Tuesday, February 17, 2015


                Over time it seems that the “American Dream” has fluctuated a bit from what it really seems to be. The “American Dream” used to be having a good job, nice house, a couple cars and a family to share that all with; nowadays it has seemed to change a bit. It seems now that people are more concerned with getting the latest iPhone, or the hot new designer bag, and designer clothes and shoes. It is a lot more common now to find people who have a shopping addiction. It seems now that the “American Dream” is starting to become very materialistic. I would like people to stop for a moment and consider what they think is important to them and to reflect on themselves to see how much they think they are affected by materialism. I would like people to reflect on what is really important to them and put aside all of those other things that we think are going to make us happy or fit in with everyone. I would really like people to see how much all of these advertisements are effecting people and their happiness and to just be grateful for everything that they have after they have seen this photo essay. The worst thing that could happen is if people don’t realize how much all of these designer objects are affecting our world today and what Americans are finding the most important to them. Nowadays it is very common to be in line at a clothing store and to see the person in front of you drop about $500 like its nothing for clothes all for themselves. My audience for this photo essay is going to be my classmates and also my professor. I think after seeing this photo essay people may be a little shocked after the realization of what our world is turning into. This photo essay is going to take place now in 2015 to reflect on our community and how it has changed over the years to what we now find important to us. These pictures in the photo essay will be from people around Illinois in this area showing how much all of these materialistic things are affecting the world.
Design Plan

Medium and Production:For this project I will be using photographs to show how materialistic America is turning into. My plan is to use pictures that show this for example, designer handbags that you always see girls wearing and also just pictures of some of the name of very popular designers. I also plan to take some pictures of people that sort of portray this image of materialism. Some other pictures of objects that I will be using, will be of fancy cars, maybe iPhones, and types of shoes, north face products, and fancy jewelry. I really just want people to be able to look at these pictures and to actually notice how materialistic the world is turning into and to reflect on how this may be affecting them also.

Ethos: As far as ethos goes I don’t want to necessarily say that I am completely innocent of materialism because some of the pictures that I will be showing may be objects of my own. I do want people to be able to look at this photo essay and see how materialism is affecting our world today and to maybe reflect on their own lives to see what kind of lifestyle they are living.I want this photo essay to be more informative than anything.

Pathos: I don’t want the essay to be too serious to where I am accusing everyone of materialism, but I do want some of these images to stand out to people and be bold to get my point across. I don’t want it to be too relaxed because then I think some people may find that boring and not take the essay as serious. I think it is important to have that balance between somewhat relaxed and then not too serious.

Logos: My arguement is mostly informative and informational. I will be showing different pictures that each represent materialism in america and all the different ways that it can be expressed. I think under each picture i will put a caption that maybe states a fact or statistic about materialism and how much it is changing our society today. I think it would be a little confusing if i didn’t put anything under the pictures. I don’t want the captions to be too strong either where it seems like i am really complaining about the situation but like i said before more informative.

Arrangement: For this photo essay I plan to use powerpoint to display the essay and then also some photo editors to get the images to look the way I want. I am planning on maybe making a collage of some of the pictures that are somewhat similar like maybe of some of the different designer names that are popular. I would like to have a background that stands out a little to make the pictures pop more but not too much where it will be taking away from the actual pictures. I will probably just stick to one picture on the page at a time unless i am making a collage of a couple like i talked about before. Under each picture i plan to have some time of caption maybe with some statistics of materialism in the US or just sort of explaining the pictures.

Testing: In class we will be peer editing which will be helping to get some feedback on my project and to let me know what i am missing or what i can add in to make it a little better. I will also maybe ask a couple friends to sit down and look at it to let me know what they honestly think of it and to hopefully let me know some ways that i can improve my essay.

Photo Essay


I believe that I was able to accomplish my goal with creating this photo essay. It was definitely more
challenging than I thought it would be. When I first picked the topic I thought it would be very simple to find people portraying this materialistic characteristic, but it was actually challenging. I found the best pictures just walking around stores observing people and the objects in the store. I planned to make a PowerPoint that would mainly just inform people about materialism in America and I believe that I did that. I don’t think I was too bold in my photo essay but more informative, which is what I wanted. I think after people view this photo essay they will be able to take a step back and reflect on their own lives and see how materialism may be affecting them. I think I was able to get a wide range of pictures to add into my photo essay which consisted of people, objects, cars, and the inside of a store. Overall I think I set out to inform people about materialism in America and I think I accomplished that through my photo essay.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Writing and Design

From this discussion about writing and design it has better helped me understand that there is so much design and art that actually goes into writing. The two go hand in hand when trying to write an essay or any type of writing. It is easy to write an OK paper but when you put in the design and artistic aspect into it, that is what makes the essay or any type of writing great. Design really plays a key role in audience. If there is no design in writing it is going to be very hard to actually capture the audience and keep them interested through the whole writing. i think the design aspect of written communication is really what differentiates people and makes them stand out. I think that is why i have always struggled with writing because i feel like i don't have that artistic and creative ability in me to really make a paper stand out and to capture an audience's attention. I have friends and family members that bring that aspect into their writing and i envy them for that because it makes me just want to read more of what they wrote and really keeps me focused in on what i am reading. This discussion has really opened my eyes to see how much really goes into written communication and making that connection between writing and design.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

What I think about Blogs

What I Think About Blogs
I think blogs are a very good way to express one’s feelings and emotions. I do think a blog can be useful to some people. I think it could be useful in the way that it could be therapeutic to some people. I think any kind of person can blog, but I don’t think I would, besides in this class. I think the kind of person that blogs is the kind that is a very open and creative writer, someone that doesn't really care what other people think of them, but also may be very shy and quiet. A blog might be able to have a use for me, which would probably be mostly the therapeutic type of way. I think it would also help improve my writing and really help me be more creative. I think a writing class uses a blog to teach people to really open up in their writing and to teach them not to hold back. I think it would help teach people to also be more confident in what they are writing. I think we will use a blog in this class to talk about some recent book or articles that we will be reading and to reflect on those and share our opinions. I think the blog will be somewhat like the one that is described in the article, but then also reflecting on some things that aren't as personal.