Wysocki

Wysocki pushes for a change in the visual expectations held by society. Specifically, the objectification of bodies, mainly women, was said to be an unnecessary and distracting addition to advertisements in the sense that they take away from the actual text. I would agree, but I would also argue that sex sells and the cover of a magazine is not necessarily meant to be read, but it’s meant to draw the reader in to buy, and then read,the textual content between that cover page and the end. That being said, Wysocki agrees that the obvious point of visualizations is to meet the expectations of the audience, and I liked that she challenges these expectations. Is it possible to change society’s expectations about beauty and the quality of visual compositions? I support Wysocki’s notion that designers should push the horizon to change the viewers expectations, however the actual possibility of this seems slim to me. The media has a lot of control on shaping societal ideals, so without a big push to change these expectations or notions of beauty, and without wide-swept support from major media outlets, how would this be remotely possible? The image I’ve attached with this post is a Playboy cover from 1970… here we can see that society’s expectations have not drastically changed over the last (almost) 50 years. If the objectification of women and the notion that sex sells has continued this long, why would it change now? More over, how can it change now? I don’t think designers could effectively challenge this without the support from major media outlets, because if they tried then their work may not be bought and then they will not have any future work.

Wysocki has high-hopes, and I like the idea of challenging expectations through visualizations, but I just don’t see it being super realistic. In addition, I liked that she pushes her students to find what they believe to be effective compositions before she delivers design principles to them. I think that’s a great way to get students to start noticing design principles before they’re familiar with them,which could in turn make the easier to recognize, apply, and experiment with. I can’t say that I disagree with Wysocki, I just think she’s being a very optimistic teacher where as I consider myself a realist. The set forth design principles work, and experimenting with them is always great, but changing society’s expectations is extremely ambitious.

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