Question 1 - In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
Introduction In this presentation I am going to analyse theparticular conventions we used in our music videoand ancillary product. Using screen grabs from our music video,• I will compare our shots with professional music videos on the market why we used these shots and how they illustrated the star persona of the band.• Compare digipaks and magazine ads with other Rock genre artists on the market.
In this screenshot we see Me and Harry asguitarists and singers, performing on‘Castle Hill’ just before dusk.Harry is lip syncing to the song as well asplaying the guitar performing , whichfollows the convention of Rock/Indie rockWe see me and harry follow theconventions of the rock genre imagethrough what we are wearing. Forexample harry whereas a black t-shirt andjeans, with me wearing a white shirt andunbutton waistcoat with black skinnyjeans. Both these styles relate to genreand star persona of the band.We also challenge the conventionsthrough our performance in these shotson castle hill, as we shot only me andharry performing with no mic’s justguitars .Conventionally you would expectto see a drummer, a bassist and maybe apianist however In our video we focusonly on the two main characters relatingto the narrative. This makes it easier toidentify the story and link to the structureof the video.
Lyrics and visual exampleHere is an example of how we used the lyrics andvisual method from Andrew Goodwins theory. In thisscreenshot it shows harry just left of centre frame,writing on his hand. Here he is ‘acting’ out the lyricswithin the song ‘Ive bet you got a list’. This created aninteresting, engaging scene within our music video, asit enables the viewer to interact with Harrys bodylanguage, and highlight the line more clearly. Incomparison, The kooks – Naïve music video describesthrough the lyrics ‘Shes still up to get me’ and as wesee in the screenshot, shes trying to get him out ofbed.Here is another example of where we use the lyricsand visuals theory. The lyrics illustrate ‘the lights havegone and the parties over’ and we see the light behindharry and him on his own. Here we subtly use thiseffect to support Harrys independence and lonelinessfrom the narrative story. As the shots we show of himon his own, also represent him expressing his feelingsabout ‘What he said’, may this be through bodylanguage, lyrics or performance. We wanted to engagethe audience into feeling what the song is about, andrelating maybe to some event in that may of happenedin their lives.
Here is one of the examples of where wechallenged the ordinary Rock Genreconventions. We wanted to be more uniqueand creative in areas of our video as we feltit was getting to ‘same old, same old’ similarto other typical rock genre music videos. Soto avoid this I created a motion track scenewhere by I ‘stuck’ our motion capture clip ofme and stevie walking together facingforwards and one of harry and stevie facingthe same direction on the garage doorwhich made it look like it was part of thegarage. This gave a fascinating look, andhighlights the narrative story strongly byHarry not being able to see this, only theaudience seeing. To which way you mayinterpret these shots, is up t the audience,either Harrys dreaming, reflecting back on‘what he said’ or thinking into the future, welet the audience work at understanding thenarrative and unlocking the clue towards theend.Furthermore by conjoining the performanceof harry and narrative scenes it creates quitea powerful visual description to which theaudience can compare both sides. As inother Rock genre music videos, very few usethe same ideology or effect in there videos.
One of the most iconic figures within our music video andancillary product, this silhouette shot captures a powerfulrepresentation of a rock genre look and feel.We used this shot around for about 3 to 4 seconds in ourmusic video, along with a photographed version for ourback cover of our digipak.From my research into Rock genre music videos I foundthat lighting was an important part into making the videomore engaging, expressive and dramatic. It created thatfeeling of a live performance which we wanted to have inour own video. So, with the use of our location, (Man OnThe Moon and professional band stage) we used the fixedlights and strobes to create different colours, flashes andtimings. However this particular shot we used our ownportable outside lights and got one of us to move the lightaround behind me whilst performing. With a darkenedforeground and lit background it enabled us to create thesilhouette look.In comparison to ‘Bring the light’ by beady eye musicvideo, it follows the conventions of typical lighting forRock genre stage set ups, with lights positioned inparticular places around the set. However we did moveours around to get a variety of different looks to whichmore challenged ordinary lighting effects.
For our performance shots, we focused a lot on getting close ups of the guitar playing as we felt this is a strong connection to other rock genre videos. The red/orange colour of the guitar contrasts with the bluey background setting and creates am interesting overlay effectIf we compare thiswith Beady eyes –four letter word’they also use closeups of the guitarand cross fades ofclips to which weonly done a smallamount of in ourmusic video. Avariety of coloursare also visiblecreating anexpressive artisticlike look.
Throughout the filmmaking process wemade it clear that we all wanted to have a‘movement’ to our video. This being mostly‘hand held’ shots for our music video. Inparticular this example shows a cantedangle which then zooms in to a close up ofHarry singing the vocals at the camera,directly to the audience. Through researchonly few Rock genre music videos adopt astatic, still camera look, and the videoswhich did choose this method I foundwerent as effective to maintaining interestas the hand held. Examples of these areU2’s Beautiful day which I found was shotto still and The black keys little submarineswith interesting camera angles, shot typesand movements.I think that by using this technique, we cankeep the audience connected with the songand with the video allowing them to feelthe beat of the song through the visualsrather than just the lyrics.
Through my research I have also found thatmany music videos either create a performancebased video or a complete narrative musicvideo. However for our music video wechallenged the convention by combining thetwo towards the end of the video. We decidedto go down this route for our video mainlybecause we wanted to try different and unique.So how we did this was shooting someperformance and narrative in the samelocations, i.e. the walking with harry and Stevieat the start and then me and Stevie towards themiddle. In essence I perform a cameo role in thenarrative, as I am also in the band performing.Another way in which we challenged the rockgenre conventions was through our location.Specifically our rural park location. Usually youwould expect and urban location for a rockmusic video, but I feel it contrasts quite well inour video due to the type of song, and way inwhich we executed the relationship narrative.
Another media product thatfollows similar conventions toour video is Green days –‘Wake me up when Septemberends’.The music video consists of ashort narrative story at thebeginning which introducesthe theme of the video andthen flicks betweenperformance shots andnarrative scenes. However thenarrative does not cross overwith the performance, insteadthe scenes stay separate andthe song is addressed to thenarrative.
My final image, shows a screenshot from our middle eight where the pace of the song slows down. This section contrasts to the rest of thesong, as most of it is upbeat and fast paced. What we did differently herehowever is focus on 1 location to fit the lyrics and feel of the song, so we chose the castle mound clips. Our reason for this was because we liked the idea of the stars line in the song, and the shots which we took on location at castle mound were just before dusk. This gave this section a dream like, night time setting look.This I believe follows the music video conventions as generally if the pace of the song changes so do the visuals (cuts, fades, clip lengths).
Our magazine advert is closely conventional In terms of composition and placement of text on the page. As you cansee, The Killers (Band Name) at the top, below Man On The Moon (Album name) and at the bottom the date,Facebook and twitter links, production studios/companies and top special features. If we compare this to thestereophonics magazine ad we see a similar layout and positioning of the key elements. When we first see the magazine ad the viewer is Immediacy drawn to the orange plectrum, a marketing gimmick to try and sell the magazine. This would also be following the conventions of other rock magazine adverts as you would typically see this on an indie rock cover rather than a hip hop,/ pop cover. This is evident by the use of the greyscale colour theme for the front cover. We see the sky is grey, and the characters clothes almost black. This enables the free plectrum, twitter and Facebook icons to be highlighted, again trying to sell and increase the bands awareness. Furthermore the cut away look challenges conventions of other magazine ads for the rock genre in the way its not just a plain photo of the band. With the centre tear in the paper running down the centre of the image it creates a definitive broken apart look. This relates to the relationship in the music video of a ‘tearing’ feeling between harry and stevie. As well as the relationship between the character its important to consider the use of the instruments to which follow the conventions of a rock groups image and star persona. We also overlayed the stars time laps again to the sky which relates to the digipak and music video linking all three mediums
With our digipak we wanted to base it on everything we experienced through the making of our video and the what the characters/Band may have felt during the making. For example, visiting over 13 different locations within our music video some gave us some incredible graffiti type art, so we used thisfor our two CD covers, and the small panda on the back cover. This follows media conventions as artists generally have pictures, themes, colours relating to the making of there album and the story behind why they made it etc. Most of the Digipaks I have researched consist of a selection of artistic designs and photos relating to the name of the album or hit song. We follow this also by our album name Man On The Moon which is where we shot our performance scene for the music video.In the making of the back cover, we challenged the conventions a little in adding a little more substance to which made the back cover just as interesting asthe front. Through research, I have discovered that consumers when buying an album tend to always look at the back, as well as the front. With other back covers, such as the Oasis album ‘stop the clocks’ (supported in ancially post), I found only a blank colour on the back with the song names and production companies. So instead we decided to add the silhouette panda and fade these onto the pavement. Furthermore, adding the Facebook, Twitter and YouTube logos to advertise the band on the internet shows the up to date, practicality of the product as consumers are bale to view the album online. For our spine we followed the conventions of rock albums applying ‘The Killers’ – band name and ‘Man On The Moon’ album name, typical to what you would expect in a professional well designed rock album spine. Our Front cover is our main focus point to which we decided to use only harry as the main focus. With him looking up at the stars and the glowing moonlens flare behind the text, it relates to our music video, and magazine ad as well as the album name ‘Man On The Moon’. All these connotations are linked with the theme of the music video, magazine ad and digipak. It follows conventions of other rock albums which relate there front covers with either the album name or band image to which illustrates the product. Overall I believe our theme can be a good starting point in ensuring future albums can be made similar or slightly different for the band to brand themselves in whatever way they want to show there star persona to there audience. For more about our digipak visit my blog post named: ‘Ancillary Product Anaylisis | By Jason