February 11, 2008
Frames...the overlap of 340 and Communication Studies.
In class, we were told to find a poam online--anything that we could justify as a product of an act of making. I decided to do this be referring to some of the concepts that I have studied in some of my Communications' classes.
Before I even begin, the conceptualization of framing is just astounding. Frames are everywhere. The way in which I arrived at my online poam was framed within the words I chose to use in the Google search engine. If you think about it, how many things do we actually do, as people brought up in a civilized society, that are independent of pre-existing frames? I would venture to say not many. We are socialized/cultivated to think the way we do from birth by outside social forces. Very little thought exists without the influencing factors of the civilized world, because thought lies within the constrains of language, a man-made construct.
Wow...I need to stop my rambling and move on to discuss my online poam. In Google, I typed in two seemingly unrelated terms: "orange" and "ice cream man." One of the results that came up was "Hot Wheels Guide - Good Humor Truck/Ice Cream Truck, South Texas Diecast Collectors. Wow, this is weird, I thought, there's gotta be a poam in here somewhere. So, I decided to explore the site a bit and came across this photograph:
Here are some of my thoughts as to how this object has been framed:
• Framed obviously as a product…typical rectangular packaging with a t-hole for hanging on shelves.
• Appealing to boys with tractors and pictures of construction equipment.
• Framed as a model of American consumerism boasting of the well-known brand name: Mattel.
• Expansion of classic Hot Wheels product collection by appealing to the interests of children. Appealing to target audiences’ assumed interests…targeting familiarity within the child cohort.
• Use of colors that are most typically considered either “boy” or “neutral.”
• Framed to evoke emotion that is created resulting from a real encounter with an ice cream man—obviously, an evocative experience of childhood.
• The product aims to transcend the tangibility of the plastic construct and enter into the imagination.
When evaluating a piece of art, each observer approaches the object with different insight, which contributes to how the object is interpreted. In Communication Studies, a product of media is evaluated based on the frame within which the media maker places the product. In this way, the creator has the potential to manipulate the patterns of human thought by discreetly directing the consumers to perceive the product in an artificially manufactured light. For example, television news is a perfect representation of framing at work. Television news in itself is a manufactured construct: a collection of tidbits of information deemed newsworthy by reporters/editors/journalists, etc. all of whom are working under the expectation that the fruits of their labor will deliver an audience. Thus, the stories that are covered are not necessarily news, but information thought to attract the viewer, and thus deliver them to advertisers which will, in turn, guarantee monetary compensation to the news’ organization. In this way, every product including all copyrighted creative works are, first and foremost, framed by the ulterior motives of the creator in order to garner a profit. Within this overarching goal, creators and advertisers present these products as commodities appealing to human desire. The ways in which this goal is accomplished varies with the product and its respective audience demographics. The audience then responds because, from birth, they have been primed to respond in a certain way to media appeals. It’s almost as if, just as poetry is constrained by poems, the agency of human thought is constrained by what society has deemed valuable, one of the top contenders being a capitalistic society based on financial prosperity.
Posted by thulyk at February 11, 2008 06:20 PM
By the way, the rambling was great --revealed so much,
but what unfolds after you reconfigure/reframe the rambling is just as revelatory.
More, more, more!
(--take a look, if you get a chance/inclination at my graphic prose poam (in particular, note how an idea of framing systems within framing systems is considered) on display till 28 March in the work Gallery on State Street across the street from Shaman Drum)
Excellent stuff here!
Posted by: thyliasm at March 10, 2008 12:43 PMLogin to leave a comment. Create a new account.