In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Our media products genre was fantasy, because we thought that it was a good choice for the target audience, being children. Mainly because of Fantasy being a story where events can happen which would not usually happen in real life. The main elements of a fantasy film, are talking animals, but in our case we decided to make a talking burger, as we thought that it would relate to the children because its something they like. Also things like magical powers, that’s another typical convention of a fantasy genre, an example of this would be a film like Cinderella. Cinderella is a perfect example of the typical Fantasy genre. It contains talking animals and magical powers, which is what we wanted to use in our own children’s film and we used this as inspiration and ideas to put our ideas together.
Continued… In our group we looked at the typical conventions of an opening sequence and used this to produce our own, the main conventions of the opening sequence are;
Theme tune or some kind of voice over
introduction of characters
genre through the mis-en-scene
establish of the period
We used these points to create our own opening sequence we ensured that majority of these conventions were used in our product. We made the first shot of our product the title sequence, and also opening credits. We chose a suitable fun and bright colored font to make it more interesting and eye catching for the target audience. We made the theme clear and obvious and we wanted to have a track that was not only suitable for the narrative but also for the target audience. We also made sure we established the period and surroundings but having shots of the area where the main character was walking. Example of a title sequence.
Continued.. In our product we tried to include all of the different micro elements, our main focus first of all was the camera work making sure there were lots of shots used, e.g. camera shots, long shots, reaction shots. Reasons for this are partly because of the area being used at that time, and the background noise. These made it hard for our product to flow properly but we tried to make it up by adding a lot of editing to make it look more professional. I felt that we focused a lot of the editing and for us it was a real challenge trying to make everything perfect and look professional , I felt that our product wasn’t filmed and done to our best ability and next time maybe change of location and better more accurate shots will make a big difference and also a big improvement on our final product. Although overall I feel we really got to understand the software's we worked with e.g. Garage band. Aerial shot Reaction shot
How does your media product represent particular social groups? Our product is aimed at the family and children social groups. The interests of children's social groups tend to be areas such as, interacting with other children of the same age, they enjoy hobbies like going out to cinema and doing sporting activities such as swimming. Hobbies that children social groups have There are many different types of social group definitions and our social group falls under the category of an Informal group which basically means they lack the formality of a formal group which has lots of rules and regulations where as the Informal group doesn’t. Examples of Informal groups would be groups of friends, families etc.
Continued.. In my group we made sure that there were elements of out product that would represent our social groups. Mainly because that social group go to school everyday and deal with the social interaction that takes place. Also children love to imagine and have fun and elements of our product e.g. The talking burger can relate to the social group and represents what they do in their day to day life. Our product does not challenge the typical stereotypes but conforms them. For example we included the stereotypical “school bully” and also a stereotypical “dork”, we used these because it fits the genre and also relates to the social group we are aiming at. We tried to use the comedy when thinking about the “dork” by using certain stereotypical clothing e.g. glasses, high rucksack, socks pulled up etc things to mainly entertain the child social group.
Who would be the audience for your media product? When we first came up with the idea of our product we aimed it at children aged 8 and over and also families because we felt it was suitable for children of those ages but not any younger as there maybe things that parents might not think acceptable to be a ‘U’ for instance having things thrown at the main character main be seen as behavior that young children could copy and also it could be seen as dangerous behavior We looked closely into the BBFC and decided as a group that our classification should be a ‘PG’ as we feel that our product conforms to the requirements of a ‘PG’. We made sure that there was no discrimination or any detail of dangerous behavior, we ensured there was only mild language, natural nudity, and only small references to illegal drugs. We thought that a ‘U’ would not be suitable for our product as parents may feel that the content is unsuitable for their children and therefore not want them to see it, so we decided that it would be best to make our classification a ‘PG’. Knowing that the product is a ‘PG’ allows the audience to see that not only is it for young children but also for families and that’s also our target audience. I think that our comedy element also make it more of a family fun packed film.
Continued.. I feel that our group has worked hard and reached our aim, and also challenged things we thought we may have not have accomplished . I think we have learnt and understood how to use things like Final cut express, and garage band to the best of our ability. We tried to stick to our original narrative although it had to be tweaked slightly to background noises and lack of props. If we had the chance to change things I think we would have tried to make the shots more accurate and choose better locations where it would have been easier to film so that we got the continuity we hoped for at the beginning. I think that as a group we have tried to make everything e.g. shots, sound, mis-en-scene etc as good as we could. I feel that as a group the thing that let us down was the continuity towards to end and the fact we had to do a voiceover because there was too much crowd noise where we were trying to film. Other then that I think we reached our aim and the outcome was good.
How did you attract/ address your audience? The things that attract our audience to our product I think are the types of characters in our opening sequence, they are young, school children, in a familiar location to our audience. For example our product is set in a school, which young children will find they can relate to, also having the stereotypical costume of our main character ‘Jimmy’ and also having the obvious characters like protagonist, antagonist, and also a talking burger makes the product comical which children enjoy. I think that also the theme tune we decided to use is lively and fun and will be interesting for our target audience, young children enjoy it because its upbeat and happy, and older generations (family) will know this song so they can relate to it as well, so it attracts the young and older parts of our target audience. Screen shots taken to show examples of things that relate and attract the target audience…
What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product? For editing purposes we had to upload and capture our product to a software called Final cut express. I found that at first it was difficult but once getting used to how to use it properly the group and I found that it was easy to work with and we got to understand how to add effects, transitions, voice over's, texts. here are examples of the things we did on final cut… This is an example of the texts we added. The transitions we added From using Final cut to edit our product it has given me a better understanding of how to edit and also how to make the product look more professional and make better continuity. We also had to use final cut to edit the sounds which we created on garage band. We put the sounds onto Final cut and juggled it around, using the razor tool, and also making it longer and shorter when needed, and louder and quieter.
Continued… The razor tool We also had to get to know how to use Garage band to create sounds, and soundtracks for our product. We looked through lots of different types of songs and sounds that we could use but we did not think that any of them fit our product. So therefore we converted a song into an MP3 and loaded that onto Final cut express. Although we did not use garage band to make a soundtrack, we still got a good understanding of how to use it . When using the film cameras, we had to figure out not only how to work the cameras, but how to set up the tripods, insert tapes, and also how to connect what leads to the Apple Macs and capture our product onto the computers. Apple Mac and a tripod. As a group we quickly found out how to use the cameras, and how to use things like zoom and things on the tripod to turn the camera and till it to make certain shots. Unfortunately whilst filming we realised a part of the tripod was faulty resulting in our camera being slightly wonky, so the next time we filmed we used a different tripod so that it didn’t become a problem when filming our product.
Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product? Looking at when we first did our Preliminary task, its obvious that when we filmed the shots were not accurate and the continuity was not well done, also the costumes were not as accurate and we could have used more props, so looking at that we have definitely improved and realised that the shots need to be better, the editing could be improved e.g. transitions (fade, dissolve etc) and also the sound could be improved too making sure that its loud enough for the audience to hear, and perhaps using voiceovers or adding sounds from garage band e.g. gunshots. Since filming that we have improved lots, like learning how to use garage band properly, and being able to add voiceovers, although in the Children's film opening sequence we did not include any special effects I feel if we did they would be greatly improved. Our first reaction shot & then our second reaction shot.
Continued.. We used things like reaction shots in our product, as they are commonly used in children films and also as part of the fantasy genre mainly used to establish the reaction/expression/emotion of the particular character when introduced or faced with a new character or location. We used the long shots to show the surroundings and what the main character ‘Jimmy’ was doing and thinking in his “imaginary world.” We also used over the shoulder shots so that we could show that the “imaginary burger” is talking to our main character. The other micro elements like mis-en-scene which we also tried to focus on such as the surroundings and the lighting in our shots.