Visual Narrative and Cognition

Research on Visual Narrative and Cognition focuses on understanding how cognition influences perceptions in the context of visual storytelling. Cognitive principles help to understand the interaction among visual elements in a narrative; further applying those understandings in Design processes enhance the effectiveness of conveying information, evoking emotions, and engaging audiences with a narrative.

The understanding of how visual narrative affects cognition in creating perceptions may lead to the following key areas that the Department is interested in: 

Sequential Information Processing: Visual narratives use images, graphics, and illustrations to convey a story or message. By understanding cognitive processes, such as attention, memory, and comprehension, designers can create compelling visual narratives that are easy to follow and remember. Visual narratives involve a sequence of visuals that need to be processed in a particular order to understand the story. Cognition research involves organizing visuals in a logical sequence, using clear visual cues, and ensuring the flow of information aligns with how the brain processes information and further helps designers to optimize this sequential information processing, ensuring that users can follow the narrative smoothly without getting confused or overwhelmed.

Visual Metaphors and Analogies: Visual metaphors and analogies can help users understand complex concepts by relating them to familiar experiences. Cognitive research informs the use of visual metaphors and analogies in design. By leveraging familiar cognitive associations, designers can create visuals that resonate with users, making it easier for them to grasp abstract ideas. 

Visual Hierarchy and Attention: Cognitive principles guide designers in creating effective visual hierarchies. By employing techniques like contrast, size, and placement, designers can direct the viewer's attention to key elements in the visual narrative, enhancing comprehension, and storytelling impact.

Emotional Engagement: Visual narratives have the power to evoke emotions in the audience. Understanding how cognitive processes influence emotional responses allows designers to create visuals that resonate with users and elicit the desired emotional reactions. They can use colours, imagery, and storytelling techniques to create emotional connections with users, thereby influencing their perceptions and actions.

By incorporating cognitive principles into the design of visual narratives, designers can create more impactful and memorable communication experiences. The combination of visual storytelling and cognitive understanding can lead to enhanced user engagement, effective knowledge transfer, and improved user experiences.

Faculty: Subhajit Chandra, Snigdha Banerjee.

Associated Faculty

Subhajit Chandra

Assistant Professor

School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Snigdha Banerjee

Assistant Professor

School of Humanities and Social Sciences