When I first saw Visual Storytelling: Inspiring a New Visual Language advertised, I thought it would help students understand the codes and conventions of an exciting emerging media form: infographics. There were many interviews with the visual artists, and I had hoped that they would include discussions of the techniques and styles, why the artists had chosen the genres and styles they did, the colours used, etc. While there are considerable printed words accompanying the images, they don’t address the graphics so much as the politics of the graphic arts business. I think the authors missed a great opportunity.
Still, the book contains a great number and variety of graphic representations of information. And unlike those that appear often on websites, the graphics are on paper, so the images are high quality and capable of close and long examination. The book therefore provides a great range of infographics from many artists and countries. It will then be up to teachers and students to observe and analyze them to build their own understandings of the codes and conventions of infographics.
This infographic was designed to explain the challenges that working men face when trying to lose weight and increase their fitness levels.
(page 236, Visual Storytelling: Inspiring a New Visual Language)
This image explains the complex steps that animated movie makers must follow in the production of a movie.
(page 213, Visual Storytelling: Inspiring a New Visual Language)
For useful links supporting the understanding and critiquing of infographics, see