Thursday, 21 March 2013


Question 1) In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge the forms and conventions of real media products? 


When looking for inspiration for our music video, we found that this played a key part within the research and planning of the text. To do this, we looked around at a number of music video's within our genre (Folk / Nu-folk), including Ed Sheerans 'A Team' and Jack Johnson's 'Better Together'. We looked at these video's as we felt that they provided us with an accurate idea of what our intended target audience, primarily teens and young adults, wanted from a music video. When looking at Sheeran's video 'The A Team' 
"we particularly liked the use of black and white shots, which we incoorperated into our own work. However we differed from the continued use of the black and white, which is seen throughout Sheerans video, and used it selectively, in parts of the video where we felt the black and white effect suited the music best.  The black and white effect combined with the 'homemade' feel of the video, gave Sheeran's video a simplistic, yet effective look, something which we felt suited our genre and audience. Another key aspect that we found effective was the use of narrative within this video, which gave the video a Goodwin-esque feel to it, sustaining his amplification theory. We tried to replicate this, by following both Sheeran's idea's, and Goodwins theories on the relationship between visuals and audio. It follows the life of a young troubled teen, on a, sort've quest for enlightenment. But it was shot in a way, which provided the audience with potentially a number of entropic and redundant connotations. We felt that this was a key concept to include and maintain for our video, as it provided potentially both originality, and some stereotypical connotations, based on the way the video is perceived by viewers. 

We also used a number of other features in our video, such as the close up's you can see here, which we then replicated in a way to communicate to the audience the emotions and feelings our video is intended to convey.  Sheeran's A team also opens with the death of the actress involved. This idea had occured to us before viewing Sheeran's video, but this gave us more clarification about the idea, which we eventually did decide to use. This 'back to front' structure disrupts the Todorov feel to our video.


These idea's specifically came from watching a number of videos, both within our genre and outside the genre. Personally, I had watched Sheeran's A Team video, and Alt- J's Breezeblocks and grasped the idea from that, but my partner also found the style in Trey Songz - Heart Attack. Although this song in particular was outside our respective genre, we felt that getting a number of idea's about the structure of our video was imperative in making the video interesting to watch.

As our primary audience was based around the teen age group, we also found inspiration from TV shows such as Skins, and Misfits. These shows portray the teen lifestyle as an up and down roller coaster  with both elements of rebellion and emotion. We watched a number of adverts for both shows, and found that both made good use of the handheld camera's, which we further developed in our video, as we felt this represented the rocky road that our music video was made to show. We were also able to use Skins towards our idea's of costume and mise en scene, taking inspiration from one of the shows main characters 'Effy'. We found that her style, suited the theme we intended to represent within our video. The good use of makeup and hair styling, to give our actor an image that showed she was unfazed about her image and also gave her a faded, grunge look, which we felt portrayed her personality as well.

We also used conventions found in the film Black Swan, which we felt, combined with the aspects taken from Skins and misfits, gave our video two contrasting sides. One being the mainstream, stereotypical view of teenagers, which has elements of redundancy in, and the second being a darker, much more obscure view,  which we felt could connote a plethora of meanings, which would give our video a balance of entropy and redundancy. This second side derived from the final dance scene in Black Swan, a film which focuses around ayoung female dancer with psychological problems. We really liked the movements, and costumes in this, and again felt that this directly contrasted with the beginning of our music video, which we considered to be an interesting factor. It also gave our video a performance aspect, rather than maintaing a completely narrative structure, in our opinion would have made the video a lot less interesting, and less beneficial to our audience. It's not often aspects such as this are found within our genre, and therefore this can be considered an area where we challenged forms and conventions of real media products.

As an additional aspect to my media package, I was required to create an individual digipak and advert for the music I had chosen - Carl Martin - I Just Need A Friend.  Whilst planning for this, it was essential for me to look at other media products from the folk/Nufolk genre. I decided to stick to conventions of other real media products in this aspect, to ensure that my audience knew that this was a Folk genre text, and to ensure that my audience knew the aims of the piece. As earlier mentioned, I looked at Ed Sheeran and Jack Johnson, but to make my research thorough, I also looked at a number of other examples, to pinpoint exactly what structures and effects suited the genre.

While doing my research and planning, I found many similarities between the digipaks and adverts. It seemed that many of them tried to maintain a simplistic style, while ensuring the cover was effective in connoting the genre without stating it. In the majority of covers, only a small range of colours were used, which helped to ensure this, and often there was only one key image, which captured the audiences attention. I decided to utilize some of these features in my own work, whilst trying to maintain some levels of originality in my piece.

As you can see in the power point below, I have identified a number of features present in real media digipaks and adverts. Now I will discuss about how I used, or did not use the features.


For my digipak, when doing my research i found that a number of other digipaks in my genre made good use of a simplistic house style. I decided that this would suit my genre as similar artists to mine had used this approach and style. I did this by using just one primary colour, created in PHOTOSHOP CS5. I then combined the use of small images of appropriateness that connoted the good feeling I was looking to promote on this text. I also used just one font (Harabara) which I had found on the internet and downloaded. I then used A bold effect on my title to make it stand out and catch the audiences eye, and then used the same font in a smaller size for the album cover, directly in between the two lines of collage, to create calm, soft, and gentle connotations.


During my research and planning, I realised that font choice, size and colour played a vital role in connoting my digipak and adverts genre. When I came across Jason Mraz' album, I really liked the use the 'handwritten' style of the back of the digipak. Therefore, I decided to incorporate this into my own work, whilst adding my own twist. As you can see in the Mraz cover, the background remained blank, with just the black font being the main focus point on the back. The font is was also electronically created. I decided, for authenticity to create the tracklisting myself. I felt that this gave my artist a closer link with his audience, which i think in my genre is a vital thing to create. Instead of directly replicating Mraz' work, I also decided to make  my back cover more interesting, and include some props that would give my artist more character.


Prior to the creation of my digipak, I had liked the idea of using a collage on the front from an early date. When I found Jack Johnsons - Better Together album cover, this reinforced my idea's that it suited the genre.  Instead of using a complete collage, similar to Johnson's, I decided to use only a select group of photo's and lay them out in a way that i felt suited the style. I felt that Johnsons use of the collage made the cover busy, and this was not the approach I was looking for. I took my photo's using a number of technologies, including my own Samsung Galaxy s3 8MP camera, and a Nikon D60 DSLR camera. 


As the advert was intended to sell my media package, it was imperative that I did a plethora of research into existing music adverts, to ensure that my advert promoted and appealed to it's target audience. When researching my adverts, I found that most had one clear image, used to draw the reader in, and interest them. When designing my own product, I decided to vary this, and use the same image, and multiply it in size to maximize the amount of attention my product would receive. I replicated the same image, with a drawn on effect 4 times, with the effect growing each time. If I were to do my advert again, I would probably change this as I now feel that it does not effectively fit in with my genre. I also decided to make the background of my advert  using symbols, similar to that of the Kings of Leon advert in the powerpoint, to again maximize attention. However, looking retrospectively, I would again change this to maintain the simplistic house style i had originally intended.  Another key aspect I found was that the artists name/album name was often in a different font or size to make this an eyecatching aspect of the advert. I used this feature in my own piece, by using a different font to for the name of my artist, to ensure that this made the key information in my advert stand-out.

No comments:

Post a Comment