AS Media CourseworkEvaluation<br />By Zaynab Varachhia<br />
Introduction<br />The project I did was a music magazine and I worked alone on it, with no outside help.<br />The genre of my magazine is hard-core rock/metal, mainly heavy metal.<br />I had to create a front cover, a contents page, and a feature article of my music magazine.<br />
Question 1: In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?<br /><ul><li>I used generic conventions such as the use of dark colours like black and red, striking fonts to suit the name of the magazine, and also the way the band on the front are portrayed, with their dark clothing and make-up etc. looking like a metal band are perceived to look like, therefore giving the whole magazine a dark feel.
I used these typical elements to make it apparent to my audience that this was a rock/metal magazine, and didn’t really stray from the normal conventions, except I used more brighter colours to make it stand out more, as it would appeal more to the audience, and so it was more likely to become successful as it gave a fresh feel to this particular magazine.</li></li></ul><li>Question 1: continued…<br /><ul><li>The whole magazine is done in dark colours with a black background and white writing to stand out; all the pages I have done follow the regular conventions of how they should look like – the front cover has a dark background, with a picture of the band in front looking gothic, with a striking font for the title and white writing to stand out against the black, making the whole theme dark basically. The contents page and feature also have black backgrounds with white writing to stand out, and pictures of the band looking gothic, therefore they all look like typical pages out of a metal magazine.
Therefore, I have made use of typical metal magazine conventions, and applied them to my project to appeal to that particular type of audience.</li></li></ul><li>Question 2: How does your media product represent particular social groups? <br /><ul><li>In my project, I have represented both females and males as equals, as female band members are just as popular in the metal world as male band members, and the particular band I have used are young people.
The costumes I have used for them are normal clothing, but also gothic clothing as clothing doesn’t really matter but the main band member wears dark clothes to show that she follows the gothic lifestyle, as many fans of metal do, whilst the remaining members prove that what clothes you wear doesn’t have anything to do with the music.
The band members are portrayed as young, attractive, and appeal to both the male and female aspects of the audience. The female band member is smiling out at the audience, whilst the males look tough, showing that the females generally are softer.
The use of taboo language used by the band members showed that they speak like the rest of us, and so their fame is the only thing that is different.
Teenagers are also represented as being just as responsible as adults, and yet different with a rebellious side to them - they are seen as being like adults in a way, instead of fitting into a set stereotype of teens as a ‘group of people’.</li></li></ul><li>Question 2: continued…<br />The lighting is all dark, and there are generally no settings, just dark backgrounds for the photos to give impression that these are a dark, metal band. <br />Therefore, this fits in with the stereotype of bands being all gothic, though also challenging in that they can look normal too. I represented the band as such to fit in with the metal stereotypes but also to show the audience that it doesn’t really matter about their appearance, mainly their way of dress, and yet my audience still recognised them as a metal band.<br />
Question 3: What kind of media institution might distribute your media product, and why?<br /><ul><li>I think Future Publishing plc would be the most likely to distribute my media product, as they are the publishers of Metal Hammer, the popular metal magazine, also Classis Rock, and so they seem to be interested in the rock/metal genre of music magazines, therefore I would have a good chance of having my magazine published by them, as my magazine is new and fresh, and could soon become very popular as it introduces famous/new bands to the world and is an alternative to other music magazines already out there.</li></li></ul><li>Question 4: Who would be the audience for your media product?<br /><ul><li>The audience of my magazine are both male and female, and are for all ages, as the bands featured in my magazine are old and young alike, thought mostly teenagers to people in their 30’s would really appreciate this type of music, older people not so much, so mostly people from 16-30.
It is for people of any nationality/race, as band members are very diverse, and people of all classes can appreciate, whether working, middle-class, students, etc. Due to the band members all being different, there is something for everyone within the rock/metal genre. So therefore, this is a wide audience and so they would all hopefully like the product, and make it successful. The audience is just basically anyone with an interest in rock/metal within the accepted age limit, although they could be slightly more targeted at certain groups of people i.emoshers, Goths, young males.
I gained positive results from my test target audience, so I think my product would be successful.</li></li></ul><li>Question 5: How did you attract/address your audience?<br /><ul><li>To make my magazine appeal to my target audience, I thought a lot about the content in my magazine.
I chose the particular title and the font as it is very striking and eye-catching, and the title sounds good, like a magazine you would definitely want to read.
The images on the front are very appealing, showing attractive young band members smiling out at the audience, inviting them in. The lighting makes the band members look flawless and perfect, and the posing attracts the reader; the colours stand out vividly against the blank, dark background, therefore making the band members seem surreal.
All the bands featured attract the attention of the reader, who would want to know more about them and why they had been featured exclusively on the cover.
The article on the contents page feature lots of interesting and different bands, and also news regarding some of the bands, and it is grouped into different sections, i.e. news about the bands featured on the front cover, which make it simple to understand and so the audience would find it very useful.
In the double page spread, the headline stands out like it should and the article is structured like a professional piece of journalism with pulled-out quotes; the writing is informal, with colloquial words thrown in, but is written with expertise. There is a big image of the band smiling out at the audience and making funny faces; the picture looks flawless, appealing, and makes the page all the more interesting so that it is not all writing.</li></li></ul><li>Question 5: continued…<br />This article is different to other articles as the band has a unique history that most bands haven’t even come close to; the actual members are different to typical metal band members, but likeable all the same. Therefore, the article is of a different calibre to other articles.<br />
Question 6: What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?<br /><ul><li>I was mostly already familiar with blogging, but I had never used Adobe products before, such as Photoshop and InDesign, and had never used a Mac computer before, so during the course of this coursework I learnt how to edit and creature newspapers etc using these particular programs, and also found out how a Mac works.
I learnt how to use the camera and how to mount it on a tripod.
All the editing techniques I used for my photos I learnt whilst doing this coursework, such as changing the lighting and removing the background.
I learnt how to do everything in InDesign, which I had previously never used before. When adding in pictures, I learnt that I could resize them to fit but would have to cut out certain areas to make them directly fit into the frames.
I also had to use Microsoft Word quite often which I know how to use already.
So therefore doing this coursework I learnt a lot of new things to do with technology which I had no previous knowledge of, and also made use of what I already knew about computers and programs.</li></li></ul><li>Question 7: Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?<br /><ul><li>I learnt a lot of things whilst making my final product, which made it a lot better than my prelim task. I made more use of fonts, images, editing, and contents.
My prelim magazine cover was very simple and basic. The shots in my final product are taken more professionally and edited in new and better ways to make them look more professional, whilst the pictures in the prelim task don’t look as good and was not taken in such a way that to resize it, it would fit perfectly into the frames, also it was not edited much to change the lighting and appearance of the model.
There are also no strap lines and not even that much writing on the front, also too less images and too less use of colour in the prelim task.
The content of the writing in the final product is more creative, and the images are more interesting and appealing and there is good of colour. Furthermore, it has a good layout unlike in the prelim task.
Therefore, it is apparent that I learnt a lot of editing skills etc from the time when I made my prelim task to when I made my final product, in which I was I was able to effectively use the skills I learnt along the way.</li></li></ul><li>
Conclusion<br /><ul><li>Overall, my product was largely successful from the feedback I received from my test audience; it looked like a professional magazine piece judging by the fonts, pictures, title, content of the writing etc. The main things that made this magazine article successful was the journalistic article, very professionally done with pulled-out quotes and coloured captions, the professionally edited photos, the title and fonts of the magazine, and the little details such as the strap line, issue number and date etc. The only weakness the magazine had was the pictures, as there was only one type of picture with the models dressed in the same clothes with the same backgrounds; there should have been a variety of different scenic pictures.
Overall, I think the final product could pass for an actual magazine with the exception of less pictures having been used.</li></li></ul><li>