In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? In our music video we wanted to move away from glamorous stylised videos expected and appreciated by main stream audiences. We wanted to focus on a narrative and contrast music video making with film making. We chose not to use regular close ups as we challenged ourselves to create a promo and artist that our audience could engage with not just on the surface, but also musically. Our main locations were well known London landmarks, this creates a sense of regularity, but it was our choice of a train station, park and a semi-detached house that really created the sense of verisimilitude that we were looking for. This also challenges the commonly used music video locations such as a studio or performance arena.
Our artist does not sing the whole way through our music video, we chose for this to happen to challenge the conventions of music videos. We felt that the artist should only perform the rap verses of the song to create a multi-dimensional character and personality. We wanted our artist to have many levels like a real person as an alternative to the celebrity singers and performers of today who create voyeuristic music videos preventing the public from really understanding and connecting with their music. When the rap is performed our artist is cheeky, confident which works well with the tone of the song. During the narrative of the video our artist is more shy and optimistic, and the lyrics become more powerful.
We used diegetic sound to remind our audience of reality; we are marketing our artist as a real person who is passionate for his music and is not a commercialised and manufactured band or singer. The graphics that we inserted and created post-production show an additional way in which we challenged the conventions of music videos; this is a way in which we emphasised the lyrics of the song and the meaning that they had to our artist and to the audience as well. We wanted them to put themselves into the song to reflect a time in their life where they felt the same as our artist.
Beyonce-Single Ladies, a high production music video. Our location research in London and Worcester Park Station. Voyeuristic music video, Shakira-Gypsy http://www.islandrecords.co.uk Island Records is one of the biggest UK record labels which we researched. Pete John, rapper. Pete John.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
We believe that our media products are very effective, we chose to follow Goodwin’s theory of creating a relationship between the lyrics of our song and the visuals that we created. This is very effective in creating a positive feeling through our music video which is emphasised and made stronger through our ancillary products. Our MySpace, Twitter and YouTube accounts accompanied with our digipak create the perfect promotion for our artist and his first single.
Our digipak represents our artist as an up and coming, singer songwriter with natural talent through the relatively ordinary locations edited with images of our artist posing naturally. Our twitter page in particular allows our artist’s fans to follow his day to day life and gain a real insight into John Paul.
The links to similar artists and bands on our social networking sights allows us to gain fans and reach a wider audience with the psychographics which we identified as fitting to our genre and artist.
Another of Goodwin’s theories was that there is a relationship between music and visuals in a music video, this is true in our music video especially as we chose to edit with the beat of the music, as the tempo of the song was not too fast this worked well with our narrative based promo. Editing in this way amplified our aim to show our artist as a real person and promote our song.
The ancillary tasks also need to reflect the music that our artist is writing, the hybrid genre of our artists music being rap, techno and alternative makes for an interesting accumulation of styles available to us for our music video, social network sites and digipak which we tried to utilise to the best of our ability. The powerful images of our artist mixed with florescent graphics and positive tones of his music creates an effective product.
What have you learnt from your audience feedback?
The first research task we undertook was to create a questionnaire to gain some feedback from our audience about our genre and what they would expect to see in a techno/rap music video. We then used this information to create a balance between following and challenging the forms and conventions for a video of our genre, for example many of the people we questioned expected it to be set in a club or concert which we decided would be very difficult to execute to the standard that we were looking for as we did not have access to these locations.
The feedback we had during the editing stages of our work was extremely useful; our product was still in the progress of being made with many of our key elements missing or incomplete. We originally planned not to have our artist singing at all in our video, this however seemed to be too much of a challenge to the music video conventions and we re-filmed the rapping verses of our song to include our artist performing them. This was very successful, we separated this aspect from the rest of the promo by making it black and white, this allows our audience to connect to our artist as his personality and passion is expressed during this scene.
We found lighting our locations very challenging when filming outside in particular, we re-shot a lot of our footage to improve the lighting conditions after getting feedback from our audience that the poor lighting ruins the quality of the filming. We had to work efficiently to finish our filming before it got too dark.
Once complete, the feedback we received was largely positive, it was commented that our video was re-watchable numerous times; this was the response that we were aiming for as music videos are played over so many media platforms such as television music channels and the internet. Music videos therefore have to be interesting enough to sustain the enjoyment of the audience for numerous viewings. The song which is about love is very upbeat and we tried to encompass this in our video which gained a lot of recognition and good responses.
Our Questionnaire Audience feedback before completion and after completion. Our Twitter page.
How did you use media technologies in construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Technology is vital to the creation, promotion and distribution of music videos and their artists. The creation of our product would have been very difficult without digital technology; the advancement from analogue filming is extremely significant. Camera equipment is much more accessible to amateur film makers and this enables us to make professional quality products at a much lower cost.
Our research, and in fact every aspect of our work was posted on our blog, this was an ideal way to display our work through linking to websites, taking screen shots and embedding videos which inspired us in addition to uploading our own creative and research work in many formats.
Our MySpace, artist research, fast and slow sequence and mood board from our blog. http://iminlovecoombe-media.blogspot.com /
The internet and social network sites create numerous opportunities to promote an artist or band; we made Twitter, MySpace and YouTube accounts aimed at both digital natives and the forever widening audience of the internet and these sites. Twitter enables our audience to “follow” a celebrity and their every move, MySpace however allows us to post concert and tour dates, photos and music videos to a typically younger and more musically interested audience as opposed to an audience focused on the celebrity culture that Twitter attracts. It is important to remember that this is still a valuable audience and one which can be very influential on other user generated content sites such as internet chat rooms and blogs which rate music and therefore can effect the success of an artist.
The process of convergence through technologies such as the iphone allow our audience to watch our music video on YouTube, listen to our song on the radio, follow their movements on Twitter, or download the song to listen to on their iphone. This is key to the distribution of an artist and their single or digipak which can be purchased from these android technologies. We made sure that our products were therefore compatible for these devices and that we maximised the distribution of our video over these media platforms.
We used imovie to edit our music video in, this enabled us to successfully sink our music to our video and our artists’ rapping, and edit to the beat of the music. We used Photoshop to create our digipak, and LiveType to create and position our additional graphics once we had finished the editing of our promo. These programmes are vital to the success of our music video as mistakes in the miming or off-beat cuts make the video seem unprofessional and distracts the audience from the connection we are creating with the audience our artist and his music through our music video.