In what ways does your media product use, develop orchallenge forms and conventions of real media products?The horror film genre has been a successful genre for hundreds of years, which is whythat there are so many of this specific type of film around today. As with every genre,there is a set of conventions that help to determine if the film is actually of this genre.I felt that in many ways, my film used many of these conventions seen in real mediaproducts. I used a setting of a large isolated woods, and a dimly lit house as my settingwhich is very conventional of this genre as it signifies a ‘fear of the unknown’, mycharacters were also conventional of other real media products as I used two teenagegirls, as this is regularly used for this genre as it signifies a sense of vulnerability.
I also followed the conventions in terms of shot types, I used several over theshoulder shots, to give a sense that the character was being watched, againconventional of real media products in this genre.The media product I created challenges the conventions of a horror genre in thesense that none of the characters are murdered, and that all characters survive.Conventionally at least one of the characters is killed, which generates more fearamongst the audience, where as all of my characters survived, which could haveaffected my film by making it less horrifying.
I feel my media product developed the conventions of real media products in the horrorgenre through the way I didn’t use typical horror creatures or males as what is conventional,I developed the conventions by using a female character, and someone who is actually thefriend of the victim, yet still feel I made my film successfully scary and horror like.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?The two ancillary tasks that I chose to do are the radio trailer and poster, to accompanymy film. The radio trailer was to be a 30 second conventional radio trailer, and the posteragain a conventional horror film poster. I worked on all of these alone as I was workingindividually. This is my finished poster to go with my film, ‘The Red Cloak’.
I created this poster using Photoshop, and an Apple Mac computer. I feel that thisposter is very effective when used with my main media product. The poster retainssome elements to the story and keeps the audience from finding out anything toimportant without actually seeing the film. The poster is successful in it’s goal whichwould be promoting and advertising, making the target audience watch the film. Itgives a taste of the film. One problem that I did experience when working on the filmwas that I created the poster, before I had actually finished my film. I then changed theactress’ in my film, so the actress’ in the poster are not the actual actress’ in the film.Which is very unprofessional and highlights to me the importance of completing the filmfirst when doing future tasks similar to this project.
I feel that my radio trailer is also very effective when used with my film, I feel that the trailer is more effective than the poster as the trailer uses real sound clips from the film, and also, thirty seconds of sound can signify more than just one picture usually. I used several different sound clips in my radio trailer, mostly taken from the film. I used heavy breathing sounds, screaming sounds, and footstep sounds. I also recorded my own voice using Garage Band and editing my voice to sound more deep and conventionally scary, as most radio trailers use a deep male voice.The three, film, trailer and poster, all work very well together and create a very genuinereal media product together. Very few films are released without trailers and posters toaccompany them, so by creating these I have made my film even more conventional.
What have you learned from your audience feedback?I obtained audience feedback from many places, I played my film to my media class, andthen asked them for their feedback, I asked friends to watch the film and feedback and Ialso put my film on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube and asked my friends on socialnetwork sites to give me feedback.
Of the 3, I obtained more critical responses on social networking sites, which is likely tobe due to the lack of face to face contact. It is easier to speak your mind online, than it isto someone in person, for this reason online feedback was the most important to me asit was the most honest, and less sensitive feedback. I received overwhelmingly positivefeedback regarding my storyline, and many thought that the idea was original andunusual. However a few people around 10% of the group said that the shots that I usedwere not always fully fault through, and sometimes a different shot type altogetherwould be the better option.In my media group, the feedback was mixed and my setting and props werecomplimented, however this time sound was picked on as being too basic, somethingthat I would aim to improve in future tasks.
I then asked my friends who said that they thought the film worked very well, and thesound effects that I had used were very successful in building tension and generating fear.I then asked my actress’ to watch the film and give me some feedback on how they feelthat the editing and sound and overall product has turned out compared to the individualscenes that were filmed, they felt that the way that I had edited the film and placed allthe sounds and clips together to create the overall product was very well done, and verysimilar to what they had in mind when thinking about the outcome of the films they hadshot.
How did you use media technologies in the construction and research and planning and evaluation stages?Throughout the whole construction I used of my media product I used many differentmedia technologies. The main technologies that I used were a Panasonic HD Camera andan Apple Mac computer, which allowed me to shoot my footage then upload and thenedit and manipulate the footage into the final film. Without these technologies the task Iwas given would have likely been difficult.
On the Mac I used several different software to create my products, I used FinalCut Express to upload and edit my film, I used Photoshop to edit my film poster,and I used Garage Band to create my trailer. Final Cut Express allowed me to crop,edit and place together different clips that I had filmed and make a ‘timeline’ of allthe different scenes, making it into one big clip, which is my final film. Photoshopallowed me to edit the pictures I had taken of my actress; and change the colourand contrasts to make the image look more eerie, and to add different layers tothe pictures and Garage Band allowed me to place together different sounds andedit the speed and pitch of these sounds. All these programmes have severaldifferent tools on them, so there was literally hundred of different options toexperiment with and use when creating my film.
I used a Panasonic HD Camera supplied by the media department at my school. I used the camera for both my clip footage and also for my still photographs used to create my poster. I feel that this camera worked very well and would not have been able to do the project without it, or at least one very similar to it. I used the camera with only natural lighting and feel it looks very realistic. Garage Band helped me to create my trailer and a piece of soundtrack for my film. Garage Band was very helpful as it allowed me to create music with the track only. If I Garage Band wasn’t there for me to rely on then I would have had to create my sound in Final Cut Express by placing the sounds together, then blacking out the image and extracting the sound using a different piece of software. For this reason Garage Band was very useful to me. I regularly used the Internet to help me with my project. I used the internet to help me with research and planning by looking at different posters and trailers on line on Google Images and YouTube. I also used the Internet to get different sound clips for my film, from www.freesound.org, without this website I would have had to record all sound effects myself, rather than relying on these royalty free and free to use sounds.I also used Blogger to display all my work on my Media Blog.