Image types revisited. A texto-material approach for creating image types

Authors

  • Seraina Tarnutzer USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Institute of Digital Technologies for Communication (ITDxC) https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3256-3783
  • Katharina Lobinger USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Institute of Digital Technologies for Communication (ITDxC) https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1735-9269
  • Federico Lucchesi USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Institute of Digital Technologies for Communication (ITDxC) https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7812-3148

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.24434/j.scoms.2024.01.3894

Keywords:

visual methods, visual analysis, image type analysis, texto-materiality, close social relationships

Abstract

In visual communication research there are already several methodological approaches for creating image types. These approaches work with creating typologies based on the representational features of visuals / image motifs, reducing the complexity of extensive visual material. However, we argue that in everyday visual communication, the meaning of images depends largely on the practices in which they are embedded and not on the motif. This paper’s aim is to propose a methodological design for an image type analysis that considers both the representational and the artifact-related component of images, following a texto-material understanding of images. We illustrate the procedure step by step through an empirical study that explores visuals in couple relationships in Switzerland. The method enables a qualitative analysis of a large number of visuals that combines a) the creation of image types and b) a dynamic approach to in-depth visual analysis. Image types resulting from this procedure are more heterogeneous in motifs compared to previous traditions of image type analysis but allow for considering both the visual and the material dimensions of visuals, e.g., practices in which images are embedded. The approach builds on existing methods and contributes to the advancements of methods within visual communication research.

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Published

2024-05-08

How to Cite

Tarnutzer, S., Lobinger, K., & Lucchesi, F. (2024). Image types revisited. A texto-material approach for creating image types. Studies in Communication Sciences, 24(1), 103–121. https://doi.org/10.24434/j.scoms.2024.01.3894

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Section

Thematic Section: Images, clusters and types