A2 media coursework evaluationPresentation Transcript
A2 Media Coursework Evaluation Demi Macluskey
Question One In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
When beginning to plan my music video I knew that there wasn’t going to be many conventions of an indie/rock music video that I would follow. I do not have an artist or band featuring in my video which is an unusual thing my particular genre. This is a risky move as a band is usually something that an audience begins to idolise and associate with their love of the song. I decided not to make it obvious who was the artist in my video as I wanted it to be natural and as un-choreographed as possible therefore not making one particular character personally stand out from the rest and letting the audience decide who is the main character, therefore this is an feature of a conceptual music video that I did follow. I would say that my music video is a conceptual music video, according to Firth’s (1988) theory; Conceptual videos do not tell a story in linear fashion, but rather create a mood, a feeling to be evoked in the experience of viewing. This was my aim, to create an upbeat feeling within my music video for the audience to receive when viewing. A convention that I did follow in my music video was using lip singing. Although many Indie/Rock videos have a band lip singing the lyrics, I had most of my characters lip singing. I felt this was a vital part of the video as it showed that it wasn’t just any video but was a music video created to promote a song and I feel to promote a song the lyrics need to be pushed and embedded in the audiences’ mind, I think having my characters lip singing will achieve this. As like a lot of conceptual music videos, mine was shot over a number of different locations with a wide range of shots and characters, this is a popular convention with music and music videos of my genre. No shot lasts for over 10 seconds, therefore again showing the range of events happening in the video. I also used three different cameras to film my music video, meaning that the shots also have a range of qualities, this gave the effect I wanted it to by looking as though these shots are not choreographed and are natural everyday things that my characters are doing. One clip is taken off a mobile phone, I wanted to put this in to make the variation obvious to my audience. I also achieved this by not using many effects when editing, instead I cut the shots to make them snappy. With my CD cover, I did follow the conventions that had been made previously by my band. They were never featured on the music video, most of their album covers were just pictures, not photographs, but never had faces or identities on. I have done the same, with two people sat on a bench but the picture is taken from a high angle shot meaning you cannot see the faces of the characters. Although I think media products get noticed particularly for following trends and being what ever is popular at the time I think they get more noticed for breaking trends/conventions and actually starting something new. On the next slide, I have style models and still shots of my music video to show how I have used forms and conventions from real media products.
Style Model Taking from the latest series of Skins Sunshine coming through the window suggests that this is in the afternoon or late morning, a stereotypical time for teenagers to wake up. This suggests that there was some kind of social event that they all enjoyed together the night before. Number of teenagers in one double bed. This is a very typical shot used for genres that appeal to teenage audiences. It shows freedom and makes the audience envy the characters and their attitude to life. A connotation of them all being in one bed together, some still fully clothed and lying on top of each other, shows that at some point in the night, they desperately wanted to go to sleep and it didn't matter where it was. This could be trying to portray that they had been influenced by alcohol the night before. The shot suggests closeness between friends, especially seen as one boy has his top off, showing he feels comfortable with the people around him. The mixture of gender shows social acceptance between teenagers. Influencing the audience to have friends of both genders.
My Shot The wine bottle in one of the characters arms has a significant role as a prop as it shows that something, involving alcohol, has gone on the night before. Therefore implying this group is a sociable group. As this shot was inspired by my style model, it shows that I have conventions of real media products. I have tried to create a social and laid back environment within teenagers, the same kind of attitude that is portrayed through programmes such as ‘Skins’ and ‘Misfits’. The reason I did this is because it is an attitude that appeals to teenagers throughout, as they want the edgy and carefree lifestyle that most of the characters live. I used the idea of having the teenagers piled on each other, from the style model, to show closeness between friends and create a comfortable and relaxed environment between the characters.
Style Model A shot from the ‘Dirty Little Secret’ music video by; The All-American Rejects Two hands holding the card tightly; shows the characters need to latch on to these secrets and how protective they are of them. As this song is taken from the song ‘Dirty little secret’ this shot gives the audience the impression that what the characters are showing on these pieces of card, are their own ‘dirty secrets’. Handwritten; this suggest that the message on the card is personal. Although this is a still image, in the moving video, many of these shots are gathered in a fast paced sequence at the beginning of the video. In a matter of seconds there is a large amount of secrets on cardboard flashed before the audiences’ eyes. This implies that the writing cannot be read thoroughly, again pushing the idea of secrecy. The fact that there is no identification of the person, again shows the discretion and secrecy.
My Shot The colours on the card are bold and bright therefore representing a colourful person, with a bohemian feel to it. Therefore relating back to the song and giving the characters that edgy feel I wanted them to have. The way she is holding the card (front and centre) suggests the wording on the card is important and therefore relevant to the song. The handwriting on the card shows a personal aspect to the lexis. I wanted to show that my characters individually styled their prop how they wanted too. Giving a personal aspect to it. A personal aspect to a music video, or any type of media product, is a convention that is used to reach out to an audience to make the characters seem like normal everyday people from the same community as the audience. I used this convention as my music video is all about portraying an everyday life through a teenagers eyes. The fact she is winking shows a cheeky and flirtatious attitude. This represents that the song she is taking part in is a fun and upbeat song. The facial expression on a character represents what they are thinking and the mood they are in. The fact that she is acting ‘flirtatiously’ is a convention that is used within many real media products with teenage girls. The fact they are confident and upbeat, is an attraction and therefore builds an audience. The card, and message on the card, is a lot brighter than my character. This was done purposely so that the attention would be more focused on the words than the pretty girl behind it. The bright colours on the card is a convention that is usually used in a real media product, to represent a colourful lifestyle, which is usually what the lifestyle of a teenager would be described of.
Question TwoHow effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary tasks?
Our coursework is built around creating a music video and two ancillary tasks to enhance and promote it. I am designing and creating a CD cover and magazine article to help promote my music video. The artist has to be the main focus in these ancillary tasks as they are purposely created to promote the artist and sell more records. Therefore it is important that the artist is portrayed in ways which will compliment and emphasize their individual iconography, meaning the pragmatics behind the image (image writing). The aim of a advertisement poster is to attract the audiences eye in their everyday surroundings, for example, shops or newspapers. Some examples I have researched show a image of the artist and others show the CD cover of the album or single they are trying to promote. I took the direction of having my CD cover on the poster as I thought it would embed the image into an audience member's mind, therefore they will spot it easily when entering a music store. The song that I have chosen is 'Bohemian Like You' by the dandy Warhols. The song (originally) was promoted mainly by its explicit video and the amount of advertisements it was used on. For example Vodafone used the song from 2001-2004 to promote different operations all over the world. The song is a very uplifting song and therefore does well with advertising products. The clothing company NEXT used the song on their advert last year in the summer and it was in fact that advert that made me choose this song, therefore showing how important publicity and promotion is to selling records. I believe in order to have a successful promotion, there needs to be a repeated element, whether it is a slogan from the song or the title or a picture that is used many times. Therefore I am taking the approach of using the CD cover to promote my music video and artist. The background of the song is uplifting and bright, therefore i wanted to portray this in an uplifting and bright CD cover which would then be used in the advertising poster. Throughout my music video there are hand written posters that my characters hold, therefore on the CD cover I wanted my song title to be written in the same hand written font. My artist never appears in their promotion poster or their CD covers therefore I wanted to follow this convention. The use of Photoshop helped me to get the handwriting text on my front cover. Photoshop also helped make the picture brighter and bolder using different colours on the image to make it as eye-catching as I wanted it to be.
Question 3What Have You Learned From Your Audience Feedback?
(1)Me: What was your favourite bit of my music video? (1)Sister: I liked the fact that you had different characters on your white background, it gave variety to the music video. (2)Me: What could I have improved? (3) Me: What kind of feeling did watching the video give you? (2)Sister: When the still images were flashing at the beginning of the video, they could have been slower so we could have seen the pictures clearly. Also the video ended sooner than I imagined, it was quite short. (3)Sister: Excitement, it gave me an idea of teenage life.
I believe audience feedback is a vital key in making a successful media product. Therefore I was grateful for the feedback that my sister gave me after watching my music video many times. The fact that she liked the different characters on the white background was important to me as this was something I wanted to be noticeable to my audience. The amount of characters was a vital key to the feeling of my music video as I wanted there to be a variety in gender, age and nationality to show a wide range of people and to give my audience the feeling that they can be a part of something as fun with their friends, as the filming was just ordinary life. Therefore the feedback from my sister was rewarding as it meant she noticed the variety of characters and how they contributed to the theme of the video. When I asked what I could improve and she mentioned the flashing images at the beginning, although I take on the criticism, I do believe that the way in which I made the images flash to the beat is effective, however I can understand that the audience will want to be able to view the images as it will interest them to see an insight into the artist’s/characters life. After watching my music video through many times after submitting, I agreed with my sister that it was a very quick ending and could have come to an end in a more gradual way and not so sharp as well as fast. I have learnt that I when producing my next media project I will use an equal amount of time on the start finish and middle of the product. Therefore this was constructive criticism. The best part of the feedback, for me, was that it made my sister excited to experience teenage life, which is what I wanted to achieve. Whether or not the viewer was the age of my characters or younger, I did want them to look at teenage life, whether it is spent with friends or a boyfriend/girlfriend, and look forward to it or even envy. Other people also said that the video gave them an uplifting feeling every time they watched it.
How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages? New media technologies have been used in all of my coursework, from beginning to end. It started with basic technology such as the internet, to Adobe Premier Cs3 to Photoshop for my ancillary tasks.
Research and planning To learn everything I did about my band, lyrics and background, www.wikipedia.org was my main source of information. Without this website the research I had to do would have been very time consuming and probably not as accurate. The website had masses of information about my band and my song, this shows how new media technologies, such as the internet, can help produce a media product.
Research and planning I also used www.youtube.com to watch other A2 coursework examples and videos by my band as well as other videos in the same genre. Bohemian Like You - The Original Video Youtube is an easy sight to use, meaning that I could view any music video at any time that I wished. This helped me to get inspiration for my own video and be able to watch videos over and over again without any difficulty.
Music video The camera I used to film my video was Panasonic. I used a standard HP computer which included programmes such as Photoshop and Adobe Premier Pro Cs3. I used two Interfit Ex150 lights when filming my shots on the white background, this helped make the lighting look more professional as well as the quality of the shots, one of these lights was placed inside the white background to make it brighter, again this helped the quality of the shot. I used Adobe Premier to edit my footage, as this would give me the best finished product. This allowed me to cut shots to exact seconds and was an easy programme to use. Once I had finished my editing I used Photoshop to edit a photograph for my CD cover, I also used Fireworks to make my advertisement poster.