Codes & Conventions Of Music Videos


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Codes & Conventions Of Music Videos

  1. 2. What Is A Music Video ? <ul><li>  A music video is a short film or video that accompanies a complete piece of music/song. Music videos represent a crucial part of the music industry as artists owe their careers to music videos because they are being given the chance to impress the public not just with their vocal talent, but also with their looks or moves, thus attracting a wider audience and becoming a iconic model leading many aspirers wanting to live the life they do , showing the influence music videos within the music industry can have on the consumer throughout a global market. </li></ul>
  2. 3. MUSIC VIDEO THEORY Lyrics establish a general feeling/mood/sense of subject rather than a meaning. Meaning is presented more through visuals. Tempo of music drives the editing. Genre might be reflected in types of mise-en-scene, themes, performance, camera and editing styles. Camerawork impacts meaning. Movement, angle and shot distance all play a part in the representation of the artist/band (close-ups dominate). Editing is done in fast cuts, rendering many of the images impossible to grasp on first viewing, ensuring multiple viewing. Digital effects often enhance editing, which manipulates the original images to offer different kind of pleasure of the audience. <ul><li>The codes of a music video, is how they use the equipment such as the cameras, symbolic codes for example - what the person in the video is feeling and how that is to portrayed to the audience. Music conventions is the way things are done within the video, generally in order to portray the genre. Therefore as a result certain conventions depend on the genre of the music in the video. </li></ul><ul><li>However, some general conventions are… </li></ul><ul><li>Artist is shown performing </li></ul><ul><li>The lyrics of the song influence what is </li></ul><ul><li>shown in the video </li></ul><ul><li>The editing pace fits the music pace </li></ul><ul><li>Costumes reflect the mood of the song </li></ul>
  3. 4. <ul><li>Styles of Music Video - Music video’s can be categorized in terms of style. </li></ul><ul><li>Performance – Band / artist playing. </li></ul><ul><li>Narrative – Includes story. </li></ul><ul><li>Mixture – Both performance and narrative based. </li></ul><ul><li>Cameo – Band / artist features in the narrative but </li></ul><ul><li>doesn’t perform. (Foo Fighters) </li></ul><ul><li>Animation – Digitally (flash) / Stop-frame. </li></ul><ul><li>Abstract </li></ul><ul><li>Camera Variety of shots depending on the style A lot of Close Up’s (especially in performance music videos) - Perhaps ECU of lips, guitar strings being strummed. </li></ul><ul><li>Examples - </li></ul><ul><li>Crane shots </li></ul><ul><li>Low-angles </li></ul><ul><li>Long Shots and Extreme Long Shots </li></ul><ul><li>Pans / tilts – move from different </li></ul><ul><li>performers. </li></ul><ul><li>Tracking. </li></ul><ul><li>Editing and Sound There are many different editing techniques used in music videos. Music videos usually feature jump cutting. Footage is usually edited to match the music. </li></ul><ul><li>Examples – </li></ul><ul><li>Split-screens </li></ul><ul><li>Computer Generated Images </li></ul><ul><li>Diegetic sound. </li></ul><ul><li>Non- Diegetic sound </li></ul><ul><li>Change in levels of sound </li></ul><ul><li>Mise-en-scene </li></ul><ul><li>The mise-en-scene can vary greatly depending on the genre of music and the type of music video. </li></ul><ul><li>Props – performance equipment, band </li></ul><ul><li>merchandise. </li></ul><ul><li>Costume – certain outfits. </li></ul><ul><li>Location – concert halls, venues, street. </li></ul><ul><li>Facial expressions. </li></ul>
  4. 6. Andrew Goodwin’s Theory <ul><li>Visuals either illustrate, amplify or contradict the lyrics and music. </li></ul><ul><li>Genres often have their own music style/iconography (the typical depiction in images of a subject, and related sense. </li></ul><ul><li>Close-ups should always be included. </li></ul><ul><li>The artist/band might want to develop their own star iconography, which becomes their star image (identify). </li></ul><ul><li>Voyeurism (the sexual interest in or practice of spying on people engaged in intimate behaviours) is a common theme within music videos. </li></ul><ul><li>Goodwin argues that the female performer is frequently objectified principally for display purposes, often through a combination of camerawork and editing with fragmented body shots emphasising a sexualized treatment of the star. </li></ul>
  5. 7. John Stewart’s Theory <ul><li>The music video has the aesthetics of a TV commercial, with lots of close-ups and lighting being used to focus on the star’s face. </li></ul><ul><li>He sees visual reference in music video as coming from a range of sources, although the three most frequent are perhaps cinema, fashion and art photography. </li></ul><ul><li>Stewart’s description of the music video as ‘incorporating, raiding and reconstructing’ is essentially the essence of Intertextuality, using something with which the audience may be familiar, to generate both nostalgic associations and new meanings. </li></ul><ul><li>The video allows more access to the performer than a stage performance can. The mise-en-scene, in particular, can be used to emphasise an inspirational lifestyle. </li></ul>
  6. 8. Steve Archer’s Theory <ul><li>There needs to be a strong and coherent relationship between narrative and performance in music promos. </li></ul><ul><li>Music videos will cut between a narrative and a performance of the song by the band. </li></ul><ul><li>A carefully choreographed dance might be part of the artist’s performance or an extra aspect of the video designed to aid visualisation and the ‘repeatability’ factor </li></ul>Sigmund Freud’s Theory <ul><li>Refers to the notion that erotic pleasure may be gained by looking at a sexual object (preferably when the object is unaware of being watched). </li></ul>
  7. 9. <ul><li>Cutaways - Brief shot that momentarily interrupts continuous action by briefly inserting another related action. Object, or person (sometimes not part of the principle scene or main action), followed by a cutback to the original shot. </li></ul><ul><li>Eye- line Match - A type of edit which cuts from one character to what that character has been looking at. </li></ul><ul><li>Flashback - a scene or moment in a film in which the audience is shown an event that happened earlier in the film’s narrative. </li></ul><ul><li>Match cut - A type of editing where the position of one object get in the next cut, but using a different object. </li></ul><ul><li>Continuity Editing - The most common type of editing, which aims to create a sense of reality and time moving forward. Also nick named invisible editing referring to how the technique does not draw attention to the editing process. </li></ul><ul><li>Cross Cutting-  The editing technique of alternating or interweaving one narrative action with another- usually in different locations or places, thus combining the two: this editing technique usually suggests Parallel action. Often used to dramatically build tension and/or suspense in chase scenes or to compare two different scenes. Also known as inter-cutting or parallel editing. </li></ul><ul><li>Cutaways - A brief shot that momentarily interrupts continuous action by briefly inserting another related action. object, or person, followed by a cutback to the original shot. </li></ul><ul><li>Graphic Match - An edit effect in which two different objects of the same shape are dissolved from one into the other. </li></ul><ul><li>Juxtaposition - The placement of two images on either side of an edit to create an effect. </li></ul><ul><li>Linear Narrative - A style of storytelling in which events happen chronologically. </li></ul><ul><li>Parallel Editing - A type of editing in which events in two locations are cut together, in order to imply a connection between the two sets of events. </li></ul>
  8. 10. Thirty years ago, music video used to be less important than it is in the present day generation. MTV (Music Television) was the phenomenon that gave so much power and importance to the music video. MTV started broadcasting in 1981 in the USA and it marked the beginning of the music video’s ruling over the music industry. The first video ever played on MTV was ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’ by The Buggles. As MTV was broadcasting 24-hour-a-day music, music videos were needed to be produced. Consequently, music video began to play an important role in artists’ careers. An example of this would be Madonna’s career which has been greatly influenced by her videos that are presented as sexy, appealing look of the artist. Some experts say that Madonna has been inspired by the image that the actress Greta Garbo has used in her silent movies. MTV has been highly controversial, as younger generation saw as the beginning of an amazing, new, fresh era in music. However others considered it to mark the end of true musical talent, as artists have been become more appreciated for their looks instead of their vocal abilities.
  9. 11. In the 21 st century, the music video are dominating the song itself, leading to them even deciding the success of a song or artist. Collections of music videos are being sold on tapes or DVDs. Music video’s greatest fans are apparently watching them muted just to enjoy their artistic value, as they consider it to be a new form of art. They consider that a music video should be assessed based on its visual qualities and not on the song quality. It seems that the music corporate managers, have realised the potential of using female sex-appeal in music videos, therefore this feature is being used excessively as it is more popular for the public. The birth of the music video has created a new type of directors: video directors. MTV started listing directors with video credits and this profession has become more and more popular. But it seems that most video directors don’t specialise in this particular art form, they see it as being just a step on the way to directing a movie. Many start directing videos or commercials, hoping to get the recognition to build a name and to direct a movie. It seems that even video directors admit the fact that a music video is secondary to the song itself. Although music video’s fans have tried to elevate this form of entertainment to the title of an art form, the music video is eventually just a work of commerce, destined to sell a product: the song. Reference -