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Author Topic: What do you see here ?  (Read 4521 times)
nop_90
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« on: March 03, 2011, 03:52:11 PM »

An experiment.
Possibly it might be cultural. I informally tried it with 4 people. 50% saw it.
What personality do you see in this picture ?


* starbucks.jpg (304.39 KB, 856x1665 - viewed 180 times.)
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perkiset
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« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2011, 03:58:28 PM »

Beelzebub staring back.

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« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2011, 04:22:02 PM »

prisoner exchange?
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« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2011, 04:53:18 PM »

I was in starbucks (see I too am prone to influence).
The eye is naturally drawn towards the key image in the picture.
A man picking up a child.
Notice the man has a moustache and kind of a beard.
Also notice he is wearing a hat, but the hat is "hidden", from a quick glance the hat is slightly yellow and appears to be part of his hair.

Initially I was putting cream and sugar in my coffee.
I quickly glanced to the pamphlets on the rack.
I was surprised to see "jesus", initially I thought it was a religous tract that some bible thumper stuck in there.
I then examined it closer.

I then brought it back to my table. I asked the 4 people sitting there, what do they see/think.
One of the people right away said jesus.
Then this person said that there is a famous painting that looks very similar to that photo.
The Philippines is a strong catholic country. Wondering if this pamphlet was made just for the Philippines.
(Hence cultural reference).

Santa Claus, Was St Nick, who was Odin. (Odin probably was someone else).
Similar concept Smiley
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perkiset
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« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2011, 04:56:02 PM »

Hmm. That was about a billion miles from my thinking, but I can see it.

Would NOT be the first time a company tried to paint themselves with things of local/cultural importance subconsciously. Interesting stuff.
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« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2011, 05:01:50 PM »

i keep thinking their design is from the 60's
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« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2011, 05:36:14 PM »

i keep thinking their design is from the 60's
Just in that pamphlet NB ?
Or are you speaking in general ?

If it is in general. The americans started to leave here in the 1950s/1960s.
So american culture stopped growing at this time here.
So they have taken american 1950s/1960s customs and adapted that to Filipino ways.
With the Americans there is a Love/Hate view.
Hate because the Americans where an occupying force.
Love/Awe because they where so powerful.

An interesting observation.
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« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2011, 05:37:31 PM »

Juan Valdez, the coffee bean dude.

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« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2011, 09:52:36 PM »

Specifically this design, but yea in general to now that I think back through ads from the region. Culturally I wonder if it's because of a different barter/business mentality. So the shiny shiny doesn't work there.

In US it's focused on how pretty it will make you, and how cool. With LOTS of extra shit all over the ad.
There it seems to be be aimed towered "so and so will love you more" and a presentation of the product source (nature). No distractions.

And bomps nailed it. I was trying to figure out who it reminded me of.
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« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2011, 02:57:47 AM »

Bomps nailed it, but the "real" Juan Valdez has "hard features".
This guy's features are "softened".

In US it's focused on how pretty it will make you, and how cool. With LOTS of extra shit all over the ad.
There it seems to be be aimed towered "so and so will love you more" and a presentation of the product source (nature). No distractions.
You are right about the "loved" thing.
I am wondering how you got that from the picture ?
Is it because the "starbucks jesus" is picking up the child ?

If you ask someone about XXXX the ultimate sign of respect is "He is loved by the people".
So you are correct in reasoning.

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« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2011, 12:46:53 PM »

Part of it is that i am just a genius. : Grin

Part of the reason is because I am an uber-nerd who has worked in the marketing and design industry for 15 years now. But what did it was a couple things.

1) start with the scene. wheelbarrow with sacks of what would be assumed to be coffee of course. Mountain in the background to imply either "this is the nature where this shit comes from" or "look, this dude has hard work hauling this thing up and down a mountain". The hat, implies work out doors, in case you missed it the first time round, but also implies long hours in the sun.
So, he is a hard worker out in the sun doing backbreaking stuff. So you can have your horrible starbucks coffee battery acid.

2) the girl standing on the sacks. She is standing on his work. Because of his work, she will grow up and be productive, just like her daddy, since after all she sees how hard he works. (so she can buy and drink starbucks lol).

3) rolled up pants i think are on purpose to either imply that she doesnt want her pants dirty at daddys work, or they are not wealthy enough to afford properly fitting pants, or that it is freaking hot there.

3) pig tails are to make sure you know its a cute girl without seeing her face.

4) low camera angle is to imply either power or importance. Grandeur.


Of course it could all just be a shot of a dude hugging some kid at work.
But having been on a few very large corporation consumer product shoots, i gotta tell you, its not unlikely that the entire scene is specifically contrived, down to the hand positioning even, to portray a specific sensation.

apple does it perfectly for the past few years. I would HATE to be on one of their shoots.... lol
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« Reply #11 on: March 04, 2011, 03:00:56 PM »

I have no doubt that the details of the photograph are carefully nuanced by the advertising folks.  That's their job.  Advertising is intended to persuade.

But the trees in the background?  THEY'RE JUST TREES!  If you find some hint of a face there (I don't, despite staring at it for five minutes and looking) it's just your mind trying to make order out of randomness, similar to how you can look at the sky and find clouds that look like various things.

Really, there's an awful lot of paranoia in this forum.
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nop_90
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« Reply #12 on: March 04, 2011, 05:53:46 PM »

Part of it is that i am just a genius. : Grin
Genius is something or someone embodying exceptional intellectual ability, creativity, or originality, typically to a degree that is associated with the achievement of unprecedented insight.
So in this case NB has shown "unprecedented insight", so it would be fair for me to call in a "genius" in this case Smiley.
He has examined the scene, and broken it down scientifically.

But the trees in the background?  THEY'RE JUST TREES!  If you find some hint of a face there (I don't, despite staring at it for five minutes and looking) it's just your mind trying to make order out of randomness, similar to how you can look at the sky and find clouds that look like various things.

Really, there's an awful lot of paranoia in this forum.
I said nothing about the trees, or a face in the clouds, or anything along those lines.

Read statement 4) of NB's analysis.
low camera angle is to imply either power or importance. Grandeur.
The central theme of the camera is the man and the little girl. I stated that when I first saw the picture, the man reminded me of jesus.

In USA there was Rockwell, his European counterpart was http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alphonse_Mucha
They both started out as commercial artists. But later became artists in their own right.

i gotta tell you, its not unlikely that the entire scene is specifically contrived, down to the hand positioning even, to portray a specific sensation.
When you have an orchestra the musical instruments are combined together to create a "sensation".
For music this has been done intentionally for 100s of years, and it is known.
The "flight of the valkyries" by wagner creates the sensation that I am "flying". He combines the various instruments together.
Each of the instruments by itself is meaningless.

As I started off my post.
I was in starbucks (see I too am prone to influence).
I obviously do not go to Starbucks to have a "shitty" time. And starbucks is selling me more then just "coffee".
I pay ~150 peso for a coffee. If I wanted I could have bought 250g of beans from starbucks, took it home, and made many cups of my own coffee.
I spend 30-40 minutes on average drinking the coffee. I feel better afterwards because of the carefully "orchestrated" atmosphere starbucks has created.
150 peso (~$3-4) is not unreasonable for that much entertainment.

From a scientific level.
Certain environments can increase or decrease crime. If planting a few trees, painting walls a certain color could decrease crime, well everyone is better off.
The "It is all in your head" statement, is a very stupid statement.
It is saying "I do not know the answer, so I come up with a incomplete solution".
Much sickness both physical and mental are created by atmosphere.

Being "influenced" is neither good not bad. It is neutral.
Influencing people to lead a healthier lifestyle etc. is a good thing.
On the other hand, if you are being influenced by scammer who wants you to join his cult, that is a bad thing.
If you are aware of how this works, you can make yourself safer.
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nop_90
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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2011, 05:13:11 PM »

In US ...... With LOTS of extra shit all over the ad.
There it seems to be be aimed towered  ........ No distractions.
Just came to me Smiley
"Westerners" generally speaking are draw to the central theme or image and focus on that.
"Asians" generally speaking examine the entire photo.

In an interesting experiment, people where show different photos.
Example a cow (central theme) and then different backgrounds. Example cow in front of red barn, winter scene, summer scene etc.
The experimenter then changed 2 things in the photo, either background or central theme (ie changed color of cow).

If the central theme changed, the westerners noticed right away, "cow is a different color etc".
But if the background was changed, westerners did not notice.
The reverse held true for "Asians".

So in the starbucks photo, they do not want to distract from the central theme.
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« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2011, 01:53:44 AM »

I said nothing about the trees, or a face in the clouds, or anything along those lines.

I guess I misunderstood the original post.  But the section of trees is blown up and circled, so I assumed there was something we were supposed to "see" in the trees.  I was just saying that there is nothing in the trees but trees.

Yes, some people might think the man looks like Jesus.  And that might be one way the ad is intended to influence.  And I agree that advertisers may try to influence different types of people in different ways (even in the same ad.)

I thought your description of your "Starbucks experience" was a little interesting.  In many parts of the world, including the Philippines, I'm sure, having coffee at Starbucks is a luxury experience that many cannot afford.  And that experience -- and the feeling of luxury, and of having something that others can't necessarily have -- is part of what they are selling.  I know I've been to Starbucks' stores in a lot of different countries, and in some places it's obvious that all of the customers are tourists, expatriates, or very well-off locals.  So I would expect that in those places, the marketing would be different than in someplace where they are viewed as a bit more ordinary.

Now I don't think that this "Starbucks as a luxury brand" is so true in the U.S. or Western Europe.  Starbucks sells overpriced coffee here, too, but it's decent coffee and it's convenient, and I think that's really what they are selling convenience, quality, ubiquity.  Their stores are clean and relatively comfortable, but I don't think many people feel that having a cup of Starbucks coffee is a major luxury.  (In fairness, there are certainly people here who wouldn't be able to justify spend $3 on a cup of coffee and wouldn't go there, but I don't even think those people would see Starbucks as a luxury item.)

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