Processing visual metaphor
A study in thinking out loud
This article explores the mental operations people undertake when they encounter a visual metaphor. First, an integrated theoretical model of visual metaphor processing is proposed. The model is then empirically evaluated: in a think aloud task, six participants were presented with twelve pictures containing visual metaphor and asked to verbalize their thoughts as they looked at the pictures. The experimental materials represented four different genres: political cartoons, magazine advertisements, educational illustrations and paintings. The findings enable a more precise description of what happens when people attempt to reach understanding of visual metaphor. The results have implications for building theory around visual metaphor processing, as well as empirical research on the interpretation of visual metaphor.
Keywords: think aloud method, aesthetic processing, visual metaphor processing
Published online: 15 July 2013
Cited by 16 other publications
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