So… How can an image communicate meaning?
In the media the use of camera aspects and mise en scene are used to convey a narrative and are used to represent individuals, groups of the public, events and many places. Every single part of a scene represents something and tells the audience a story, and therefore expresses emotions.
Within mise en scene there are six categories:
costume, lighting, acting/proxemics, make up/hair, props, and setting. This spells clamps that can be used to help remember the sections of mise en scene and to make sure you take into account each sector to help result in a powerful photo or piece of media.
Mise En Scene
All these parts can tell a character’s story or express a certain feeling to the audience, the setting of a photo would tell us of the person or object in that specific shot. All of the categories are interlinked to each other much like the media ecosystem, these parts are all as equally as important as the other and really help to put an image together to make it effective. Mise en scene can be clearly expressed in the tv series Downton Abbey, where the two classes of characters upper class and lower class are differentiated through the use of mise en scene. Whereas the upper-class characters wear suits and expensive dresses to state their importance, the lower class servants wear simple clothes with dark colours to show they have no power or significance juxtaposing the rich. The setting in Downton Abbey is in a mansion which displays the money the rich have and what they can afford, within the house the colours further convey the money and power. A red carpet flowing down the stairs represents royalty and shows the audience that these characters have importance, the many paintings presented in this mansion show that the money the upper class have has been passed down, it is old money.
For the camera uses, framing and movement are very important to help further express the feeling the mise en scene is trying to portray. along with these two ways of analyzing the distance, angles and aperture are vital. Depending on angles a person in a photo can be viewed in juxtaposing ways, but as with mise en scene, how the audience views the person also relies on the distance and framing. The importance of camera framings in scenes is vital to produce a successful piece of work to show to a specific audience, in movies all the shots taken are analyzed so that they have a response that the producers wish for. In chicken run the shots taken display a powerful feeling to the audience there are long shots and close-ups, in one scene there is a point of view shot when a character is calculating the chickens. By using this type of shot it creates a sense of suspense as we see the chickens from that character’s point of view, it is ominous and we get to experience the chickens’ fear. Along with these camera angles the distances and focus on certain objects also add to the narrative, how the photo is set out is very important in media production.
By knowing about mise en scene and the camera I will use my knowledge to professionally layout designs on what reaction I want from the audience. I know which angles and distances to use to get the most successful response, I now find it easier to be able to tell a story from a photo and have it convey a powerful narrative. I am looking forward to designing my own proper work with a better more experienced mind in the area of how to create effective media for certain demographics.