Friday, 27 April 2012


Front Panel 

Back Panel 

Left Inner Panel

Right Inner Panel 


Sunday, 15 April 2012

Evaluation Q1

In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

For our coursework, we were set the task of creating a music video, a magazine ad and a digipak. We had to look at the common codes and conventions for each product and create our own. Below I will explain the common codes and conventions for each of my texts. 

Common conventions 

Music Video
  • They tend to include both a mixture of performance and narrative, a study done by Goodwin looks more into this concept idea. Sometimes artist use what is called a 'cameo' where one of the band members play a lead role in the narrative. 
  • They use a range of shots. Tracking shots are commonly used to create a moving flow for the song. Pop videos mainly use longs shots of the female on screen for the male gaze. Whereas indie bands tend to use close ups of the band members playing their instruments. An example of a video where the camera angles used are to hide the artist 'weight' is Sean Kingstons video. A lot of close-up shots of the male singer are used with constant camera movement. 
  • Lip syncing is commonly used to portray the sense of a performance going on. Most artist use this nowadays, mainly incorporating it in with the video. Unless the video does not contain a performance aspect.  
  • Music videos usually feature jump cutting and the footage is usually used to match what is going on on screen. They tend to edit the video to the beat of the soundtrack. 
  • The mise-en-scene is usually selected to match the genre of the band e.g. a metal band would use some sort of warehouse to create an isolated feeling, whereas a pop singer would use a colourful and happy place. 
Magazine Ads 
  • They always show the band name in bold lettering to make it stand out in the magazine, the smaller the artist the bigger this tends to be. 
  • They provide realise dates whether its for tickets or a cd sale. 
  • Star reviews help promote the band and make people want to buy what is being advertised. 
  • Band information and band websites, so people know where they can find out more information on the band. These are usually shown through the use of Twitter or Facebook icons. 
  • Record label information and a copyright statement. 
  • Band image or cd image. 
A link to more on Magazine ads

  • They tend to be made from cardboard, this is because it is seen as more environmentally friendly. 
  • The band name is usually clear on the front. 
  • Band image or print on the front, usually recognisable and have a close link to the band. 
  • Website information and band website for people to find out more information. 
  • Band and album name on the side, including category number and company logo. 
  • A brief description of the band or a lyrics sheet in usually found on the inside booklet. This provide you with information. 
  • Barcode. 
  • Copyright statement and record label information. 
A link to more on digipaks

Here is a podcast taking you through the first stages of our digipak plans: 

We then moved onto looking at the common codes and conventions for each product for our chosen genre, indie/alternative. This was to help us when making our final products.  A band that inspired a lot of our idea was the Arctic Monkeys

Firstly we looked at some of their videos. We found the video for 'Teddy Picker' very helpful for filming our performance shots. They used a lot of close-ups of the band and a lot of shaky camera work. We decided to go for the same sort of look when filming ours. Although the narrative was not very prominent in this video, we were mainly looking at how they filmed their performance footage. We also looked at the fast pace of editing used in this video, it matched well with what was going on on screen. However, this video incorporated a diegetic opening which we chose not to do, we believed that it wouldn't have worked very well. 

Below is a vodcast demonstrating how we went about filming our performance work using ideas from this video. We mainly used the concept of one band member in shot per time and a shaky camera look. 

We then looked at one of their digipaks. We noticed they went for a very simple design. Apart from the common codes and conventions we mainly liked the black and white image. We then decided that for our digipak we also possibly wanted a black and white image on the front to signify the indie/alternative genre. There was also a lack of textual information on the front. So we only included; the band name, album name and the information about the bonus video. We found that the majority of the information was included on the inside were their was often a booklet. We chose to do this as well. 

Finally, we looked at a magazine ad's. We noticed again they took a very simplistic design. The image colour chosen was black and white with limited text used. It used some of the main codes and conventions of a normal magazine ad but lacked any real editing or imagination. In order for us to gain full marks we had to include more textual information, also because they band are unknown we needed to provide more text. We included Facebook and Twitter links in order to help promote the band and get all the information across. 

We knew in order to get a higher mark we needed to include more signs of editing and more information for the magazine ad and the digipak. We did further research into our genre and the links below will take you to them:

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Evaluation Q2

How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?

Our task was to create a Music Video, Digipak and a Magazine advertisement for our chosen band. We chose to do an unsigned band called The Swing Movement. 

          I discovered that in the real world, separate companies are given the roles of producing, advertising and designing these products.  Companies such as; Wewow tend to deal with the designing of an album cover or a magazine ad, they don't deal with the mass production of it. Whereas companies such as; Creando deal with the making of the music video and Image works LTD deal with the designing of advertisements. This shows that it is not just one singular company that produce all texts. These two mainly focus on the designs and the creative aspects for the band. It is then usually left down to the record labels to find the appropriate magazines and websites to promote their bands on. 
          Our primary target audience is males aged 15-24. The reason we chose this was because we believed that the indie/alternative genre aimed more towards a male audience. However, we do have a secondary audience which is of the same age range but the female gender. This is because in our video text we show a relationship, which is part of the rom/com genre. This targeting females as well. 
          With our selection of band being the indie/alternative genre, it is quite obvious where the texts would be distributed/exhibited. NME are a huge organisation who mainly focus their attention on the alternative/indie genre. I believe this would be the perfect magazine to place our advertisement in, we would be aiming our product at our targeting audience. Youtube is a great place to promote your videos. However, if our video was to shown on a particular channel I believe it would be MTV. This is one of the biggest music channels in the world and mainly focuses on indie/alternative and rock music. Finally, we would have our digipak available to buy on websites such as; Amazon and in stores such as; hmv. These are two huge companies which would allow us to target both our secondary and primary audiences. 
  • We chose to use the same image context on both the magazine ad and the digipak. This was an image of a singular figure sat on a swing in a lonely a derelict area. This linked closely with the title of the band 'The SWING Movement'. 
  • For both these texts we also used an editing effect to make it look as if the swing was moving. This was achieved by using multiple layers on photoshop. 
  • In all three texts we have used black and white imagery at some stage. We used this after looking at our research into the indie/alternative genre and we found it was a common convention. The colouring used helps show the vulnerability and sadness of the figure on screen. 
  • Also, in all three texts we have used the idea of looniness and isolation. This is achieved in the mag ad and digipak through there only being one person in shot, he is also surrounded by nothing but a natural environment showing he is on his own. These images link well with the video because it is about a singular person trying to overcome a broken down relationship with someone close. 
  • Finally, we use the band image in all three texts. This is a good promotional idea getting photos of the band involved in as many texts as we could. 
  • We used a different person in the video and the magazine advert. This meant the figure in the mag ad didn't match the one on the video. However, we thought this was good because it was more about trying to sell the tour dates and digipak and not the video. 
  • We also used different editing techniques when using photoshop. For example part of the magazine advertisement is in colour, this was down to a different layering effect used. 
  • We didn't use viral advertisement at any stage in the video ie. product placement of images of the band. 
Overall we were happy with the outcome of all three texts. We believed they all worked well together and you could make links with all three. We tried to stick closely to the common codes of our genre when creating all three and I believe we achieved this. Because the band are un-signed this gave us a chance to explore and be more creative (using our own images to more effect). 

Friday, 13 April 2012

Evaluation Q3

What have you learned from your audience feedback?

Throughout our production we have tried to use common codes and conventions to appeal to our primary and secondary target audiences. A target audience is a group of people who you aim your product at, you use certain ideas in the hope that it will appeal to them. However, all good film makers try and make their products appeal to everyone in order to make more money. 

Our primary target audience is of the male gender between the ages of 15-24. After researching we found that it is mainly males who like the alternative/indie genre. However, we noticed that there was room for a secondary audience. We found this to be females aged 15-24. With the narrative being based around a relationship, it is around this age where romance starts playing a big role in someones life. People experience break-ups and can relate to the experience viewed on screen. This also helps us appeal to our secondary audience, females, through the use of a 'rom-com' like genre being used. One of the clothing codes we decided on was for the female to be wearing a red jacket in the first scenario. After playing around with colouring and layering whilst editing, I managed to make the jacket significantly stand out. The idea was to make it signify romance and love, thus further linking it to our secondary audience.

Throughout the process we recieved all sorts of audience feedback helping us to improve our video. We used such social networking sites as Twitter, Facebook and different internet Forums, where we posted our video and asked for any comments. However, we found that our most helpful source of feedback came from class discussions. This is when we showed our work in class and then asked for feedback from the rest of the group. I took notes and blogged on what was said during the discussion. Here is an example of feedback we received after we showed some friends our 3rd rough cut.

We took on board all the feedback that was given to us and discussed very idea. Some ideas such as; turning the memories of the narrative into black and white, we rejected because we didn't believe it would work. However the majority of feedback given to us we used to make changes to our video. Here is a list of changes made due to our feedback:
  • Less performance shots and more narrative.
  • Have five scenarios instead of three. 
  • Get rid of the 'on side' performance shots.
  • Keep the camera steady in the narrative shots. 
  • Make the narrative more clear.
  • Change the way in which we go from past to present in the narrative. 
After gaining feedback we made the changes to the video and then asked for further feedback. The people who we aimed at getting feedback from 

There is a clear use of audience feedback shown in all three of our products. Every time we received feedback we produced a new version/idea after using the notes we gathered together. This meant that our work was meeting all the common codes and conventions needed to attract to our target audience. 

Here is a vodcast taking you through some of the reasons why we used audience feedback, who our audience was and what we gained from the feedback: 

Here is an example of some performance footage we filmed, we then gathered audience feedback from people our age (target audience) and made notes on what we needed to change. This feedback was gathered from a group discussion in class where the average age was 17 and of both sexes. This being targeting both or primary and secondary audiences. 
Here is the feedback we received:
  • Remove the dutch angle that appears in numerus shots, this can be done on final cut.
  • Good use of focus adjustment throughout the video, this is done through using a 'Nikon D300's' camera with a lense on it.
  • The video was well synced with the audio.
  • Too much focus on the lead singer. More shots of other band members.
  • More cut away shots of instrument pedals and amps.
  • Good use of camera movement throughout the video.
  • Possibly include more shots off all band members.

After receiving this feedback we produced our first rough cut (including narrative) using this feedback and produced the video below: 

As you can see we made many changes such as; we got rid of all the dutch angel shots, we added a narrative, we increased the number of cutaway shots and we played around with the effects in iMovie. Overall I believe without the audience feedback this video would have not been improved this much.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Evaluation Q4

How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?

What aspects of new media we used:
  • Final Cut Pro X
  • iMovie 
  • Motion (software)
  • Photoshop
  • Nikon D300s HD camera
  • Websites: Youtube, vimeo, blogger, divishare, scribd. 
  • Viral advertisement
  • Digipaks
  • Magazine advertisements
               Firstly, one of the main types of new media we used was the software Final cut Pro X to edit our video. This is the latest version for this type of software. I found this an easy piece of equipment to use once I got the hang of the basic skills needed to use the software. One of the main effects of which I used was the 'auto flashing' layer which gave our video a good look. It zoomed in and out of the shot whilst also layering over a flashing effect, I mainly used this when the song gathered pace. Although I used a lot of different layering I found fitting the shots to the beat of the song proved most valuable. This was a common convention found in our research. I also used multiple layers on top of each other to link the narrative with the performance footage, and again this was mainly used when the song gathered pace. 
               Originally, we edited our footage on the software iMovie, this was for our first 2 full rough cuts including both performance and narrative. This was mainly because we found it a quick and easy way to pull together a rough cut in order to gather audience feedback as soon as possible. We were mainly focusing on the shots we had got and less on the editing. However, once I started using Final Cut I found it a lot easier to work with and the overall outcome was a lot better. 
               For our filming we used a camera called a 'Nikon D300s'. The quality of this camera was excellent (720p HD film) and helped us film a better project due to it being a high resolution camera. With it also being my camera this helped massively with time management through us being able to film whenever and not having to book a camera out. 
               We also found the software Photoshop very helpful when creating our ancillary texts. This price of software was really good at helping us edit our photos and include texts on both our digipak and magazine advertisement. Firstly, one of the main effects that we used was layering. This was to make it looks as if the person on the swing was moving, this involved layering a lot of the same image on top of each other in order to get this effect. This involved using the lasso tool to move the images around and also playing around with the opacity levels. We tried to stick the usual indie/alternative conventions when editing the photos, I believe we did this well. 
               I managed to enter our video into a music video competition which proved useful in order for gathering audience feedback gained from people within the music industry. It also meant that our video was viewed by more people, this showing the true effects of placing your work onto the internet. 

Sunday, 1 April 2012

GG - The Swing Movement (One shot perf vid)

Here is some work I have done, we plan to include it in our digipak as a 'special edition' offer. It is performance footage shot all in one take, it is all in time. This will help widen our target audience because people who aren't really interested in the music, might enjoy the creativity and use a similar idea when making their own videos.

An example of another band using this idea are called 'The Plastics'. They created a music video which has all been shot doing one take. However, ours differs from the idea that only one band member is in shot whereas, in their video they are all in shot. The Pixies have also used a similar idea. They created a video which contained one shot of all the band members running down a hill in slow motion. They idea was to stand out against the common codes and conventions, they were more about the music then the image of the band. It was a kind of protest against the stereotypical music video for an alternative band.