Project 2.1 – Image and Text

This exercise requires me to select newspaper images and write my own captions, using both anchoring and relaying text. How does the text contextualise /re-contextualise the image?

Anchor – In news stories the text that accompanies pictures is usually there to control the meaning, to stop the image from being in a manner that isn’t in keeping with the political views of the newspaper, for example. In advertising this type of anchoring text is used to fix the meaning of the image into one clear and distinct message.

Relay – In the second definition the text has equal status with the image. Image and text bounce off each other to create a fuller picture that allows for ambiguity and various interpretations.

Picture Link 1


Tempting burger: Burger King in Russia has started using ‘Tittygrams’ to advertise. Anchor
The caption here is very obvious in linking the image and story.

Alternative Caption:

Burger King act the Tit. Anchor – It directly references Burger King and how their selection of the women’s breasts as an advertising medium has not been well received.

Picture Link 2


London mayor Boris Johnson and prime minister David Cameron join a hand-printing session with children at the Advantage children’s daycare nursery in Surbiton, England. The pair have set their sights on the Scottish National Party recently. Anchor – This caption links the image of blue paint on David Cameron’s and Boris Johnson’s hands with the recent Tory attacks on the Scottish National Party. The caption and image work together to give the viewer the gist of the story.

Alternative Caption:

Cameron looking for Salmond’s blue blood in next months election. AnchorThis caption maintains a link between the original story and the image.

Cameron demonstrates why he should be Prime Minister. Relay – A humorous caption which requires further reading of the article.

Picture Link 3


Enda Kenny with Centre Parcs CEO Mark Dalby in Co Longford earlier today. Anchor – This caption helps give context to the publicity picture. The story relates to job creation and investment in Longford by Center Parcs with the development of a holiday village.

Alternative Caption:

Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny at last making himself useful as he gathers some firewood. Relay – This is very ambiguous, forcing the viewer to read the article for more meaning.

Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny takes steps towards rebuilding the economy. Anchor – Although vague, this caption is directly linked to the story of job creation and foreign investment.


It was interesting to see how captions can be used to shape the viewers understanding of the image or story. Anchoring text often allows the viewer to gain the gist of a story, without them necessarily having to read further. Where as relaying text can be quite ambiguous, leave the interpretation to the viewer. Both forms of text can be used to entice the viewer.


Webb, S. (2015) ‘Burger King under fire for advertising on models’ breasts to tempt diners’, Mirror, 24 April, available: [accessed 27 Apr 2015].

Hennessy, M. (2015). ‘David Cameron’s warning: the big bad Scots will get you’, The Irish Times, 23 April, available: [accessed 27 Apr 2015].

RTE News (2015), ‘Center Parcs promise up to 1000 Longford Jobs’, RTE News, 2 April, available: [accessed 27 April 2015].



  1. […] and fix the meaning of the image (follow the link to a previous exercise I carried out in which anchoring text was used). Campbell’s name appears in the largest font to attract the reader’s […]


  2. […] Anchorage and Relay in newspaper articles. […]


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