Producerism over Consumerism
I entered this project with the desire to respond to the predatory consumerism used in toy advertising for children ages 8 to 11. I responded specifically to a television advertisement for a product called Shopkins, a marble sized toy line that encourages consumption and gambling above play and social interaction.
I designed my response by facilitating a Makers event where children 8 to 11 made their own toys to play and trade with. At the event I showed the shopkins advertisement and an advertisement for lego with no sound playing. I asked the students to tell me how the commercials were different and how the toys were played with differently. The students pointed out the heavy use of animation in the shopkins ad and the use of different sets in the lego ad. The students then began to make their own toys using blank wooden doll pawns and the art materials we had available. Each student made two toys, one to keep and one to trade with a random partner.
To document the process using a visual format that would satisfy the project requirements I created a 13 x 20in poster that would show the advertisement being responded to, the accessible materials used for the project, and the cultural artifacts made by the students. I was inspired by Cherry’s brochure shown in class where she had designed brochure by physically composing a prototype brochure with physically cut and pasted images and then reproduced them it by scanning the collage-like document. I borrowed this method by arranging analog objects like the torn logo of shopkins, yarn, and other materials used in the project and then taking a picture of the scene to produce a finished print design. Additionally I used photoshop to make photos of the students work I took in class to look like polaroid images in order to visually separate the images of the materials used and the images of the students work.
Thank you everyone for your feedback during the in progress critique. The comments about disrupting the branding of the original advertisement was very constructive.
Any comments on the finished work would be appreciated.
Original Shopkins Advertisement
How the Maker Movement Is Moving Into Classrooms | Edutopia
Cultural Production in Theory and Practice | Participate
Maker culture – Wikipedia
What is the Read Only Culture vs. Read & Write Culture? – mediastudentinthegong