Our music video is for ‘San Francisco’s Earthquake’ by Baby Lemonade. The song revolves around a person’s mental health troubles and the consequences for them and for others, and our video focuses on his behaviour and responses to this illness.
In what ways does your music video use and develop forms and conventions of other media texts?
The music video’s content and style is typical of the rock/electronica genre as it echoes a horror theme with the manic dancing, along with the singer’s and plastic baby doll’s full-face make-up, which creates an intertextual reference to The Joker, a cartoon antihero well-known in popular culture for his psychopathic and schizophrenic behaviour and shocking violence against civilians. It also contains many close-ups of the lead singer to enhance his status, which is often requested to be a main part of a music video by record companies.
The ancillary products – including the CD + DVD digipak and the magazine advertisement – use and develop conventions of other media texts. The digipak’s artwork consists of only stills from the music video and lyrics from the song used in the video to create a visual link. It follows the forms and conventions of other CD and DVD digipaks as it contains a track listing and the running times of the album and DVD extras, a link to the band’s and record company’s website, the band name and album title on the gatefold, the compact disc and DVD logos, a parental guidance logo, a BBFC rating (an 18), the production company logo (Sony BMG), a barcode, credits and thanks, a back catalogue of the band’s albums, and further information on how to contact the band.
The magazine advert follows same colour scheme as the one in the digipak and uses the same font for the writing, to create a visual link between the two ancillary products. It also follows the forms and conventions of other magazine adverts as it contains a title displaying the band name and album name, a picture of the digipak in the centre, a star rating and a review by a magazine that follows a similar genre of music, a BBFC rating, the compact disc and DVD logos, a parental guidance logo, and a release date.
In what ways does your music video challenge forms and conventions of other media texts?
There are no whole band performance scenes which are typical of this genre, but manic dancing is used instead to portray the character’s unstable mental health. Also, videos within this genre are typically set in studios or at live gigs, so by shooting in a snowy forest – which could be seen as a romantic venue – we have challenged conventions within this genre.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
The pre-production stages show development of ideas and themes. We took the mood-board into account when styling our performer and editing the video (with warped effect and increased contrast). We kept to the storyboard, and our good planning made the editing process easier as the timings were well thought out.
My digipak and magazine advert are closely related in style and theme to video; I used stills taken from the video as the album artwork, the colours in all of the text are taken from the stills, the lyrics from the song are featured overlaying some of the photos, and a ‘techno’ font is used throughout to represent the electronica style of the song, and to create a visual link between the music video and the ancillary texts.
What have you learned from your audience feedback?
Comments made by our target audience (mainly young adults) described the video as ‘amazing and creepy’ and ‘scary’, and one said ‘you've done a wicked job’. This is the response we were aiming for as we wanted to create something original and off-beat; music videos within the rock/electronica genre can become clichéd as they mostly feature whole band performances, whereas ours features a performer with schizophrenic behaviour, more common with a movie genre such as horror or mystery.
How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Research: Youtube – to view other videos of a similar style or genre. Slideshare – to create Powerpoints for analysis of other music videos, the questionnaire results from our target audience, and to create a mood board, Survey Monkey – to create questionnaires appropriate for our audience’s opinion.
Planning: Hard-disk camera – to film indoor and outdoor scenes in video. Issuu – to upload production schedule, proposal and treatment. Slideshare – to create Powerpoints to outline the health, safety and permission details. Adobe Premier – to create video using effects (grading, warping) and cutting. Adobe Photoshop – to edit stills from video to use in digipak and magazine advert.
Evaluation: Ning – to analyse our uploaded work so far. Youtube – to upload our final video cut for others to analyse so we could collect audience feedback.