Summary

The objective of my image is to communicate the new law in Australia whereby parents are now required to vaccinate their children if they wish to receive child benefits from the government. The concepts and messages that I have attempted to communicate through the use of visual imagery include the abuse of power, the negligence of not getting vaccinated and the lengths people will go to in order to obtain money for survival. In terms of the abuse of power, it is evident through this new law that the Australian Labour government is using money as a means to manipulate people toward achieving a certain goal and agenda. This new law also places a spotlight on the people who don’t vaccinate for various reasons and who are putting others in danger by doing so. Lastly, the final concept lies in the fact that there are guaranteed individuals who will now vaccinate their children in order to obtain money – which may be essential for their survival and livelihood.

The first major component of my image which communicates the previously mentioned concepts is the composition. I have arranged the subject matter of my image in a way that imitates the ‘Creation of Adam – Hand of God’ fresco painting by Michelangelo. The reason I have chosen this composition is that it represents the power relationship between Australian parents and the Australian government. The hand which holds the vaccination reflects the hand of God, and the child’s hand reflects that of Adam. I have also chosen to limit the colour of my subject matter, and I have chosen a complementary colour palette with accents of red. In order to utilise this colour scheme I have added an orange hue to the skin and have highlighted and brightened the blue examination glove within the composition. In terms of colour, I have also darkened the area around the child’s hand and brightened the area around the examiner’s hand. I have done this in order to further highlight their respective positions within the relationship of power. Another component of my image is the use of money within the syringe itself, and dripping out of the syringe in a liquefied manner. This is to highlight the fact that, for some parents, vaccinations are purely a means to financial gain and stability, even though their personal ideology may be against vaccinations. Another interesting element of within my image are the emphasized veins on the hands of the child. These were added to in an attempt to communicate the idea that some individuals regard vaccinations as harmful and threatening to well-being, therefore I have darkened the blood of the veins to represent this. To further emphasis this I have also made the hand of the child sickly.

The main elements of knowledge I have applied to the manipulation of my images are the concepts and theories regarding colour, composition, semiotics and image manipulation techniques. Out of these the most important has been composition and semiotics, as these elements directly relate to my use of the ‘Hand of God’ arrangement from Michelangelo’s painting.

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