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In a world where almost everything can be bought or sold, why we buy what we buy?  In this paper I am going to talk about what make us to buy a product, the psychological factor that makes us to decide whether to buy a product or not. Many times we bought a product that we never used or just used it once. The main purpose of this paper is to go through the process of decision making and the types of persuasion ads use in order to push us toward their product. Also we are going to see through this paper if “choice” is just a trick and an illusion to sell you the product they want to. Choice today are endless and still we don’t know what to choose and this related to marketing makes a very interesting correlation with the types of persuasions the marketers use.

First we have to look to the psychology of the costumer and this is the primary thing in decision making. We are everyday bombarded with advertisement of many kinds as for example TV commercial that are more common, Radio commercial, Billboards, Social-Networks, push-up notifications and many more. People today are trying and finding many ways to make you more involved in a specific product and more willing to buy it. Here we can have a very fine example of “e-bay” or “Alibaba” that at the moment you watch a product and it depends how much time you spend on that product they will e-mail the best offers they have for that specific product. They try to be like a personal seller so you never leave without a buy. This are all kind of advertisement and persuasion techniques used to persuade you to buy. What makes an advertisement a winning one and some other just another add? For this we should see the psychology of persuasion.  The 6 scientific rules written in his book by Robert Cialdini makes the best answer for this problem.

  1. Scarcity – People are more tending to buy something that they fear they may lose. This is an example of last moment deals.
  2. Reciprocity – People are more willing to buy at this case if something is rewarded to them before the purchase.
  3. Consistency – People tend to repeat the pattern of their buying’s and it is more easy to keep a client than to get e new one. The best example of this is when you give your costumer the free trial of the premium than later on it is more possible to be turned in a purchase.
  4. Social Proof – Everyone is using something so it must be good. Social proof persuades you to buy you something because many people are buying it. The best example here are the rating and comments used in the dieting programs or fat loss programs. They show many results many high ratings and many good comments so you can get involved and believe in the product.
  5. Authority – Going to a psychologist and seeing his office without any diploma or specific document hanged on the wall that psychologist is not going to be very reliable to you but having more diplomas and specialization documents or any kind of document hanged on the wall you tend to believe them more. Another good example of this are also the TV commercials when for a specific medical product they show you a doctor with many documents hanged on the wall.
  6. Sympathy – We are more influenced and more willing to buy or use something that someone we like recommended us. That’s why Companies involve famous people to commercials to persuade you to buy what he buys because you like him/her.

This 6 persuasion techniques presented to us by Robert Cialdini are the most effective way to persuade mass of people to buy a product. Even though today written in a book these have been around for ages and it is something that comes naturally even in our daily lives and in our daily communication with each other.

Going back in time in chronologic way we can also correlate marketing with regimes. With this we see that even in communism marketing was something very familiar. Even though not very often posters were the main type of marketing. This includes mostly movie poster and event posters. Also the product were limited and people didn’t had many choices. On the other hand Democracy is totally the opposite where you have unlimited choices. Looking this in marketing makes a very interesting topic.

Why many choices makes us buying less? When we go in any market and we want to buy a chocolate we see all kind of varieties and all brands. Faced in such varieties we tend to step back or spend a lot of time in choosing a product. Here is where other factors come in and we make a decision in a specific product. The information we have on our mind the ads we have seen make us to decide and to choose one product. If we take an example of having 20 smartphones around us and not knowing any brand and having no information we would have the most difficult time choosing one and usually we wouldn’t buy any. The varieties of choices presented in front of us made us to be confused and if in the end we decide to buy one randomly and the product would not be satisfying we would blame ourselves for the choice we made even if the product was a low quality product. Looking at this we can see that one time after we get a bad impression of a product we tend to buy what satisfied us and not try more products so we stick with one product being loyal to that product. In Communism, let’s say, people had only very few choices and if their choice was bad they wouldn’t blame themselves but they would blame the producer. Psychologically this means a lot in a buyer decision making. Let’s take an example of jeans. What happens in marketing today is very interesting beside the big possibilities we have to choose. If here we take an example of a big company for example Pepsi Co. we can see through their history that today they own many other familiar brands to us as for example Lays, Cheetos etc. and this makes Pepsi Co. a very big company. Pepsi Co. makes the best and the more expensive ads on one specific product PEPSI. On the other hand the main big competitor Coca Cola owns many other familiar brands to us like Fanta, San Pellegrino and many other but the most known product is Coca Cola itself. What this means is that we can have so many different choices all brought to us by only few main big companies. The advertisement we see today are all designed and produced by some few big companies. It is the same if we say that an X Company produces 30 products but every day they would present to you only one product. In this case you would know only one product and just one day a week you see another different product and you find another product but still you want to buy the first product. The choices we have today are somehow a trick to make you go and buy the main product that the companies want to sell because of the problem you have deciding through that “pile of products” you see in front of you, you just go and pick the product that it’s the most familiar to you and this this case the product that was the most advertised to you.

To conclude I wanted to mention that in our everyday lives one decision to buy something simple and not expensive is very easy and to buy something expensive we tend to be more complex in our decision making and more difficult. In this whole paper somehow concluded that in our lives we are persuaded to buy a specific product as we are persuaded to take an action. Also today with the choices we have we are more confused and we tend to buy the most familiar product and not trying and this happens because of the big companies making the marketing the way you are persuaded to buy somehow what they want you to buy.

 

 

Drawing is fun

Hello again everyone.I have been gone for a very long time but now I am back. I have been drawing and learning the guitar so my free time would be more creative. Drawing is like a passion to me and the problem is that I have been stuck. I didn’t knew that drawing would become so difficult and so complicated. The shadows, the light the scale of something your are drawing. Everything became so messed up at a point for me. I searched the internet and I started to see many tutorials and stuff and everything was very basic, nothing good. Even thought you can find some tutorials that are very useful for beginning but not too useful after you want to advance more. I asked my friends if they knew any website or something where i could get some lessons and none knew any website. I started to search on internet and to be honest i paid so many websites and so many things that i regret doing so. I stared to complain to my friends that couldn’t find any good drawing lessons. One day one of my friends told me about some sort of home course about drawings. I felt very exited and soon as went home i opened the website. it was called Realistic pencil portrait. I was scammed some times from this kind of websites but i wanted to learn to draw more perfect. I paid for the lessons and it took me more than it would say to you. It says to you that you will be a master but you will not going to be a master but you will learn drawing in a way that you never thought before because it will give you a very step by step intro and a step by step lesson for drawing your favorite portraits. Imagine how time and money it took me to search for some good lessons and somehow i found it. Remember its not that you are going to be a master but after learning from these lessons you can go further and further on drawing and start painting as i did and now I am here and all this because of the pencil drawings that i learned. Step by Step your can do everything and now is never late.

Gypsy posing

Gypsy posing

Here is what I am doing now and this is one of my paintings of a sad gypsy posing for me. I had this painting done for 2 weeks because I am not a professional and I need more time. As always thank you for reading and have a good day.

Albania road to EU

Heeeellloo world.Today after some days from the match Albania – Serbia and their conflict I wanted to search and write about on how EU accession of 2004 and 2007 enlargement countries impacted the inflow of FDI in their respective countries.What has been the impact of euro-zone crisis in South East Europe and Western Balkans with a more detailed insight on Albania. I thought of writing about this because I wanted to see the road of Albania towards EU and this somehow creates an image. As always thank you for reading.

OUTLINE

  1. Introduction
  2. The expansion
    1. Process of entering the European Union
    2. 2004-2007 Expansion
  • Foreign Direct Investment
    1. Description of Foreign Direct Investment
    2. Foreign Direct Investments in EU25 (For the 12 countries)
  1. The Euro-zone Crisis
    1. Overview of the crisis
    2. The effect of the crisis in South Eastern Europe/Western Balkans
    3. The effect of the crisis in Albania
  2. Conclusion

The European Union with a unified currency and organization has always been a target for most of the countries in the European region. First by being a member and then by being part of the European Monetary Union, the countries have been under development, but have also faced difficulties. The European Union has always been under constant changes on both the economical and political side. Joining the European Union and the European Monetary Union has shown that it can make countries grow and maintain a sustainable political, social and economical situation through trade and relationship between the member countries. From expansions to economical difficulties, the countries in the Union have had their ups and downs. In this paper, we discuss about the expansion of 2004-2007 by the entrance of 12 new countries in the Union and the effect that this entrance brought to the inward Foreign Direct Investments as a positive situation. On the down side, we have the famous Euro-zone crisis which affected all Europe and especially the South Eastern side, the Western Balkans and moreover Albania. From the analysis, we find out that the accession of the 12 countries in 2004-2007 was highly positive about the inward FDI in those countries. Additionally, we find out that, no matter the benefits of the EU membership and the pattern that the FDI followed, the crisis that came with that was demolishing regarding numbers of GDP and poverty, especially for the countries of the South Eastern Europe and the Western Balkans, and slightly for Albania.

After knowing the benefits after it, joining the European Union has been a challenging issue for most of the countries in the European Region. As stated officially by the entities of the European Union, three are the categories in which the countries wanting to join should be perfectionized:

  • “stable institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for and protection of minorities;
  • a functioning market economy and the capacity to cope with competition and market forces in the EU;
  • The ability to take on and implement effectively the obligations of membership, including adherence to the aims of political, economic and monetary union” (“europa.eu”, 2014).

During the discussions, there are criteria that are negotiable and there are others that are fixed and the candidate country cannot do anything about it. Negotiable are the criteria regarding the time in which the candidate chooses to implement the rules, known as “acquis”. Each of the categories of the “acquis” is treated separately to decide the conditions. This way, countries that join will have a unified comparable system that will make it easier to enter and operate within the Union. For the countries that joined in 2004 and 2007, the process dated at least four years prior to the accession. Here we discuss the procedure of each country individually:

  1. BULGARIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2005

  1. ROMANIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2005

  • CYPRUS

First Effort: 1998. Signing of treaty: 2003

  1. HUNGARY

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

  1. SLOVENIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2005

  1. SLOVAKIA

First Effort: 1998. Signing of treaty: 2003

  • MALTA

First Effort: 1999. Signing of treaty: 2003

  • LATVIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

  1. LITHUANIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

  1. CZECH REPUBLIC

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

  1. POLAND

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

  • ESTONIA

First Effort: 1997. Signing of treaty: 2003

Economically, the benefits of joining the European Union with EMU have shown to overpass the benefits of not joining (later on seen in the FDI perspective). “EU membership has two important implications regarding FDIs. First, it allows countries that have small domestic markets to expand their market and to attract European funds for investments. Second, membership suggests political, economic and legal stability” (Radulescu, n.d). This fact was the one driving the ten countries in 2004 and two countries in 2007 to finally fulfill all the requirements and enter the Union.

As a definition, we consider as Foreign Direct investments, the ones that are deriving from one country to be physically present in another one. They might come as buildings and machinery or even as stocks and complete acquisition of a firm. The Foreign Direct Investments are strongly considered as a direct way of development in both economic and social perspective. Therefore, there are certain rules that are unified in order for the development to be more efficient and more possible. This way, risk and uncertainty will be reduced to bring a stabilized situation. The FDI’s have the tendency of increasing the cash inflow, making the currency more stable and increasing profitability. Easily noticeable effects that derive from Foreign Direct Investments are linked with both inputs and production, increasing the levels above the previous results.

Back in 2003, it was widely expected that, after 2004, FDI flow to Central Europe would go up sharply, at least for a number of years, and this despite the drying-up of privatization projects. As a trend, this is what happened with the twelve accessed countries. Because they were unified in a single currency, these countries faced decrease and elimination of exchange rate risks, followed by a further increase in FDIs. “The gravity model estimation finds that the introduction of the euro and EU membership (2004, 2007) leads to higher FDI activity among the euro area and EU members. The effect is more pronounced in the case of countries that joined the EU in 2007, with an increase in FDI inflow of more than 100% between 2007 and 2010” (“europa.eu”, 2014). More noticeably than the others, countries like the Czech Republic and Poland seem to be rated top when talking about the attractiveness they offer to the Foreign direct Investments. Europa.eu explained that “FDI contributed to a certain extent to regional imbalances, favoring the most developed areas in the given countries. Certainly, the quality of infrastructure and labor force were here better than elsewhere, being important location factors for foreign investors”. As shown also by the graph, thankfully there is an immediate positive effect of the accession when speaking economically. The FDI’s generally grew during the time period, which might have caused also the increase in the European Union.

The figure here shows the pattern that the FDIs followed in the new Member countries from the moment they joined and later on.

Efstathiou (2011) explained that “the flows of FDI into the under accession economies promoted growth, technical innovation, helped to restructure the domestic enterprises, which was very crucial to the process and supplied the economies with capital”. His description was completed by mentioning that the quality of the standards and techniques were favorably affected, making it possible for the countries to benefit as much as possible.

Knowing the general idea that we explained above, we can now come down to a trend. Kalotay (2010) explains that “over the period 1992–2008 the FDI inflows of economies in transition had maintained a strong upward trend” adding that the “new EU members still accounted for almost half (49% of the group’s cumulative total of close to $ 1 trillion over the period 1992–2009”. This way, we see that we have a trend that implies that the FDI after the accession in the EU increased positively by giving the same effect to those countries’ capital. Also, the trend suggests that the countries which accessed the EU in 2004 and 2007 have to adopt and adapt new structures regarding their macroeconomic features. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland showed a certain trend towards the Baltic countries, making the region more attractive towards the inward Foreign Direct Investments. The country that reflected the benefits more was Poland. Overall, it is not doubt that the accession of Poland to the EU in 2004 has created an opportunity to speed up the rate of economic growth by improving living standards of citizens. It involved all sectors of polish economy, changed public policy, environment of many firms, and position of single consumers. It opened the market thirdly times larger then Poland’s GDP for polish producers of goods and services. It gave the Poles the opportunities to take up jobs nearly all around the Europe on the conditions of non – discrimination. As for the Czech Republic, the region became an attractive opportunity for the automotive industry, whereas the Greenfield automotive plants were mostly thought of being developed by FDI in Slovakia. This way, the trend suggests that the FDIs did increase in number but they had a certain pattern for certain countries.

Along with the improvements that the Foreign Direct Investments brought, came a crisis later on in 2008-2009 known as the Euro zone crisis related to some banks that were finding difficulties in their financing. The causes to the crisis were the major three described as:

  1. One-size-fits-all monetary policy

Since the implementation of the single currency in 1999 by the first 11 members, the power to decide was given to the European Central Bank. Because the bank was one for all the countries of the EMU, it set unified standards. Harari (2014) also adds that “by giving up an independent monetary policy and currency, countries with high debt burdens were not able to use certain measures to respond to the crisis that countries outside the euro could use”.

  1. Misplaced confidence and assessment of risks

Even though the European Union brought unification, it did however damage itself by doing so. Considering countries as all the same due to their presence in the European Union and the EMU, the Union failed to strictly predict the default risk, therefore set a proper standard of interest rates for those countries.

  1. Economic divergence and trade imbalances

In the year 2000, many countries were struggling to join the EU or the EMU, and the growing pattern was unique for each (from inflow of FDI to trade balance). Due to the fact that some countries were not self sufficient and had to import, the funding to that would be enormous. However, there was always the question of either the country could pay the debt back, knowing that it was not operating under normal circumstances. Because of these factors, trade deficit followed up with the later on crisis of 2008.

To get more into details, we focus now in the South Eastern region of Europe, also considered as the Western Balkans because of their geographic position. Also, some of the countries in the region are not part of the European Union which makes it difficult to have a fair comparison. The western Balkans is composed by Greece, Bulgaria, Albania, Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The impact of the crisis on the Western Balkan countries came in two waves. The first wave was the period 2008-2011, when the region was exposed to the full brunt of the global economic crisis. By the end of 2011, however, just as some level of stabilization had been achieved and GDP was on the upswing again, the second wave came, when the full scale and depth of Greek sovereign debt crisis was revealed and the drama unfolded on a European level (RSCAS, 2012). The countries of this region faced devastating fiscal deficits (except for Croatia) which made it difficult for the countries to hold a stable trade balance. Also known as the “Greek Crisis”, the financial crisis of 2008 did damage the GDP, employment, FDI and the banking sector of Europe, especially the south eastern part. Regarding GDP, the Euro Zone crisis either favored GDP growth or turned it negative for these countries. As the picture shows, only a minority of the countries (Kosovo and Albania) faced an increase in the country’s GDP. This was thought to have come mostly due to the fact that these two countries are not part of the European Union so they do not suffer direct consequences. However, unlike the other European countries, the countries of South Eastern Europe/ Western Balkans did have positive GDPs only a year later (2010).

Bartlett et al. (2010), however, explains that “despite the increases in public debt generated by the fiscal expansions, all the Southeast European economies continue to report public debt levels that are below (and except for Albania, well below) the 60% of GDP reference point in the EU’s Stability and Growth Pact”. Also, if we mention FDI, we see that there was a major decrease in those investments starting with a decline of 67% in Croatia to a 28% decline in Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, because countries of this region were not big and did not have a major importance in the European trade, the crisis was not very typical; it mostly came with some problems that were manageable. The main consequence was actually unemployment for which Kosovo (70%) and Bosnia and Herzegovina are top ranked in Europe.

To narrow down the situation, we analyze the effect of the crisis in Albania. Under the crisis effect or not, Albania has always been under the term “poor country”; one of the poorest of Europe. However, the Euro Zone crisis did deepen the poorness even more. Even though Albania is not part of the EU or EMU, it is highly affected by what happens in the region. However, the crisis surprisingly brought benefits and drawbacks at the same time. Durmishi (n.d)  states that “according to official figures, Greece represents about 28% of foreign investment in the Albanian Economy. Based on economic theories, the degree of trade partnership directly affects the degree of economic interdependence between the two countries. In 2007, the Albanian economy had about 8.3% of exports and imports 14.6% with Greece. In 2008, Greek exports to Albania increased by 19%, while the Albanian exports to Greece increased by about 25%”.  This numbers are part of the “exploitation” that Albania made during the crisis. However, on the other hand, the crisis in the Greek banking system has no negative effect on the safety of deposits, but in reducing the level of lending by banks for Albanian businesses. Additionally, given the serious crisis that is facing Greece, Greek companies will have less financial resources available to invest in Albania and this would lead to reduced foreign direct investment.

To conclude, we wrap up with findings that we made throughout the research. First, we understand that Foreign Direct Investments are crucial to a country’s economy and they should be as easy as possible. The best way to ease things is to be part of a unified market in which the risk is lowered as much as possible through a common currency and common laws. The research showed that after the enlargement of 2004-2007 by 12 countries, European Union’s economy started face improvement which were mostly seen in the countries that accessed. Without any doubt, we see a pattern of increasing numbers regarding GDP, employment and industry improvement from FDI after being part of the EU and EMU. However, this stable market faced its downfall with the crisis of 2008. It did damage the countries of the South Eastern Europe/ Western Balkans even though some of those countries were not part of the Union. Nevertheless, the effect was not so demolishing for Albania. On the contrary, it gave Albania the possibility of benefiting to a certain extent. With these statements, we conclude by saying that all the great changes that Europe faces economically do have an impact on all the region.

Being creative

Hello again ,

It has been a while since I updated my blog but drawing need some time and effort. Today I want to show you my latest drawings that I made. I have tried to follow my imagination and see its results. The last drawing took me about 4. The first one is just being creative and trying to create new funny characters. I started the second drawing as exercise for drawing faces and I let my imagination free so I end up with the drawing you see. Drawing is hard but with some practice and time you will love it and you’ll need more and more every time. Your Imagination start to grow as you get better.

I saw a photo of my friend with some RayBan glasses and I tried to draw the same exact picture but drawing the same thing and the same things as you see in a picture for me is boring and so I tried to make something more imaginative and here is the result.

I like this one. I like to call it ” The Creation of the face” because it gives me the expression that eyes, nose and mouth are being connected together to create the whole face, at least this what I was trying to express.

Thank you for reading and have a nice day.

Fearing Freedom

Hello Everyone,

This is a  paper that talks about freedom and modern man in our modern society. My thoughts are messy and  sometimes  it is hard to understand the relationships between a thought and another.

Fearing Freedom : Freedom  in  Democracy

What is democracy and freedom ? Democracy  is  often  seen  as  an  unlimited freedom .  Actually  both  words  are  inclined  to  each  other  in  such  a  symbiotic  way  that  it  is  hard  to  define  where  the  first  ends  and  when  the  second  begins. In dictionaries definitions Democracy  is  “government  by  the  people  in  which  the  supreme  power  is  vested  in  the  people and  exercised  directly  by  them  or  by  their  elected  agents  under  a  free  electoral system”.[1] Once  Abraham  Lincoln  said, democracy is a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” So  Democracy  is   a  set  of  principles  and  ideas  of  freedom  that  it  is  applied  in  practice  ,  democracy  is   a  institutionalization  of  freedom.

Freedom  in  the  other  hand  as  in  dictionaries  is  “the  power  or  right  to  act, speak,  or  think  as  one  wants  without  hindrance  or  restraint”.[2] Freedom  is  a  very  wide  notion,  hard  to  understand  and   many  times  misunderstood. In  all  human  history  we  can  see  that  people  fought  for  freedom  and  they  had  a  very  interesting  motto “Better a thousand times to die with glory than live without freedom”[3]. The  sentence  talks  about  individualization  and  the concept  of  freedom  since  the  ancient  times  and  how  important  freedom  is  to  people. Nowadays  freedom  is  very  important  even  though  it  is  pushed  to  the  limits.

Many  philosophers  have  explained  freedom  in  their  own  way  of  perspective. Freedom  for  liberals  means “the absence of external impediments that may take away part of a man’s power to do what he would do.” (Hobbes, 1651, 79). In  the  other  hand  Marx  first  concept  of  freedom  is  based on  reconciliation  between  individual  freedom  and  communal  freedom.

As  we, briefly,  try  to  understand  the  meaning  of  freedom,  some  questions  arise  about  the  relationship  between  humans  and  different  kinds  of  systems  and  governing. Why  people  were  sacrificing  their  freedom  and  obeying  to  systems  like  communism  and  fascism? Human  history  has  seen  very  rapid  developments  in  all  sort  of  fields . In  time  people  has  changed  social  systems  moving  from  one  end  to  another,  from  primitive  societies  to  new  democratic  systems ( like  the  one  in USA). Between  these  two  sides, in  an  intermediate  position  and  very  close  to  each-other,  we  have  communism, fascism  and  Nazism. This  systems  had  one  common  thing ( among  the  others )  they  constrained  freedom. Nazism  made  millions  of  Germans  to  give  up  their  freedom  in  name  of  a  pure  German  race  and  Communism  made  millions  of  people  to  give  up their  freedom  in  name  of a  democratic  country.Many  people  think  that  this  kind  of  systems  were  commanding  and  were  ruling  only  by  fear  and  through  force  and  people  were  obeying  only  because  they  were  under  pressure  and  terror. Nowadays, freedom  and  fear  are  at  the heart  of  the  modern  society. While  some  people think  they  are  influenced  by  this  systems  because  they  are  under  pressure  and  terror,  people  nowadays  are  afraid  of  loneliness .

 

Freedom and Modern Man.

Achieving  the  ultimate  freedom  is  now  in  focus  and  the  final  task  of  post communism  societies. This  refers  to  the  transition  from  isolated societies  to open  ones. No  man  could  live  without  freedom. We  have  many  examples,  from  different  periods  of  history, that  shows  us  the  power  and  importance  of  freedom. Referring  to  world  literature (in  time) we  can  easily  find  examples  of  human  efforts  and  wars  fought  for  freedom. In  the  ancient  Greek  literature  we  can  see  that  people  fought  gods, and  writers  brought  heroes  that  fought  for  freedom (like  the  fire  that  Prometheus  brought  among  people  to  vanish  the  darkness) because  people  need  illumination. More  knowledge  means  more  power  and  more  freedom. Another  fact  and  the  most  ancient  one  of  wars  of  people  for  freedom  is  written  in  the  bible  with  Adam  and  Eve. Adam  and  Eve  had  everything  they  wanted  but  god  forbade  them  to  choose  from   just  one  tree  so  they  were  not  free. They  understood  that  their  freedom  was  limited  so  they  wanted  more  and  they  counter  this  power  by  eating  an  forbidden  apple,  even  they  knew  the  consequences, just  to achieve  their  absolute  freedom. Modern  European  history  and  American  one  is  based  on  efforts  to  free  freedom  from  politics ,  economy’s  and  spiritual  chains  that  have  blocked  people  from  progress. We  can  see  nowadays   that  people  have  broken  all  the  chains, they  have  overcome  nature  and  are  being  dominant, people  have  overcome  church  power  and  ruined  absolutist  systems.

Over  wars  people  thought  that  won  the  total  freedom, but  new  democratic  systems  came  up  that  denied  all  the  things  that  people  thought  that  they  had  earned  in  centuries  of  war. These  new  democratic  systems  will  dominate  over  social  and  private  life  of  people. People  thought  that  absolutist  systems  came  from  only  some  few  man’s  madness  and  that  would  bring  them  to  ruins. A  big  illusion  is  that  Hitler  was  commanding  and  was  ruling  only  by  fear  and  through  force  and  people  were  obeying  only  because  they  were  under  pressure  and  terror. We  can  see  that  thousands  people  in  Germany  were  ready  to  sacrifice  freedom  the  same  way  that  their  grand  grandfathers  tried  to  earn  it. They  sacrificed  freedom  because  many  others  thought  that  was  with  no  value  to  protect  freedom. Democracy ( nowadays )   brought  a  new   society  in  which  the  individual  feels  changed  and  degraded  and  this  is  what  was  used  by  this  leaders  on  that  time. Hitler  made  up  the  idea  of  the  “ Master  Race ”  because  he  believed  in  the  sick  pride  of  humans.

These  days  after  all  human  efforts  we  don’t  have  such  systems  any more. Now  with  the  new  democracy,  world  think  is  going  to  the  right  path,  to  the  ultimate  illumination. But  why  people  are  so  influenced  from  totalitarian  systems  like  communism, fascism  and  other   cruel  systems? Why  people  obey  to  the rules  of  some  mans  and  give  up  their  freedom  even  though  they  knew  it  was  madness? To answer  these  questions  I want  to  get  back  in  time  in  1-st  century  when church  had  the  ultimate  power  and  people  were  obeying  to  the  power  of  the  church  with  no reason  at  all. They  sacrificed  their  freedom  in  name  of  god  and  church. The idea  of  god  survived  even  nowadays  and  church  has approximately  2.2  billion  adherents  but  the  ultimate  power  of  the  church  did  not. Later  in  time  , in  mediaeval  age  we  have  Feudalism. Feudalism was  organized  in  three  classes  the  lords, vassals and fiefs. All  was  set  before  someone  is  born. If  you  born  like  a  lord  you  died  like  one  and  so  for  the  other  classes. Fiefs  were  working  for  lords  and  they  were  obeying  without  resistance  and  only  few  mans  who  did  were  killed. Later  in  history we  have  the  new  democratic  systems, Communism ,  Fascism  and  Nazism. Here, also,  we  see  that  they  had  the  power  to  make  man  sacrifice  the  most  precious  thing  of  existence, freedom.  In  this  swift  passage  of  history  we  can  see  that  people  created  some  systems  that  were  not  based  on  individual  freedom. They  ruined  with  their  own  hands  what  they  accomplished  in  century’s  of  wars.

The  theory  of  Sigmund  Freud , (which  is  a  fact  for  the  scientists  even  why  someone  calls  it  just  a  theory )  actually  explains  in  details  this  inner  need  for freedom  in  a  human  being .  According  to  him  all  happens  out  of  selfishness  and the  instinct  to  survive. Looking  out  to  history  it  is  what  actually  happened . The  western  countries,  led  by  the  United  States  of America,  built  this  ideology  based  upon  the  ancient  Greek  democracy  with  a  free  market  to  oppose  the totalitarian  Soviet  Union  and  the  communism . Both  camps  were  preaching  that  they  were  right  and  were fighting  for  democracy  and  freedom . In  a  certain  way  this  clash  produced  some  real  freedom  and  invoked several  schools  of  thought . Though ,  going  back  to  a  realistic  freedom  in  the  materialist  word  its  hard  to define  whether  we  are  free  or  not .  All  around  the  globe  there  are  biased  media  ,  no  matter  which  side  they  are  supporting. Everyone  thinks he  is  right , and  the  cliché “ Your  freedom  ends  there  where  my  freedom  begins”  is  everyday  weaker. But  what  does  “free”  mean  in  a  social  concept ? People  think  of  freedom  like  fighting  the  occupier,  or in  a  peaceful  situation  getting  free  of  your  parent  who  are  the  authority  at  home . Going  back  to  Freud that’s  the  basic  instinct  each  and  every  species  have . Nowadays  in  a  modern (post  modern  according  to  some scholars )  world  we  don’t  have  these  problems  in  a  high  scale  and  somehow  we  think  we  are  free . People often  fail  to  analyze  the  information  the  media  gives  them , or  the  unwanted  information  they  are  bombed  by unwillingly  like  the  billboards , shows  on  TV  and  so  on . The  nowadays  society  is  used  to  take  everything  as granted  and  sure . No  need  for  thinking , no  need  for  analyzing ,  just  consuming  and  following.

Nowadays  not  suffering  from  lack  of  freedom  people  are  more  reassured. Although  after  winning  almost  the  ultimate  freedom  people  are  scared  of  it. This  happens  for  just  one  simple  reason, which  is  often  spoken  in  books  and  psychology  as  the  biggest  problem  of  modern  society, loneliness . People  like  animals  need  to  live  in  society  they  need  a  place  to  belong.  The  most  big  problem  nowadays  in  liberal  and  democratic  countries  is  loneliness. Kids  leave  home, in  name  of  individual  freedom  and  they  miss  home  after  some  years. People  ruined  monarchic  systems  and  after  all  this  efforts  the  invented  new  democratic  system  that  constrained  their  freedom. The  same  thing  happened  in  Albania.  We  fought  our  conqueror (Ottoman  Empire) in  name  of  freedom  and  we  chose  Communism  that  restricted  our  freedom  worse  than  before. Nowadays  in  Albania don’t  suffer  this  “disease”  in  mass because  we  are  very  archaic  in  mentality  and  we  still  live  in  families. Our  way  of  living  is  still  influenced  by  communist  system  and  we  still  are  influenced  by  the  idea  of  communal  society. If  you  live  abroad  people  are  more  “cold”  to  each other  because  the  modern  society   makes  you  so.

Globalization remind  us  for  the  necessity  of  pride  for  every  social  identity. This  is  the  essence  of  diversity. Behind  this  lays  our  fear  of  losing  freedom. This  happens  because  there  are  still  places  and  country’s  that  live  with  no  freedom and  if  they  still  exists  means  that  our  freedom  is  still  threatened. Freedom  of  speech  is  a  luxury  for  them  and  their  words  are  hopeless. Not  only  Albanians  but  all  the  world  should  not  forget   about  Serbian   genocide  made  in  Kosovo ( that  is  the  best  example  how  even  nowadays  our  freedom  is  threatened ).

Writers  and  academics  have  always  shown  the  world  that  society  runs  the  risk  to  lose  freedom  and  world,  fearing  the  great  loss,  is   threatened  to  reach  the  limits  of  a criminalized  society. Rarely  politicians  and  governments  have  shown attention  to  this  overall  risk. As  world  economy  today  is  facing  with  a  global  crisis  for  energy,  food,  fuel    human  existentialism  is  being  shocked  and  humanity  is  threatened  to  lose  freedom  and  their  rights. Meanwhile  writers  and  thinkers,  as always,  still  remain  the  shaken  conscience  of  a  society  and  humanity  as  a  whole ,  it  is  every  day  more  required  from  the  politicians  to  find  solutions  to  dangers  which  threaten  the  same  humanity. And  we  all  agree  already  that the  politicians  should  change  their  ways  and  behave  like  real  statesmen.

In  conclusion  although  the  inner  need  of  freedom  in  human  being  and  although  all  the  wars  people  fought  to  win  freedom  humans  don’t  want  to  be  alone. We  still have  communism , in  some  country’s,  nowadays  and  people  living  there  are  ok  with  what  they  are  doing  and  their  incomplete  freedom. Loneliness  makes  people  fearing  freedom  because  freedom  makes  you  more  individualized  and  more  you  get   individualized, you  get  more  detached   from  “ the  crowd ”  and  in  a  certain  point  you  feel  alone. Democracy ( nowadays )   brought  a  new   society  in  which  the  individual  feels  changed  and  degraded. That  is  why  people  are  afraid  of  freedom  and  they  find  shelter  in  other  kind  of  systems.

Bibliography

Fromm, E. (September 15, 1994). Escape from Freedom.

Harris, M. (March 27, 2010). The Meaning Of Freedom According To Marx. Liberty Blog.

Marx, K. (n.d.). Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844. Retrieved from Marxists: http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1844/manuscripts/comm.html

Sittenfeld, C. (Sunday 19 September 2010). Freedom by Jonathan Franzen. The Observer.

Tocqueville, A. d. (September 5, 2001). Democracy in America.

Zinn, H. (n.d.). zinnslaem10. Retrieved from historyisaweapon: http://www.historyisaweapon.com


[1] Oxford Dictionary online

[2] Oxford Dictionary online

[3] Louise VI of France, 1081-1137
Thanks for reading and visiting my blog.  Cheers

Hello again bloggers

Today I want to show to you some of my other drawings. I am very impressed by surrealism as a kind of art movement ( on which I wrote an essay). They used Automatism as a technique and is very interesting way of drawing. Automatism has taken on many forms: the automatic writing and drawing initially practiced by surrealist. Automatism can be compared to similar such as the non-idiomatic improvisation of free jazz. Playing with your creativity and drawing whatever comes to your mind is a perfect way to improve your imagination and your skills on drawing. I have practiced automatism but I have only one drawing left from all my collection and I will show to you the drawing (the third photo) with some of my other drawings that I have.

Thank you for reading my post and have a good time. If you want to use this drawings or anything else from my blog please let me know. Thanks

Hello again Bloggers.

I am writing another post on photography.I love photography. Photo is another part of my passion very close to drawing. Photographing people and watching their face expression is a very interesting thing. I have been photographing for some times now and the I love “Out-of-the-darkness” photos. I have been looking around for inspirations and I found this new blogger with very beautiful photos. Have a look and enjoy ” http://ared-t.blogspot.com/ “. My favorite one is the last one.

 

Thank you for reading and watching and have a good time.

Drawing on free time

Hello Internet

This my second Post on my blog and I want to share with you some of my drawings. I am not a pro, I draw on my free time as my passion. I learned to draw online but it was hard to find good tutorials for free.

Do you like Doodle?

I love doodle.I started drawing, in general, 6 months ago. I tried to learn to draw from you tube videos online tutorials and many inspirational videos.

Trying to learn, I started to explore more and more kind of arts.I found some styles that I never heard before, like DADA, ORPHISM, Magic-Realism, Neue Sachlichkeit ( New Objectivity ), Color Field and many more.

I started to watch videos on doodle and moleskin art and I loved it.I started drawing doodle art just a couple a months ago and in the beginning it was very hard for me to draw different pictures almost not related to each-other. Drawing different picture and fragments of your imagination.I have drawn only 3 doodle for now but more will come and other kind of drawings will follow.

Thank you for reading and have a good time.



                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Surrealism vs Realism

What  is  Realism ?  What  is  Surrealism?  What  are  the  differences  and  the  similarities  to  each  other?  What  makes  them  unique?  Which  is  the  best? ( Personal Opinion )

What is Realism? Realism  is  cultural and intellectual movement,  of  the  19-th  century,  that  include some  areas  of  social  life  as  art,  politics,  music,  literature,  science, moral etc. We  cannot  say  in  music  that  we  have  less  or  more  realistic  music  because  is  more  their  plots rather  than  music  that  makes  them  classified  towards  realistic  movement. (Brian, Pauls,  Realism  and  Naturalism) .Realism  today  is being  dominant  in  television  and  TV  shows. We  have  various  of  reality  shows  now days  that  have  over  populated  the TV  programs. Realism  in  art  was  the  movement  against  romanticism  and  they  believed  in  the  philosophy  of  “objective  reality”[1]   and  were against  the  exaggerated  emotionalism of Romanticism.

What is Surrealism? Surrealism  is  also  a  cultural  and  intellectual  movement but  of  20-th  century. The word Surrealism comes from sur-realite, translated means “beyond reality”.  As  Realism,  this  movement  includes  a  various  types  of  social  areas  but  the  most  popular  one  was  art. “The surrealists  were  bored  with  the  real  world,  with  the  normal  means  of  expression.” (Salvador Dali,  The  Great  Hispanic  Heritage;  McNeese, Tim: 11). So  they  decided  to  express  the  world  in  a  strange  way. To  express  their  philosophy  and  feeling  they  were  based  on  Sigmund  Freud  psycho-analysis  of  the unconscious  and  they  also  strongly  believed  in  interpretations  of  dreams  and  exploring  the  darkest  corners  of  the  mind. I want  to  mention  here  Salvador  Dali, who is “the most famous and enduringly influential  painter  of all the surrealists, but also the one who did most to reduce the movement to a cliché” (Daoust, Phil. “ The Guardian” Tuesday 18 September 2001)

What  are  the  differences  and   similarities  to  each  other?  Realism,  as  I  mentioned  before  is  the  kind  of  art  that  “copies”  the  reality  as  it  is,  without  expression  and  being  honest  this  is  kind  of  boring.  Just  capturing  a  moment  and  drawing  it  as  more  as  realistic  you  can  gets  you  closer  to  photography,  but  of  course  that  needs  more  skills  than  photography. On  the  other  hand  Surrealism  is  more  expressing  one.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Surrealism  tries  to  understand  and  explain  the everyday  reality  of  the  world  in  a  very  mystic  and  bizarre  way, as  drawing  the  unconscious , and  tries  to  take  us  to  different  world  of  mysticism   that  our  mind  have  never  imagined  before. Surrealists  used  a  very  high  technique  of drawing  so  they  can  make  their  dream  world  as  real  as  they  can. “Salvador  Dali  used  highly realistic technique to create what he called, hand-painted dream photographs”[2] .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Even  though  this  two  kind  of  arts  seems  so  opposites  essentially  they  are  somehow  the  same,  because  both  kind  of  art  tries  to  express  our  concerns  of  daily  life, they  try  to  express  reality, even  though  in  different  ways. Another  similarity  is  that  both  try  to  create  an  object  that  is  close  to  perception  of  human  eye  and  mind. Surrealists  don’t  paint  abstract   shapes, they  paint  weird  ones,  but  obeying  to  laws  of  perspective,  light  and  shadow  like  Realists  also  do.

Surrealism  and  Realism  are  two  kind  of  movements  that have  over  populated  television  and  fashion. Realism  dominates  in  Television  as  Surrealism  dominates  in  fashion. Why  Realism  in  TV-shows  and  Surrealism  in  fashion?  “Modernism challenged  realism’s  dominance  in  literature  and  the  fine  arts  nearly  a  century  ago,  but  in  popular  fiction,  film,  and  television,  realism  continues  to  be  the  dominant  narrative  form”.[3]  Today  we  have  a lot  of  TV-shows  called  reality  show. I  would  like  to  mention  some  of  this  shows   like: “Big  Brother”,   “Extreme  Makeover”,  “Kafazi I Arte”,  “Albanian’s  Next  Top  Model”,  “Dancing  with  the  stars” , “ The  voice  of  Albania”  and  many  more. Realism  is  dominant  in  television  because  in  this  programs  characters  chose  their  behavior  and  their  actions,  so  this  bring  people  closer  to  preferred  character  and  they  share  various  kind  of  emotions  with the character  such  as  love,  fear,  hope  and  even  lust. (Booker, 2002). Meanwhile,    Surrealism  dominates  in  fashion  world. Fashion  historian  Richard  Martin  said “Surrealism  remains  fashion’s  favorite  art” ( Wood  Ghislaine, “Surreal Things”, 2007). Surrealism  has  been  and  it  is  an  influential  art  in  fashion  because  of  its  ideas  of  recreating  a dream  and  weird  expression. Surrealists  have  a  very  creative  mind  and  this  kind  of  art  need  a  lot  of  imagination  and  that’s  what  one  good  fashion  designer  need,  imagination.

Which is the best? In  my  opinion  Surrealism  wins  this  match  because  to  me  Surrealism  is  more  beautiful,  expressive,  interesting  and  mystical  than  realism. For  example  if  you  are  in  a  gallery  of  an  excellent  realistic  painter,  you  go  through  the  first  painting  and  the  first  thing  that  comes  to  mind  is  how  beautiful  and  real  the  painting  look   and  you  move  very  fast  to  the  other  painting  and  so  on. If  you  are  looking  to  an  excellent  surrealist  painter  you  will  go  at  the  first  picture  and  the first  impression  is  “ ? ”.  From  “ ? ”  you  start  to  think  “What the painter  meant  with  that?” and “What  this  mean ?”  so  the  painting  absorb  you  to  her  message,  that  is  hidden  to  symbols, and  you  start  to  think,  you  start  to  think  what  painter  was  thinking  on  the  moment  he  painted  that  and  you  briefly  feel  the  same  way,  so  the  painting  feeds  your  imagination  and  your  way  of  understanding  and  interpreting  world  and  reality  around  you.  That’s  why  I  vote  for  Surrealism.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Booker, M. K. (2002). “Strange TV: innovative television series from The twilight zone to The X-files”. Greenwood Press.

Brian, P. (1998, March 13). Realism and Naturalism.

Daoust, P. (2001, September 18). “The earth is blue like an orange”. An A-Z of surrealism.

Marshment, M., & Hallam, J. (1994, June). “ A review of contemporary media ”.

McNeese, T. (2006). “Salvador Dali”. New York: Chelsea House, ISBN 0-7910-8837-5.

Schaefer, M. (2011, November 11). “Dali, Salvador”.

Wood, G. (2007). “Surreal things” (Vol. 1st edition ). Victoria & Albert Museum.


[1] the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them ( Oxford dictionaries online )

[2] Schaefer, Marilyn, “Dali,  Salvador”,  scholastic.com <http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3754356>

[3] Marshment, Margaret & Hallem, Julia “ A  review  of  contemporary  media ”   <www.ejumpcut.org/archive/onlinessays/JC39folder/OrangesNotOnlyFruit.html>

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