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Semiotics theory of visual communication

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Visual Communication

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Semiotics theory of visual communication

  1. 1. Reading PicturesReading Pictures Signs, Symbols and Visual Codes
  2. 2. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes From looking at optical illusions it is clear that we can read pictures in several ways. In order to get a similar reading, pictures often contain signs, symbols and visual codes to help us.
  3. 3. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Signs can be divided into three types:  Symbolic  Iconic  Indexical
  4. 4. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Symbolic signs are the ones most difficult to get your head round!  Symbolic signs have no obvious connection between between the sign and the object.
  5. 5. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes For example the word CAT has no obvious link with a small pet furry animal. It only works because we understand the rules that say the letters C-A-T, when put in a certain order mean that small furry animal. CAT =
  6. 6. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Iconic signs are a lot easier to understand!  Iconic signs have a visual likeness to the things they represent. Can you think of at least two iconic signs you see everyday?
  7. 7. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Here are some you can see when you use a computer:
  8. 8. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Look at the following signs and explain why they are iconic.
  9. 9. Signs, Symbols and Visual CodesSigns, Symbols and Visual Codes
  10. 10. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  11. 11. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  12. 12. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  The only alphabet in the world that contains iconic letters is the one used by Japanese and Chinese people.  The letters are called kanji and there are over 2,000 of them compared to our 26!  Each kanji looks like the word it represents.
  13. 13. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  Copy out each kanji.  This one is naka, it means middle. You can see the line in the middle.
  14. 14. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  This one is gawa and means river.
  15. 15. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  This is yama and means mountain.
  16. 16. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  This is ta and means rice field.
  17. 17. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes The last kind of sign is indexical.  Indexical signs have some kind of direct connection to what is being shown.  Example: A tear running down someone’s cheek can be an indexical sign for sorrow.
  18. 18. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes This is an indexical sign. What do you think it is for?
  19. 19. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes It is an old sign for a school. It is supposed to represent the light of learning! Now we use an iconic sign to represent this.
  20. 20. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  Another way of helping us to read pictures is the use of visual codes.  There are three main visual codes: - Dress Codes - Colour Codes
  21. 21. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes  Dress codes relate to what people wear in particular situations.  If we see people in evening dress we usually make the association of glamour, wealth and sophistication.
  22. 22. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Colour codes  Black is the colour people wear after someone has died.  White is the colour of innocence.  Red can mean danger and stop.
  23. 23. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  24. 24. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  25. 25. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  26. 26. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes
  27. 27. Signs, Symbols and VisualSigns, Symbols and Visual CodesCodes Signs, symbols and visual codes help us make sense of a picture.

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