Designerly Ways of Semiotics

Natacha Steyn

Natacha Steyn’s theory-based bachelors thesis is a study of semiotics through the lens of Roland Barthes, specifically his paper "The Rhetoric of an Image". She unfolds her research question of ‘Can designers use semiotics as a tool to analyze advertisements?’, discovering limitations of using Barthes' semiotic analysis methodology as a lens to analyze advertisements. Her discoveries are done through different case studies. In her thesis, she comes to the conclusion that semiotics is not a universal tool to analyze images, designs, or advertisements, due to the limitations discussed. Still, Steyn considers semiotics a knowledge worth knowing about, since it can be a perfect guide for designers to use in order to communicate the correct connotative, denotative, and linguistic message through a visual.

Natacha Steyn

So I crossed the bridge from South Africa to Germany in 2020 alone.
In general I´m a Proffesional Graphic Designer for Factor-a/DEPT agency (well that's my promotional role as soon as I graduate) .In a world of  –  being creative, hiking and sports, good coffee, sausage dogs, cultural experiences, being a tourist in many destinations  –  thats where you´ll find me! 
Fun fact about me: I really love ducks:duck_arrive:

Where do you see yourself in 20 years?

As an Art Director and design lead (maybe owning a business) working on huge projects that will make an impact :)

What is a good design for you?

A design that evokes an emotion. Something unique with a lot of thought put into it.

What was the most challenging experience during your studies?

Covid 19 :D But study-wise, definitely learning how the printing process works. I am more of a designer in the digital world.

Who or what inspires you?

All the designers within DEPT Agency based in Berlin. They are super inspirational.

Also, nature is my biggest source of inspiration🌿

How do you approach a new project?

Asking a lot of questions and researching the project before hand. Talking to other inspirational designers about the scope of work.

What advice would you give to students who just started studying in your programme?

Might be bias but, DON'T IGNORE THEORY! Especially for those who want to become an Art Director.

Also: Remember that people who give your designs critique are the ones who see a lot of potential in your work! Critique is good!

Have you changed during your studies? How?

Becoming more efficient in design in terms of soft skills.
How? By doing crappy design jobs for crappy companies, and working yourself up to better companies. Every career step is a great learning curve.

Also: being able to critique design by learning new theories and philosophies!

Why did you choose to study in your programme?

I was born an artist, doing art and creative things, my way of thinking is as chaotic as an artist, so it was very simple to me to choose what I want to study :)

What are you not going to miss in your studies?

Some old fashioned design lectures :D

How are you going to celebrate your graduation?

One word: Party!

Say hi!

Nicole Danzfuß