Tim McKraken was a student at Glyndwr Uni about 16 years ago – which was, back then, a college. He was on a foundation course for art and design, and after 2 years moved to Cardiff Univrsity to complete his Ba degree.

I am going to look at Tim’s commercial work after graduation – his experiences and then finally, his moving to the US.

Through a lot of hard work and a steely determination, Tim grafted a career for himself in the cut throat world of design advertising. He gained an impressive number of clients such as Kellogg’s, Game-Station and the Phones4U group. I am looking at these commercials.

Advertising is about careful phraseology suggesting a view or way of thinking that is conductive to the interests of the products being promoted. In the case of the Special K advert for Kellogg’s, Tim explained how the company had researched the calories and nutritional information that the bar provided. Thought the use of careful language, for example, “eating 1 bar for breakfast and lunch will make you gain less weight than eating your normal meals”. This obviously implies a benefit, but in actual fact, it is simply the bar being a far smaller snack than a meal…it is nothing more than that.

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In the case of Gamestation, a series of adverts was created to bring the helpfulness of its staff out, and promote games as gifts for the holidays. The idea behind the advert was the confusion that moms traditionally have in choosing the right games for their kids. The advert shows the mom going into the store and asking for “Call of Booty”. The assistant finds the correct game for her, and asks if it is for PS2, upon which the mom says that they’ve for an “eggs – box.

The advert uses a play on words and turns the whole thing into a very comedic visual. It can be intimidating for people going into new environments and asking for items of which
they have no idea – and this is very appropriate for gamers. Often, you’re either completely immersed in gaming, or don’t have any intrepid whatsoever. I fit into the latter category, so fully appreciate the moms position.
Game-station Advert

The advert that was made for the hardware supplier, Scruffs Scruffs was a break from the ordinary for Tim. Tim and his team decided to go outside the box for this shoot, and make something that was controversial yet fitted in well with the products. It was decided to make this advert into a porn movie – almost. Scruffs wanted to have a fun side to their adverts, by advertising the irreducibility of men when wearing their clothing.

There was a knock on effect of this concerning the woman who played a significant part in the movie – the woman was actually a teacher at the prestigious Stockport Grammar School. She was suspended after the ad was circulated between students.

BBC News

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