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STRUCTURE

IDENTIFY

....................................................

UTILIZE

....................................................

CONNECT

....................................................


PREFACE

.................. ........................................................................................................................................................................... On the outermost layer of visual communication (for example: a poster, package, or webpage) are literal, formal components. These parts are identified through semiotics, semantics, and pragmatics. This is the process of breaking everything down to its parts, learning how those parts work together, and how the parts are understood. The “part” is a sign, meaning in physical or mental form, which can be broken down again into an icon, index, or symbol. The relationship between the parts, like anchoring and relaying, allows you to support or change the meaning of a sign. That relationship forms connotations, which is how that meaning is interpreted. The purpose of identifying those components is so that you can utilize them. Through the use of rhetorical tropes you can not only create meaning, but author it. In doing that, you create a logical, ethical, or emotional appeal to your audience. The first layer you’ve come to understand becomes a foundation to build upon conceptually. Finally, the use of these components can be connected through communication theory. This is where you learn the process of communicating: sending a message, through a channel, overcoming noise, and receiving feedback. In seeing the connections, all the parts and layers form a structure. The idea of identifying, utilizing, and connecting doesn’t specifically refer to semiotics, rhetoric, and communication theory, but rather a process. This process can be understood as the learning process that is shown within these pages where the parts have been identified within existing examples of visual communication, the theories have been utilized within studies, and connected within a communication model. More importantly, it can be understood as a way of defining and understanding what design is.


PART ONE IDENTIFY

................................................... Definitions

3

Found Examples

4-9

Studies

10-13


DEFINITIONS

......................... ...........................................................................................................................................................................

SEMIOTICS sign

the study of signs. It was originally started by Ferdinand de Saussure in the study of linguistics and was expanded upon by Charles Sanders Peirce. the element of meaning composed of two parts, a signified and a signifier.

signifier

the physical form of a sign.

signified

the mental concept of a sign.

icon

the literal depiction of something.

4

index

the evidence of something.

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symbol

the abstract representation of something.

6

syntagm

a linear series of signs.

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paradigm

a series of signs that are similar while being individually unique.

8

SEMANTICS

the study of signs in relation to their meaning.

anchor

identified by Roland Barthes as the act of supporting the meaning of a sign with image or text.

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relay

identified by Roland Barthes as the act of changing the meaning of a sign with image or text.

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PRAGMATICS

the study of signs in relation to the audience and context.

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connotation

the implied meaning that is interpreted from a sign, based on cultural norm.

12-13

denotation

the factual and literal aspects of a sign.

12-13


ICON

................................................... The caveman, bird, and mountains are icons, because they have been realistically depicted. By James Heimer

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INDEX

................................................... The cover is an index for the use of xerox machines by zine makers. Fanzines, Book Cover, 2010

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SYMBOL

................................................... The lightbulb is a symbol for an idea. Indie Publishing, Book Cover, 2008

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SYNTAGM

................................................... This poster lists out the dates and places in a linear sequence. By Cory Schmitz

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PARADIGM

................................................... The chairs are formally similar while conveying individual differences. By James Weaver

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PRAGMATICS

................................................... WHO: Printmakers and Artists. WHERE: Private or public book collection. WHAT: The combination of the photo, handwritten type, and paint splatters represents the process and creativity that went into making the prints.


Original: A Day to Remember, What Separates Me From You, Album Cover, 2010

ANCHOR

................................................... In this anchoring study, the hourglass image was supported through the addition of a clock.

Wendy Vong, 2012

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Original: Into It. Over It, Twelve Towns, Album Cover, 2011

RELAY

................................................... In this relay study, the stamp’s meaning is changed by relating it to the anthrax letter that was sent to Senator Daschle in 2001.

Wendy Vong, 2012

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Original: Source Unknown

CONNOTATION & DENOTATION

................................................... In this study, the original poster was changed with a graphic black and white photo combined with warped type. Its connotations are now scary, dark, and mysterious.

Wendy Vong, 2012


Original: Source Unknown

CONNOTATION & DENOTATION

................................................... In this study, the original poster was changed with a black and white photomontage combined with serif and script typefaces. Its connotations are now indie and hip.

Wendy Vong, 2012


PART TWO UTILIZE

................................................... Definitions Found Examples Studies

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16-17 28-29


DEFINITIONS

......................... ...........................................................................................................................................................................

RHETORIC

the effective use of persuasive visual and verbal language, this originated from the school of pre-socratic philosophers in Ancient Greece.

personification

the attribution of human features of mannerisms to the inanimate.

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hyperbole

the figurative exaggeration of an image for emphasis.

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pun

the comparison of visual or verbal language that is similar but convey different meaning.

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antithesis

the opposition between two strong, contrasting ideas to reinforce differences.

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the figurative meaning that is communicated as opposed to its literal meaning, typically for humorous intent.

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metaphor

the substitution of one object to the resemblance of another unrelated object.

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metonymy

the substitution of an indexical object for a related, complex idea.

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synecdoche

the use of a part to describe or depict the whole, or vice versa.

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the exaggerated imitation of something from mass culture.

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irony

parody

MODES OF APPEAL

the behavior in which a speaker influences an audience.

logos

the mode of appeal that uses the principles of reason and logic.

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ethos

the mode of appeal that uses the principles of good character and judgement.

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pathos

the mode of appeal that uses the principles of emotion.

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PERSONIFICATION

................................................... The wolf illustration is given human characteristics like a beard, hair, and tattoos. By Dawid Ryski

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HYPERBOLE

................................................... The scale of the guitar is exaggerated compared to the to the boat and sharks, in order to imply a body of water. By Dawid Ryski


PUN

.................................................. The shape of Idaho mimics the shape of a grand piano to represent the origins of the musician and the type of music he plays. By Jason Munn


ANTITHESIS

.................................................. This compares the contrasting ideas of competing political parties to peace by overlapping the elephant, donkey, and dove. By Invisible Children

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IRONY

................................................... The bunny wearing a human foot creates irony by showing the opposite of the rabbit’s foot that humans wear for luck. Artist unknown

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METAPHOR

................................................... The screwdriver is compared to the en-dash as something that connects two things. By Luke Heyes

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METONYMY

................................................... The record substitutes an eye to support the idea of sound and vision. By Christopher David Ryan

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SYNECDOCHE

................................................... The shape of the bottom of the boot and the text create a iconic representation of Toy Story 2. By Wonchan Lee


PARODY

................................................... This is a parody of the iconic Obama poster. Instead of Obama’s idea of change, it is the about a transformer changing from a robot to a car. By Tom Doyle


LOGOS

................................................... This logically compares the moons of the solar system through scale, linear elements, and labeling. By Dan Matutina

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ETHOS

................................................... The pink ribbon is a trusted symbol for breast cancer awareness. The musicians and companies are also shown supporting the event, proving it to be an ethical, trusted cause. By Carmen Leah

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PATHOS

................................................... This postcard welcomes you to Portland, Oregon by using imagery as text. It creates a romantic ideal of the city of bikes, roses, timber, nature, and scruffy men in plaid. By Betty Turbo

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LOGOS & METAPHOR

................................................... In this study, an indexical image of the stock market is used as a metaphor for a ballot, creating a logical reason to vote. By Wendy Vong

VOTE

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VOTE

PATHOS & PUN

...................................................

your vote for peace

In this study, a pun is used on the words peace and the shape of a puzzle piece. An appeal to the emotions is created to entice the viewer to vote. By Wendy Vong

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PART THREE CONNECT

Communication Theory

................................................ Definitions | 31 Definitions

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Real Life Example | 32-34 Real Life Example

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Communication Studies Model | 35-36 34


DEFINITIONS

......................... ...........................................................................................................................................................................

COMMUNICATION THEORY

a system of ideas explaining how information is conveyed and received.

shannon weaver

in 1949, Claude Shannon and Warren Weaver created the most influential early linear communication model.

berlo

in 1960, David Berlo adapted the Shannon-Weaver model for broadcast television. This model now concerned the social and cultural context in which the receiver lives.

emmert donaghy

in 1981, Emmert Donaghy improved the communication model by prioritizing the context and feedback of an audience.

communicators

the source of information.

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message

verbal, written, or recorded information for a recipient.

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channel

the form of passage in which communication takes place.

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noise

the disturbance in the understanding of a message.

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feedback

information received after a message has been delivered and a response to the effectiveness of a message.

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contextual factors

components within the environment that can affect a message.

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IN COMMUNICATION THEORY

................................................................. Pinterest is a major social networking site that connects communicators around the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting. A pinner shares a message (like a favorite book, recipe, or photo) to their followers, allowing that message to continually travel through different channels, contextual factors, noise problems, feedback, and communicators. The structured design experience behind Pinterest is extremely sucessful and complex. As a communication process, each component within itself is already a result of the process or allows a new process to continue. However the most significant communication process is that between the original pinner to the repinner and to their followers.

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MESSAGE

................................................................... The communication process starts when an interesting thing is pinned to the site and shows up in a mass of messages on the front page of the website.

COMMUNICATOR A

................................................................... These messages are sent from multiple communicators. For example: sfgirlbybay. CHANNEL Communicator A has chosen a channel through a specified pin board. For example: nstagram-y. FEEDBACK The message has already been given feedback through likes, comments, and repins.

COMMUNICATOR B

................................................................... Communicator B is processing all of these messages. CONTEXTUAL FACTORS Communicator B’s understanding of these messages is largely based on their age, sex, location, culture, and knowledge.

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continued‌


CONTEXTUAL FACTORS

................................................................... Communicator B starts the process again by repinning. The new message is altered based on contextual factors like reasoning, motivation, and perception. For example: how the communicator makes logical sense of it, what they believe about it, and why they are drawn to it. CHANNEL Communicator B determines a channel for their message. For example: Interiors. FEEDBACK Communicator B’s reinterpretation can also be feedback to either the person who pinned it before or the person who created it in the first place.

FEEDBACK

................................................................... After sending the message, communicator B will be able to recieve feedback through repins, follows, likes, and comments. This forms a cyclical communication process. COMMUNICATORS The message is sent to and feedback is received from Communicator B’s followers, Communicators C.

NOISE

................................................................... A number of noise problems can occur at anytime in this process. TECHNICAL: Internet connection, image quality, or broken links can interrupt the reading and sending of a pin. SEMANTIC: The more communicators a pin goes through the more its meaning is changed. EFFECTIVENESS: Although Pinterest is quite an effective site overall, legal issues have surfaced concerning copyright issues.

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Structure  

Connecting the components of visual communication.

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