In this unit, I’ve learned about visual rhetoric, argument, the composing process, and myself as a writer. Specifically, for visual rhetoric I’ve learned about the different genre conventions such as photo essays, comics, and infographics. I learned more about these when we worked in groups to list the summaries of each genre convention as well as the do’s and don’t’s.
For photo essays, I’ve learned more about how much prior planning goes into picking the right photos to showcase your argument, and what they should include to appeal to the specific audience. Such as the angle the photo is taken, the lighting, the mood that it gives off, the effect of being black and white or in color, and the descriptions needed in order to make the argument explicit.
For comics, I’ve learned that even though most of them contain humor or satire, they still need to make an argument. They also need to be cautious of what they’re showcasing, and make sure that it’s appropriate and not too controversial. They also need to be cautious of the spacing within the actual comic and relay the argument through characters, objects, and a setting behind them. I ended up switching from an infographic to a comic because I felt that it helps my audience see the argument better and address the emotion behind it better. I also found this genre convention more fitting because my topic is often joked about on social media platforms, so it makes sense to use humor in my medium.
Infographics need to be organized while being creative, colorful, and visually appealing to their intended audiences. They also need to contain statistics or facts, but not include too many numbers that it’ll confuse the audience. The statistics should also not contradict or weaken the argument, but instead should strengthen it and back it up with concrete data. At first, I was going to use an infographic for the medium of my visual argument project, but after attempting to research data about my topic I found that there wasn’t enough statistics to create a strong enough infographic.
When I first started the composing process, I looked at all the mediums to see which one was best, and decided that a comic would be most fitting for my topic and would address my argument in the most effective way. I looked at many comic strip generator websites to create mine, but after browsing around and trying out different ones, I decided to draw my own on Photoshop and Illustrator. I’ve used them in the past in classes for projects so I’m knowledgeable on them and am able to create the visual argument that I like the best and best addresses my topic and audience. I also liked this option better because I love graphic design and hope to incorporate it into my career one day, so I will be able to feature this in a portfolio. It also gives me a bigger sense of accomplishment that I’m able to make it on my own and able to portray exactly what my vision is.
As a writer and looking back at the first writing project, I realized and learned that I need to use less subjective reasoning, and more objective reasoning. Although opinions can help support arguments, they can also weaken them. The goal of this assignment is to address my intended audience and make my argument explicit, so using less opinion-based claims is something I’m working on and continuing to learn for this assignment. Additionally, from the first writing project I didn’t ask as many questions about the rubric and conditions, and needed to. I will now ask more questions on clarification and ask for advice and help when need be. Regarding research, I need to look at different sources that appeal to similar audiences but address the same topic. In my first version of my previous writing project, I used the same sources for both reports but needed to use different ones with different audiences. So far for this assignment, I’ve learned that I need to look at multiple sources in order to grasp the overall feelings and moods that they address in order to make my claims and argument effective.