Color signification in digital multimodal compositions: A descriptive analysis of undergraduates’ digital videos

Illias Karasavvidis

Punctum, 5(1): 67-91, 2019
DOI: 10.18680/hss.2019.0006


Modern digital technology allows users to compose multimodal ensembles that combine aural and visual modes. Video editors allow users to manipulate the color of visual imagery through effects. While effects unlock an extra layer of semiotic potential, empirical research has not examined how novice users utilize color-related effects to communicate meanings when creating digital artifacts. The present study analyzed 46 digital videos created by a cohort of undergraduates who attended a digital media course. The examination of the digital videos showed that only one in three video projects involved the use of effects for changing the color of the original image and video resources. A closer analysis of these video projects indicated three main patterns of color-related effects: defective, inconsistent, and consistent. Two video projects from each category are analyzed in detail, examining how the students utilized the semiotic potential of effects for manipulating color. The study is concluded with a discussion of the main findings and directions of future research.

KEYWORDS: digital video, video effects, color, multimodal composing
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