Sunday, 16 March 2014


Using your experiences of the  modules to date, produce a practical investigation that explores your own critical observations, thoughts and opinions relating to the context of your own developing creative practice. You should aim to visually communicate your informed findings through the selection, evaluation and presentation of appropriate primary and secondary source material, visual research and design development. In order to focus your research you ar asked to select, consider and explore one of the following research themes. Sustainability Modernism, Propaganda, Social Impact, Consumerism or Visual Language.
From these themes I selected three possible themes that fit in with my essay and began to brainstorm some ideas for each section.
Propaganda: a form of communication aimed towards influencing the attitude of a population toward some cause or position. Propaganda is information that is not impartial and used primarily to influence an audience and further an agenda, often by presenting facts selectively (thus possibly lying by omission) to encourage a particular synthesis, or using loaded messages to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented. Propaganda can be used as a form of ideological or commercial warfare.
I began looking into the specific techniques of propaganda to get and insight on how I could execute this theme, selecting ones that would be relevant to my work.
  • Ad nauseam: This argument approach uses tireless repetition of an idea. An idea, especially a simple slogan, that is repeated enough times, may begin to be taken as the truth. This approach works best when media sources are limited or controlled by the propagator.
  • Beautiful people: The type of propaganda that deals with celebrities or depicts attractive, happy people. This suggests if people buy a product or follow a certain ideology, they too will be happy or successful.
  • Black-and-white fallacy: Presenting only two choices, with the product or idea being propagated as the better choice. For example: "You're either with us, or against us...."
  • Loaded language: Loaded language is wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes.
  • Scapegoating: Assigning blame to an individual or group, thus alleviating feelings of guilt from responsible parties and/or distracting attention from the need to fix the problem for which blame is being assigned.
  • Stereotyping: This technique attempts to arouse prejudices in an audience by labeling the object of the propaganda campaign as something the target audience fears, hates, loathes, or finds undesirable. For instance, reporting on a foreign country or social group may focus on the stereotypical traits that the reader expects, even though they are far from being representative of the whole country or group; such reporting often focuses on the anecdotal. In graphic propaganda, including war posters, this might include portraying enemies with stereotyped racial features.
  • Testimonial: Testimonials are quotations, in or out of context, especially cited to support or reject a given policy, action, program, or personality. The reputation or the role (expert, respected public figure, etc.) of the individual giving the statement is exploited. The testimonial places the official sanction of a respected person or authority on a propaganda message. This is done in an effort to cause the target audience to identify itself with the authority or to accept the authority's opinions and beliefs as its own.

From this I then created a brainstorm of potential concepts on what i could do with these types of propaganda.

Out of all of the idea's I had come up with I really liked the idea of creating a book of testimonials from black british women about their experiences in society or media as women of colour. I also came up with the name 'The black myth' to reinforce the ideals that society have against this group of women are not all true.

However I still wanted to explore some more themes to ensure that I had got a full scope of idea's on what I needed to produce.

Visual Language: a system of communication using visual elements. Just as people can 'verbalize' their thinking, they can 'visualize' it. A diagram, a map, and a painting are all examples of uses of visual language. Its structural units include line, shape, color, form, motion, texture, pattern, direction, orientation, scale, angle, space and proportion.

I also again created a brainstorm of potential concepts of what I could create for the projects and really liked the concept of curating an exhibition of influential black women throughout time as a way for women to connect and identify with their role models.

I wanted to create something that steers away from oppressing black women but also wasn't cliche. From my list of idea's I came up with the concept to curate my own exhibition that celebrates black women and their achievements. With concept in mind I decide to build upon this create a more focused idea.

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