Motivational posters. You see them in a lot of offices, and major corporations love to adorn their walls with them.
Hang In There Baby:
The original “Hang in there baby,” with the cat clinging to a chin up bar, or a piece of bamboo, was first motivational poster. It was published in late 1971 as a poster by Los Angeles photographer Victor Baldwin. It has since become a popular relic of the 1970s. But did it motivate people?
The poster definitely struck a chord with 1970s Americans, and it became one of the best-selling posters of the era. Victor Baldwin received letters from people telling him the poster had helped them through difficult life events including recovery from surgery.
Baldwin himself said “(the kitten) gave solace and strength to people everywhere, in all sorts of trouble, including myself.” By 1973, the ‘hang in there kitty’ had sold 350,000 copies at $2.00 each.
He lived for a time solely on the income from that now iconic poster, and took a break from his studio work for a while. Something he admitted he would rather be doing than selling posters.
From Motivational To DE-Motivational:
It’s a bit of a different world now. People seem to need a little more than a “Hang in there, baby!”
That’s why DE-MOTIVATIONAL posters have become so popular. Viv la sarcasm! And cynicism. They’ve become America’s second and third languages.
I walked into an office many years ago and saw a framed poster of forks, with one bent. It said,” Unique: Just because you are unique does not mean you are useful.” I thought it was hilarious!
The company called Despair says they had a dream – to crush other people’s dreams. After all, they say “the Motivation Industry has been crushing dreams for decades, selling the easy lie of success you can buy. That’s why we decided to differentiate ourselves- by crushing dreams with hard truths.” See? Sarcasm!
They say, Motivational products don’t work. but our demotivational products “don’t work even better!”
Here are some actual, and funny, de-motivational messages now hanging in offices. It’s all about humor, which we desperately need!