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How Games Of Thrones achieves some of its storytelling without words

Game Of Thrones visual storytelling

As many of you will be aware, Reddit is a great community resource, with sub-reddits for every conceivable interest. As a massive Game of Thrones (and by extension A Song Of Ice And Fire) fan, I spend quite a lot of time on r/gameofthrones and r/asoiaf.

Besides all the memes and tinfoil-hat theories, there are also a lot of discussion posts, and fairly regularly there are very carefully considered and well-thought out entries that cover everything from episode recaps to contextual history.

One that caught my eye this morning was this one on r/gameofthrones called “GoT and Visual Storytelling” from user branchey, which takes a look at some of the clever visual choices made throughout the series so far. Whilst the books are incredibly detailed and offer a lot more detail, the medium of television allows for a different kind of art, and branchey has used their knowledge to analyse a good number of different techniques the HBO show’s creators and directors have utilised.

[quote-symbol symbol1]One of my favorite visual storytelling techniques is simply illustrating what is happening in the scene with composition, lighting, framing, etc. Probably the most popular example of this is Ned’s choice in the pilot episode. Simple scene composition illustrates the choice he must make between family on the left and duty/honor on the right. It’s also a good reflection of Ned’s character.

The post talks about scene illustration, foreshadowing and visuals that details character relationships, amongst others. The middle of these is particularly interesting to me; whilst branchey kindly only talks about already-seen foreshadows and what comes to pass, but it teaches the watchers to be vigilant, as there is so much that can be read into, allowing the more keen-eyed amongst us to predict future events.

There’s some great stuff on there, but as ever, beware of spoilers. The mods are as vigilant as the Night’s Watch, but some stuff does slip through.

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