Visual Materials Sample Essay Paper

Visual Materials Sample Essay Paper.

Visual Materials Sample Essay Paper

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Visual Materials

Student Name


Map of Paris sewers

Visual materials

A visual study is a fundamental unit of art, and if appropriately presented, visual analysis can deliver a message just like a historical text. The main aim of visual research is to identify and comprehend some of the graphic options artists demonstrate in creating art. The elements addressed in a visual analysis include pigmentation line texture and size; moreover, the visual analysis may consist of context insights or interpretations of the meaning of an artwork. Through visual examination, it is possible to have a formal analysis of an artwork. The paper aims to describe the image illustrated above, demonstrate some historical background about the image, and explain what I understand about the artwork’s time, place, or event.

Contemporary theorists of visual elements are interested in the extemporary experiences that visual elements create in a different context such as time, place, or event. About time as a context that visual elements evoke is that artwork contends a very exclusive pedagogical scenario that helps construct recent and past times; this is a very significant context of art that allows communication time. Visual elements are also important in the demonstration of place and event. For instance, various places are demonstrated through imagery culture. Graphical elements may be used to represent and mark multiple times in history radically; for example, specific imagery may mark colonialism.  

Description of Map of Paris Sewer, 1878

  Sewers are the most enigmatic infrastructure of every metropolitan area. Most of the residence in the urban centers recognize that sewer systems exist. However, they are very few that can precisely describe the layout of their urban sewer system. The sewer system replaced the medieval sewer system design constructed before (Mogilevich, 2020). At around 1850, Baron Haussmann and engineer Eugene Belgrand designed the modern Paris sewer system. By about 1878, the contemporary sewer system was approximate to be over 373 miles in length, and currently, the architecture of the map extended to over 2100 kilometers serving the residents of Paris (Gandy, 1999). There is a present sewer with the map, which is pure and beautiful, making Paris reign over other cities. 

Elements I can observe from the Map of Paris Sewers, 1878

  • Title 
  • Map scale
  • Property lines 
  • Unique identification lines such as blue
  • Redline sewer connection system 
  • Outskirts of Paris labeling 

The image demonstrated above is the Paris sewer map showing an overview of the Paris sewer system. The map is formal and requires a lot of effort to actualize the project. They are text in the image such as titles and numbers are used to denote the map number and year of representation. It uses a scaling perspective, which enables representing the city of Paris sewer system in a single piece of paper. The map does not show any pictures of people. The most crucial element is the sewer lines, which are shown in the color red. My eyes move around the map observing the representation of the sewer system, and it seems static. I can name it Pair’s modern sewer system, and the method used to create the image is through drawing. It appears flattened, and the color used is blue and red. 

                                                    Historical context

An effective sewer system is essential in water usage disease conception and implementation of public health policy in any urban area.  It was during the rule of Napoleon when Paris demanded a modern other than a medieval sewer system. The leadership commissioned Bruneseau to contrast a current sewer system that would serve Paris residence. In the image, newlines connect to the central sewage system that serves a locality; this led Hugo and Baron to engineer an underground passage used for supplying drinking water using iron piping.

The Paris sewer map of 1878 can be regarded as one of the sewer designs that demonstrate a clear architecture of a modern sewer system. Certain visual elements show urban design hence indicating the location of the visual element that has been represented through imagery. The image depicts Paris’s sewage system. It demonstrates how Paris was adequately planned to eliminate its urban waste and access clean water, which converged to the public health policy. Baron Haussmann and engineer Eugene Belgrand participated in designing a modern sewer system for Paris made the image in Paris (Weiss, 2020). The insight behind the construction of such a complex sewer system is due to a medieval sewage system in the city of Paris that was ineffective and contributed to the spread of health diseases such as the Black Death.

 The purpose of the image of the sewer system is to represent and accurately describe the layout and the physical appearance of the Paris sewer system. It defines the urban space it gets its waste out of rid. The image captures and represents a dramatic representation of Paris and the comprehensive imagery of its most important infrastructure. The picture represents the underground Paris waste system and water system that allow resolving and repairing the sewage system once faulty. It describes how Paris transformed from a city of low infrastructure to a hub of business public health maintenance through appropriate urban planning.  The image was used to appropriately outlay and represent the Paris sewage grid system and show how Paris would sewage system would be restructured to enhance urban planning and sanity.

Visual analysis

 The title of the map indicates the primary purpose of the map. It clearly outlines the scaled drawing of the sewage system in Paris and allows the viewer to comprehend the image. It marks and partitions the distribution of the sewer system around Paris (Andersson, 2021). Despite that about time, the image depicts 1878 when there was the reconstruction of the Paris sewer system. The title demonstrates by being specific that it is a sewer representation of Paris city. The map scale is used to put the information and presentation into context; this allows the map to be substantially and visually different from other maps. Mostly a scale appears like a label of specific units. Through the map scale, one can make visual analysis about the imagery representation of the area; it is possible to make a distinction that the drawing is a sewer system of a metropolitan area. The blue line sewer connection system demonstrates the primary grid that is used for sewage correction in Paris. A person can identify that this is the metropolitan main correction system that the other sewage system drains their waste through this line.

Graphic representation of the map to scale implicates that the geographical model of the area is all fitted in the drawing with appropriate measures; this is because the representation is done to scale that allows expression of all the aspired areas into a simple diagram. When the information is combined with historical context, the map portrays the place and time and the situation that led to the construction of the sewer system; this includes that the sewage system is a Paris sewage system constructed in1878 due to the demanding sanitation of the city.

The image left out a compass, which is essential in distinguishing directions such as southeast and west. The social position represented by the picture is the social importance of proper sanitation in urban centers and an adequate sewage system as an essential factor in a metropolitan. The political position of the image is that leaders need to ensure appropriate allocation and construction of proper infrastructure. In contrast, the cultural position of the system demonstrates tidiness and adequate waste disposal as a culture of the residence of Paris. The historical representation is one of the evolving modern sewage systems used in any metropolitan area to improve its infrastructure.


Andersson, P. (2021). Robert J. Topinka. Racing the Street: Race, Rhetoric, and Technology in Metropolitan London, 1840–1900. Oakland: University of California Press, 2020. Pp. 196. $85.00 (cloth). Journal Of British Studies60(3), 765-766.

Gandy, M. (1999). The Paris Sewers and the Rationalization of Urban Space. Transactions Of The Institute Of British Geographers24(1), 23-44.

Mogilevich, M. (2020). A World of Waste. In The Architecture of Waste (pp. 216-233). Routledge.

Weiss, S. (2020). Making Engineering Visible: Photography and the Politics of Drinking Water in Modern Paris. Technology And Culture61(3), 739-771.

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