Look at the red letters "a d v e
r t i s i n g" above. By scanning the letters from left to
right, you recognize a word. If you scan from right to left, there's
no word, just a bunch of meaningless letters: 'gnisitrevda.'
We scan lines, paragraphs and pages from left to right.
You're doing it now. You started in the top left hand corner, moved
left to right, then jumped back left to continue down the page.
That reading habit gets applied to looking at ads.
Certain elements of a picture may be arranged to try to go against
that pattern. But key manipulative elements of a picture are arranged
to be picked up as the eye scans left to right and down.
So, try "reading backwards." Scan the picture in
REVERSE, from the bottom RIGHT corner, going backwards to the left
It's easier to see subliminals if you don't try so
hard. Relax. After all, the most subtle ad details are intended to be
registered by a reader skimming magazine pages.
Look out of the corner of your eyes. Just glance. If
you normally glance at an ad from the right, reverse it. Trying
glancing from the left. Notice where your eyes want to go. Look more
closely in those places for something that isn't quite right.
Instead of looking at the page rightside up, turn it
sideways, or even upside down. That can help you notice because pages
are designed to look a certain way from a certain angle (the usual
In ads, notice things that are
out of place or
surrealistic. But remember that you tend to read from the upper left
corner to the right and down. So what's in that position?
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