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Cartoons - Deconstructing a Visual Text

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by

Nat Holmes

on 27 October 2014

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Transcript of Cartoons - Deconstructing a Visual Text

Cartoons - Deconstructing a Visual Text
Consider the colours used in this cartoon.
Let's look at size...
Labelling.
What has been labelled?
What do these labels tell us?
How does it contribute to our understanding of the visual text?
Speech Bubbles:
Who is speaking?
What are they saying?
Is it a conversation?
How does it add to the meaning of the cartoon?
Visual Texts
A visual text makes its meaning with images.
Visual texts can be complex and multilayered. Often they can communicate information more clearly than verbal texts.
Visual knowledge is understanding how visual elements such as line, colour, shape, texture, space, symbols, pattern and composition create meaning.
Reading visual texts is important to your study of English. When deconstructing cartoons there are 10 elements to look for.
Consider:
1.
Colour
2. Size
3. Labelling
4. Speech Bubbles
5. Symbols
6. Focus
7. Angle
8. Tone
9. Facial Expressions
10. Context
Looking at
C
o
l
o
u
r
.
.
.
Look for individual
c
o
l
o
u
r
s
, or combinations of
c
o
l
o
u
r
s
.
Is it in black and white?
C
o
l
o
u
r
s
can be symbolic of feelings.
Consider the following table...
Red
: Sexuality
Blue
: Represents the 'Blue Carpet' of the Brownlow
Yellow
: Blonde Hair. Playing up to the stereotype that 'wags' are all blonde.
What stereotype is associated with blonde women?

What is the message of this cartoon?
What is disproportionate? Has anything been exaggerated?
Why?
Consider:
Time change
Response under the images
A symbol is something the represents something else. Look at the following cartoon. What symbolism do you see in the visual text?
How does it add to the meaning of the cartoon?
Symbols.
The cartoonist will draw your eye to important features of their visual text.
Consider what is in focus?
What is in the foreground?
What is in the background?
Focus.
Angles give an indication of which character has more importance in a cartoon.
If the angle is sloping down, a character is given inferior status.
Consider the following image:
Angle
What does this image suggest about the banks and the power companies within Australia?
Tone indicates the cartoonist's attitude towards an issue. Revise your notes to assist you with identifying tone in visual texts.
Tone
Facial expressions are important in order for the audience to interpret thoughts, feelings and emotions.
Facial Expressions.
How are each of the five characters feeling in this cartoon? How do you know this?
What is the tone of this piece?
How do you know this?
Size is an important feature of visual texts. It is an obvious feature used to highlight characteristics or certain parts of the issue.
CONTEXT
CONTEXT is understanding where something is placed in a timeline ... what comes before and after. It takes into account 'background, environment, framework, setting, or situation surrounding an event or occurrence'. When looking at context, ask yourself if the visual text is a response to a current issue, an article, a situation.
Look at the four segements of this cartoon. What is the context?
How does the background add meaning to this cartoon?
Now it's your turn...
Interpret the following cartoons using some of the analysis tools you have been looking at.
BIBLIOGRAPHY
HERALD SUN
THE AGE
MARK KNIGHT CARTOONS

http://www.vcestudyguides.com/guides/language-analysis/10-things-to-look-for-in-cartoons

http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/context.html

By N. Stewart
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