1. In what ways does my media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
Genre characteristics <ul><li>There are 3 styles of music video; Concept, Narrative and Performance. </li></ul><ul><li>Concept: A series of images that can match or contradict the mood of the song. They do not include a plot and they usually create or pinpoint a message within the music. </li></ul><ul><li>Narrative: Almost like a short film as they involve a plot that includes characters, sets etc. They can either fit the story of the lyrics, or be based on the theme of the song. </li></ul><ul><li>Performance: The artist/band can be seen playing the song. </li></ul><ul><li>My music video for “Everyone Cares (but no one can help)” falls under the category of ‘Concept’. I have included images and ideas that relate to the song’s mood and lyrics, but form no real story or narrative. </li></ul><ul><li>I chose this style as I feel that the acoustic genre of music suits images of nature, rather than a plot based video. </li></ul><ul><li>I researched into music videos for the ‘Acoustic’ genre and found that most use images of nature as it is seen as an almost ‘raw’ form of music. I decided to use this theme within all my products, but I have tried to add my own unique twist and effects to make the artist original and new. </li></ul>
The lyrics also formed images within the mind, rather than create a story that is easy to follow. I think this is much more suitable as you could draw the audiences attention to the ideas and themes behind the music using the images. For example: “ Always would I hold out my hand, Feeling for fingers” paints the picture of a hand being held out, and someone else holding on to that hand. This is an image I used within my video, and I think this exaggerates the meaning behind the lyrics (people caring, but no one can help with your problems). This is an example of how I used Goodwin’s principles as one is to “Match visuals to the lyrics” as I matched the image provided from the song to what can be seen and I think this is extremely effective. Establishing a relationship between music and visuals
I have tried to include images of nature within all my products. This is so the artist is instantly recognisable as audiences will relate him to this theme. I also wanted to follow some of the conventions of acoustic music, and using images of nature is one of these. I also decided to use an image of a guitar on my album cover and website to emphasise the fact that Chris Sheehan is in fact an acoustic musician, and also to show he is a solo artist. People will see the images and instantly recognise that this is acoustic music, and therefore the connection has been made between the audience and the products. The effect of ‘contrast’ was extremely important within the branding of my artist. Within the video, I found that if I raise the contrast of the images, they become more vibrant and aesthetically pleasing. This contrast gave me the visual style I was looking for as it seemed to make the images stand out a lot more, and this is important in creating the identity of the artist as you want them to stand out and be unique. I then used this contrast effect on all of my products and I think it made them all extremely effective. Below you can see an example of my product before adding contrast, and then after adding contrast: Visual style and brand identity within my products
<ul><li>I decided to use various editing techniques to improve the variety and keep the audience interested and entertained. Some of these included: </li></ul><ul><li>Blurring </li></ul><ul><li>Fast cuts </li></ul><ul><li>Fade </li></ul><ul><li>Long clips </li></ul><ul><li>All these are typical editing techniques used within music videos. They are often used to emphasise and exaggerate the mood and feeling of the song. For example, when the percussion enters within my song and it becomes more dynamic, I used faster cuts and more energetic images to match the sound of the song at this point. Whereas, when the song is slower nearer to the beginning, I used longer clips of calmer images to match the tranquillity. </li></ul><ul><li>At the end, as the song is fading out, I decided to use a fade to bring the video to an end. The song has quite a slow and calming ending, so I decided to make the fade slow to match this. This is effective as it marks the end of the song, and leaves the audience with a feeling that they would like to hear more of his music as it doesn’t end abruptly. This is a technique used within many music videos as it increases the interest of the artist. </li></ul>Editing techniques
<ul><li>I followed many conventions when creating my digi-pack and website. I had learnt from my research that there were certain points that were included on most example, and I decided to include many of them. </li></ul><ul><li>For example, on the back of the digi-pack I included: </li></ul><ul><li>This is the record label, production company and the bar code. All these are included on most CD's and Digi-packs and are an important feature. I also included the copyright information. I researched many example and created one of my own using the relevant information.Here is what it says: </li></ul><ul><li>(c) 2011 HMOD Productions / Hammond design / Distributed by HMOD Prodcutions / All trademarks and logos are protected and are used under license from HMOD Productions / Recordings by 50/50 Recordings / All lyrics are copyright of Chris Sheehan / </li></ul><ul><li>Made in the EU: 83472348292834 </li></ul>The conventions I followed to create the digi-pack and website
<ul><li>I also followed the convention of including the artist's name and the title of the album on the front cover. This is important for a less known artist as you need people to recognise and establish a connection between them. This is different for a more well known artist as they can use techniques such as not included their name, or the title (such as the very famous example of the white album by The Beatles). </li></ul><ul><li>Another example of how I followed conventions was including the track list on the back of albums. Once again this is very important as it creates that interest and interaction with the audience. </li></ul>The conventions I followed to create the digi-pack and website
<ul><li>I also used certain techniques when making my website. For example, I included a header at the top of the page that included Chris Sheehan's name and a cropped picture from an image I had used for the album cover and within the music video. </li></ul><ul><li>Other conventions I followed were : </li></ul><ul><li>Including buttons </li></ul><ul><li>A latest news box </li></ul><ul><li>Copyright information </li></ul><ul><li>A background image </li></ul><ul><li>One that is particularly effective is the music player that I included at the bottom of the page. This is extremely important as new listeners will go on to the webpage and automatically hear one of his songs. This immediately creates the connection between the audience and the product. It also increases the audience interaction with the website. </li></ul>The conventions I followed to create the digi-pack and website
2. How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
<ul><li>I tried particularly hard to try and create an image for the artist across all my products. I achieved this by using certain techniques. </li></ul><ul><li>I tried very hard to use similar colours between all my products. I decided to use an almost orange/brown colour as I think this perfectly suits the acoustic genre and the sound of the music. Here is an example of how I used similar colours throughout: </li></ul><ul><li>I achieved this mainly by adding contrast to all the pictures. This contrast proved very useful as it made all the images throughout my project to become more vivid and eye catching which is very important when promoting a new artist. </li></ul>Creating a brand identity across all of the promotional products
<ul><li>I also used the same Aparajita in my two ancillary tasks. I decided to use the font for every bit of text on both to emphasise that this is his identity. Audiences will recognise the font and automatically relate it back to the artist. This increases the connection between the audience and the products. </li></ul><ul><li>I also chose to use the same two images within all three products. The first is the picture of a road that seems endless. I decided to use it as I feel that it is a very effective and impacting picture that grabs your attention. This effect is needed to create an audience for the artist as they need to feel as if they are unique, new and interesting. </li></ul>Creating a brand identity across all of the promotional products
<ul><li>The most important image I used was this picture of an eye. </li></ul><ul><li>I used this image extensively, including it in my video, digi-pack and website as the main focus point. This was very important as it is a very effective image. It grabs the audience and they become intrigued by it. It's very impacting, and this is very important in creating that interest. The audience needs to have this kind of impact to become involved and engaged with the artist, so this is why it was a good image to choose. I also wanted to follow one of Goodwin's theories which is to “Include the notion of looking”. It is used to create a new layer of connection with the audience as they are almost brought into the video and experience it from another level. This again is extremely useful as the audience need to be as involved as possible to want to know more about the artist and ultimately become a fan. </li></ul>Creating a brand identity across all of the promotional products
<ul><li>I think that I have successfully created a brand identity for Chris Sheehan throughout all my products. I have used the same images, the same fonts and the same colours to create an instantly recognisable theme. The image of the trees and the road relate to his acoustic music as it is a very common technique to use pictures of the environment on the advertising for this genre. I have used the eye to draw in the audience and allow them to feel very connected with the products, creating a new level of understanding and intrigue that they can explore and lastly I have used a very basic, but effective font to emphasise his traditional yet unique and different style of music. </li></ul>Creating a brand identity across all of the promotional products
3. What have I learned from the audience feedback?
The questionnaire 1) Did the video suit the style of music? If so, was it effective? 2) Did you enjoy the music video? 3) If yes, what did you enjoy? If no, what did you dislike? 4) Is there anything within the video that you think should be altered? 5) Do you think my video matched the conventions of the ‘Concept’ genre of music videos? I asked a mixture of classmates, friends and family to answer these questions and write down their answers The answer to question 3 can be found in a video on my blog.
4. How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Movie Editing Software <ul><li>To edit my music video, I used an editing program called Adobe Premiere CS3. I have had a lot of experience with this software, so creating the best possible music video was a much easier task as I knew how to use each effect well etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Using premiere to edit a music video was quite an easy task. You can be very precise with cuts to match the tempo of the song almost exactly. I tried very hard to make the video flow well, meaning that I tried to match colours between clips, keep the tempo of each clip very similar and re use images several times within the video to make viewing very easy for the audience. This would allow them to connect deeply with the media and understand the messages and themes behind the song. It would also increase the interest for the artist and therefore allow the audience to engage with him by listening to his music or visiting his website etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Again, changing the contrast of images within premiere is very easy, but it creates a desirable effect that works well. You can also raise the brightness of a clip (which is sometimes needed after increasing the contrast) and this once again makes the video more aesthetically pleasing. </li></ul><ul><li>Another effect I used several times within my video was the layering of one image over another. You can tweak the opacity of clips so that two or more can be seen at once. Here are some examples of where I used this effect: </li></ul>
<ul><li>To create my ancillary tasks, I used a piece of image editing software called Photoshop. Once again, I have had a lot of previous knowledge with this software, so I decided to make both my Digi-pack and my website on it. It is very useful and manipulating images is quite an easy task, so I tried to create the most interesting pictures that I could. I could contrast, and double layers of text, create round edge rectangles for the website, manipulate the most minuscule of details and create images with many layers. For example, my website had a total of 32 layers, all combining just one image. This is extremely helpful and you can change or edit any layer you choose without disrupting the rest of the images. You can also make each layer invisible if needed. For example: </li></ul><ul><li>If I needed to edit the background image - </li></ul>Adobe Photoshop
<ul><li>For my video, I filmed with my own Panasonic digital video camera. Although the picture quality isn't the best, the video was very easy to use, edit and transfer. This is due to the fact that all the film was stored on the the HDD (hard drive) in the camera itself. All I needed to do was attach it via USB, and just copy the files over. This is a lot quicker, easier and simpler than a traditional camera that records on to tape. Another very useful feature is that it film in clips, whereas on a tape it is just a continuous length of video. This is very useful as you can easily pick the best clips out from the masses of different videos, and delete the ones that are unneeded. </li></ul><ul><li>I also used a tripod to film all my shots. The tripod I own is very sturdy and versatile so getting the best images possible was very easy. For example, I used several pans during my film, and these could look smooth due to the sturdiness of the tripod. It also has legs that extend to a great length, so getting shots from a higher angle is easier. </li></ul><ul><li>Lastly, for some of my still shots and photos (the ones used within the ancillary tasks for example) I used a Fujifilm Finepix HS10 digital camera. This is a high quality camera that takes HD photos. This was very useful as it made some of the more important shots look a lot better. It gave my work a more professional look, and also makes the products a lot more attractive. </li></ul>Camera and equipment
<ul><li>I used several pieces of software within my blog to improve it and make it a lot more interesting. First of all, I uploaded several videos to Youtube throughout the project and then embedded them within my blog. This is very useful and interesting as it gives a new insight into the decision's I made as just text can sometimes be quite boring. For example, for question 3 of this evaluation I decided to film myself talking about it as I am able to give a more personal response to the feedback I had received. This was also extremely effective when demonstrating how to use a green screen. I was able to visually demonstrate the process and allow the viewer to fully understand what happens and how. </li></ul><ul><li>Another useful technique to use on the blog is the picture uploader included within the post screen. I was able to upload photos, pictures and images to describe and emphasise what it was that I was describing. This is sometimes a lot easier as you can fully exaggerate what it is you mean. </li></ul><ul><li>Lastly, to upload this evaluation I will use a website called SlideShare. This is a website that allows you to upload presentations from PowerPoint or OpenOffice Impress and then embed them on to the blog. This allows someone to view my answers without leaving the blog, therefore increasing the ease of use. </li></ul>Software used within my blog
<ul><li>Probably the most important part in creating my desired music video was the use of a green screen. I personally had only had a slight bit of experience, so it was a new, enjoyable and exciting prospect for me. I bought mine at the start of my project, and used it many times to try and learn the techniques and figure out how to make it look as good as possible. What I decided was that it worked best in natural daylight and to keep the screen as flat as possible, as shadows or wrinkles on the sheet cause the effect to not work properly. The process of using the green screen became easier however, as you begin to learn what works well, and what doesn't. Adobe Premiere was very useful as it includes the 'Chroma Key' tool that allows the removal of the green to happen. This is what it looks like when I apply the effect: </li></ul>Green Screen
<ul><li>When I came up with the idea for the green screen dancing images, I thought of three ways I could do it. Firstly, as in the pictures on the previous slide, I wrapped the green screen around a hula hoop so it made a circle. My sister then held on to the back and danced with it in her hands. This turned out very well and I thought it suited the music perfectly. </li></ul><ul><li>The second idea I came up with was for her clothes to have the picture on too. For this I had the idea that if she wore the green screen like a belt, then when the green was removed, some of the black of the clothes would be too. </li></ul><ul><li>Lastly I thought that I would make her use the green screen like a cloak. I had doubts that this would work due to the wrinkles and lumps that would be found when the screen was moved, but instead it worked very well and is a very effective and vibrant image. </li></ul>Green Screen cont.