Bree’s Visual Rhetoric

  1. The feelings I have towards these pictures are different for each image. The first image of Marilyn and Kennedy is a beautiful picture that gives me conflicting feelings. It makes me look back at the American culture and the conspiracy theories surrounding our history. I have always idolized Marilyn and thought Kennedy was a great president, probably my favorite. But, I think about the affect they had on people. They were both having an affair, yet became idols for thousands of people for years to come. Marilyn was a sex icon. What does that say about America? We idolize beauty and sex?  The image of Pearl Harbor makes me sad and angry. It makes me angry that Japan would attack us on our own soil. It also makes me angry to think that so many men and women died that day and the years to come at the end of the war that followed. The Star Spangled Banner with the flag gives me great joy and pride. To be a part of the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave is an amazing feeling. Jackie Robinson was the first African-American baseball player. I have always admired baseball, and it is an American sport. But this was a big step in American History and it makes me excited to think about the amazing baseball player he was, and that he lead America in this movement. 9/11/2001 was a sad day in American History. Thousands of people died that day. It breaks my heart to think of the lives lost that day and terrifies me to think that this kind of attack could happen to our country, on our soil, at any time. The first Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims and Indians was a huge deal for America. It was at this point that America started to develop in to the country we know it as today. I like to think back to the joyfulness and happiness that was shared on that day. The coming home kiss warms my heart and makes me happy and hopeful. The final image on my board is the child holding the sign. America is constantly murdering and killing each other. It has been like this throughout out entire history. It saddens me that a child is protesting the fight between African Americans and Police Officers. I only lived through two of these events. Yet, I feel strongly about all of them. You do not have to live through an event to understand the impact that it had, or the meaning behind the event.

2. Several of the images below creates a virtual emotional experience for viewers. I believe that the picture of the couple kissing in time square provides the most emotional experience. Without knowing the context of the photo, it is still a heartwarming and beautiful picture that appeals to the emotions of others. The images of 9/11 and of Martin Luther King have the ability to take people back to those days and remember them. Whether you were there or not, it is likely that you have learned about it and can be taken back to that day. Images of Marilyn and John create a visual image of love, beauty, secrecy, and deception. While each image provides a specific emotional experience for me, they will have a separate emotion for everyone that looks at them.

3. There are several different tones to these twelve images. The picture from 9/11, Pearl Harbor, and the child holding the sign bring a negative tone. They take us to a time or death and destruction. These are times of tragedies, whereas other images are happy. The image of Marilyn and John, Coming Home Kiss, Jackie Robinson, The first Thanksgiving, and Martin Luther King Jr. give off a more positive tone. These images show smiling and happy people. They have a happy tone. The other images portray a patriotic tone. For instance the Star Spangled Banner and flag provides a tone of pride and happiness. The photo of Susan B. Anthony shows pride in the women as they fought for women’s rights, as well as the pride in her accomplishments and our history.

4. Overall, there is not a specific audience. The only image that I can decipher a specific audience is the last picture of the little boy. If you look closely there are a group of African Americans and the sign has the blue line. This shows that the targeted audience is the African Americans and the police officers. I think that images from time periods such as Pearl Harbor and JFK have a likelihood to appeal to older generations, where as images of the child have a tendency to appeal to younger generations, based on the fact that they lived through different events and cultures.

6. I believe that the technical features of these photos makes a difference in some cases, but not others. I believe that the black and white of the Pearl Harbor photo, as well as the angle helps provide the emotional appeal as well as the intended message. I also believe that if the angle of the Coming Home Kiss was altered, it would drastically change the perception. If the picture was taken as a close up, it would still be emotionally appealing, but not as strongly as with the people in the background. The atmosphere surrounding Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. makes the picture memorable. Without the crowd and the historical Washington Monument, this would just be another picture of MLK. But, the crowd and the position of his hand, we can remember that this was the “I have a Dream Speech” in front of the monument in Washington D.C. The crowd in front of him shows the impact he had on the people and history of America. The angle of Jackie Robinson’s helmet flying off as he slid in to home plate shows his talent. It helps show us that he was dedicated and an amazing player. If Jackie was just standing in his uniform somewhere, we would not truly get to experience his efforts on the field.

7. I don’t believe that the photographer or creator’s made any difference. It would not change the meaning or credibility of the images.

8. I believe that these images presented together allows us to see the struggles and accomplishments of the American history. It allows us to see that America has suffered hardships, but has overcome them. For example, we see Pearl Harbor which was a tragic day starting our journey in to WW2. We then see the Kiss in Time Square, symbolizing the end of the war. These two photos show the downhill and the uphill of that time period. I think that the images together not only show our ups and downs, but also places that we need to improve. We see Jackie Robinson and Martin Luther King Jr. making a difference in the African American community and working towards equality. But, then we see at the end a picture of an African American child still trying to end discrimination. As well as trying to stop the tragedy in America. While we see the end of the war in WW2, by seeing these images put together, we see that the war in America has yet to end. But we also can see that there is hope for us to overcome this war in our country.


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