Semiotic theory can seem quite daunting but it’s a lot easier to understand what’s going on with reference to an actual example, so this exercise asks you to try a spot of semiotic analysis for yourself.
• First, look carefully at the image below and describe its literal elements (i.e. denotation). What can you see?
In this image the literal elements are a sailor sitting on a torpedo that’s splashing along some water. The sailor has a ‘rein’ he’s holding with one hand and some other kind of rope or string in his other hand.
The text is telling the … Read the rest
Using existing images of apples as a starting point, think about what the image of an apple could represent or signify, placing recognisable images in contrast to others, in order to generate new meanings, or to reveal critique or satirise existing images and the ideas represented in those images in some way.
Select apple images from art history or from commercial visual communication. Try to use different visual examples or signifiers to explore different meanings in different contexts. For example an apple in a religious painting is likely to mean something very different from an apple in a TV advert.… Read the rest
Choose a film and its corresponding poster and reflect on how the typography, image, colour and composition are used to reflect the nature of the film. You may want to choose a film you’ve seen or can view some clips from; alternatively, you could start from the poster and then research around the film. How has the aesthetic of the moving image influenced the design of the poster?
I thought this poster for the documentary film ‘Terms and Conditions May Apply’ really stood out.
Without knowing a thing about this film, I recognised the typography as being the typefaces and … Read the rest
• What kind of messages are the statements below sending? Describe what is being communicated through the combination of what they say and the visual feel of the typography.
As discussed in the course, typography conveys its messages via both the actual words presented and the way those words are presented.
1. In this first example, the literal message suggests that you have arrived somewhere. My first thought was the obvious one – a hotel or other place where you’d stay the night. It could also be somewhere you’d stay for a more than a few minutes like a … Read the rest