Props as Signifier

We were taught the Signifier and Signified in our third week of class and had to choose and object to illustrate both concepts. I chose an empty drink bottle that was full earlier when I bought it before class. Well here’s what I got:




A direct representation of the object would be as such. In the 1st image, a drink. The 2nd image, a prop in the popular game of “Truth or Dare” among youngsters (more info about the game: and lastly, in the final image, the bottle as something that can be recycled.





Following the signifier, these set of images are the signified. The way they are shot connotes a new meaning to the object. For instance the first image, the bottle is balanced on the palm to establish the sense of gravity. The second image shows the inside of the bottle where the symmetry and geometrical interior design of the object gives it the look of one peeking into the eye hole of a kaleidoscope.  In the final image, the bottle is taken from an illusioned point of view, making it look like it’s a vase holding the stalk of flower. The bottle is actually in the foreground of the image while the stalk of flower in the background.

To conclude, I found the exercise interesting despite having to rack my brain for ideas on how I could shoot the object and give it a different connotation. But it was through this exercise of having to illustrate these concepts (Signifier & Signified) on objects we can easily find around us that made it clearer how something can have new meanings to it when shot in a different context rather than in its literal function.

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