Transformation Object Development

This week I’ve been looking at different ideas for my Transformation Object for Project 1.

I’ve been developing my ideas from last week, and decided to go with the idea of a game for children.

There will be four players, in teams of two. The first team picks up a card which describes a scenario but is missing a few words; they then choose from a box of words to fill in the blanks on the card.

After this, one person from the second team gets to see the card and the words, and has to draw their interpretation of it in less than a minute.

The third person then has a minute to try and guess what the scenario is.

If they guess their team receive a point, if they don’t the other team receives a point.

The game continues until all of the cards have been depleted; every turn the teams switch roles, and the team with the most points at the end is the winner.

I’ve drawn up some simple ideas of how this might work below:

week 4 post_image


Transformation Object Concept Work

This week I’m looking at my work on Project 1 for Visual Language, where we create a transformational object which explores semiotic theory.

I’ve made some initial drawings about a concept I have…


Basically I’m thinking of creating a digital game/experience which will be either an app or website. The idea is to show a series of images in a few different categories, and these will change over the course of the ‘game’, which will be the transformation part. A word (signifier) will be shown underneath, and users will have to click through each image in each category to find the image they think best matches the word. After all words have been shown and choices made, a scoreboard will show up which will compare the user’s results with other players, showing a percentage per image.

The semiotic theories I think I will be including are signification (the word displayed at the bottom), and the denotations will the images themselves, which will then be applied with meaning via the word. Colour will also be explored as a category, and possibly differentiation. I think the concept of myth could factor into the scoreboard/comparison at the end, showing how each person’s cultural/historical beliefs lead them to choose a specific image compared to others who may have different responses.

At the moment I’m still playing around with this idea… hopefully it will be more developed by next week!


Seeing & Knowing

Amnesty International Advertisement

(‘Amnesty International: Eyes’)

“The way we see things is affected by what we know, what we believe” (Berger 1972).

In this post I will explore how two advertisements reflect this statement, and analyse how Daniel Chandler’s concepts on Semiotics are portrayed in each example.

The advertisement for Amnesty International represents the above statement – the signifier is the image of a child’s bruised face and the text; the signified, however, reveals knowledge required to understand the advertisement as intended. The connotations are that the child has been abused; presumably by the child’s father based on the caption. If one didn’t know this the interpretation would be different; therefore this advertisement is affected by what we know.

Chandler’s concept of the Symbol/Symbolic applies to this advertisement, where the signifier doesn’t immediately represent the signified, with the exception of the connection between the two in the sign. If the text were to be placed in front of a smiling image of a child, for example, the signified would change as a result.

Lego Advertisement: Create

(Jung von Matt Hamburg, ‘Lego: Create’)

The second advertisement approaches this idea differently – the signifiers being a toy and human hand, the logo and ‘Create’. The signified reveals the advertisement’s meaning – this is dependent upon the viewer’s familiarity of Michelangelo’s ‘The Creation of Adam’. The knowledge being that a child playing with Lego acts as God of his creations. Without this knowledge, the advertisement wouldn’t be effective in capturing the experience of playing with Lego.

Michelangelo's 'The Creation of Adam'

Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam (RasMarley 2009).

Lego Advertisement: Plane

(‘Lego: Plane’)

Chandler’s concept of Differentiation can be explored here – particularly by looking at another Lego ad. This advertisement features a different signifier and signified than the previous advertisement, but using differentiation to combine the two signs (being advertisements), we can provide meaning to them. The two ads can be seen as part of a set if we apply the signified of Lego allowing a child to use their imaginations to create. The meaning (signified) becomes more apparent if we combine the two advertisements than on their own, although the juxtaposition of the each allows them to be seen as more effective individually.

Reference List:

Amnesty International (n.d.) ‘Amnesty International: Eyes’ [image], 25 Powerful Advertisements That Will Make You Stop and Think, From Up North, viewed 12th November 2015, <;

Berger, J 1972, Ways of Seeing, Ways of Seeing, viewed 12th November 2015, <;

Jung von Matt Hamburg (n.d.) ‘Lego: Create’ [image], 71 Brilliant, Clever and Inspirational Ads That Will Change the Way You Think, Pinterest, viewed 12th November 2015, <;

Lego (n.d.), ‘Lego: Plane’ [image], 5 Creative and Effective Minimal Print Ads, Pinterest, viewed 13th November 2015, <;

RasMarley 2009, ‘Michelangelo Buonarrati (1475-1564) – 1511c The Creation of Adam (Sistene Chapel, Vatican)’ [image], in RasMarley’s Photolist, Flickr, <;

Semiotic Analysis – Opel Ad

Opel Advertisement

(McCan Erickson Frankfurt, ‘Traffic Light’)

Chandler states the three orders of signification as being denotative on the first order, meaning purely representational; connotative on the second order, which references the values attached to a sign. The third order is myth, which references culturally-accepted values that are seen as normal, or natural (Chandler 2014). We can explore these ideas in reference to the above image for the car manufacturing company Opel.

The denotations of the ad are the traffic light, the green light in particular, the paper bag and clouds; as well as the logo and text on the right side of the image.

The connotations of this ad are that the cars advertised will allow you to go fast without stopping – the absence of the red and yellow lights implies that the driver doesn’t need to worry about arbitrary road rules when in their car. The image of the traffic light with the tagline “Pure Passion” may connote that when the driver is passionate about cars, they can simply ignore other distractions and focus on the experience of driving. The tagline also implies that these cars are designed to be driven by those passionate about cars.

The myths implied in the advertisement are that car-enthusiasts are averse to road rules, and often break laws in order to pursue a purer driving experience. The other commonly accepted myth here is that a high-performance vehicle should be driven on long, open roads where the driver never has to stop.

Reference List:

Chandler D 2014, Semiotics for Beginners: Denotation, Connotation and Myth, Visual Memory, viewed 2 November 2015,

McCann Erickson Frankfurt, ‘Traffic Light’ [image], Opel OPC Range: “Traffic Light” Print Ad, Coloribus, viewed 5 November 2015,