Images now flood our writing lives, whether on the pages of newspapers, magazines and academic journals, or on the screens through which we access Facebook, Flickr, and YouTube. It now appears clear that visual literacy—the ability to "read" and "write" with images—will soon become as important as literacy proper. In this course, we learn how to decode the arguments that images make and make our own arguments with images. We study the emerging academic field of visual rhetoric as well as the examples of it we find in the media to become more effective visual communicators ourselves: we learn to think and to persuade with images. Students complete three projects, ranging from PowerPoint presentations to documentary films that analyze the rhetoric of an argument. The course is helpful to anyone interested in becoming a writer in the age of multimedia (and any of us with a blog or a Facebook profile is now such a writer) as well as those interested in related fields such as web design, film and videomaking, and business communication.
Prerequisites: all demonstrations are performed in Final Cut Pro X and Motion, so students need either access to the 53 Church Street lab or their own copies of Final Cut Pro X and Motion. Students do not need any previous familiarity with these products. Each student also needs access to a video camera, either one of their own or the cameras available at the 53 Church Street lab. (4 credits)
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