Patrick Wood English essay - comparison of two non-fiction texts 16/05/2013
In this essay I am going to be comparing two texts on Children’s literature. The first text is an interview with Anthony Browne on the Scholastic book clubs website and the second is an article on first-time author Scott McIntyre on the Mail Online website.
The interview with Anthony Browne is on a site that overall is informal for the benefit of its younger viewers, however, the interview itself is very formal and appeals more to the parents and teachers who are online. The Mail Online’s webpage, however, is just the opposite. The site itself is very formal whereas the text is informal but still I think that both texts are targeting more the older and more mature people, who will understand what the writer wants and is trying to express and who are interested, albeit in different ways, in Children’s literature.
I would firstly like to start with the layout of the page. The Scholastic page design is very colourful and very bright (it uses primary colours), whereas the interview is very academic and reserved placed upon a plain (white) background. There is also a role of honour down the side showing all that Anthony Browne has accomplished, which is a way of selling/promoting him to the audience and again on the other side, a link to his award-winning book ‘Gorilla’ which he needs as is trying to sell in order for the Scholastic book club to make money. On the other hand, the Mail Online’s layout altogether implies that it expects an older, more mature, aspirational class of person to be on its website, for example: the M&S Wine link suggests that the person that is in the target audience for this piece would be in a higher class than that of a person who would be buying cheap wine. Also, the tabs that encourage the reader to explore more of the website are harder to navigate than the tabs on the Scholastic website which implies that the people who are one the Mail Online’s website are less likely to be Children.
Secondly I would like to talk about the photographs on the two different texts. Anthony Browne’s photograph is very professional and formal looking and in this photograph Browne himself is quite obviously posing for the camera, everything about the picture is set up but conveys mixed messages. The shot is a close up, he is wearing plain, casual clothes (his collar is up and his top button is undone all adding to this effect), he is not looking directly at the camera and all the tones on and around him are sombre and/or muted so that his clothes on the black background create an air of sophistication and from his smug, half-smiling face it certainly looks as if he knows how to pose and this implies that he has done this kind of thing before.