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Apply narrative to one of your coursework productions

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  • 1. Sian LynesApply narrative to one of your coursework productions.Narrative is a vital component within my A2 pop music video for my primary target audience ofyoung females adults aged 16-24 years for the song "Living Dead" by Marina and the Diamonds. Thiswas fundamental to create meaning within the narrative for the audience to decode the text and forit to be entertaining.The juxtaposition of the title of the song "Living Dead" was exercised through the use of binaryoppositions, as theorised Levi-Strauss. This allowed two opposing conflictions to be visible to theaudience through the misé-en-scene. This can be seen as the indoor scenes provided a warm hue,with the artist seen in a happy state, as seen in close-ups of her smiling. In contrast, the outdoorscenes at night time had dark undertones, especially with the dying foliage. This was reinforced bythe artist wearing a red dress indoors, representing her "living" state opposed to the black dressworn outdoors to signify her "dying" state. This allowed the audience to immediately decode thatthe story of the narrative involves two conflicting state of minds which enhanced the repeatabilityand interest of the storyline.Additionally, the music video was based on Andrew Goodwins Amplification theory of narrativewithin music videos. This allowed some retention to the lyrics of "Living Dead" whilst still beingsubjective for my audience to apply their own reading. This was seen through the use of Todorovstheory of narrative through original equilibrium, disequilibrium and new equilibrium. The originalequilibrium can be applied to the first few shots of the music video, where the artist does not pickup the 1950s rotary telephone. The disequilibrium is seen when the artist answers the phone andthe disequilibrium is continued throughout the video as the artist is shown through close-ups whilstlip-syncing to whoever is on the other end of the telephone; connoting she is having strugglingrelations with the recipient, mostly likely an ex-boyfriend. The new equilibrium is restored when thefinal shot of the music video shows the artist putting the phone down and smiling. This narrative isclosed as the ending of a fade out is used to signify it has finished. The post-editing of a fade out isone my audience would recognise from other texts. By adopting Todorovs theory of narrative theaudience could follow the storyline distinctively whilst using Goodwins Amplification model allowedthem to apply their own negotiated reading.The mise-en-scene was also important in establishing the narrative and the relationship of the artist.The indoor scene setting of a bedroom for example suggested a voyeuristic context and reinforcedthe sexual allure and private life of the artist. The low-cut red polka dot dress for the costume andapplying make-up within the indoor sequences suggested by artist wanted to feel desired by apossible male spectator, adhering to Laura Mulveys Male Gaze. Whereas this was challenged in theoutdoor scenes of mid-shots of my artists putting her hand in front of the camera lens, denying amale spectator viewpoint, providing connotations to the audience that she didnt care. RolandBarthes Symbolic Code can also be applied to the costume as the black dress worn outdoors as theartist can immediately assume her behaviour will be menacing, and a stark contrast to what theyhad previously seen in the indoor scenes.Overall, I believe that the narrative for my advanced portfolio was successful as it enabled theaudience to be engaged throughout right until the final shot of her hanging up the phone. Themeaning of the video was polysemic, it could be decoded that the artist struggles to live lifeindependently or that she has found a new happiness by moving forward with her life.

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