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Eyelight enhances perceived emotional responses in cinema
Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Moving Image Production. (ISTUD / Audiovisuella studier)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2006-4522
Dalarna University, School of Language, Literatures and Learning, Arabic.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9343-1878
Dalarna University, School of Language, Literatures and Learning, Japanese.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8111-7603
2022 (English)In: Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, ISSN 1931-3896, E-ISSN 1931-390X, Vol. 16, no 3, p. 389-399Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Eyelight, in the eyes of a human portrayed on film, is a cinematographic means to augment the vividness of expressed emotions. This is used by both cinematographers and stills photographers, and it is also expressed in Anglo-Saxon, Arabic, and Japanese literatures. Here, the effect of using eyelight in the cornea of the human eye on film is examined by eye-tracking individuals on a Swedish university campus, in order to study their perceptual responses to film characters, with, or without, a glimpse of light in their eyes. The participants’ perceived capacity to discern the emotional states of the film characters was also tested. Eye-tracking data were analysed for entry time, fixation time, dwell time, hit ratio and revisitors, while emotional decoding was captured through a self-report survey, and by open questions. Our results demonstrated that film viewers’ attention is captured 49% faster, and 11% less time is used per fixation to film characters’ eyes, when eyelight is used. In addition, 58% of our participants claimed that emotions were easy to discern from eyes in the eyelight condition, whereas only 36% claimed that emotions were easy to discern under the no-eyelight condition. Although our results concern the subjective impression of one’s ability to discern the emotions of each film character, they offer preliminary support for the idea of using eyelight to enhance emotional communication in film and stills photography.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2022. Vol. 16, no 3, p. 389-399
Keywords [en]
eyelight, catchlight, film characters, eye-tracking, emotion
National Category
Studies on Film Design
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-35762DOI: 10.1037/aca0000383ISI: 000733027600001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-35762DiVA, id: diva2:1513357
Available from: 2020-12-30 Created: 2020-12-30 Last updated: 2023-03-17Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full texthttps://psycnet.apa.org/record/2021-21163-001

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Swenberg, ThorbjörnBerg, LovisaJonsson, Herbert

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • vancouver
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  • Other style
More styles
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  • de-DE
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  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • asciidoc
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