Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The look of a scent

12.10.2009
Viveka Kjellmer's doctoral thesis sheds light on the role of perfume advertisements as communicators of status, identity and values.

The thesis portrays pictures in perfume advertisements as actors rather than as passive tools, and dissects the dynamics of imagery. Kjellmer, who has a master's degree in business economics and worked for many years with advertising pictures and marketing in the advertisement agency and marketing communications environments, currently teaches art history and visual studies at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Perfume advertisements are full of interesting contradictions. For example, although the product is a scent, the ads rarely use scent symbolism. Perfume is a consumption good, yet the bottles are often depicted as pieces of art or as status symbols. The purpose of using perfume is to smell pleasant, yet the pictures tend to focus on entirely different things. But nevertheless, the ads do work.

The thesis studies the image of scent in perfume advertisements. Since the product - the scent - is invisible and therefore cannot be captured visually, its effects have to be illustrated using metaphors and imagery and the design of the only visible object connected to the product, namely the bottle. The paradox of illustrating something invisible opens up for analysis of motifs and associations used in the ads. The theoretical part of the study discusses the cultural history of perfume, from incense and scented oil in antiquity to modern use of fragrances, and what scents really are and how they affect us.

It also addresses the link between the perfume industry and the fashion industry, including the financial factors that influence perfume marketing and advertising. The empirical part deals with the pictures used in advertising, and explores how dreams are made. The thesis analyses how scents are depicted in perfume ads and how the images used interact with other ingredients - text and perfume name - in the ads. The findings lead to a discussion on motifs and imagery, and on how an advertising picture can communicate other things than objective information about the product.

Kjellmer concludes that the advertised images of scents have become far removed from the actual scents of the perfumes. In fact, the pictures address something completely different: the scent of beauty, success, attraction and money. Indeed, the pictures are tempting, but they say little about the character and content of the product. Thus, the purpose of the ads is not to be informative, but rather to be suggestive; they do not communicate what the perfume is, but instead what it can do for the person wearing it. Knowledge and information do not sell perfume, but dreams do. Dreams about something extraordinary, or dreams about expressing who we really are. Or maybe more correctly, dreams about who we want to be. And this is the function of the image as an actor - to create dreams, promises and possibilities.

Title of the thesis: The Image of Scent. On Image Communication in the World of Perfume Advertising
For more information please contact Viveka Kjellmer, e-mail: viveka.kjellmer@arthist.gu.se
Press information: Eva Englund
Eva.Englund@hum.gu.se
+46 31-786 1003

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://hdl.handle.net/2077/20773
http://www.gu.se

More articles from Communications Media:

nachricht New Technologies for A/V Analysis and Search
13.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Digitale Medientechnologie IDMT

nachricht On patrol in social networks
25.01.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

All articles from Communications Media >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>