Final Music Video:
Saturday, 21 March 2015
Evaluation Task 4: How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Evaluation 4: How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
This is the script that we used to answer this question:
We started the process by deciding to focus on a ‘rock group’ image, therefore we knew that a performance element would be key to our video. As a result, we chose the song ‘Grounds For Divorce’ by Elbow. Having filmed an animatic of our rough storyboard on the Sony NX5 and cut it together on Final Cut Pro, we decided that we needed to include a narrative element in order to add another exciting dimension to the video.
We filmed the performance element on a Sony FS100, as by using prime lenses we were able to capture higher quality footage that added to the authentic nature of the band. Equally, by measuring out the length of shot, the footage was much sharper and helped to bring clarity to the video. Furthermore, we used a lighting monitor to co-ordinate and control all the lights, thus ensuring that all the members of the band were visible.
In the pre-production stage we used digitisation to transfer the footage from the camera’s hard drive to the editing software Adobe Premier. We used the rhythmic determent of the music and placed marker on the beats on the timeline, thus indicating potential cutting points. To finish the video we used colouring and grading tools. We adjusted the colour palette so it had a blue tint, and did this by altering the contrast and saturation of shots. Also we added a letterbox effect to generate an epic, cinematic feel.
In order to create effects we imported short action sequences from Adobe Premier to Adobe After Effects. We used stock footage of muzzle flashes and placed them on top of the image. We had to size and position them correctly, in order to ensure that the flash occurred around the end tip of the gun. By blending the light around the gun the effect merged with the background, and this helped to make the shot more realistic. By placing masks around the actors faces, the faces of the actors lit up with the gunfire, thus made the action more genuine and impressive looking. To emphasise continuous gunfire we used motion tracking, as it followed the point of the gun and highlighted the muzzles flashes.
To film the narrative element we used a Sony NX5, as it allowed us to have a higher shutter speed and it had integrated lenses, thus we were able to adjust to the moment, making the footage seem more spontaneous. This helped us to create a more exciting and tense atmosphere. We used the camera handheld to further intensify the movements of the actors, as it helped us to engage the audience and bring them into the drama.
For the explosion shot we used multiple layers of stock footage. By speeding up the images of mud and smoke, we created a much more impressive and realistic explosion. Moreover, we used motion tracking to place the explosion behind the girl, thus we had to cut around her and the woodland background.
In order to make our set more realistic, we undertook research on the Internet and used various mediums as inspiration. The most beneficial source of information was the music video 21 Guns by Green Day and a section of the film Mr and Mrs Smith as it helped us piece together an image of what our set and narrative elements should look like. In relation to the set, we took images of the couple on a Canon 70D and printed them out in order to heighten the link between the performance and narrative element.
Tuesday, 10 February 2015
Friday, 6 February 2015
Evaluation Task 2: How effective is the combination of your main produce and ancillary texts?
This is the script we used for our task 2 evaluation:
An artist’s image is extremely important, as it conveys the artist’s ethos and character to their target audience. Richard Dyer defines star image as, the semi-mythological set of meanings constructed around music performers in order to sell the performer to large and loyal audience. Thus, the star is not a real person but just an image that has been created out of a range of materials. Yet, audiences idolise their favourite artists, and this is due to the fact that they identify with the star image that has been created. Our bands star image was one of authenticity and rebellion, and we attempted to portray this throughout our video and ancillary texts. We gained inspiration from bands such as, The 1975, Mumford & Sons, Imagine Dragons and Kodaline. These bands all portrayed a similar star image, and did so through using ‘grungy’ locations in their videos, casual dark clothing and dark colours on their website and album covers. The bands also centred their products on key images or themes, thus we decided to use this idea in the construction of our products. We did this by focusing on two key motifs, trees and lightbulbs, and this also helped to establish a link between all of our products.
We constructed our star image through various creative choices, and attempted to establish links between our video, digipak and website. By reflecting the bands star image in all three of our media products, we ensure that the audience recognise our band, thus each product helps to cross promote our artist. Our target audience is 17-25 year old males, predominantly Caucasian, middle-class in terms of demographic profiling. The video will appeal to people who listen to indie rock music, due to the organic focus on lyrics and the authentic nature of the band. We did not want our band to appeal to mainstream users, and thus we focused on the ‘Britishness’ of our band, shown through stereotypical rebellious teenage images.
COLOUR AND FONT:
As our star image focuses on authenticity and rebellion, we wanted the band to be seen as rather mysterious, therefore concentrated our products around dark colours. We added a blue tint to our music video, by altering the saturation and brightness on Adobe Colour Correction, and this generated a cold atmosphere in the video which emphasised the ‘dangerous’ nature of the band. We also reflected this through our choices of props and clothing, as the destroyed bedroom in the performance element had blue wallpaper and the band was all dressed in dark blue or black clothing. We took inspiration from ‘The 1975’, as they are dressed similarly in dark clothing that reflects their rebellious star image. As a result, our colour scheme for our website and digipak centred on this blue and black colour scheme. We used a white background with black text on our home page screen, as it was mainly dominated with an image, but the rest of the website pages had a black background and white font. Although we did not use a blue background, the pictures on the website were edited with a blue tint, therefore the colour scheme of the website to an extent matched the video. We took inspiration from ‘The Script’s’ website and album cover, as they used the exact same colour and font on these two products. This helped to create a link between the products, and the blue colour helped to reflect the bands organic star image. As a result, we used images on the digipak that had been edited with a blue tint, thus the authenticity of our band was emphasised and the album linked with our other products. We also used the same font on the album cover that we used on the website, thus another link was drawn between the two products. The font we chose was simple, but with a slight slant which helped to intensify the reckless nature of our band. We used the colour black as it helped to intensify the text, thus we ensured that the text was visible against the image. By placing the text in the middle of the image the audience was immediately drawn to it, and this helped to promote the name of our band ‘Carter James’.
In all three of our products, we present the images of light bulbs and trees. These images reflect our star image, as the lightbulb represents the quirkiness of our band, whilst the trees portray the rebellious mysterious nature of the band. These images are central in our video, as the single lightbulb in the performance element is drawn attention to through numerous close ups. Imagine Dragons uses the same image in their website and digipak, and this helps to establish a running theme throughout the bands products. We used this for inspiration in the creation of our star image, thus we took these central images from our video and reflected them in our website and digipak. Moreover, the narrative element is shot in a woods, thus the dangerous side of the band is effectively conveyed. Equally, the home page of our website displays an image of a hand holding a lightbulb with a tree growing inside. We constructed this image through taking a photo of a tree and a lightbulb and merging the two together on Photoshop. As a result, the audience are immediately drawn into the mysterious star image of our band, and are able to draw connections between the website and music video. Throughout the rest of the website, the header involves an image of lightbulbs, thus this motif is continually emphasised throughout. Furthermore, on our digipak, the front cover depicts the lead singer in the woods thus the motif of trees is accentuated. We wanted to generate a ‘wild’ atmosphere, thus had him standing alone, but surrounded by trees. This helped to heighten the rebellious star image, but also the authentic and organic nature of the band. Equally, we had a close up image of trees on the back of the digipak, and the same on the second panel. We used the same image of the lightbulb and tree on the third panel (where the CD goes), thus establishing another link between our two products. By continually using these two motifs the bands star image was emphasised, but it also helped to familiarise the audience with the band and caused them to identify the band with these two symbols.
In order to promote our band, we decided that we wanted to use a front man, so that the audience could identify with both the band as a whole, and as an image. As a result, in our video we had the lead singer standing slightly forward and away from the rest of the group, and this distinguished him as the front man. Equally, we began and ended the video with close ups of him, thus the audience were immediately able to connect with the bands leading image. We translated this image onto the digi-pak and website, as we put the lead singer on the front of the digi-pak in order to infer that he is ‘Carter James’. We also used another photo of him in the inside cover, as it allowed us to highlight the fact that the band was represented by the lead singer. We took inspiration from ‘The Script’ here, as they use the idea of a front man in both their digi-pak and website. In order to incorporate the idea of a front man in our website, we used images of him in the gallery and placed them at the top of the page. The majority of the images centred around him and due to their placement, the audience were immediately drawn to him. By using a front man we were able to promote our band as the audience could identify easily with the band as a whole, but mainly through the eye catching image of the lead singer.
There were certain aspects that we could have improved, in order to emphasise the bands star image and the link between the products. For example, we did not involve a logo on any of our products, and this would have really helped to intensify the link between the digipak and website. Using a logo would have allowed us to brand the band with a specific image that the audience could relate to, yet instead we relied on the power of colour and motifs. Also, the colour scheme on the website is mainly black and white, with only a slight blue tint, whereas the video and digipak have a very obvious blue tint. This prevents the products from being completely similar, therefore slightly detracts from the bands star image and limits audience recognition.