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Exploring Camera Angle Effects on the Evaluation of Faces and Objects

Wienemann, Rasmus (2009) Exploring Camera Angle Effects on the Evaluation of Faces and Objects.

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Abstract:Camera angle and -position can change one‘s perception of the depicted in different ways. The Camera angle is an often used way to make shots more dramatic as well as support the story line. Directors and photographers as well as other professionals expect viewers place themselves into the camera and judge the depicted scene from there. A high camera angle from above an actor or actress lets the viewer look down on the actor or actress. The viewer in turn will interpret the shot as looking down on the actor and adapting his or her interpretation of the scene. This effect is much utilized but not thoroughly studied empirically. Some research exists that produced camera angle effects on the perception of an actor or an object. These studies have investigated the effect in a certain context as influencing the perceived story line of pictorial events or the evaluation of a product in a fake advertisement. Kepplinger (1987) has recorded a camera angle effect when depicting an actor playing a politician and has found that such an effect is not universal but interacts with the characteristic of the politician that was measured. One angle can be flattering for one characteristic and unflattering for another. Meyer-Levy and Peracchio found in 1992 that the subjects Need for Cognition influenced the size of the camera angle effect when subjects rated a product from a fake advertisement. In this study the researcher aimed to explore some fundamentals of such a camera angle effect. The differences between the occurrence of such an effect depending if the stimulus was a face or an object were studied. Furthermore the role of the subjects Need for Cognition on the camera angel effect were examined. An interaction between the rating scales and the camera angle were also studied. A online survey was conducted with 98 subjects. The subjects were asked to rate pictures on their screen on 13 seven-point Likert scales. The pictures were of six faces and six objects were depicted from either a high, eye-level or low camera angle. Three between subjects groups were created differing in camera angle. The results were analyzed by MANOVAs and chi-square tests. A significant main effect of the camera angle was found with all faces but only with one object. Further non parametric tests support the conclusion that an interaction between stimulus and camera effect exists. The subject‘s Need for Cognition only interacted with the camera angle on one object but no other stimulus. Seven of the 13 scales were found to load on two rating factors (four and three respectively) that had been determined by Osgood et al. as early as 1957. The factors also interacted with the occurrence of a camera angle effect. The results of this study further support the findings of Kepplinger in that such a camera angle effect is not universal but rather depends several factors. Some of which could be indicated by this study but further research is needed to fully understand the effect thoroughly. The role of the Need for Cognition is not yet fully resolved as the results of Meyer-Levy and Peracchio could not be reproduced. One explanation for this could be that in their study the picture was part of a fake advertisement and the Need for Cognition might have influenced the subjects attention to the context rather than the picture. With the results of this study as a starting point future research can further inverstigate the differences in camera angle effects on faces/humanoids and objects, the role of context, the influence of the Need for Cognition (or it‘s interaction with the context) and the role of underlying factors of the evaluation of a stimulus
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
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