Hey, you can talk to me here http://joelsvoice.deviantart.com/ Name is Danny. My fandoms: Generation kill, Scrubs, Teen Wolf, Walking dead, The Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, Star Track, QAF
A Will Poulter award? Oh my God, I don’t know what that would be for. Awkwardness? Nerves?
Billboard demonstrating gender stereotypes as most people automatically assume that Alex is the boy.
Actually, I’ve studied design and advertising, and I can tell you that the reason people would look at this and immediately assume Alex is the boy is because, quite simply, the boy is the focal point of the ad.
English-speaking readers’ line of sight goes from left to right and up to down. This ad leads the viewer from the words MEET ALEX etc straight to the boy and then over and down to the girl. I didn’t even notice there was a set of parenthesis with words in them in the ad until I looked the fourth time.
This is a fallacious confirmation bias, as anyone looking at it will assume Alex is the focal point (i.e. The Boy) and then if they’re perceptive they’ll notice the words at the bottom. Aha! Those damn gender stereotypes gotcha again! Except no, because the ad literally forces you to read it as “Alex is the boy” by the visual language and lines of sight.
A better ad would have been structured from top to bottom instead of left to right, and wouldn’t have pushed the girl, the real subject of the ad (who, by the way, has been VISUALLY PUSHED OUT OF HER RIGHTFUL SPACE ON THE AD BY HER BROTHER) off to the corner as far away from her identifiers as possible.
Here, I’ll make you a better ad.
Bam. Shitty stock photo but you get the point. If anyone sees this and assumes Alex is the boy, they don’t have the the ad layout to use as an excuse for their internalized gender shittery. Likewise, the ad isn’t actively trying to make you read it a certain way and THEN making you feel guilty for interpreting it the way they designed it to be.
Oh thank god for the added commentary because this was driving me nuts. Honestly until this poster pointed it out I didn’t even realize there WAS additional copy pointing out that Alex was the girl, because they’ve purposely set it up as white-on-light text in a position and size that implies pointless fine print. I kept scrolling past this going “okay, but how would a viewer even get the point of the ad without it being explicitly pointed out to them?” Granted, at billboard size you’re less likely to miss the accompanying text, but absolutely everything pointed out here about how the ad is visually structured is spot-on. The visual language of this kind of layout is very well-known, they essentially set a visual trap and then make you feel bad about reading it exactly the way they intended you to read it.
It could’ve been really powerful, but I don’t think they did a very good job of it. As it is now it’s not structured to make you examine your own assumptions, it’s made as urulokid pointed out, to make you feel bad.