Images and Meaning

27th September 2022

What do images mean to us? How do we analyse them? Do we actually see what we are looking at? What are the images trying to tell us? Are they are storyline? Part of a visual language?

As an artist and a photographer, there are ways to help you draw the observers attention to what you wish them to notice. These can be subtle or more direct. In general we can use the rule of thirds, leading lines, and perspective to help create a storyboard and direct the eye. We can use a warm or cold colour pallette to enhance a generalised feeling or indicate a season.

With the onset of the digital age we can edit and manipulate the original image, and create composites. There was a time when people used to say the camera never lies, but in today’s society with so many people being concerned about how they look on social media platforms, it often does. Commercial advertising is airbrushed, we can add filters to our own selfies with our phone cameras. We can get apps for our phones that will remove blemishes, change the lighting etc. We can change the background to be somewhere else entirely.

We do all of these things because we want to convey a story, we wish the world to see us in a certain way, or we are unhappy with how we look.

There are times when I struggle to actually see what the photographer or the artist are trying to convey, and that isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes, having a different perspective to the original intention of the image can lead to conversation and enlightenment.

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