Media evaluation

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Media evaluation

  1. 1. We chose to create a horror trailer, leaning towards the paranormal sub-genre through the use of the main character coming back from the dead to haunt her former best friend. I performed a lot of research into all types of horror trailers; looking at the use of the text, diagetic sound effects, the soundtrack and camera shots to create tension whilst capturing the audience‟s attention. The horror trailers all seemed to follow the same format; having the trailer start of softly with warm lighting, to create a sense of happiness, with slow takes and then quickening shots after the horror begins, with the lighting becoming darker to form a scary atmosphere. The paranormal horror trailers gave me a further sense of how to lay out the trailer; many of them used a gentle yet eerie soundtrack that changed from being slow and light to slightly more forceful when the horror is at a climax, but it always returns to the slow, gentle soundtrack towards the end of the trailer leaving an eerie thought as to whether the ending of the film will be one of resolution. Therefore, in our trailer I put a gentle, piano score at the beginning and the end of the trailer – using the same one, to show the link and add continuity to the trailer. Whilst, placing a drone type score with more of a drumming sound over the heightened, dramatic moments.
  2. 2. Furthermore, paranormal trailers had simple events that could easily go unnoticed in the trailer unless drawn attention to, so to help do so they normally used an effect of some sort to make the impact of the eerie event more dramatic to the audience. I then used this idea by placing effects on certain parts of our trailer to add more of a sense of horror; in the end take, when the dead best friend is seen in the room, I created an earthquake effect on the camera to make it look shaky – as if from the other actress‟ reaction. I also used a negative effect in the middle of a take during the trailer which saw the dead best friend show up behind the other actress in a mirror. The negative effect stood on the take for a second or so before changing back to normal view; allowing the shot of the dead best friend to become more dramatic and effective to the audience.
  3. 3. After researching the presentation of most horror posters I found that those of the paranormal sub-genre followed more of a simple format, compared to other film posters, allowing the text and images placed on them to stand out to the audience. Therefore, my poster had a simple layout with the one image being placed in the middle of the poster to allow the text to surround it – not taking away from it. The background had a simple light grey tone that followed the basic colour scheme whilst allowing the black and dark red text to stand out against it. I kept the colour scheme quite basic with dark tones to create a dark theme that would link into the basis of the film, also by including a dark red colour I allowed connotations of blood to be drawn from it.
  4. 4. The title ‘Best Friends’ stood towards the bottom of the page but in a dark black to stand out against the grey background, whilst not taking away from the rest of the poster that would be seen before it; I formed the text in a font that made it look quite sinister and blood-like to hint at the idea of bloodshed within the film which allowed the text to stand out further against the plain, normal font used for the rest of the text on the poster. However, I placed the text in the centre but not allowing it to take up the whole width; to make it look more endearing. I put a tagline „Friends forever?‟ underneath the title, towards the right hand side in a white small text – so as to not take away from the title but still stand out against the background. I put the question mark in red to draw more attention to the question, whilst using the dark red as a symbol of blood (foreshadowing the outcome of the film).
  5. 5. On the page I included a few coverlines, with the one „from the producers of „sinister‟ and „demon‟‟ at the top of the page, on the right hand side, to not take away from the poster but allow the reader to not the film has some credibility – I thought a white font would further help create this. I then placed four stars in a dark red and “Empire” in white underneath; giving a critical analysis of the film to further entice the audience to the films quality. I put another coverline of a critic with the word „terrifying‟ in a slightly bigger and further spaced out font, in a dark red, to show this is the main comment of the quote.
  6. 6. At the bottom of the poster I included a few lines of text with names and production companies on to show the official nature of the poster, as this is used on all posters. I also put a date of release towards the bottom of the poster to give the reader information on how to see the film. I put the date in a dark red to separate it from the text around it.
  7. 7. My magazine cover didn‟t follow as much of a dark theme as my other two media products as I had to initially base it on a friendly, light theme that would attract readers. However, the main image stood in the middle of the page of the dead best friend; to attract attention to the film. This image was given a dark tone, whilst I modified the actress to look sinister; highlighting the idea it‟s a horror film.
  8. 8. The title „Best Friends‟ was placed at the bottom of the cover to allow the image to stand out in front of it, but was still given a bigger font than any other coverlines to allow it attention. I placed the other details of the coverline „exclusive interview with cast‟ in a triangular shape put in dark red, in the right hand bottom corner of the page to create the effect as if it‟s a turned up corner of the actual page. I put the text in this in white to stand out against the red and separate it from the rest of the text on the cover. Furthermore, I used a basic narrow font for the title „Best Friends‟ but used the bevel and emboss effect to make a silver and black streaked filling of the text; allowing it to not coincide with the basic colour theme of the cover and stand out.
  9. 9. I placed all of the coverlines on the right hand side of the cover in a column, to allow the image to stand alone in the centre of the page. I used film titles that were evenly spaced; giving the reader a vague idea of what will be included within the magazine. I used a white font to contrast the black background it stands against. Furthermore, the last coverline is different to the others as it says „The A-Z of comedy‟; I put this in a completely different, typewriter font to separate it and further made its separation obvious by using a grey background behind it.
  10. 10. For the masthead I created a film strip shape to place each letter in of the title „TAKE‟ to relate the magazine to films in an obvious manner. I then placed a sticker underneath the masthead, on the left hand side, allowing it to cross over slightly; creating the effect it‟s been placed separately on the magazine. My first two coverlines on the right hand side also follow the idea of the film strip, which separates them, creating a theme throughout and relating the magazine together. I also placed these in a narrow, capital font with the main words in red to further stand out.
  11. 11. We created our trailer by adapting our research to help create an enticing trailer for our target audience; the first way we tried to do so, was creating a plot that would appeal to our audience and conveying it in a sense that would be thrilling and dramatic enough to receive attention. By having our trailer change between slow and quick speeds and softening the soundtrack to contrast with having it become harsher at other parts we allowed the horror to slowly seep into the storyline and leave suspense with the audience.
  12. 12. The most effective method I added to our trailer was the effects on certain shots to draw further attention; the earthquake effect on the shot of the dead best friend helps to disorientate the audience, furthering the suspense that is built through the trailer. Alongside this effect, I put an effect of „echo‟ on the scream that‟s heard over the shot – this allows the diegetic sound effect to last longer than the shot and heightens the eerie effect of the trailer, with this being the only piece of dialogue used in the trailer it also shows a further insight into the story and captures the audience‟s attention. We decided to not use diegetic speech within our trailer as it would sound out of place against the soundtrack and would take away from the suspense that progresses through the trailer. The only dialogue given is the scream which creates double the effect it would normally as it furthers the eerie tone portrayed throughout whilst allowing a sense of speech in the trailer – further connection the trailer to the audience and reality.
  13. 13. Our initial trailer is a lot less developed and mature than the final trailer as it used very basic transitions of fades and a few cross dissolves. Also, I didn‟t use any effects from Final Cut Pro on the first trailer so the tension caused within it was only due to the actions and events of the takes. Furthermore, my first trailer had a very simple soundtrack that was created on Garageband that looped over and over to fill the trailer. In addition to this, the text for the first trailer was created on iMovie with a simple black background for the white, bold text to stand out against; the text was also a simple, classic font so it was easily read. The black background of the text didn‟t link very well into the trailer as there was no movement to show the progression of the trailer whereas in the final trailer the text background has a slow, simple movement that shows the continuing of the trailer.
  14. 14. My initial poster was created on Photoshop and followed a simple format which I also essentially maintained for the final product; with the image of the best friend necklace being used on both. The image on my first poster uses a messy outline but helps it to stand out against the white to black background that stands behind it. Yet, the image for the final draft had a clean cut and a thorough grey filling to make it seem plainer and bolder – which furthered contrasted the background. The text boxes are slightly bigger on my first draft; this was to take up further space and fill the poster which I decided against on the final draft as it only helped to take away from the important pieces of text and the image on the poster. Initial poster: Final poster:
  15. 15. The title „Best Friends‟ used a basic font on the initial poster so it was bold against the rest of the poster. I placed „Best‟ in a dark red whilst „Friends‟ was coloured black; allowing the two to go against each other and add variety to the colour scheme of the poster. I also made the font for „Best‟ in a slightly italic, curly font; to show a sarcastic, doubting tone to the realistic view of their friendship – to hint at the storyline for the trailer. I also placed „forever?‟ of the tagline „Friends Forever?‟ in an italic, dark red font to relate to the title whilst furthering the sense of doubt in the character‟s friendship. Whereas, on my final draft I made the title in a completely different font to the rest of the text on the poster to allow it to stand out; creating a font that looked as if it‟s written in blood. Whereas, in my final poster I used a more dramatic font for the title in order to make it stand out. The font demonstrates the idea of it being written in blood or carved, but placed it in black to make it seem more dramatic and dark. The tagline was placed in white, to contrast against the dark grey background, with just the question mark placed in dark red to draw attention to the question and foreshadow its answer.
  16. 16. The initial magazine cover followed the same colour scheme of black, white and dark red but the image was hardly edited and didn‟t make the actress look very scary. I kept the idea of the „Take‟ film strip but made my own film strip for the final poster instead of finding a stencil of it. Furthermore, I still used the same coverlines on both covers but used a better font for the second to make them look more professional and moved the sticker to the left hand side and let it cross onto the masthead slightly; making the effect better to believe. Instead of plain dark red lines separating the first two coverlines I used film strips; to add continuity to the cover. I also got rid of the red diamonds as I thought they took up too much space. I then added „The A-Z of Comedy‟ to the coverlines; making the magazine seem fuller. Initial poster: Final poster:
  17. 17. On my first magazine I used a basic font for the title „best friends‟ which I put in white to contrast against the white background. The font was too simple to stand out amongst the other coverlines, and made no dramatic impact. Also, the other text „exclusive interview‟ was placed in a dark red next to the title; to show it‟s relevance but not allowing it to be the most important information. On my final magazine the title had a narrow, slim font that gave the text a silver and black streaked texture – this differed from the rest of the colour scheme, showing it‟s importance. I then put the rest of the text „exclusive interview with cast‟ in a dark red filled triangle on the right hand side corner, as if it‟s a turned up page. This separated the text and makes it more interesting for the reader to look at.
  18. 18. After we created our trailer we then demonstrated its uses to our target audience and the initial research we had done in finding what they believed contributed to a good horror trailer. Through our research we found that our most likely target audience was around the ages of 15-17 so we made our characters of the same age group to allow them to seem relatable. In our initial research we used a group of our target audience to test what type of trailer was most liked; between the Blair Witch Project, filmed on a hand recorder, and The Great Gatsby which was fast paced and exciting. Our research concluded that The Great Gatsby was eye-catching and preferred. Therefore, we tried to make our trailer as exciting and suspenseful as possible.
  19. 19. Comparing this research from our target audience to the finished project of our trailer we found conducted further feedback from our audience and their thoughts towards whether our trailer was effective or not. After showing the trailer we asked whether or not the trailer was scary enough to be deemed as a horror. 7 out of 10 of our audience agreed that the trailer was scary, with 1 person disagreeing that it wasn‟t and a further 2 said it could‟ve been scarier. This feedback was mostly positive and showed the trailer as being effective in its horror element. The 7 described the ending as a cliff-hanger that left the audience wondering what would happen to the best friend.
  20. 20. Furthermore, we asked whether or not the soundtrack was effective in helping to set the mood of the trailer; changing from a sad tone to a suspenseful one. The audience feedback described the soundtrack as improving as it got further into the trailer and a suspenseful score was used. The ending soundtrack; of the soft piano created an eerie tone to the trailer as was deemed as the most effective; the audience said that its reoccurrence within the trailer helped make it so as it connected the two and showed a constant theme of insecurity which unsettled and scared the audience.
  21. 21. We then asked whether the effects used within the trailer; the negative effect, the earthquake effect and echoed scream helped make the trailer more enticing. The audience described the earthquake effect and echoed scream at the end of the trailer as the most effective part of the trailer as the scream left an eerie tone and was dramatic to the audience of what happened to the characters. The earthquake effect helped create this and disturbed the audience to the safety of the character. The negative effect was described, by the audience, as highlighting to the fact the best friend was stood behind the character in the mirror and helped them understand the drama of the shot. Therefore, this effect was necessary in helping create the horror within the trailer as it showed the haunting element of the plot.
  22. 22. The poster was described as being quite bold and made the point of the film stand out through the image. The use of one image allowed the poster to be bolder and drew attention to it; making the text conform around it. The image of the heart locket was called different and our target audience said it was thought provoking and made them want to know it‟s involvement to the film – but the image easily related to the title. They also described the tagline „friends forever?‟ as intriguing and said it stood out as one of the main pieces of text as it made you question what would happen in the film. Furthermore, when asked about whether or not the coverlines of the critics were useful, our audience said they were and made their attitude to going to see it better as they made them trust the films quality.
  23. 23. The magazine cover was described as being very effective as it caught the readers eye easily – especially the bits in red. The audience said the magazine showed very clearly it was a film magazine by the use of the film strip and described it as being interesting and fascinating. Furthermore, the title „best friend‟ and its text „exclusive interview..‟ were said to be very interesting and the most eye catching part as the triangle created a different effect to the cover. The audience said the same effect was given by the „sticker‟ at the top of the page; as it seemed like it was stuck on. Also, commenting on the image they said it did seem a bit plain to only have one image but the one given was very effective and scary; the audience were intrigued to read about it.
  24. 24. SlideShare – This website helped me upload presentations of my research and planning to wordpress where all my work is accessed in a clear, ordered manner. Prezi – Another presentational website that helped present my work of research and planning in an ordered manner, allowing it to be informative.
  25. 25. YouTube – My interview videos and trailer drafts were able to become available to be viewed on my wordpress with the help of this website as they configured them into a product that could be shared. Facebook – This social networking site allowed me and my two other group members to interact and share ideas for our trailer through its Inboxing function.
  26. 26. Voki – I used Voki as another way of presenting my ideas and planning without having it written down in a plain way. This website allowed me to use a video and voice format to have my text presented in dialogue through a little character which I created. Chart Generator – I used a website to help create charts that I could use to demonstrate my research into what my target audience would like my trailer, poster and film magazine to be like. These charts helped portray the results in a clear manner which then contributed to me being able to make decisions on how to create my products.
  27. 27. Adobe Photoshop – I used this program to help construct my poster and magazine cover. I was able to modify the images of the actress to make them look better suited to the horror genre and our trailer. Adobe Illustrator – allowed me to create the „best friends‟ title used for my poster which I then placed in Photoshop; it helped produce the title in the way I wanted with the effects and sharpness of the text.
  28. 28. iMovie- I used the program to produce the trailer, by putting all the takes that I had created in other programs and the soundtrack all together in the right order as it let me easily modify shots and move pieces of the trailer around to better fit in whilst allowing me to place transitions in between them. Adobe After Effect – I used this to produce the background for the title that‟s used on the trailer; the background was simple in its colours and movement but allowed the text to stand out against it and didn‟t undermine it. I changed the initial background by changing the colours to a light grey and white whilst slowing the movement of the colours down.
  29. 29. Final Cut Pro – this program allowed me to create the special effects I used within the trailer; the earthquake effect on the bedroom scene, the echo on the scream in the last take and the negative effect on the mirror shot. These effects helped add tension to the trailer and further portrayed the horror element within it. Garageband – After I had found the sample of music I wanted to use, using websites for sound downloads, I would cut the track to only have the section I wanted to use within the trailer. For the drone that‟s used at the horror climax of the trailer I altered the bass levels to make it heavier and more impactful. Also, this program allowed me to create a fade for the gentle music so the ending was abrupt.

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