Point Blank – Real Strife Evaluation By Nadine Cowan
Aims... In this evaluation I am going to answer 4 main questions. Using these questions I am also going to cover all the work that has been done by myself and my group in order to complete our group music video and individual digipacks. The 4 main questions are;
In what ways does yourmedia productuse, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
How effective is the combination of yourmain product and ancillary texts?
What have youlearnt from your audience feedback?
How did you use new media technologies in construction, research, planning and evaluation stages?
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Marketing Aims One of the first things that we did when we started this project was to research on artist similar and different to the artist that we found. By researching similar artist we got a incite into a typical conventions of music video similar to the genre our artist was in. And looking at artist from different genre gave us the opportunity to find out what was popular in other genres and possible incorporate into our video which could lead to a wider target audience. We also did research on distribution and promotion similar to the product we were hoping to create . Doing this initial research allowed us to gain knowledge which would help us to create a music video which shows typical conventions of videos in this genre, but also a few unconventional things to makes it stand out. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
In what ways does your media product... A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
...Develop forms and conventions of real media products? Casting
The casting was of our artist friends that live in the same estate as him. This made it look more realistic and easier to film. Low budge video such as our often required friends of the artist to appear in the video for little or no payment.
Similar A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Many of these videos that have a low budget are often filmed in the artist local area were they have grown up and our video was no different.
I also believe that location is important when listening to the song as it allows you to visualise what our artist is talking about.
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
...Challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
Although the song is some what similar to music in the genre I believe that it also challenges it as it isn't recited in as aggressive way which is often the case.
Also although it is talking about the struggle of growing up he continues to talking about the hope that he has for himself and friends that are in the same situation.
‘‘Noting but love for my brother, pull each other out the struggle’’ The Song
Making the whole video black and white challenges typical conventions of videos in this genre. If Black and white is used it is usually only parts of the video and not the whole thing.
By making our whole video black and white it makes it stand out slightly to typical videos.
The Video A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Our Artist and extras don’t have a particular costume. They were told to come in what ever they felt comfortable it. We did this mainly due to the fact that the video was going to be in black and white so it would really matter.
Although grime videos don’t typically have costumes the artist and extra many have a dress code such as ‘All black’ or the same style top.
As you can see in the two pictures on the left, in the top picture they are all in similar coloured outfits and in the bottom picture they are all in the same top promoting the crew ‘Boy Better Know’
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Techniques used to create meaning... At one point in the video our artist says ‘eyes going blurry’ and we made our video go in and out of focus this connect the song with the video. He then says ‘take a walk in my shoes ’ and the video switches to a pathway in his estate, this reinforces that our artist is in his area and shows the audience ‘his path’ A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Making the video While filming we came across a number of problems; One of the biggest was with one of the cameras that we used during our first session of filming. The setting had been changed resulting in all the camera setting appearing on our raw material when opened up on editing software this set us back as we had to reshoot those scenes again. Another problem that we came across while editing was that we didn't have enough footage e.g. cut aways, so special effects had to be used to give the effect of more footage. Although we did have a number of set backs and complications i can say that making the video was a fun process . We gained knowledge on how to film a video using a digital camcord and then using editing software to put it all together. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Throughout the video there are number of shaky shots and shots that are in and out of focus. We did this intentionally as we believe that it gave our video a more realistic feel instead of something that was staged. Also the shaky shots relate to the outside location more as well.
Scorcher video to his song ‘gangsta’ has many of the qualities that our video has, and I think that its a great video. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23z15VntlZc)
Also REM video to ‘what's the frequency Kenneth ’ also has the shaky shot similar to ours video. Although it is from a different genre of music I think it fits both of them. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIOXQp-YGpQ)
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
In the studio While filming in the studio one of the main things that we had to think about was lighting. There was no natural lighting so the lights positioned on the top of the camera the was the main source of light. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
On Location; Rayners Lane estate While on location we had to be cautions of the time, As it was winter when we filmed it became dark very early, so sticking to a time schedule was important. Additionally we had to watch out for the public incase they got into one of the shots. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Digipack While filming we decided to do a photo shoot of our artist. The images in the photo shoot could then be used for our adverts and CD front, back and insides. These are some of the images that we took while filming... A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Advert These two album covers by ‘Dizzee Rascal’ were two big inspirations when creating my advert. I like the use of big bold colours and the fact that it is very simple and easy on the eye. I thought that this was key when creating the advert as it had to be eye catching and easy to remember. Also the same font is use on both album covers. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Initially this was the advert cover that I started designing. I changed it as this image is used on the front cover of the CD and I didn't think it was a good idea to use it twice. Also we took so much images in the photo shoot i thought it would be a waste to use the same image several times. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Editing I added in the 5 stars and quote. Erased the background. Changed the background to yellow. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Advert I choose the yellow as it is a very eye catching colour and can be seen from a distance. Also the colour yellow and black together has a connotation of being quiet ‘warning’ colours when together. Insects such as Bees are black and yellow and when stung by them they give off a poisonous chemical Also black and yellow tape is used is used by people such as police when cornering off a area to warn people. By using these colours it catches people eyes but also a has a subliminal message that he is a new artist that wants to be taken seriously. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
CD When making my CD pack I wanted it to fit in with the ‘grime/ UK rap’ genre but at the same time stand out from current singles out at this time, something slightly unconventional the genre as he is a up and coming artist. Wretch 32 Skepta Chipmunk All up and coming artist from the same Music Genre as our artist A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
This mix tape by Bashy was inspiring when it came to me making my own CD pack. I like the mix of reality and futuristic techniques, not to much of either makes for a good combination. It allows to show his personal style but still be recognizable to consumers. This is a roll deep album cover. Although I do think that this I a excellent album cover for our artist first single I think that all the animation may be too much. As he is a up and coming artist it is important that consumers can recognize him and his product and with a lot of animation that may be hard for them. This kind of stuff would be perfect for future single or album covers. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Front cover This is my final front cover for my CD. I think that its a good mix of reality and futuristic styles. I flipped the image. The background is a artists aspect of a cityscape. I used Photoshop to change the colour to fit in with the theme The ‘P’ in Point Blank is a font called ‘God of war’ and I used it as I think it stand out slightly to usual font, also I reflects the ‘P’ on our artist hat. ‘Impact’ font is used for the rest of the font. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Insides When doing the inside of the CD pack I didn’t want to do much editing as there was a lot of that on the front and back. I simply use two images and cropped them so they were closer up. I use a image of a microphone because when I was doing my research I found that often the inside a CD case were images or what the artist like. E.g. in the inside of 50 cent album there is a close up of just his arms with money laying on top and ‘Bling’. I Also added a quote that our artist say during the track ‘RL Real Life…’, I think this makes it more personal to him and the song. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Back cover This is the back cover for my CD pack. I wanted to keep it very simple and to the point. Use of the ‘God of war’ and ‘Impact’ font again authenticates the product. I added the ‘Parent advisory’ logo as I think it again authenticates the product as something genuine. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? Overall I do think that our music video and digipacks have a lot of synergy. All the images that I have used include our artist with headphones on this reinforces that he is a musician and is passionate about music. Again the city background reinforces that our artist is from a city. Although the background may not look like the estate that he lives on, in the song he talking about himself getting out of that area to a better place and the use of modern buildings shows were is he aiming to get. On the insides of the CD pact there is one image of a microphone and another of our artist and his friends. These two images again reinforce that our artist is passionate about music and hopes to bring his friends through in any success that he gains (this is also mentioned in the song). The advert that I created represents and promotes our artist very well. It is straight to the point yet has all the details needed for people interested in his music. Also the bright yellow background is something that is eye catching from a long distance away and also something easy to remember. Using the same font for both parts of the digipack makes it more recognizable to consumers. Overall I believe that the combination of our main product the music video and ancillary text the digipacks has created a synergetic product which all compliment each other. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
What have you learned from your audience feedback? A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Final cut raw When we completed our video to a final stage we got a group of people to watch over it and give their honest opinions. By doing this we had the change to say what we would improve in the future, but also do slight improvements if possible. This is the feedback that we got A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
It was an ok attempt. I like the Varity of shots and changing in colour of the jacket although there is a lack of footage. Really liked it, positive song, not the usual UK grime vide; editing was also good. Good, Very good! Good, Some of the clips could have been smaller. I like it! The song is good, not your typical ‘grime’ song. I feel like I could be friends with the artist. Really good, i like the use of black and white. ‘HARD’ although more extras would make it better. Its good, I couldn't do better so I'm not going to criticise. Some clips are to long! Very good editing. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Hearing the audience feedback let us know what was good about our video and also the things that we needed to changed. Overall the video was a success and everyone enjoyed it. The one thing that kept on popping up was the ‘lack of footage’ that we had used and this meant that some shots were too long and become boring. Thanks to the audience feedback we gain the chance improve those aspects of our video A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Questions Do you think our music video would be suitable on music channels such as MTV base and AKA? Has the addition of footage made our video better? A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
After seeing our video and Digipack how much would you pay for our CD pack? Would you watch our video again? A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Do you think our product is representative of the ‘Grime’ Genre? 13 people agreed that our music video did fit in with the ‘Grime’ genre due to things such as the locations, casting and message in the song. 7 people didn't agree that our music video didn't fit the ‘Grime’ genre as it didn't follow some of the conventions such as the black and white theme throughout. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Do you think that our music video and digipack is technologically advanced? 75% of the people that we asked agree that it was technologically advances, most people quoting ‘considering it was your first attempt the editing is at a decent standard and the use of black and white must have been something quiet challenging to do ’. 25% didn't agree mainly saying that some of the editing between shots wasn't sharp. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Comparing our Digipacks... We had to choose the best digipack. When it came to comparing we only had myself and Shakira to do so. We took them around asking people which one was most eye catching and which one they like the most. Shakira front and back was more popular. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
My insides won out of the two. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
My advert got more votes. People said it was more eye catching. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
What music/ radio channels will your product be air on? First I think that channel aka would be a good place to start airing our video as it is a channel that focuses mainly on British urban so our target audience is bound to watch it and hopefully create a fan base for our artist which would hopefully get our artist more well known. Flava is a music channel that focus mainly on hip-hop and RnB music but often play songs that have become popular from music channels such as AKA. And with a wider audience that AKA it would hopefully give our artist more publicity. MTV base is the most popular and commercial music channel out of the 3 and is also very popular world wide. If we were able to get our artist one this channel we have open a new door into possible in a Varity on counties. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
At 1xtra Tim Westwood presents a show between 4pm-7pm on weekdays and 9pm-11pm. He has had a lot of artist from that same genre as our artist pass through his show including chipmunk, Wiley and Tinie Tempah who all now have successful music videos playing on all the TV channels that I spoke about. Choice fm is also one of London's most popular radio stations for hip hop and RnB and similarly to 1xtra a lot of artist from the grime genre have passed through the station and had a number of there tracks played on a regular basis, including Tinchy Stryder and N-Dubz. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
How did you use new media technologies in construction, research, planning and evaluation stages? Research... When doing research the main source of new media technology that I used was the internet.
Search engines such a Google are a huge help when reaching.
Internet social networks such as MySpace and face book allowed us to search from up and coming talent.
Only magazine such RWD kept us up to date with new artist and popular trends.
A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Blogging Blog spot was something new to me and most of my media class. Usually our work would be done on the computer and the printer into hard copies. But using blog spot allowed us to upload our work online. I think doing it this was beneficial as it lessened the changed of losing our work which often happens if it is saved on a USB or Paper copy. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Making the Video... When filming we used relevantly good digital cam cords that allowed us to have sharp footage, we gained basic training before filming but also learned as we went along. Also when in the studio we use a number of Hot light to create light and dark areas, we had to be extremely careful when used them as they did get very hot (as in the name). Props such are microphones and microphone stands were used to make it more realistic and when we were on location in Rayners lane estate a portable wireless stereo was essentially so that our artist was in sync with track. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
When editing our footage we used a editing soft ware called Final cut pro. At first we hardly knew how to use the software but as the weeks progressed we all got better. The first thing we did was to long and capture our footage to get all the useable footage in once place, we put them in different folders e.g. two shot and establishing which made it easier when dropping it on to the timeline. Once everything had been sorted into different files be began to drop the clips down onto the time line, at first syncing the footage with the track but practice makes perfect and after a while it became easier. When everything was on the time line we started to add little effect such as in and out of focus (which went with the lyrics at one point) , we also used a lot of fades when changing between shots. This type of editing is a typical convention of our music video. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Making the advert / CD pack... Photoshop was the main program that I used when editing images for my digipack. Overall I didn't find this aspect that difficult as I use this program at home sometimes and in photography weekly. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
Youtube Youtube was one of the biggest helps when making our music video. When doing research it allow us to look at video of a similar genre and the type of things that were included in the video. Also it allowed us to see comments from that public about the video and the things they did and didn't like. It also allows world wide coverage of the video, artist such as Soljah boy became famous after continuously posting music videos of himself now he is internationally known. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
After just 3 days on youtube we have had some really good feedback and a good amount of views. This is promising for the future of the video and artist. 71 views in 3 days Comment ‘ARD’ A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan
After just 1 day of days on facebook we have had nothing but good feedback.
Conclusion Overall I believe that making this video had been a great experience. From the planning, to filming and finally the evaluation. I have learnt the importance of doing the boring things such as planning and how it helps you to get a great final product. When starting the projects we had to get deep into our target markets thoughts which I thought was pointless at the start but when we started planning our video it made complete sense. Also we had to deal with a number of different set back such as losing a team member and having to find a new artist, this was beneficial as things like this happen everyday and is bound to happen to us in the future. So learning how to deal and overcome these problems have become life long lessons which will help us in the future. As a team I believe that we worked well together sticking to dates we made to film and finish certain tasks by deadlines. Using new software such as final cut was a challenge at first but with most things practice makes perfect and over time we became better, also our main editor wasn't also around so me and my other team mate had to step in to do a large amount of the editing . In conclusion I have learnt that a lot more work going into making a media product and promoting a artist that what we see on TV or in adverts. Also I have learned the process of making a marketable music video and how having a hard working team is key to a successful product. A2 Media / Real Strife/ Nadine Cowan