How the Print Media of the past has affected our material conception today

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Print media has a huge effect on how we perceive material objects. While marketing has increasingly evolved to digitized formats, the realm of paper advertising (in the form of magazines, newspapers, brochures, and signage) has maintained its visual impact.

In fact, there seems to be a current allure to the nostalgic charm of paper advertising.Nostalgic advertising revisited For example, take “e-cards,” those humorous sayings circulating on Facebook and other internet sites. The success of these online posts is attributed to their graphic quality. The sayings are usually altered versions of common sayings, paired with boldly-colored backgrounds and usually a single black and white image of curiously-illustrated people. The idea is that the images were extracted from actual paper advertising, from various periods over the past 130 years. While these e-cards are made for the computer, their origins are indebted to the designs found in old newspapers and magazines. For some insight into the history of advertising, consider researching vintage labels from everyday objects.

Avonlea has an array of items with printed labels. For example, Coca Cola products can be mapped from various decades in the 20th century based on the changes made in the logo font.

Another suggestion is the presence of trade cards. These printed advertisements announced a certain business or trade, and a tradition of collecting these developed early in their history. These can be considered a true celebration of graphic design, as they are synonymous with the invention of the printing press.

On your next trip to Avonlea, make sure to check out the current paper shopping bags provided when you purchase items.They are adorned with advertisements from 1898! The power of these printed advertisements have really stood the test of time and despite all of the technology that is now available at our fingertips we are forever looking towards the past for fresh ideas and inspiration!


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