Portfolio – Visual messages and mini brief 1.

A visual image can be communicated in one of three ways, these include:

Representationally (direct reporting of visual details of the environment, both natural and made)

Abstractly (Basic visual elements – ‘Simplification can create a more intense and distilled visual meaning’ – Donelis)b

and symbolically (e.g. Picasso’s Dove became a symbol for the peace movement)

We were set a mini brief which was to use observation, reflection and exploration to communicate through representational, abstract and symbolic imagery, with the theme of ‘community’. Following are my 6 A5 images created along with explanations of how I was inspired to create them.



I felt that this ongoing movement is a perfect representation of community, people coming together to support a cause and each other. I decided to use this for this brief. My aim for these visuals is to show this community of masses of people coming together to support this movement for race equality through the three visual communications.


I really felt like these images put together in this representational way really communicates the theme of community. The crowds of people show this in itself, however, the clear protesting that I found displayed in almost every image that appeared when I looked this up, shown by the signs and the powerful messages that they’re communicating, really highlights the importance of community to these people. in one image people are wearing masks which shows that they’re protesting during the coronavirus pandemic, showing that this community is so important to these people that they even come together to support each other during a global pandemic. Putting their lives at risk to be part of a community really emphasises the importance of community for this specific cause and protest.


This is an abstract visual that created with the same aim as the representational, these abstract images are a good representation that clearly and powerfully communicate the community of the black lives matter movement. I lowered the opacity of the images on top of the heart shaped hands to display the many different ways that people are coming together to support black lives. The heart shaped hands communicate a sense of community in terms of well being and love race. The hands holding each others wrists communicate the theme of community in the sense of holding onto each other, but the equal amount of racially diverse wrists communicates the equality that this movement supports and is moving towards, giving a sense of hope as well. The fists at the bottom, also drawn to be racially diverse, again, show this sense of equality amongst this community and the fists in the air communicate the community coming together In protest to fight for this cause and for race equality.


Above shown is a symbolic communication that I developed from researching into the black lives matter movement. when I saw this symbol I automatically knew what it represented which shows its universally symbolic establishment. I found different variations of this symbol and put them together in a collage shown above, I intentionally positioned the symbol with the ‘black lives Matter’ typography in the centre of this frame. this symbolically communicates the theme of community as this is globally associated with the Black lives matter movement which shows that there is a wide global community supporting and aware of this cause.



Mental health awareness is incredibly important and I wanted to show the theme of community through the representational, abstract and symbolic communication. My aim for this subject was to highlight the importance of mental health awareness and to emphasise the importance of community through showing support aspects in relation to mental health struggles. Hopefully this aim will be successful for communicating a message that there is a for people who struggle with their mental health


When researching into mental health awareness and where the aspect of community falls into place amongst that, I found that friends and family are a vital part of support for people who struggle with their mental health. After searching through images that show this, I felt that these two images were most effective in communicating that in a representational way. Using Photoshop, I put the two images together and lowered the opacity of the top image to allow them to blend with each other. This visual communicates the importance of community in relation to mental health and displays this in a clear way representationally. the group of hands show unity and friendship and commitment to helping one another and the image of the woman crying and the man clearly empathising clearly communicates that there is support and empathy for anyone who needs it. The reason why I decided to only stick with just two images was because after searching through many sources, I found that the most simplistic displays of this subject were also the most powerful. Just presenting two images means minimal information for an audience to gather when looking at this visual yet it emphasises the theme of community clearly, through a representationally communicating way.


This abstract visual presented above is a mix of three separate abstract images with slight alteration. When I was looking through abstract imagery that focuses on mental health support, but more precisely, the theme of community, I found these three abstract images complimented each other really well. The first image I chose was the blurred typography that states ‘anxiety’. This word is one that people instantly associate with mental health and the way that this typography has been manipulated connotes that this abstract image is trying to communicate that someone, or people, is struggling with anxiety or other mental health issues. The second image that I chose to go along with this is the middle section of this visual which shows a person curled up and sat down as If they’re crying or breaking down and their body seems to be deteriorating from their back. This was originally all in black, I decided to alter the part of this image that isn’t deteriorating to green to match the bottom typography which overall represents how the thing that’s holding what they have left is the love that they receive from other people, this highlights the link to the theme of ‘community’ through the subject of mental health. The bottom typography that spells out ‘love’ in a heart beat monitor style, which also suggests that the reason their heart is beating is because of love and support form people around them (i.e. community). This emphasises the importance of community and support for mental health issues abstractly.


It took me longer than I initially anticipated to find a symbolic image to communicate mental health awareness but more importantly communicating the theme of community within that. I came across a few images that symbolically communicate mental health but struggled to find one that fits this theme of community. This image was the best one that I could find for this. The hands under the brain, positioned in a friendly way shows how they’re ready to take the brain and give it some care and support. I really thought that this really highlighted that all it takes is for people to be there for other people in order to support someone struggling with their mental health and the simplicity of just the hands and Brain really communicate this successfully and effectively in an abstract way.

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