Visual Metaphors

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Visual Metaphors Examples A visual metaphor is also called a pictorial metaphor and is the representation of a person, place, thing, or idea by way of a visual image that suggests a particular association or point of similarity. Modern advertising relies heavily on visual metaphors. For example, in a magazine ad for the banking firm Morgan Stanley, a man is pictured bungee jumping off a cliff. Two words serve to explain this visual metaphor: a dotted line from the jumper's head points to the word "You"; another line from the end of the bungee cord points to "Us." The metaphorical message, of safety and security provided in times of risk, is conveyed through a single dramatic image. Another example is in an ad for Canadian Furs. A female model wearing a fur coat is posed and made up in a way that is slightly suggestive of a wild animal. To reinforce intended meaning of the visual metaphor the advertiser has superimposed the phrase 'get wild' over her image. Reflection An understanding of metaphors is essential because they provide the schemes or cognitive models that are the basis of thought. Metaphor processing initially involves the cognitive process of comparing target and source, hence of juxtaposing two conceptual domains in order to find out what justifies them being aligned. Visual metaphors can enhance comprehension. For instance an illustrative metaphor is "the atom is like a solar system." It has a nucleus just as the sun is the solar system's nucleus.
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