A2 Media Evaluation

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  • 1. A2 Media Evaluation
    By Molly Douglas
  • 2. 1) In what way does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
    1a) Film poster
    1b) Film magazine front cover
    1c) Film trailer
  • 3. 1a) Film Poster
    The film poster I have created ties in well with stereotypical conventions of a horror film. In order to get the effect I wanted, I researched other media posters of the genre I was aiming to achieve. The colours were generally cold , for example blues and greens. This is to suggest a sense of loneliness, isolation and dreariness compared to yellow, which connotes happiness because it gives a bright feel. Underneath are two examples of horror film posters on the left and right, and my final film poster in the middle. You can immediately see the similarities in the colours used.
  • 4. 1a) Film Poster
    Other horror poster conventions:
    • A centred main picture
    • 5. Cold blue and green colours
    • 6. Red writing or something red in the picture to connote blood
    • 7. Portrait
    • 8. A black background to represent the darkness of the character
    My horror film poster conventions:
    • A blue wash
    • 9. A centred main picture
    • 10. A subtle use of red on the characters arm
    • 11. Landscape
    • 12. Black background
  • 1a) Film Poster
    Behind the character is a black background, which connotes evilness and hints to the audience that the character on the poster is evil. Also, it enables part of the character to be hidden in darkness, seeing only her face, arm and hands. Making those things stand out even further.
    Here I have mirrored not just horror posters but most film posters, by adding small print of a production list underneath the title of the film.
    The title is in white, contrasting with the black background as white represents innocence and purity. This is similar to the way other horror film titles have been styled on the poster.
    The blue wash I have applied to my picture gives a cold and isolated feel, by doing this it removes any emotion from the picture. It can also make it look supernatural, and in our trailer Isla’s father comes back from the dead.
    I have added a slight bit of red in the background as a subliminal message to show the blood to come later in the film
    My poster is landscape, this challenges the conventional aspects of horror film posters, as the ones I researched were all horizontal.
  • 13. 1a) Film Poster
    The film poster in some ways challenges conventions of real media products, the strongest way it does this is by changing the layout to be landscape as most horror films I have researched are setup as portrait. The reason I have done this is because the picture I have chosen is Isla looking out of a window, and the window was landscape and therefore thought this layout more fitting. Furthermore, there was more room to write my title as there was lots of black in the background giving space to write
  • 14. 1a) Film Poster
    ‘Forget me not’ is our tagline but instead of writing it on the computer, it is involved in the actual picture as it is written on Isla’s arm. This gives a horrific effect, as it looks scratched on and painful. The way it is written is also very spiky and blunt, this is in keeping with the horror theme convention.
    The character’s face here is slightly blurred out by the lighting I have used. This creates suspense because the audience are unknown as to what this character looks like.
  • 15. 1b) Film Magazine Front Cover
    The film magazine front cover I have created mostly follows conventional patterns of real media products. I have found these to be:
    • The magazine name is clear and at the top. Usually going across and behind the main image.
    • 16. Images on the front targeting a certain audience or reflecting a specific and easily recognisable film genre
    • 17. Colour schemes are matching a maybe perhaps tie in with the main image
    • 18. Font sizes vary on more important headings
    • 19. Several cover lines surrounding the main image to show what’s inside
    • 20. The price and barcode are displayed
  • 1b) Film Magazine Front Cover
    The magazine front cover has one main image, following the conventional patterns of other magazines.
    Much like my magazine, CineLive has cover lines spread around the main image. However, I haven’t added many, in order focus on Adultree, and not cover the image up. CineLive also appears to have little cover lines.
    I have tied in the colour of the writing with my main image to make the page look neat and attract attention. Isla’s scarf is red therefore some of my writing is red. This also appears to be the same for CineLive. Batman’s belt is a gold colour and therefore some of the writing is.
  • 21. 1b) Film Magazine Front Cover
    My magazine title is in the corner of the page, and is in front of the image as I felt that was one of the most important things for readers to see. However, CineLive is behind the image, making that appear of more importance. This is the same for a lot of other magazines I have researched.
  • 22. 1b) Film Magazine Front Cover
    I got inspiration from CineLive to do a film strip at the bottom of my magazine, in order to tease readers, giving examples of what is inside. CineLive has created a ripped effect and I tried that out in my drafts but decided perhaps it looked a little too much and decided to go with a film strip effect instead.
  • 23. 1b) Film Magazine Front Cover
    Here I have added a heading to my magazine of the title. The boldness of the writing is to draw the reader in and grab their attention.
    Looking at this image of Isla, it is easy to distinguish the genre of film. Her ghostly white face makes her look gothic and scary., relating to specific psychological horrors. Her eyes are wide, and the makeup used makes them look dark and evil. She also has a splash of blood coming from her mouth which suggests the evilness of her character and reflects the murder she carries out in the film.
    ‘Adultree’ is written in white, but with a hint of red in the middle of the writing. This ties in well with the colour schemes of the rest of the magazine and could connote blood/ evilness vs innocence as the colours are red and white.
    This extra bit at the bottom of the magazine is reflecting a film strip. It gives readers an insight into what else is in the magazine
    ‘New’ is written bold capitals, much like the title of the magazine. This focuses it’s importance as new and exclusive is enticing.
  • 24. 1c) Film Trailer
    The film trailer we have created has many conventions of horror trailers, and after studying and analysing others, some of the conventions I found consist of:
    • A happy/romantic first scene to connect the audience with the characters and contrast with what’s about to happen
    • 25. Blackouts throughout with words on them to help the narrative (for example: ‘Behind closed doors’)
    • 26. Pace rapidly progressing
    • 27. Creepy music
    • 28. Screams
    • 29. Contains film title and opening date
  • 1c) Film Trailer
    Happy Scene
    The beginning of our film trailer is similar to other openings of horror trailers. Orphan (below) opens also on a happy note, with children playing, and here is an over the shoulder shot of Kate watching them. This is very similar to our trailer (left) as the parents are watching Isla and her sister play happily by the river. This happy scene is mainly placed at the beginning to contrast with other more intense and horrific scenes. It also gives an insight into the characters lives and personalities to give them sympathy later on. This is very common in horror films and appears in many I have analysed.
  • 30. 1c) Film Trailer
    Our trailer, ‘Adultree’
    Throughout our trailer we have added writing in order to give the audience clues about the narrative. In addition, with ours we have added a bang as the writing appears. This builds tension and is stereotypical of horror trailer conventions. ‘There is something wrong with Isla.’ This uses vague language to keep the audience wondering what exactly it is that is wrong with Isla.
    ‘The Strangers’ Trailer
  • 31. 1c) Film Trailer
    As our trailer progresses, the pace begins to fasten, the music gets more intense and the clips become shorter giving a mixture of different clips at once. This is a strong convention of horror trailers as the pace builds to get ready for the end result. For example, in our trailer there are a lot of screams and music is throughout getting creepier and more intense. Lots of clips flash up quickly to give a teaser to what could happen without seeing what actually does and ruining the film.
    The time of our trailer is 2:53, so nearing on 3 minutes. This is long for a horror trailer and most stop nearer the 2 minute mark. The Strangers is 2 minutes, however Orphan is 2:30 minutes, therefore the time does vary from trailer to trailer.
    Our trailer also includes the title, ‘Adultree’, the tagline, ‘Forget me not’ and ‘Coming soon’ all in separate blackouts to give an abrupt feel, they all also have a bang sound when they appear to grab audience’s attention. This is much like other trailers but instead of coming soon may have an actual release date.
  • 32. 2) How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
  • 33. Question 2
    The two ancillary texts and my main product all work well together to create what could be a realistic film. Horror conventions are within all of my products and reflect those of real media products. The two print based texts, my magazine front cover and film poster both share similarities. The same character is used on the main image of both of the ancillary texts as I decided it focuses the attention on just one character, making her memorable to the audience. A majority of the font is white on both the two products which was conventional for the horror posters and magazines I had researched. The ancillary texts, along with my main product are all aiming to promote the film, that is their main purpose. The three things throughout sustain the same genre which is horror, and after researching into real media products and their conventions, I am able to stick to horror conventions.
  • 34. 3) What have you learned from your audience feedback?
  • 35. Question 3
    To gain audience feedback, I have setup an account with formsite.com
    and created a questionnaire. After collecting all of the results, I have arranged some of the more important questions into charts.
    Here is the link to my questionnaire on formsite.com
    http://fs20.formsite.com/molly0026/form740625003/index.html
  • 36. THE POSTER
    Studying my poster, which genre of film do you believe it to be?
    This shows that the majority of the audience understood the genre of film by looking at my poster, which is what I was aiming for by using conventions of real media posters. However, 2 people got it confused with a thriller, which isn’t much different to a horror. This tells me I perhaps need to do something to hint further to the audience the genre, but don’t believe that would be possible.
    Please give stars to which gives away the horror genre most and least
    Here you can see that the black background was the most appropriately used to represent a horror, closely followed by the girl herself and the evil look in her eye.
  • 37. The layout is landscape, challenging horror film poster conventions, does this work?
    It is obvious to see here that all the people who took part in the questionnaire agree with my decision to change the layout to landscape whether or not it challenges conventions of horror film posters.
    Magazinecover
    Looking at my film magazine, does the film strip effect at the bottom work?
    I am happy with this feedback, as I was unsure if the film strip at the bottom of my magazine front cover worked or not and the majority of people have said it does. However, I am still debating whether I think it works with the magazine, or looks neat and tidy.
  • 38. What age group would this magazine attract?
    This is good feedback to have as I was again unsure on what my exact target audience was. I think the context of the genre would be targeting more towards the 18 and 19 ages rather than 16 downwards.
  • 39. Trailer
    How well did you understand the play on words in the title?
    Here I can see that not many people understood the title of the play and why it was spelt differently. The play on words would only be understood if you knew the plot and after watching the actual film. Perhaps more images of the tree where the father hangs himself are needed in order for the audience to make that connection
    How well did the happy scene at the beginning work?
    This is great positive feedback to tell me that the happy scene was needed in order to tell the story and contrast with scenes later on.
  • 40. ANY IMPROVEMENTS ?
    - No
    - The music needs to have better transactions and there should be some creepy sound effects added
    - Plot to make more sense
    - I think the happier scene could have been happier, through using different lighting. But overall I think it worked.
    more music added
    • No it was really good.
    • 41. Build pace more
    • 42. Clips need to be connected better
  • How this feedback has helped me…
    After studying my results, I have learnt that overall, my products are fitting for the horror genre they are and follow the right conventions. The happy scene was a convention we discovered in horror trailers to contrast with scenes later on, and the feedback tells me this is well communicated and the effect we wanted has been portrayed. However, the more negative comments about the play on words in the title aren’t so good. This means that maybe the audience might think ‘Adultree’ is spelt incorrect accidently, but however may make them want to find out. The title would only be revealed in the actual film, but thinking back now I believe we should have made it more obvious within the trailer so audiences make the connection between the title, tag-line and the footage.
    Overall I have got some positive feedback and am pleased as the effect I had aimed for has been understood and recognised.
  • 43. 3) How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
  • 44. Question 4
    Throughout every stage of my coursework I have used new technologies to communicate, create, edit and evaluate my work. To begin with, my work is located on a blog on the internet called wetpaint which helped to easily distinguish every different page.
  • 45. Question 4
    RESEARCH &PLANNING;
    By using YoutubeI could view appropriate horror trailers in order to analyse their conventions. I also used Google and Google images to find horror film posters and magazine front covers to find out the conventions of these ready to apply them to my media products. This was also used in my planning stage, I Googled a certain image I wanted, for example a girl looking creepy, and added that to my draft posters and magazine covers in order to get an understanding of what sorts of images I wanted. I also used Wikipedia to research into the history of film magazines, and well known and particular film institutions. To plan and draft different copies of my media text products, (film poster and magazine) I used a variety of Microsoft documents to see which was more appropriate. In the end I decided to edit some of my drafts on Microsoft Publisher as I found it had more tools, features and was more equipped for picture editing. There was also a ‘set transparent’ tool, and I found I needed this to edit the background of my pictures if a background was unwanted.
  • 46. Question 4
    CONSTRUCTION
    This process involved me taking and editing the pictures I had planned. This is where I started to use hands on technology, for example digital cameras and editing programmes, as I could finally put to practise my own initial ideas.
    I used Picasa to edit my pictures. This was helpful to get the right lighting, colour and text. It was easier to add the main text such as the title ‘Adultree’ for the poster instead of doing this on Publisher as it gave a range of different fonts, and the text was easy to rearrange. I then print screened it and edited the rest of the text on Publisher, to create the small text underneath ‘Adultree,’ as Publisher was easier to see when writing the small print. Picasa however, was ideal for getting a feel for fonts and font sizes of headings. Therefore I created my whole magazine cover on Picasa as I needed to work on the font sizes for the cover stories and headings to give the audience an idea of the most important things on the magazine. I did print screen this however, to edit the film strip effect on Publisher, as Picasa doesn’t let you add extra images on top of your original image and I needed a box filled with colour in order to add my other small images inside.
  • 47. Question 4
    Picasa was easy to edit fonts and the size, you could just grab and drag to the size you wanted
    You could also change the text to have another colour in the middle of it like this example here
  • 48. Question 4
    Editing this draft, I have used the re-touch button, click from one location on the picture to another and with it copies the image you have clicked. For example I wanted more of the red blood, so where I had red blood, I just clicked and dragged to where I wanted more of it.
  • 49. Question 4
    When filming our trailer, we used an HD digital video camera and a microphone. These were used to capture film and audio footage on. However, to edit these the way we wanted we had to use further technology.
    We used a Mac, and iMovie to edit our video footage. Once the footage was transferred from the digital camera to the Mac and onto the iMovie library, it was only then when we could begin to edit clips together, along with adding:
    Sound by recording on the microphone
    Music downloaded from websites
    Editing the speed and flow of clips by using iMovie
    Transitions; blackouts, fades, blurs
    Titles and writing
  • 50. Music websites:
    www.freesound.org
  • 51. Transitions
  • 52. To Conclude…
    After looking over everything I have evaluated here, by a combination of vast amounts of new technologies, I believe my two ancillary texts and main product work together in challenging, using and developing real media products.