C.R.A.P. Advertising


In this blog I’ll be breaking down the extraordinary handmade Play-Doh ad. By critiquing the editorial skills of the ad I will be demonstrating the knowledge of layout and design principles I’ve gained from taking the MCOM2 course at St. Lawrence College. So, without more introduction, let’s judge the C.R.A.P. of this advertisement.

Contrast is the detail put into the image that create a layered or depth effect. Using contrast we are able to expose the focal point which is essentially the most emphasized spot on the image. Within the Play-Doh advertisement the focal point at first could be acknowledged as both the Doll with her golden hair, or the ogre body due to shading. With more knowledge we know the Doll head is the focal point, due to the alignment leading us to look there. Contrast can also be found within the art work by the mountain and trees compared to the trees and land that are more detailed at the front. The smooth mountain tells us that it is distant due to us not being able to see the individual strains of grass. The path that flows through the ad with light contrast shading makes us aware of the depth of the image. The father down the path we go the smaller the trees get as well. Incorporating all these themes we have an exemplary display of contrast within the ad.

Repetition is the repetition of photos, fonts, and colour. The consistency shapes the tone of the ad. Within the Play-Doh ad we can find repetition by first looking at the trees. The trees have an even amount of 3 on either side, for both the front trees and flows to the grouping in the back, this continuous theme balances the image. There are many examples of repetition within the artwork but another focus is through the characters of the ad. Each character has a ligament, mainly the head, swapped with another character. The tone is childish and funny, and as a advertisement directed to children this is necessary, however as we move to the next form of repetition, the story turns a bit darker. The consistency of darker colours create a gloomy effect and to add to the horror the advertisement displays a repetition using bones. We can find skulls as an accessories for the ogre and another bone from the decapitated Owl. The repetition changed how I view the ad from sweet to scary and it solely increases my fascination for the advertisement.

We mentioned alignment within the advertisement in the contrast section however there is plenty of it in the ad that needs to be discussed. Alignment is essentially imaginary lines within the image. These lines move the readers eyes and shape the placement of contents within the image. The text line cane be found flowing from a centered pointed leaf creating a midway lune for the text alignment. The more fascinating lines within the image are the eyes of each character. The characters are all circled looking upwards at the doll head and without even acknowledging this our eyes immediately follow their glance. This point is what aided the contrast in discovering a focal point creating a flow is design.

Proximity is the spacing of elements in the design. Within this ad we can only find the display of proximity around the wording. All elements of the design cricle away from the wording such as;

  • The Ogre arm looping under leading to the pinky. The pinky points around and up, in the same form as the arm.
  • Flowing with the pinky is also the chimney smoke from the small cottage.
  • The tree tips as well point around the text.
  • Finally the logs close off the top of the bubble.

All these design elements form a text bubble for the Play-Doh subheading used for the advertisement.

In conclusion this advertisement is very creative which lead it to be a very successful campaign. I hope you learned a little about intro and design from me sharing my knowledge. I look forward to being a new advertisement connoisseur.

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