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Writing Guide with Handbook

17.9 Portfolio: Interplay Between Text and Image

Writing Guide with Handbook17.9 Portfolio: Interplay Between Text and Image

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this section, you will be able to:

  • Articulate your use of images in light of their rhetorical context and elements.
  • Analyze images rhetorically both in and out of academic settings.

The consideration of visual rhetoric is not merely an academic exercise. Because visual and digital images are ever-present, thinking critically about them is a meaningful way of interacting with the world, reflecting on attitudes and behaviors, and communicating with others. You can apply what you learned in this chapter by considering the images surrounding you: those you see on advertisements in public spaces, those you view on television and other streaming services, and those you see and post on social media platforms.

Interacting with Images Online

As you add your essay to your portfolio, continue conscious and reflective practice in your own writing by thinking about an image you recently posted on one of your social media platforms. Consider the following questions, returning to “Reading” Images as needed.

  • Does it contain information open to interpretation?
  • What is its point of view?
  • How is it arranged?
  • What colors or symbols does it use, and what associations might these have for you or others?

Draft an analysis of your own image-posting behavior to include in your course portfolio. The purpose is both to showcase and continue practicing the writing skills and techniques you learned from this chapter and to assess and reflect upon the ways in which you interact with visual and digital images. Remember to include the following elements in your analysis:

  • Introduction. Establish the context. Material here should include relevant information about you, your posting platforms and behaviors, and the image you posted. Should you choose to write a persuasive piece, your introduction should include a thesis statement identifying your position and one or more reasons for it.
  • Paragraphs with clear topic sentences. Focus each paragraph on a technical element of the image, and ensure that it contains a mixture of description and either reflection, analysis, or persuasion. Begin each paragraph with a topic sentence identifying the paragraph’s focus.
  • Image(s). Because you are describing and assessing the image you posted, a copy of it will go a long way toward helping your audience understand it. If the image is in the public domain, embed it with a citation. If not, embed a link so viewers can see it on the Internet.
  • Citations. Understanding context often requires research. Furthermore, images have creators who deserve recognition for their work. Follow MLA guidelines to cite all of your sources, including the image.
  • Conclusion. Go beyond summarizing to identify future image-posting practices that you intend to consider and would encourage others to consider.

In conclusion, this chapter explains the concepts associated with both visual rhetoric and writing about visual and digital images. Through the numerous examples, analyses, and procedures outlined here, you can connect your personal and cultural experiences to the visual and digital images with which you interact. In doing so, you can make meaningful connections with a variety of audiences, permitting a broader understanding of the world and its many visual depictions.

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