014, 01:46 »
0
he's standing in front of a roomful of people whose only job is to come up with ideas, and he's telling them (not to diminish advertising, of course) that there are only 10 ideas in the entire world

No he isn't. You've misunderstood what he is saying.

JKB

« Reply #34 on: June 19, 2014, 04:48 »
+3
Reminds me of the idea that there are only a certain number of basic, archetypal plots in all of literature. See for example http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Seven_Basic_Plots

There have been some advertising takes on this: http://www.adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/7-basic-types-stories-which-one-your-brand-telling-144164

This might be the kind of stuff that forms the basics of Klein's thinking, in a Chinese whispers kind of way, though I have to confess I didn't watch the video.

Edit: Links
« Last Edit: June 23, 2014, 05:23 by JKB »

« Reply #35 on: June 19, 2014, 05:51 »
+1
Here are 10 off the top of my head. But at least 3 I think could be further reduced and all of the headings could be better defined.

Freedom & Individuality
Style, Grace & Beauty
Success / Failure
Health
Complexity & Simplicity & Purity
Progress
Age - youth and old age
Quality
Power
Sex

Curious, that already looks like 16 to me (accepting that youth and old age are subsets of age)

« Reply #36 on: June 19, 2014, 06:15 »
+1
Curious, that already looks like 16 to me (accepting that youth and old age are subsets of age)

If you read down the log you will see that I revised that list. This was as close as I could get for now:

Freedom & Individuality
Style, Grace & Beauty
Success
Health
Purity
Complexity & Simplicity
Progress
Trust
Quality
Power

What would your list comprise ?

The way I currently see this: there are the concepts which advertisers sell. These I think are always positives. I think that these are what the 10 would be all about. So my 10 (or 14 if you want) would be about trying to approach the subject headings. I am sure that you can see that where I have more than one concept on a line it is because I have not been able to reduce those elements to their lowest common denominator.

And then there are narrative concepts - e.g. the themes around which a story is told. Eg - love, friendship, fear, anger, frustration, wealth, happiness, communication, growth, family, journey, the environment etc etc. This list would be much longer. But I am going to guess that it would still reduce to maybe 20.

Whether or not we agree with Jonathan Klein it must be clear that this is an interesting, positive and useful thinking process.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2014, 06:23 by bunhill »

Shelma1

« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2014, 07:57 »
0
It's really disappointing that the intellectual merit of what was said is not being debated here.

As an illustrator, I usually feel left out when I see most of these guys speak. What they are saying usually doesn't have a lot of relevance and kind of concerns me that I'm not part of the conversation. I'll admit that I didn't watch the whole video, but just a general observation.

I know what you mean...these guys discuss photography only, as if illustration doesn't exist. (That's what bugs me about Stocksy. Beautully curated work. Where are the illustrators in that scenario?)

« Reply #38 on: June 21, 2014, 02:47 »
+9
Well I finally got around to seeing what the video is about. My take is this - It's basically a little presentation to the movers and shakers in the advertising industry to say "Hey, we're Getty Images, you used to use us all the time in the glory years and we're still relevant today. We need each other, so please don't leave us behind." So you take off your suit and tie and hang out with the young advertising hipsters. (who are too young to know who Princess Diana is, thank god Mr Klein explained it to them) Yes, images are important and are powerful, that's been going on for thousands of years even before the camera. The problem here is with every passing year of new technology, Getty Images is becoming more and more a thing of the past for the advertising industry. It's true, it's quite possible for almost anyone to make a great image. And thanks to the internet, you don't have to go to Getty and pay $600 (or more) for a single image for your ad campaign. More and more I see corporations turning to low cost models to get more value out of their ad dollars. Tim Hortons I recall asked their customers to submit photos of themselves holding a cup of Tim Hortons Coffee. They compiled the best images and created a commercial out of it. How many "Shoot your own commercial for our product and win $1000!" have you seen? Expect more in the future.
 
Getty Images is stuck because their old model is failing. But to turn to the new model (microstock) will open another can of worms, that there is a lot of low cost options out there like shutterstock. So now Getty is trying to sell itself as the "Great Advertising Image Guide" with the insider knowledge of "concepts". The problem is that the creative people in the advertising industry know all about the events of istock, and the corporation of Getty Images, not to mention the failed business of "istock selling logos". (they also have shutterstock accounts) The last people in the world you can try and Bulls**t are the advertising creatives because they're in the business and they know what stinks.

And the mention of the "10 concepts" in advertising is nothing more than a gimmick to make him seem like an industry insider. It has no more value to me than the "Mr. Senator, in my hand I hold a paper that contains the names of 130 communists who are in American government today!" Advertising is simply two things: A need/desire/question. And an answer/fulfillment/benefit. So in the case of the funeral home, you plant the question: "What will happen to my loved ones when I die? Will they suffer because I don't have a plan?" and then give an answer "But if you buy a prearranged funeral plan from us... no worries."

With regards to illustration in the ad industry, I would think it's mostly commissioned work for the big stuff and Getty can't address that need with stock illust. You'd be better off selling yourself for that market.

Shelma1

« Reply #39 on: June 21, 2014, 09:57 »
0
.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2014, 14:13 by Shelma1 »

« Reply #40 on: June 21, 2014, 14:18 »
0
But then when he talks about "crowd sourcing" it is clear he doesn't get it. He shows really famous images that have earned a lot of money, but he doesn't know the name of the artists. He belittles "cliches" without appreciating the very hard work that goes into creating them. These images sold because they are so useful. But artists that consistently produce these images are very few. Anna makes fantastic stuff and her story is just as interesting as that of the editorial artists that he happens to know personally.

We just see the same thing again, there is no real understanding how crowdsourcing really works.


More than anything else I detected underlying resentment at Istocks disruption of getty's original market. He is trying to make the turn but the resentment is tinging the air.

To bad we can not get past this energy in our own discussion, as bunhill mentions several times there is more to discuss.


 

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