The following academic paper highlights the up-to-date issues and questions of Semiotic Analysis Of Advertisement. This sample provides just some ideas on how this topic can be analyzed and discussed.
Semiotics is basically a scientific study that revolves around signs and the actual ways in which these specific signs tend to construct and even reconstruct their basic meanings. The nature of a sign can be simultaneously symbolic, indexical and iconic. In a situation whereby the specific sign is iconic, then it means that the sign must be an excellent representation of the respective signified meaning.
An example in this case is a photo or a particular painting of an object.
In a situation whereby the sign is indexical, it means that there is a direct relationship between the meaning of the sign the specific object that is being signified. An example in this context is; smoke as an index of fire. Lastly, in a situation whereby there is no direct relationship between the sign of a particular object and the meaning, the sign is known as symbolic.
An example in this case is; written language which is accurately symbolic. According to Saussure, a sign is composed of two elements: the signifier and the signified.
The signifier is basically the kind of image is visually seen. An example in this case is a painting of a particular object. The Signified is basically a specific mental concept that is mainly conjured up in the minds of receivers when they come into an engagement with the signifier.
“A rose is a symbol of love or passion not because a rose looks like love or passion or even because the flower causes it. It is just that members of some cultures have over the years used the rose in certain circumstances to mean love. The first step for signification is the denotative. This is the actual process of description, recognition and the basic identification. Connotation actually tends to look further into the kind of ways in which things are perceived at higher levels. This is helpful because it assists in enabling one to actually go beyond denotations through analysis and interpretation and the addition of facts to the meaning. This article looks at the semiotic analysis and content analysis of advertisements.
To begin with is a semiotic analysis of a specific of advertisements in the semiotic techniques and terms. In addition to the above, analysis will also explore how things the construction for the meaning has been developed. The name of the magazine is Vogue. Through an advertisement process, the product being advertised tends to become a complete representation of all that the reader would desire it to become. “What the advertisement clearly does is thus to signify, to represent to us, the object of desire” (Williamson 1978, p. 60).
The advertisement to be analyzed is taken from a magazine. Most magazines tend to adapt to their own unique slogans which tend to appear on the cover of the magazine. An example, Marie Claire magazines tend to carry within them the slogan “for women of the world” and the Cleo magazine has also adopted the name ‘she’s smart, she’s sexy, she’s Cleo’. These types of slogans themselves tend to act as signs and mainly connote the qualities and values such as confidence, youth and even sociability. In the contrary the Vogue magazine has not chosen suck kind of a slogan.
The basic reason for this could basically be that the name of the magazine is so significant enough that needs no more elaborations to attract the attentions of the public. The dictionary meaning for the word Vogue is fashion; the latest range; popularity and style. In a situation whereby the actual name of a magazine carries such a significant name and positive connotations, it so unlikely that an additional slogan would exist. As a matter of fact, it is through such kind of names like Vogue that the ideal identities of the feminine gender are clearly exposed.
It is an important thing to understand that the general “the function of women’s magazines is to provide readers with a sense of community, comfort and pride in this mythic feminine identity” (Bignell 1997, p. 61). For analytical purposes Louis Vuitton has been chosen as an advertisement. This advert was basically taken from Vogue Australia Magazine (October, 1998). Vogue is one of the women group magazines that basically aim at reaching out to women from the any particular ethnic background, and are of the age of 18 to 35 having money to actually spend on cosmetics and clothes.
Vogue Australia is recognized internationally as the beauty and fashion bible. It should also be realized that the magazine is not only being read by the purchasers but by several other readers too. “not all the readers will belong to the group of women which the magazine targets, and some readers will be men” (Bignell 1997, p. 58). Most of the messages are basically read in along the way by anyone who gets to perceive them. This type of advert basically shows a very immaculately and smartly dressed blonde woman. The next advertisement is of a good arrangement of ladies cosmetics.
This includes the beauty products such as lipsticks, body oils and garments for ladies. This is basically contained in the ELLE magazine on the November issue. This is basically an advert that is mainly intended to attract the female gender since all the products in the picture are used by women. The age category of ladies that the advertisement is supposed to reach is between 20 and 55. This is because some of the items on the advert cannot be used by women who have passed the age of 45 such as “eye shadow- meant to give color to the eye cover of the ladies.
This advertisement is majorly focusing on the ladies of the nature of youths. The advertisement is basically located on the beautiful white background to reveal the exact details of the way the beauty products would appear on a woman. The body of the model in the advertisement is actually facing the front with the body a bit twisted in a figure eight manner. The model has high class beauty wares and is carrying handbags that contain some other beauty products. The third advertisement chosen is a cosmetic advert basically for Lancome. This advertisement was basically taken from Marie Claire magazine.
The advertisement was developed during the spring of 1998 was actually more specifically cut from the leaflet with the title ‘Recreate your look with Lancome’ I actually chose this advertisement for my own personal reasons. I could come across it many times as I could peruse through the different pages of the other magazines. The major dominant object that caught my attention in the advertisement was the ugly nature of the model that was made-up in that particular picture. On personal terms I was not actually impressed by the picture but basically was more fascinated with the picture combinations that were used in the picture.
The advert actually spread out through three pages. Page one is actually a photograph of a model has a red-colored hair in the basic front view and actually covers the whole page of the paper. The female model looks to be in the age of 20 and is wearing a shiny silky dress which is blue in color. The model is wearing a type of hat on her head that actually resembles the head of an insect. The hat has blue, turquoise and green colors and are also at the same time acting as a material that the model has used to cover round her neck.
The model in the advertisement also has a scarf which is actually has shiny palettes and a shape that is actually spiky. The background of the advertisement is light colored and is dominated by pitch and rose tones. It is amazing that the only conspicuous thing in the advertisement is the pair of wings that are attached on the back of the model. The model seems like she wants to move forward with a very dynamic posture. This design of motion makes the advertisement to have a direct and lively appearance. The direct gazing that the model has actually makes it exaggerated.
The model is basically staring directly into the eyes of the viewer. The fist page actually has no additions of text and even no label as concerns the kind of product that is being advertised in the process. As a matter of fact, the viewer is actually left to wonder about the meaning of the image. The page that is actually following the first page show the same woman but this time round wearing a make up that is dark blue and green in color. There is a dark blue rose that is actually shown on the right side of the photograph as the image tends to extend to cover the whole of the second page.
Towards the left side of the photograph, the cosmetic product that was being advertised is clearly shown as the brand name which is Lancome is printed in terms of big capital letters and actually spread round the whole area of the two pages. The exact name of the product appears distinctively on the right side of the page as “Chrysalis, Spring Color Collection 1998” Underneath the texts the images of two lipsticks appear together with pictures of two eye shadows of and their colors printed over the whole area of the white page bringing forth the idea of an insect.
This image actually leads the viewer into the image of a beetle which is actually printed towards the letters. Amazingly it seems to be the kind of beetle whose design the model is wearing a necklace in the first photograph. This short description of the advert actually reveals the different types of elements that are involved in the photograph. There is however a weakness in terms of the display of information concerning the photograph as the advertisement does not give any type of information concerning the way by which the individual photograph elements relate to each other and even tend to actually influence one another.
In terms of content analysis of the above pictures, according to the dynamic model of Saussure, there are clear indications that there is no exact clear separation between the signified and the actual signifier. There is chance that a given number of signifies could be identified in the process of looking at the picture. One of the identifiers is the woman who is dressed in the insect typology.
In terms of the signified the woman’s mental concept is actually represents change that is needed in the society as concerns the product that is actually being advertised. As a female gender, the woman in the picture actually represents the beauty of the conventional beauty in the current society. The only question that rings in the mind of the viewer is that how does the concept of change relate to a woman dressed up in the manner that resembles the one in the photograph?
However there is a narrative that is placed actually at the end of the photograph to actually explain the relationship that exists between the signifier and the signified in the photograph as concerns the concept of change. This narrative actually shows that the first woman model in the picture is actually not having any kind of make-up. This is however transformed in the second photograph when the woman model in the picture is shown to be having a make-up resembling that of an insect, preferably a beetle.
This basically means or signifies change that the product that is being advertised will make to the people as soon as they use it. The idea that the designer of the photograph is trying to make as concerns the picture to the general viewers is that the product will bring a change in their lives that will make them develop the capacity to be able to move in a speedily manner. This is the reason why the idea of the beetle is brought into the design of the photograph through the model.