English 111: Visual Analysis
For this assignment, begin by choosing a “historical” picture or advertisement. Pick an image that you want to spend time describing and analyzing in an effort to make connections and meaning of the image’s value.
You will be expected to analyze the “text” and “context” of the image you choose for the focal point of this essay. Remember that images can be arguments, which means they are trying to convince you of something. They can also influence you to make choices or form an opinion; they may also appeal to our emotions, relying heavily on pathos.
What purpose does your image have? What claim is being made (if there is one)? What questions should we raise about visual ethics? When and how do images become manipulative? Or, on the other hand, what makes an image strong, successful, or meaningful?
You will describe the image you choose in detail, analyzing and evaluating areas such as color, design, layout, composition, audience, and appeals (logos, ethos, pathos) for your image. Use evidence from the actual image to argue its meaning or significance. For historical images, note that contextual analysis may become more important that textual analysis.
What insight or larger connection emerges from the analysis of your image? A final part of your analysis will be to make that connection for the reader (original direction).
Workshops will be focused on analyzing, connecting and writing your essays. We will also look to connect outside sources to the connection/insight you provide, focusing on gaining skills in both research retrieval and critical thinking.
Consider the following important component pieces in developing your analysis:
Detailed description of the image
Analysis of details
Meaning or efficacy of claim of image chosen
As you begin planning, you may find that you need to “uncover” additional information to conduct a more thorough analysis (historical background, advertising techniques, social context). Practice and employ the research skills that you have been working with through the semester to garner “extra” support for the analysis you write.
Length: 3-5 pages Format: MPA 8th Edition