Monday, April 11, 2011

Sample Ad Online Critique

[Below is a sample of what an online critique might look like instead of a written paper. This is a work in progress!]

One of the most famous television advertisements of all time only ran once--the Apple Macintosh ad from 1984. Here you would give a little more detail about the ad and why it was famous, or what it was for, such as how this was the way Apple introduced a new computer for the first time, or how the ad agency tried to get rid of both spots. Since you will be writing about a contemporary ad, you could describe other similar brands, or other strategies the brand has used. It is up to you. After your introduction to the ad, you should embed the ad like this.

Then you get on to general discussion of the ad, tacking whichever elements of it you think are the most important as discussed in the paper assignment. Rather than writing a shot chart, you should provide frame grabs of appropriate shots from the ad. The easiest way to get these is to hit pause while watching the video on YouTube, then do a screengrab. You can do this for all the shots you want, then open the screengrab files in a basic photo editing program to crop and resize them. You will also need to save them in the jpg format. You should provide 5-10 screen grabs to illustrate the visual techniques in the ad, and place them at appropriate points in your online essay.

 This commercial begins with a very gloomy scene, faceless humans in drab clothes marching in unison in a hallway past monitors. Although we see some closeups on their faces, they seem undistinguishable. The editing and photography emphasizes how they march in step.

This is contrasted with a lone woman runner who is striking in red shorts. She has what looks like the outline of a computer on her shirt, but it is very hard to see without the ability to pause to view the frame. She carries a hammer and is running forward with much intention. You should do a better job of describing what you see. I am writing off the top of my head just to show how to put things together.

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