1. In what ways does your mediaproduct use, develop orchallenge forms andconventions of real mediaproducts?• I used a lot of conventions from the film genre ofDrama. This includes realistic characters andsettings that the audience can relate to and aregular life that is disrupted by an event.• My short film also used Todorov’s theory ofequilibrium to disruption, but challenged it by nothaving a resolution. We did this on purpose tocreate a cliffhanger and suspense, which excitesthe audience.
• Another development I used when it cameto conventions was to have a linearstoryline but told it through a flashback.This is quite unconventional in mainstreamdrama films. This also helped createsuspense because it makes the audiencewonder what happened to the charactersbefore to create the ‘accident’.• We also cast young teenage actress quiteintentionally. This helps create emotionalcontagion between the audience and thecharacters, and is a representation forthem to relate to.
• Conventions of real media products was animportant part of the pre-production anddevelopment process as it helped spark some initialideas, looking at specifics genres and their formatsand including them in our own work, as well assome stylistic choices – such as camera work andeven costume.• One of the ways we did this was to look at dramafilms such as ‘The Social Network’ and ‘Awake’. Ilearnt that the genre uses a lot of close up shots foremotional impact on the audience and the use ofimportant props. As early as writing the script, Imade the creative decision to include theseelements in the plot of out short film.• The research of real media products also showedthat a strong narrative was needed for a successfuland engaging film. This became vital for thedevelopment of our pre-production.
2. How effective is thecombination of your mainproduct and ancillary tasks?• When creating my film poster I used thehierarchy of a big image in the centre ofthe page with smaller text around it todraw the viewers attention• I made sure the image illustrated thegenre of the film and wanting it to conveysome of the plot by having an ‘active’ shotof the protagonists.
• I think the combination of my maindrama short film and the film posteradvertisement for the film worked wellbecause I used the same font andcolours on both for the title of the filmto keep them connected, as well asusing a professional style for thecredits on both.
3. What have you learned fromyour audience feedback?• The audience that saw my film said that the camerawork and cinematography throughout the short filmwas very good and well thought out in relation tocharacter, their power and situations.• They also said the storyline was good, and a cleveradaptation of the fairy tale ‘The Boy Who CriedWolf’ but that the narrative slowed down in thesecond half of the film, when it should have gotmore exciting towards the climax of the plot. Thiswas due to the location staying the samethroughout the story and it being quite acontained narrative. This could have beenimproved by portraying ‘the accident’ moredramatically and maybe a faster style ofediting.
• A change I would have made would be totake more time with the ending of the film,which people said felt rushed.• I also would have spent more time oncharacter development and experiencingtheir personality through the story as I feelthe progression of the plot took over.• I did however like the look of the film, thecoloration which we edited in Final CutPro, the pace of the editing throughout –and specifically at the ending of the film. Ialso learned that my choice of costumewas well throughout and got personality ofthe characters across to my audience.
• As director, I was glad audiences noted agood use and variety of interesting cameraangles, as well as some clever use of mise-en-scene to convey some of the meaning ofthe film and character significance andemotions. I believe having a carefullydesigned and detailed storyboard is whatled to this working very well in theproduction.• Also from the feedback received, werealized that our effects sequence for whenthe characters are drunk did not work aswell as we hoped from the storyboard andcould have been improved.
4. How did you use mediatechnologies in the construction,research, planning andevaluation of your product?• During my research I used online blogsand reviews of films of the same genre toinvestigate my target audience. Thishelped me learn what Drama audienceswant from a text when they go to see it.This paired with my knowledge of the usesand gratifications theory helped mydecided on what conventions of the genreto use.
• When constructing my short film I usedFinal Cut Pro to edit and apply postproduction to it. I used Final Cut Pro topiece my film into order, as well as get thepace of editing right for the mood of thescene. We also added soundtrack to fastpaced scenes, or to add drama and soundeffects like heartbeats, footsteps anddoors closing to, on the one hand addrealism to certain aspects of the film andon the other add drama and tension to thedramatic scenes.
• In doing my research I used new mediatechnologies to find out information, sucha the internet and presented them usingprograms such as www.slideshare.com.This helped to label and connect my ideasfrom what I discovered and easily showedthe link between my own work and theconventions of those I looked at during myresearch. It also helped to develop ideas,like when writing the script, and help comeup with new ideas and changes.