Techniques in Ivory Trail, by Victor Keleher

Essay by seaweedHigh School, 12th gradeB+, May 2004

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The Ivory Trail

The text 'The Ivory Trail' represents many kinds of journeys. One of the most obvious journeys represented in the visual is the literal or physical journey. But underlying this The Ivory Trail could be also seen as an imaginative journey. The imaginative journey is depicted through the use of numerous visual techniques.

The setting of the visual can be seen through the Egyptian pyramids, the Sphinx and the word 'ivory', which all links with the country of Africa, giving the place a sense of exoticness and adventure. This allows the responder to visualise the protagonist's physical as well as the imaginative journey through his perspective. The presence of the pyramid denotes a past setting, while the use of the sand is also significant in that it represents the vastness and flowing of time, both the sand and the pyramids reveal to the responder that the journey may involve going into the past of time and preservation, adding a feeling of endlessness about the journey.

At the foreground, an extreme close-up of an adolescent boy dominates the photograph. The direction of the boy's gaze leads the responder towards infinity and the future, as if he is absorbed into an imaginative world of his own, the gaze's oblique angle is very voyeuristic, as if the boy is intertwined into his own imagination, while the swirls of the sand seems to intermingle with the boy's face, creating a pattern of a trail that leads upward towards the Sphinx and the tableaux. This provides the responder with the insight into the boy's imaginative journey or world.

The lighting and the dominant colours of the photograph also aids in depicting this imaginative journey. The excessive use of the colour red signifies with the desert, the heat and the Sun, while...