In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Narrative: The narrative of our video consists of 50% of the play time in our video. We intended to have the video split in to 2 sections, the narrative and then the band playing live. We didn’t include the band in the narrative instead we had displayed things in the video in which they could link to, for example their love and passion for Blackburn Rovers FC. Like many different music videos the narrative is usually separate from the music being played live, we wanted to do this to indicate the band where not part of the narrative, yet they were looking in to the life of the man in the video, stating what he needed to do. However in some videos the narrative has completely nothing to do with the lyrics of the song, however our video focused on attempting to illustrate the lyrics visually over time. Like most indie videos, jump cuts and quick editing techniques are used, in order to help quicken the pace of the video in time with the music. By doing this it helps the viewer feel the passion of the performance from the band. Which we hope will rub off on to the viewers. Making them feel passionate about the bands music and video.
Stereotypes: Our music video fits many Indie stereotypes. The main one is, most Indie videos have many shots of the band playing live, and many shots of the bands instruments and band members. We attempted to incorporate this in our video with lots of shots of the different instruments and lots of close ups of them being played. A clear shot of the lead singer and the drummer, displaying the bands identity on the drum kit. This is the first shot of the introduction of the song as the music kicks in.
Another way in which the video fits the stereotypes is the way in which the band are dressed. For an Indie band you would expect them to wear skinny jeans, pumps or pointy shoes, long macs or jackets and shirts buttoned up to the top, with a hint of the MOD era to them. Our band fits this image perfectly. Their style is unique, but you could easily brand them as Indie if you were to see them for the first time. This is also noticeable due to the boys haircuts, they all have moderately long hair, typical of an Indie band. Long Hair Long macs and Jacket Here is an image of the famous band oasis, we can see many similarities in their dress sense. Shirts and V-neck jumpers
The setting for our video is very stereotypical for the Indie genre, a working class town, up north which used to be filled with working mills. We have many shots of the local football ground which we know is also stereotypical for indie bands to show their love for their local team. We can see it with Oasis – Manchester City, Kasabian – Leicester City and Arctic Monkeys – Sheffield United. The room in which we filmed the band play is in fact in an empty room of an old mill. It makes the video look really indie and low budget which is good because this is what is trying to be implied by this genre, things aren’t supposed to be glamorous. In addition the use of many close ups both in the narrative and music scenes shows the indie genre, as there is a lack of money therefore we attempted to use many different camera angles which you can see all over the video to indicate to the viewer exactly what was going on from different angles.
Lighting: The lighting used for both the video and print products was the same. We used natural lighting, and didn’t use any additional lamps or torches. We thought by doing this then the video would seem more attached to the indie genre, as stereotypically the genre tends to use less money in it’s productions therefore lighting tends to be more natural. In the narrative we used the light in the house, and the normal daylight of the football match. By doing this it indicates that there isn’t a main focus, because if something was brighter then we may have wanted something to stand out. The settings of our footage created all the lighting in the video. The live performance was shot in an old dingy Mill, therefore the lighting was somewhat the same, dingy and rough, giving it that Indie feeling, which I feel worked very well and was really effective. It displayed that the band were more focussed on their music and not on being some sort of glamorous superstars, at the moment anyway. Other videos of the same genre also use the same lighting techniques, for example Keene and Arctic Monkeys.
Comparing an existing product Here is our Torrents video: Torrents Video I am going to compare this with an Arctic Monkeys video, and later discuss the differences and similarities of the 2 videos. Arctic Monkeys Video Both videos are similar and contain many similar features, for example the lighting in both videos is natural, and seems very dark and dingy, which indicates that both videos maybe of the same genre. In which this case they are. As we can see from these still shots, both shots display the same image, the lead singer, and they both display a natural lighting of the setting, the Arctic monkeys video displays the darkness at a gig and in ours we display the dingy run down mill.
Both videos are also similar as the both display typical indie stereotypes, for example the use of instruments within the actual video, The use of different instruments in the video is typical of the Indie genre. In this Arctic Monkeys video however there doesn’t seem to be a relevant narrative. Instead it is full of clips of the band backstage or basically playing live to the crowd, which is good as it gives the band character. There is no real storyline which in this video works. Another similarity which I feel is key, is the use of quick snappy editing. The shots in both videos aim to be snappy and quick so that the footage fits with the pace of the music. We aimed to do this as it is an effective technique in this genre. And I feel it worked relatively well.
Here is an album cover from a band called Twisted Wheel, they are a band in which the Torrents have supported, therefore I thought it would be fitting to compare and contrast their album cover with the one I designed for the Torrents. Both covers are similar as they both obviously display the band posing for the camera. It is effective as it immediately states what the band members look like. Both also display the bands name in bold white lettering at the top of the cover again immediately illustrating the bands name, showing their identities. In contrast my front cover has the album name displayed in colour at the bottom of the cover as you can see, the Twisted Wheel one doesn’t. Both i feel are effective as ours states the name of the album whereas TW tends to be simple yet very effective.
In addition both images are edited with a darker feel, TW is simple; black and white which adds an Indie feel to the cover, whereas we went for a more artistic effect which creates the image to be black and white yet seems to display the lines on the image as exuberant colours. Bold white font easily noticed. Posing band members in cheap and easy settings. Album title displayed, not apparent on the TW album.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? Here are all our anciallary print products. The inner sleeve has been lined up to what it should look like when placed in a CD case.
The page before displays our ancillary tasks, to compare and contrast this to our video go on the link below. Here you will see our video in full posted on YouTube: Torrents - We can Turn it Around Throughout the project we have aimed to use techniques to show all of our products have continuity and can all be linked together if you saw them in different places of media. For example you would see a certain feature in the music video and then link it in if you saw their album cover or on the advert which would be in a magazine. Which is important when promoting a new album because if a member of the public likes a certain element of the band in which they see then they can link them with the album and are more likely to go out and invest in the product. So creating similarities between our products was key, so that we could use continuity.
The main way in which they are all linked it that the same band members are shown in all 3 products. They are playing live in the video, and we then have them posing for the album cover which is also displayed on the advert. Therefore fans have a clear image of who actually is in the band. In addition for the photo shoot they are wearing the same clothing as in the video. This was because we took the photos after we had filmed then. I think it is effective and helps with continuity as it gives the viewers a clear indication of the bands style of clothing and image. It also gives viewers who may see the product for the first time an indication of what to expect in the video or from the print as most people can work out the genre. It gives them a sort of sneak preview, and will hopefully get them guessing so that they want to see more of the bands products. All of our products have also used the bands actual logo. This gives them their own identity and image. A simple logo but it is very strong and bold, and instantly lets you know who the band are “TORRENTS” This simple style shows something about the band also, that they are strong and cut straight to the point with their music. There is also a United Kingdom flag at the end as a full stop. It is very effective as it again shows their image, that they are patriotic and it links them with the MOD era in which they were inspired by.
On our album all the fonts are the same throughout. This gives the viewer the idea that it is all the same album and you can tell this by the font. If they were all different then the album wouldn’t look professional. However we used a different font on the advert, for the main text, this was because we wanted to show that the advert may have been from some other organisation yet it still had the album cover embedded in the center of it. Even though we haven’t used the same fonts on the advert we have attempted to have a recurring theme throughout the product when it comes to a colour scheme; blue, red and white. These are 3 meaningful colours for the band in 2 ways, 1 they are obviously the colours displayed on the United Kingdom flag and 2 they are the colours of their beloved Blackburn Rovers, where the boys are from. We then thought it would be good to film the footage outside Ewood Park, the home of Blackburn Rovers. This then adds to continuity as the theme runs throughout our products. In addition when we were shooting the band there was a BRFC flag on the wall which made it even more fitting to film Ewood Park and to use these colours throughout. Not only does it show the bands passion and love it also helps show their identities, were they are from and what they live for – a solid working class roots that are often important in the genre.
The location of the photo shoot is also the same location in which we filmed the band playing live. This again indicates a link for the viewer. They may recognise the setting on the album and relate it to the video. It was also a fairly indie setting, in an old room in a run down mill on the outskirts of Blackburn. Which you would see on regular occasions in the indie genre as the genre isn’t known for being too glamorous. It also shows again they’re working class men from a working class background, which fits in with the indie genre. This is an image the band gave us of the room so we knew what we were working with. Overall I think we have branded our products relatively well. There is a clear brand and a clear indication of the band throughout the products. They are given an identity which is consistent in all our products. However I feel we could have made more of the brand when it came down to our advert, perhaps making the fonts the same in which we had all ready used on the album cover. All in all I feel the bands identity is strong, unique and eye catching. The audience feedback which I obtained also indicated that they thought the whole branding of the products worked well as they all linked together with it being the same setting and theme etc. on the video and on the still shots. Which has to be a good outcome.
What have you learned from your audience feedback? Throughout our project we have used audience feedback to help us understand want certain audiences expect and want of certain products. We started by using a Questionnaire to find out what genre of music was most listened to in a sample of pupils from around the college, this helped us find that the Indie genre was a well liked genre therefore as we both have a liking to the genre we decided to use it. You can see this Questionnaire earlier on in our blog. Here are 2 print screens from our blog of the questions and results.
To obtain more feedback I decided to post a link of the video on to my Facebook profile, by doing this it gave the opportunity for 100s of people to see the link and go and watch it. They were also able to click a button “like” if they liked the video obviously and they are also able to comment the video which many people did. Here is a print screen shot of the link on my page; The first question which we wanted to ask was, “Is the genre of music clear?” we wanted to know and make sure it was so that we had clearly used the Indie genres criteria and elements. Here the results clearly show that our products easily indicate the genre of music displayed is clear and understandable. Therefore we achieved one of our own targets.
We wanted to make sure our video was fun and exciting for the viewer, therefore we asked them, “is the video effective and exciting?” here are the results: These results clearly illustrate that our video was exciting to the majority of the people asked, there is a huge difference in the number of people who liked it to who didn’t. This is good because we obviously wanted people to find the video enjoyable and fun. Those who may not have liked it may not be interested in this genre of music therefore they may not find it fun at all which is understandable, everyone has their own opinions. One task which we found hard during filming was making sure the audience would understand what was going on in the narrative therefore we needed to find out if they did understand what was going on. We asked them; “Is the narrative easy to understand on first viewing taking in to account the lyrics?”
As you can see from my pie chart the results are very close, just under half of the people who viewed the video didn’t understand the narrative on the first viewing. However in contrast 60% of the people did understand what was happening. Which is over half of the people. I feel we could have made it a little more clearer if we had shown the woman doing house work or more shots of her on her own. I wanted to also find out if the edited photo on the album cover was effective; As we can see from the results the majority of the people believed the image to be effective and worked, only 2 people thought it didn’t again maybe they don’t like the genre we used so therefore don’t like the techniques in which we used. We asked the 15 people if they could see a link between the video and the print products, and all 15 of them said yes. This shows we grasped continuity and created an image for the band, and some sort of brand for them.
How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages? We started our project by setting up a Google Email account. This enabled us to set up our own Blog on “Blogger”. From here we would go on to record everything we did and update all our progress throughout the entire project. So then anybody could track our project via the internet at any moment they wanted. “Blogger” allowed us to upload pictures and videos along with text. Which was a lot easier than a paper log as it never got lost, and it was easy for other people to view and access whenever they wanted to do so. For our research we used the internet especially ‘YouTube’ and ‘Google’ to find existing products which we used to find out the conventions of general music videos and then music videos of the same genre we were interested in. From ‘YouTube’ we would find videos and embed the code at the side of them on our blog. This allowed us to show the actual video on our blog without having to post a link and made it more dynamic. We used ‘Google’ to help with our print side of the project. We got images of album covers and saved them to the computer. We then uploaded them ensuring they had been saved as JPEG files.
During our research we also used a still camera. We went out in to our town and looked for possible locations which we could use in our video. We then took photos of them and uploaded them on to our blog. This helped show we used our own research and evidence. Once we knew what we were doing we went and shot our footage. We did this with a digital camera mounted on a tripod. We used the tripod in the majority of our footage in order to ensure the camera looked sturdy and strong and to show it wasn’t hand held. We could also use the tripod to pan around the area in which we were filming. Therefore the footage didn’t look shaky. This made it look more professional. In one scene we attempted to show the band on the television which was actually being shot, and to show that the people in the actual video were watching the band. We did this by having a DVD of the band and simply playing it on the television.
Once we had all our footage we uploaded it on to ‘Final Cut’. This was done with a fire wire which plugged in to the camera and then in to the back of the Imac. Unfortunately we encountered a problem, when we had uploaded all our footage we noticed that the computer seemed to have dropped some of the frames from the footage so it was therefore slower than it should have been and wasn’t in synch with the music. We countered this by uploading all our footage on to a different computer, thankfully it worked and we then didn’t have any similar problems. ‘FinalCut’ allowed us to edit all our footage at once. We were able to cut the pieces which we wanted and delete the bits which we didn’t need. We were also able to map all our footage out on a timeline which had numerous lines so we could overlap many different clips and audio lines with each other. We were also able to upload our music, which was another problem in itself. This was because the band manager sent us a MP4 of the final song which we wanted to use. However MP4s wouldn’t upload on to ‘FinalCut’, therefore we had to somehow convert the file to an MP3. We did this by using an online website called ‘Zamzar’. Here are 2 screen shots of the 2 programmes.
The first half of our music video has been edited to have a black and white coloured gradient. This is because we wanted the viewer to know that this half of the video is the half in which the character needs to change, as his wife is not happy. Therefore it is in black and white because it shows his life lacks colour and vitality. We got the black and white effect by changing the saturation and brightness of the shots up until the rewind. However we kept the band footage in colour throughout. We did this as we thought it was more effective as the band were not in the narrative, so it made this clear. Half way through the song we have inserted a Rewind, which rewinds time and indicates to the viewer that the protagonist is turning things around. We did this by reversing all the clips and speeding them up 3 times the actual pace. We then put them all together as they were on the timeline without the band clips. We also slowly turned the colour scheme from black and white in to colour during the rewind. We did this by changing the saturation back to its normal state bit by bit in each shot, getting more colourful each time. When we sped up looks really effective. On Final Cut we also added different fades between each shot, by clicking the 2 shots on the timeline and then going to the top bar and clicking on the particular fade in which we wanted. This made the transitions sharper, more effective and more professional. It also helps the footage flow more effectively, and doesn’t look rough and rigid, it’s fluent.
Another effect which we used several times in Final Cut were split screens. Here we split the screen several times and had shots smaller than usual but in different spaces of the screen. Some had 4 shots in were as others only had 2. It was effective as it made the viewer concentrate on what was happening and added variety. It was also good for us to get quick snappy shots in to these to go with the pace of the music, so the footage didn’t look to slow. To help with feedback and evaluation we then posted our video on YouTube. Here we were able to see how many people had viewed our footage and see what comments they had made. We also posted the link on our Facebooks so that more people would view it and tell us what they thought. To gather my feedback I have also used my mobile phone to video certain members of the public about my products. I have then uploaded them on to our blog. In addition I have also used PowerPoint for my evaluation, this helps make my evaluation look smarter and more professional. Using this will involve me having to use Slideshare to upload my PowerPoint on to my blog later on.