This week Laura presented ‘what is a narrative?’
A narrative is an account of connected events, or something that tells a story through what is happening, has a strong beginning, middle and end and strong characters and a story storyline that speaks by itself.
A linear narrative is a storyline that has a strong beginning, middle and end.
- Introducing the location
- Giving the story a ‘face’
- Letting people tell their own story
- Contextualizing those stories
- Following a dramatic form
- How can we use a narrative in our photographs?
Developing a narrative – you should consider the following questions:
- What is the issue?
- What will be the events/moment shown?
- Who are the characters (if needed)?
- What is the context/what do you want to show?
Single image narrative is predominately seen in photojournalism and the media, whereby they have to tell an story using a small about, or one image, to grab a viewers attention.
Multiple image narrative National Geographic location illustration
Text can be used to enhance a meaning to an image, provide context for the viewer in the form of a caption, title or small piece of writing and can also be included within the image.
There is of course the argument that a ‘good’ image does not need words to explain it; that the picture should speak for itself. Some pictures can indeed be self-explanatory; the images of Maciej Dakowicz’s for example tell their stories without the need for accompanying text. http://www.maciejdakowicz.com/cardiff-after-dark/cardiff-after-dark-photos/ Images can also be deliberately provided without a textual explanation in order to force the viewer to interpret the pictures using their own terms of reference, with the photographer willingly handing over authorial control.