Senate Bill 128 aims to legalize terminal patients’ right to die within the state of California. Although the medical industry does need to reevaluate health care for the terminally ill, I believe that Senate Bill 128 is not a viable correct answer. Thus, I designed a poster to express my point of view. Through soothing colors, an image of two individuals holding hands, and the featured text, my poster goes against the right-to-die movement and Senate Bill 128 by reminding the terminally ill to value the potential within their lives. I try to relax my audience through the aesthetic of my poster by featuring specific colors and a large image of two individuals holding hands. The colors primarily used in my poster, blue and green, were utilized for a specific purpose: to evoke a tranquil psychological response. According to an experiment by Rochester University, test subjects who viewed the color blue experienced a “quieting and agreeable” mood and “produced reserved, stable behavior.” This explains why looking at the ocean or gazing at the sky can be so relaxing. The color green also produces the same effect. The aforementioned study revealed that shorter wavelength colors, including green, are “experienced as calming.“ Doctor’s waiting rooms are often painted shades of green to provide reassurance and relaxation in a place that usually induces anxiety. The idea of death can cause depression among the terminally ill, so the deliberate use of the colors blue and green are meant to provide them with a sense of comfort. Like these two colors, the enlarged image of the two individuals holding hands comforts the viewers of my poster. Whether it is a father and his son or a patient and her doctor, the act of holding hands is a universal symbol of affection. James Coan, a doctor and professor of psychology at the University of Virginia, told the New York Times that holding hands makes your brain “work a little less hard in coping” and relaxes the body. Since the picture is so large, it is the first thing to catch my audience’s eye. This image was strategically enlarged and placed as my background in order to support terminal patients’ need for comfort and company. Loneliness is a common emotion, and this picture was meant to accommodate that empty feeling within the terminally ill and stimulate positive emotions. My poster inspires hope by providing two particular visuals that my audience can find relatable: a wrinkled hand and the phrase “It’s not over.” The aged hand in the photograph is intended to be a relatable figure to the terminally ill because the majority of terminal patients are elderly. Barbara Berkman, a health specialist at Columbia University, stated that 80% of end-of-life care patients are over the age of 65. Therefore the chances of an elderly, terminal patient viewing my poster are not far fetched. The wrinkled hand allows my intended audience to empathize with my poster and relate to it on an emotional level. When my audience sees the wrinkled hand, I want them to reflect and clearly see the correlation between my poster and their lives. In addition to the wrinkled hand, the sentence “It’s not over,” is meant to remind the terminally ill of the potential in their lives so that they oppose Senate Bill 128. The lettering is intentionally larger than the rest of the words on the poster because I wanted to make my point clear. The phrase is short and straight to the point, but it is capable of instilling my audience with hope. Terminal patients are often alienated by society after they are given a prognosis, leading to depression, isolation, and loneliness. By inspiring my audience with hope, I aim to help them cope with the burdens of terminal illness, reinforce their will to live, and promote the fight through adversity. Once a sense of hope is established, I can properly denounce physician-assisted suicide. My poster contains a variety of elements that aim to inspire my audience and give them, the terminally ill, hope. These elements work together in an attempt to appeal to my audience’s emotions and convince them to oppose physician-assisted suicide. When executed in the right manner, the use of emotion as a persuasive technique is a very effective way to inspire an audience to take action. Thus, I designed a poster that portrays a situation the terminally ill could find relatable and reassuring. If my poster is capable of making a terminal patient reevaluate his or her stance on Senate Bill 128, then I have succeeded in creating a visual that conveys my message.
Image in poster courtesy of Truth and Charity Forum: http://www.truthandcharityforum.org/physician-assisted-suicide-from-dominion-over-human-procreation-to-the-right-to-die/