Evaluation by Muna Alawi <ul><li>The four questions I will cover for my evaluation are: </li></ul><ul><li>In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? </li></ul><ul><li>How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? </li></ul><ul><li>What have you learned from your audience feedback? </li></ul><ul><li>How did you use new media technologies in the research, planning, construction and evaluation stages? </li></ul>
Our media product is a music video featuring a song by Mazey Boi called ‘Don’t Let Go’. I believe that it did follow the forms and conventions of real media products but it did challenge it by representing a social realistic view rather than a stereotypical ‘bling’ video that people normally associate this genre with. A convention that we followed was the combination of narrative and performance. We researched other UK rap/grime artists to see how they differ from Mazey Boi and how we can use and develop their ideas in creating a video that follows current media product conventions. In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? I looked at other artists such as Tinie Tempah, Chipmunk and Scorcher who are popular rappers that are part of the same genre and from the research I found that their videos contain a mixture of narrative and performance so we wanted to use the same structure in our video. When discussing ideas we knew that the narrative needed to play alongside the lyrics of our song.
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Challenging Forms and Conventions Forms and conventions of the real media products with the rap genre is generally associated with glamorous items such as jewellery, women, money, and materialistic objects. Our music video did challenge the usual conventions of real media products by not promoting these items and keeping it true to the grime scene instead of crossing over to the conventional American rap videos featuring artists such as 50 cent. From my interviews I found that materialistic objects isn’t that appealing to our target audience as it doesn’t relate to them. They found the use of women in rap videos is degrading because they are seen as objects and I strongly agree. Instead our video portrays a lifestyle similar to our audience and this will appeal to them as it features genuine situations and a glimpse of reality.
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Narrative The narrative format is parallel to the lyrics of the song and I think it is an effective tool as it engages the audience to follow the storyline. It followed a linear narrative so the audience can follow the storyline as it developed. The mis-en-scene and urban locations were essential in demonstrating the struggle of a homeless boy, and this was represented by the limited possessions that the character had such as the quilt, the jar of money and the Lidl bag. From the denotation the audience will understand that this boy is deprived and poor. The audience follows his effort to achieve his dream of becoming a boxer. We wanted to capture the story in different ways so we used different shots such as establishing shots, long shots and close-up shots to show off the different locations. There were also various angled shots like canted angles to give it an edgy and rustic notion. The editing was swift because we wanted to show how quick the transformation of the character was as the story progressed and it matched with the pace of the song.
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? The narrative was based on a story about a young boy who works hard to get money in order to start training to fight and he doesn’t stop till he gets to his ultimate goal. The ambience was dark and ominous and this was presented by the lack of lighting and the camera techniques used. Narrative The narrative deviates from other videos as it was edited in black and white to show the contrast with the performance part which is all in COLOUR. There is even a close up shot of him begging and pleading for money and it engages and involves the audience which allows them to sympathise with him.
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? The title of the song is the main inspiration of the storyline as it symbolises the fact that a person should never let go of their dreams and we wanted to visually represent this message within the video . We also hoped that the audience could relate to the song in someway through the significance of the message. Tine Tempah has a recent video out called ‘Written in the stars’ Ft. Eric Turner. The video was a mixture of narrative and performance, the narrative featured a storyline about a young boy who is an outcast as he is put down by others but in the end he breaks out and is inspired by music. Narrative
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Performance The performance part of the video is used to establish the artist and in this case Mazey Boi. Rap videos normally contain flamboyant performances that show off the artist but our performance part of the video was mainly shot in central London because we wanted to represent city life and it also relates to the urban music scene. We used a variety of shots to show various well known places in London that the audience can recognise. The shots of the widescreen images in Piccadilly square were significant as they followed the inspirational theme and this particular shot on the left was part of the opening sequence in the music video.
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Performance Other artists such as Devlin who has a song called ‘London City’ has shot his music videos in the same spot. The video displays social realism as it presents poverty and deprivation in society. Exposing the reality of society in London is simple but effective as it wasn’t glamorous but instead gave the audience a demonstration of urban life and this convention allowed us to establish the genre of music. After reviewing the questionnaire we found that 90% of the target audience found the combination of narrative and performance was effective.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? Branding was a vital tool in keeping a product image specifically for this song. It is significant to the audience because they are able to recognize the artist and the song just by looking at either the digipack or the magazine advert. Before creating a digipack I looked at the typical conventions associated with it. We followed the forms and conventions and focused mainly on using a recognizable format throughout the campaign, A running theme is important alongside an eye-catching color scheme as well as using images that relate to the main product that are able to spark interest in the audience. The font style was an important aspect and we kept it the same throughout as it was an important identifiable feature. Our combination of our main product and ancillary texts is effective as both the video and the print product compliment each other in terms of technical codes such as colours, layout and general vibe of the song. The look of both products is professional and evidently a combined product. The product is also very bold and eye catching due to the bright colours and large font so therefore capturing the attention of the target audience as it follows by the codes and conventions usually used by most artists in the same genre.
How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts? I believe that the combination of the main product and the ancillary texts was effective and overall it looked professional. I feel that they all link up because they follow the same theme and the same colour scheme was running throughout. The main colours used were red and blue because they are striking colours. We wanted the concept to focus around a masculine and edgy theme that would present an independent reflection for the brand. The colours chosen complement each other and they also are bold and eye-catching. The colours were featured in the main product as well as the ancillary texts through the artists costume as it contained these colours. Along with the colour scheme the text, images and the symbolism all combine together to create the brand. We wanted the brand to associate with London city life and urban culture. Hopefully the audience can identify with the product and are able to signify the connotation of the image and what it is trying to represent. The media products work alongside each other and this allows it to form an entire brand that can all relate to each other. The target audience is able to identify with the main product and the ancillary texts by relating them to each other. The ancillary texts contained components of the main product as it had snapshots of the music video and this gives the audience a sense of what to expect from the artist.
What have you learned from your audience feedback? Our sample size consisted of 40 people, 20 boys and 20 girls altogether. Our target audience at young people aged 14+ because we could relate to this age group as they were young and were likely to listen to this type of music. Rap and R&B was the most significant genre of music that they listened to so the results could be generalised as they were familiar with this field of music. To get a mass audience we didn’t discriminate with race and included all ethnicities that enjoyed the genre of music. The target audience research revealed a lot about their preferences as well as their likes and dislikes. They helped us develop our ideas as we took into account their opinions to effectively create a video directed at them. The initial target audience research included questionnaires and in depth interviews and we took their ideas into account to eventually create a unique and creative visual experience that our specific TA would enjoy to watch.
<ul><li>Do you think the mixture of narrative and performance was effective? </li></ul>What have you learned from your audience feedback? 2. What did you think of the narrative part of the video with regard to the use of colour and mis en scene? 3. What did you think of the performance part of the video with regard to the use of colour and mis en scene? 4. What do you think of the settings for the narrative part of the video? 5. Do you think that the music video fit with the song or do you think it was abstract? 6. What do you think of the camerawork?
What have you learned from your audience feedback? 7. Would you like the story line to have sound or just the sound from the song? 8. Do you think the music video went with the lyrics or do you think it was abstract? 9. What do you think of the editing of the music video? 10. What do you think of the use of images, text and colour on the digipak and magazine advert? 11. To what extent do you agree that the popularity of an upcoming brand or artist is affected by their establishment? 12. Do you think the products have following all the forms and conventions of existing products?
What have you learned from your audience feedback? The majority of people asked found the mixture of narrative and performance to be effective as there was an equal balance. When I asked about the narrative part of the video with regard to colour and mise-en-scene the majority said it was professional, entertaining and eye-catching. Very few people though it was a confusing storyline which we hoped for as we kept it simple as possible. The performance part of the video with regard to colour and mise-en-scene was thought to also be professional and the use of different locations was effective in the video as it provided variety and it showed the contrast between performance and the narrative. The narrative section part of the video went well with the lyrics of the song and this was one of our main aims because we wanted it to flow together. The majority of our target audience thought that the music video fit in with the song although we did have doubts very few people thought it was abstract and it didn’t go well together and we took this into account. We hoped that the target audience would say that the camera work was professional and most of them did they also thought that it was steady and when it needed to intentionally be shaky it was at the right moments when we used a steady cam. The music video didn’t have any diagetic sound although we initially wanted to include some in the video when the character was boxing but they thought it was better to just have sound from the song so the audience can solely focus on the music and not get side tracked. We really wanted the music video to go well with the lyrics and the audience agreed that it linked together with the words from the song.
What have you learned from your audience feedback? Regarding the digipack and the magazine advert we asked about what they thought about the text, images and the use of colour, the results show that it looked professional and there was good use of colour. The colour was part of the whole brand image and they thought it all went well together. The font use was striking and stood out the most on the advert and they thought it was a good idea that it was a running theme through all the products. We asked the target audience how far they agree with the popularity of an upcoming brand or an artist being affected by their establishment and most of them agreed whilst the other results show a variety of opinion, this was because we wanted to know how big our artist could get if we started a genuine campaign to promote his music in the future. Our final question was about the forms and conventions of all three media products and the results show that an equal amount of the target audience it did follow the forms and conventions and there was an equal opinion of it only partly following the conventions. Very few though that it didn’t because it was unique to current videos in the same genre and we didn’t follow the stereotypical ‘bing’ convention.
With regards to the music video the TA thought it looked professional and sharp. One criticism was that the video lacked a fighting scene and this would have been beneficial as it would have created a bigger impact to the story but unfortunately we were unable to do it. Instead we got snapshots of famous boxers such as Mohammed Ali and created a montage sequence of him fighting which turned out to be as equally effective. When we uploaded the video onto YOUTUBE we got some positive feedback from the viewers such as: What have you learned from your audience feedback?
Overall I think that our media product is both technically and aesthetically successful in meeting the OCR brief. I also think that our music video will strongly fit in with the current videos as the conventions are followed and we set a professional standard so it will stand out. I think that the digipack and the advert is convincing enough to get the audience to buy/download the album because the artist is relatable and relevant at the moment. Hopefully it could get picked up by an major record label and be promoted for widespread release because that is who the UK rap artists are linked to at the moment and we would like the same success. Major labels use vertical integration to promote their artist and the procedure involves print producing, advertising and distributing. The success of this artist will rely on the basis of its popularity especially if it is involved in the viral market because Mazey Boi could get recognised by a major record label if we independantly create a buzz on the internet via YouTube he might get recognised. People may watch the video again and again because of its creative concept and if the audience doesn’t understand the story the first time they will be encouraged to replay it until they get the message we are trying to send out. I think that the music videos unique selling point would be the inspirational significance of it which is expressed through motivational quotes and the storyline featuring a positive ending which is an important component to prompt the audience that they can reach there goals no matter what. What have you learned from your audience feedback?
What have you learned from your audience feedback? There could be an opportunity for some spin-off merchandising such as customised t-shirts featuring an insirational quote on them that will appeal to the audience. Other succesfel rapperes that have produced such merchandise are Tinchie Styder who has created his own brand of clothing called ‘Star in the Hood’. The clothing line originated in East London and Star In The Hood Clothing Company has since established itself as a serious contender in the world of street fashion. When the collection was available retailers and fans alike saw a marked development of the brand as the new collection brings with it some exciting new designs and product lines; building on the strength of the core range. We could learn from Tinchy Stryder and create a collection with retail partnerships in place, and the opportunities to grow and promote the music throughout UK and International retail
How did you use new media technologies in the research, planning, construction and evaluation stages? Technology has played a big role in the construction of our media product. I have developed my skills throughout each stage of production as different media technologies were involved in the research, planning and the construction. At the beginning of the project I found internet search engines and social networks were a big factor involved with the research stage. Websites such as Google and Bing contributed to the research as I was able to find out information and use it to develop my ideas. Google images and Google maps helped us to see the different locations we wanted to record and it helped us comprehend the different locations in Central London. When our group needed to share information or make sure that we were all up to date with the work we communicated through email and passed on the work to each other so we could review it. Social networking sites such as Facebook allowed us to broadcast our questionnaires and the final video so we could get feedback and eventually analyse the results given. Another way of gaining feedback was through YouTube and the comments provided by the viewers which we found useful when evaluating the video. The analysis was demonstrated by graphs that were created on Excel which I was familiar with and it helped us to illustrate the results in either a pie chart or a graph.
How did you use new media technologies in the research, planning, construction and evaluation stages? Blogger is the website we used to display our research, planning and the evaluation. it made it easy for us as all the work was uploaded on a single site and it each document was easy to locate as it was under label clouds. Blogger allowed us to put up video links and images and this was a useful tool to visually represent what we are trying to say. Certain documents were first uploaded on Slideshare which is a website that turns a simple document into slides, these improved the presentation and was efficient. New media technologies provide enhanced quality. During the video production the college provided us with a Cannon XM2 digital camera that had features such as manual and automatic focus. The camera also allowed us to adjust exposure and functions such as white balance to alter the colours on the screen. We were also provided with a tripod which helped us a lot especially when we were filming on the streets as the stand provided a firm balance and a control over the cameras movement. We mastered the camera controls by first practising with a primary exercise so we could familiarise ourselves with the different technologies.
How did you use new media technologies in the research, planning, construction and evaluation stages? The college equipment did help us enhance our ideas although they were limited facilities we coped well because the software was new and the features were up-to-date. The editing facilities that were available were Final Cut Pro and Adobe After Effects which we used in the production of the video, the first thing we learnt was to log in and capture the footage. This programmed allowed us to cut and edit our video by manipulated the shots that we previously recorded. The software aided us to cut/dissolve the sequences, adjust the saturation and edit the narrative scenes to black and white. When we were constructing our digipak and magazine advert the editing facility that we used was Adobe CS4 Photoshop. This software allowed us to manipulate the images and create a layout for our advert including colour, text and other images.
A particular slide catching your eye?
Clipping is a handy way to collect important slides you want to go back to later.