A sick product?

I read three books today, one about childrens’ picture books, one about advertising and one about sustainable living. I have come to the conclusion that I am very driven by the visual, but I don’t know if that’s because I’m especially different, especially artistically minded, or if I’m a sick product of this image-obsessed generation. Probably somewhere in-between.

The one about kids books is a new one released this year, it is written by the heads of an MA you can do on children’s picture books, they give you a history of them, tell you about the industry, tell you about what themes are suitable to explore with kids, where the words should be on the page, if there should be words, what colours to use, all of them or none of them or two of them. There’s also lots of nice pictures in it. The book costs twenty two pounds so I can really only afford to read the library’s copy, sad that.

The one about advertising is by John Hegarty, he’s an English (m)adman. He talks about stories and creativity and Levis (a lot) and irreverence and how the Catholic church are the most successful brand of all time. The main thing he says is that at his company they ‘worship ideas’. Obviously there’s a bit of hyperbole at work there, but that’s what’s quite attractive to me about the world of advertising, it’s all about good ideas. However I don’t know if I want to work in that world, it’s all about profits, manipulation, lying, irreverence (as mentioned above) and general capitalist nastiness, I will have to have a think about whether it is possible to be an ethical advertiser.

The one about sustainable living says that everything is terrible, it tells me that I need to stop creating so much waste, it tells me that I must not ever never use a fossil fuel again, it tells me to stop eating so much meat, it tells me that shopping local isn’t the only answer and it teaches me the words Locavore and Flexitarian.

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