is the occupy movement getting more colorful?

post by srt0 and christo

Mean hue of May Day / General Strike Posters compared to Other OWS Posters plotted over hue spectrum [click for full image]

Occuprint.org collects and distributes posters inspired by Occupy movements all around the world.  For the May 18/19th hackathon, our group looked at Occuprint’s collection of almost 400 posters.  Our main aim was to explore possible relations between image properties such as brightness, saturation, and hue, and intent or purpose of a poster. There were several broad categories that we used to for classification.  On the visualization below, the y-axis indicates the brightness of the images by the categories on the x-axis that represent the poster types.  In order from left to right:

  • financial inequality
  • May Day
  • strike/labor issues
  • occupying a geographic space
  • misc
  • occupying an idea/concept

Using a collation of Occuprint thumbnails, we first extracted the image properties to create a set of comparable measurements.  Then, we used ImagePlot to project the posters by category.  Plotting such measures as mean saturation by mean brightness made for visually appealing aggregations, but deriving meaning from many of them seemed a stretch. For this reason, we categorized the images to see if content correlated with image properties.

Brightness distribution of 334 posters uploaded to Occuprint

Overall, our most colorful and brightest category was May Day inspired artwork that did not mention strike.  Although strike posters appear to have a high proportion of low brightness images, tow of them, Striking Kites and Strike Arrows, were especially bright. Lastly, we made a few photo montages using the collection (just for fun).  This one to the right is sorted by mean saturation. Our next steps for this project will be to more carefully assign poster labels.  Due to time constraints, the names were used to inform the labels.  However, labels are not mutually exclusive and viewing the actual poster would help to increase the confidence of out labels and likely help assign many of the images that appear in `misc’ to a more accurate assignment.

Other image property explorations

Median Hue (x) by Median Saturdation (y) of Occupy Posters produced in Brooklyn, New York, Washington, Oakland, Los Angeles

Median Hue (x) by Median Saturdation (y) of Occupy Posters produced in Brooklyn, New York, Washington, Oakland, and Los Angeles. These are the top five locations producing posters for the Occupy movement self-identified in the OccuPrint database. Many Brooklynites prefer to identify their work as produced in Brooklyn rather than New York City.

Hue distribution of Occupy Posters by Women, Men, Crowds, Animals, and Objects [click for full viz]

May Day X strike X Occupy space