Sunday, 21 February 2010

Design Studies Assignment 2

"Denotation is what is photographed, connotation is how it is photographed." Fiske

For this assignment we were asked to show 4 chosen images to a selection of people and ask them to write a short description of what they think is going on. These are the images me and my group chose:

We were not allowed to ask any design students to help us with the stories so I asked a few friends and family members to help, and here is a few examples of what they came up with.

Neuroscience Student -

It was a dull monday morning, you know the kind. The sun was soo dull and covered by clouds that it looked like the moon. It was the kind of morning where I wished my house had windows, but it only had iron poles framing it. As I left my stone house to walk my dog, John, I thought to myself, "I really wish I had weeded the garden before those branches started growing all over the side of my house and into my glassless windows." John didn't mind though, he dragged me into the forest by his lead and then lay down, not moving an inch. I could not figure out what was wrong with him, it was very out of character. But then I heard a very loud snort and a scream. I turned around sharply. To my astonishment a man had just been thrown off a bull in the middle of the forest. This was not your average Monday morning.

Mechanic Student -

As if my day could get any worse, my dog Stuart, had cut his paw while poking about in a strange, abandoned building. As he lay down in the leaves of the thick forest feeling sorry for himself, I began to feel anxious. The clouds gathered over the sun, casting great shadows over the windowless building, and as my body shivered in the February chill, the sky cracked open into a storm, and I didn't even have an umbrella.

Maths Teacher -

A dog is lying down in a forest, looking up at a full moon, thinking about a bull fight his master was watching on the TV that day.

Music Student -

Here Comes The Sun
At first glance this picture has a slightly dark and almost scary atmosphere to it. However after thinking about it further and incorporating the title given to the picture it makes you think about the peaceful hours of the early morning when the moon starts to submit and the sun begins to rise. It makes you think about what they day will bring and the optimism of new things to come.

When I saw this picture my immediate reaction was to think of someone (the photographer) spying on whoever or whatever was dwelling in the house. I feel that this picture has a subtle darkness to it as the house is overgrown with plants and the window is very small, it makes me think that if there is anything living in the house it is perhaps trapped.

Murphy My Dog
I feel that this picture captures the essence of "Mans Best Friend" as the dog is sitting willingly for the photograph and also looking into the camera. This shows that he must be loyal and trust the owner to listen and pose for the photo.

Bull Riding
This picture has caught the horror of bull Riding as it clearly shows the man being tossed around by the bull. As you can see this in great detail i think this photo depicts the pain that this man must be feeling quite well. Seeing the facial expressions of both gentlemen looking alarmed makes you ask the question Why Do They Do It?

Vet -

My spaniel was lying down in the forest, when for the first time, I noticed his age. His arthritis had become so bad, he could no longer run the length of his favourite walk through the forest without taking a rest. So I sat down next to him and we both looked up at the sky, the blue skies had disappeared and now the sun was hiding behind clouds. We must have been there for hours, because when we both woke up, the moon was full. I had dreamt about a building I used to play in with my sisters when I was little, it didn't have any windows, just holes high up in the walls with bars covering them. We would play cops and robbers, pretending to lock each other in the "cells" when we had been bad. My dog had dreamt that he was watching a bull fight in spain. I thought this was a bit strange, because he has never even left the county.

Midwifery Student -

One night, with the moon shining brightly in the sky, I took my dog, Jasper, a walk in the woods. As we trampled through the forest, we came across a huge building with bars across all of the tiny windows. It looked like a prison, but curiosity got the better of Jasper and he ran inside to take a closer look. The building was empty, except for an old newspaper, with a photograph of a man riding a bull on the front page. Jasper was as unimpressed as me, so we turned from the creepy place and ran home in time for tea!

I found with this assignment that a few people were unwilling to participate, most likely feeling uncomfortable thinking they were going to be "psycho-analysed", and this is understandable considering they weren't really into the creative side of things. However those who did take part showed that although each explanation was different, each contained similarities. For example a few pointed out the sun's resemblance to the moon, giving the dog a name and human characteristics and all produced the same explanation for the bull rider photograph. I found it fascinating that my music student friend went into such a thorough analysis of each photograph, the things she picked up on were typical of an arty student, which makes sense as she is a very creative person. The bull picture was the photograph least likely to encourage my little guinea pigs to use their imagination as its so obvious as to what's going on. It was interesting to see some people creating short stories and others simply describing the photographs on a fairly basic level.

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