Semiotics

In yesterdays session we looked into how symbols can be iconic, Symbolic or index. We looked into how an image of a dog means dog no matter where your from. we recapped how icons have physical resembles of what your intending to show. e.g. a tree, Britain or a man/woman. These images can be identified as what they are and have a understanding what they are trying to show without words. next are symbols, these are often an abstract image that stands for something. such as recycle, peace, no entry. We all know what these signs are however the don’t relate in anyway to what they mean such as the peace symbol. A circle with a line though it and 2 lines coming out of that line in no way means peace but this abstract symbol has become symbolic and we call know what it stands for now. lastly we have index, this is still an sign however this sign is only culturally correct. Such as a toilet, analog clocks and throw away coffee cups. These are all things that can be turned into an iconic sign however these have different rules because they may not exist in a different country. such as a toilet may be a simple icon to us but it is an index as some countries dont have toilets therefore would not understand this sign. Because it isn’t a universal icon it then falls into being a index.

we then looked into known brands such as cocacola, nike, apple, google and mcdonals. These logos are symbolic as they are abstract works of art that had become recognisable though out the world. No matter if no words are include or if the logo was changed if they kept the basics you could still understand what it is.

I then had a go for myself making a new sign that everybody would be able to recognise to anybody who hasnt seen it before. As you can see above I have used the symbol that is a No entry sign, However is used alot as a DO NOT ALLOW sign. Then behind the sign i anded a Penguin. This then means DO NOT ALLOW PENGUINS or No Penguins. I thought this was boring so I added a Fag in the penguins mouth. It now means DO NOT ALLOW PENGUINS TO SMOKE or No Smoking Penguins. either way works but at the end of the day you know what im trying to say though a sign.

I then moved on to making a redesigning a Brand icon. I took apple and basically swaps the symbolic apple to a iconic apple. I made it keep its leaf onto and also had a bite taken out of it so it looks the same but just changed it from a symbol to an icon.

I found todays session quite useful as I know for a fact how index icons have been used and I dont understand but also how symbol and icon signs are very useful. I recently have been to Japan where I know very little of there symbolic language. So when it is written down I have no chance of understanding it compared to if it was written in the alphabet I use in English. I came across lots of signs such as EXIT, ENTER, NO SMOKING, METRO, JR, FOOD and brands but also many more. These signs are simple and easy to understand though images so you dont need to rely on the text to explain what you need to know. However this wasn’t always true as the Japanese use symbols for there alphabet they seem to use it a lot in there signs which i was unable to understand. Not only this some some images where not clear and lots was happening so them signs also where hard to understand. Lastly some images where clearly shown but due to me not living in the country I didn’t understand. These signs are all index as the only are intended for that culture and not the world. an example is that one sign i was was of a hippo wagging it tail, I thought this was cute however little did I know it was a warning sign meaning that hippos wag there tail and to be aware of flying poo which wasn’t as present as I thought.

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