if only!!!!

Started Apr 11, 2013 | Discussions thread
Daedalus2000 Veteran Member • Posts: 7,733
Re: Any suggestions...

i have spent a fair part of today reading about `semiotics` on the net, lots of it meant absolutely nothing to me as it seemed to be very close to philosophy in how its structured, and i have never been able to get a grip on anything philosophical, well not that i could understand anyway.

i then went looking for `semiotics` for dummies, and read what i found, i still dont understand it to be able to explain what it means, but i think i have realised something, and that is, we all start to learn `semiotics` from when we can first see, hear, feel, taste, smell etc. its just how we learn everthing that helps us as a race to survive.

`semiotics` is just a fancy name for what we all do, all day, every day of our lives, if we didnt naturally learn `semiotics` we would all be dead, simple.

at 55 years old, i have survived by learning thousands of various `signs` until they become second nature, totally natural and its all done without thinking about them individually.

so in my mind, its already in everyones `DNA`, thats why we are still here.


I am not an expert on semiotics, but your conclusion is correct. But, to use an analogy with driving, most of us can drive fine, but to be a formula One driver (or rally driver) you really need to understand the car, engine, aerodynamics etc. So maybe reading more about semiotics can help us be better photographers.

Now, my understanding is that semiotics is the study of signals and symbols and communication in general through symbols. The problem with academic theories is that they are not easily accessible because they have to spend a lot of time and space analysing subtle issues.

But we can all start simple. A first step is to thing what elements we have in a picture and what do we try to say with them, what meaning do we want to send.

I posted the image with the shoe and the tattoo in the other post as an example. Think, how did these two elements (shoe and tattoo) affected how you interpreted the picture? Would you believe me if I told you she was a nun? Of course not. Will your brain get excited and try to think how she looked? Of course it will. Will you interpret it differently from another person from another culture? Of course you will.

Next step is think about the symbols and signs that you use in your images and think if they tell us (the viewer) what you want us to know about your image.

And if you decide you do not want to say anything, that is fine as well.

I enjoyed this discussion,

Best, D

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