MiraJax Best Be Believing Music Video

MiraJax Best Be Believing Music Video:

MiraJax- Best Be Believing

Front and Back Digipack

Front and Back Digipack
Front and Back Digipack

Inside Digipack

Inside Digipack
Inside Digipack


Please click this image to enter our website

Monday, 9 January 2017

Evaluation Q1: In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

Throughout the production of our three media, the music video, album cover and website for our Electropop artist we both conformed to and challenged typical conventions. We stuck to the essential conventions in order for our products to be accessible to our audience and gratify their needs, and to fulfill their purpose. However we also challenged some conventions in order to keep our products original and entertaining for our audience, especially as our artists genre is Electro-pop and so our audience are expecting authentic content.

First I am going to evaluate the use of conventions in our Music Video:

Below are slides outlining Andrew Goodwin's Music Video Theory.


Andrew Goodwin Music Video Theory from latymermedia

Genre Characteristics
I have created this mind map showing the genre characteristics of Electropop music videos and how we have conformed to or challenged these conventions in our own video:

Mind Map created by Latymer Media2015 with GoConqr

Relationships Between Lyrics, Music and Visuals
I have created this video to show when we linked the lyrics in the song with visuals within our video:






Visual Motifs, Inconography and Voyeurism

We stuck to Goodwin's convention by including some visual motifs and iconography within our video. We included a lot of close up beauty shots of Mira, and shots focusing on different parts of her body in a voyeuristic manner. We created a repeated section cutting quickly between close ups of Mira which is seen four times in the video:


via GIPHY

Goodwin states there is a need for lots of close ups of the artist and visual hooks and so we included this sequence to keep the audience hooked on the image of Mira and to focus on her styling.


Carol Vernallis on Narrative

The Kindest Cut- Functions and meanings of Music Video Editing on Editing

Carol Vernallis talks about conventions of music video editing and we conformed to most of these editing conventions:

1. "The narrative is not always complete- it may be a partial, fragmented narrative."

We followed this convention as our narrative opens in the middle of an argument between Mira and Jax which throws the audience straight into the action with a lack of explanation. 


via GIPHY


The ending of our video is also not entirely clear and although there appears to be some resolution when Jack finds Mira, the audience aren't given clear answers as to what happens.




via GIPHY


2. "The structure of the video may appear disjointed"

We followed this convention by breaking up our narrative shots with studio shots so that the narrative is not continuous. We did this to keep the video visually interesting for the viewer.




via GIPHY


3. "There may not always be a clear resolution at the end"

Our video breaks this convention to an extent as at the end of our video their is some sort of resolution when Jack and Mira find each other, however the viewer does not know whether Jack and Mira actually resolve their issues or not.




via GIPHY

Todorov's Narrative Theory

Todorov's Narrative theory states that a narrative has three stages, an original equilibrium, a disruption and finally a resolution resulting in a new equilibrium. Todorov's theory is normally applied to film narratives, however some music videos follow the theory in the narrative, for example Maroon 5- She Will be Loved:

Mind Map created by Latymer Media2015 with GoConqr

Our music video loosely follows Todorov's structure, however the disruption happens very early on in our video. . We took more inspiration from the Mount Kimbie- Carbonated video which focuses more on an abstract representation of an open ended journey and this inspired our long middle section which follows Mira and Jax's journeys.



This video inspired our structure of having a short disruption at the beginning of the video before showing Mira and Jacks journey to find each other for most of the video.

Carol Vernallis on Editing, Camera and Framing

The Kindest Cut- Functions and meanings of Music Video Editing on Editing

Carol Vernallis also identifies conventions of music video editing, camera work and framing, and below I have created a table showing if we have conformed to these editing conventions in our music video:



I have created a Prezi identifying the typical forms and conventions found in artists websites and how our website develops of challenges these conventions:




When creating our album cover we researched into existing album covers to identify the forms and conventions that are widely used. Below I have annotated the AlunaGeorge- Body Music album front and back cover to identify the forms and conventions:



Below I have created a slide show describing how we conformed to all the conventions of album covers:


Sunday, 8 January 2017

Evaluation Q2: How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?

The combination of our three products, the music video, website and album cover, is overall a marketing campaign to sell our artist, MiraJax and their single, 'Best Be Believing'. Marketing theory tells us that the music is the starting point for the creation of a promotional package that will sell both the music and the lifestyle or image that is associated with the music. The role of our three texts:

  • music video- The role of the music video is to promote the single and the artist
  • digipak- The role of the album cover is to promote the music on the album and the artist
  • website- The role of the website is to act as a hub for all the other platforms and products, linking to social media and merchandising etc.

When creating our three ancillary texts we knew it was important that the music video, website and album cover all worked together and complimented each other in order to successfully promote our artists. To do this we needed to consider having a strong brand and artist image and synergy across all three of our products.

The first thing we knew we had to create in order for our products to work well together was a strong artist identity.  We read up on Richard Dyer's 'star' theory before thinking about our artists identity, here is a summary of this theory:


Mind Map created by Latymer Media2015 with GoConqr

An artist that we took inspiration from a lot when creating out artist's identity was Rihanna. We researched a lot into her character and how she is portrayed in the media and I have created this slide show below analysing her star identity:


Rihanna from latymermedia

Below I have outline our artists star identity and how we constructed them inspired by Rihanna and Richard Dyer's star theory:

Made with Padlet

Styling is an extremely important part of an artist's image and we wanted to create a unique style for Mira and Jack that would be seen in all three of our products. By having a recognisable style this means our products work better together.
Below I have created a mood board showing our style inspiration for Mira:

Hello by Latymer Media2015

Below I have created a diagram to show elements of Mira's style that can be seen across all three of our products:


Audience theory tells us that audiences must be gratified in a number of ways, they need to be able to interact with a product and music has to be packaged in order to guarantee fans will spend their money and consume it. An important element to creating synergy across our website, album cover and music video and creating an overall package for the audience is having a strong brand for our artist. This includes:

  • fonts
  • logo
  • iconography
  • consistent style
The font we chose to use was called Asgalt Regular and we used this on our album cover and throughout our website as seen below, please click to enlarge the images and to see how we used our font:

...


We created our artist logo when making our website and we used this logo frequently throughout our website and our merchandising in order for it to become a symbol which the audience quickly associated with with MiraJax. This helps to strengthen the MiraJax brand. Here is where we incorporated our logo onto our website and merchandising:



...

Iconography is the use of visual images and symbols, in order to create synergy across our main product and ancillary texts we included the use of split screens as a recognisable piece of iconography for our audience:

Use of split screen in our music video:



Use of split screen on our website:


Use of split screen on our album cover:


There has to be physical links and connectivity between all three of our products in order for them to work together effectively. I have created a diagram below showing how all three of our products are connected to each other. By being connected this means the audience can easily access and navigate through website, social media and view our album and music video. Please click on the photo to enlarge it:


Saturday, 7 January 2017

Evaluation Q3: What have you learned from your audience feedback?

Audience feedback was extremely useful throughout all stages of our project as it helped us tailor our products to suit and appeal to our target audience and it helps us to assess the end products results. It enabled us to understand the needs of our TA better and therefore create successful products that could generate a profit from our audience.

First we had to identify who our audience are in order to appeal to them:

Primary Audience


Young adults/students aged 16-24
Boys and Girls
Fans of the Electropop genre

An example of our primary audience

Secondary Audience

Older fans of the electropop genre
Fans of similar genres such as pop and alternative
People interested in the upcoming UK music scene

Tertiary Audience

Fans of music in general
People wanting to be up to date with trends in the UK

In order to appeal to our target audience initially before we recieved audience feedback I read up on Blumler and Katz uses and gratifications theory in order to get a better idea of our audience's needs and how we can gratify these in our products. Below I have created a Prezi showing how the uses and gratifications theory helped us to target our audience and gratify their needs:




Our Music Video
Through all the stages of creating our music video we got feedback from our target audience in order to keep improving our idea. An important stage to get feedback from our target audience was after we had created our rough cut which was a test of our ideas:



We asked Flo, a 17 year old female memeber of our target audience to watch our rough cut and tell us what she liked and what she would improve:

video

This feedback was useful for us and informed us that we needed to extend the introductory argument to make it clearer, and also include more camera movement using the dolly and more dancing in the studio shots. Here is our studio shots before and after this audience feedback:





Final Feedback:
After completing our finished video we created a survey using survey money (our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/NMSM5GT)
The questions in our survey were as follows

  • What is your age? (Multiple choice)
  • What is your gender? (Multiple choice)
  • What music genre(s) do you listen to? (Multiple choice)
  • Having watched the music video, which genre do you think this song falls under?
  • Having watched the music video, would you like to know more about MiraJax?
  • Having watched the music video, is there anything you would change?
  • What message do you think the music video is trying to portray?
  • What would you rate the music video out of 10? (Multiple choice)
  • How well do you think the music video works with the song track? (Multiple choice)
  • Did the music video make you want to buy the album? (Multiple choice)

I posted a link to our survey and our music video on my Facebook page to encourage a range of responses from as many people as possible:
We had a mixture of both boys and girls answer our
survey which was fitting with our primary
 target audience.
Everyone who filled out our survey was aged 16-24
which is our primary target audience age

















We had a range of responses to this question, with the lowest response being Electropop which is the genre of our song. However a lot of people listen to R&B and pop which are genres close to Electropop. 






12/18 people successfully identified our video as Electropop, I am pleased with this result as it shows that our video conveyed the genre well and stuck to genre conventions. People who didn't chose Electropop chose related genres such as pop and R&B. 












14/18 people said they would like to know more about MiraJax  which shows they were successfully promoted through our products, especially as the majority of people questioned were not fans of the Electropop genre.






The majority of people (9/16) people said they would not change anything, however here was what some people said they would change:

  • The scene at the start was 'cringy'
  • A more dramatic/exciting storyline
  • Better quality for the narrative shots (x3)
The response about the quality of our narrative footage was interesting to us, as we had planned to make our narrative footage more gritty and obviously hand-held to appeal to our target audience of Electropop fans, however they evidently did not pick up on this decision.




The results to these last three questions was extremely encouraging with the majority of people rating our video 10/10, and this tells us that our video successfully appealed to our target audience groups.

Our Album Cover
The first stage we asked for audience feedback was after creating our flat plan for the front and back of our album cover so that we could check if our idea appealed to our audience at an early stage:

Our Flat plan


We asked Josh, a 17 year old male member of our target audience to look at our plan and give us feedback, he said:

"I like the use of the split screen showing a section of their faces"

"I think the front and back covers are a bit repetitive you could use a different idea on the back cover. Also the white background is a bit boring"


As you can see from our final album front and back panels we really took on board Josh's feedback, completely revamping our original idea for the back cover and adding a much more visually interesting background.

Final Feedback:
After we had completed our album cover we spoke to Georgina, an 18 year old female member of our target audience for feedback on our album cover:


From this feedback we can see that our ideas gratified our audience's needs for both entertainment with the visuals and information with the track listing, artist name etc.

Our Website
The website acts as the main hub for the artist and our other products and so we knew when creating our website we had to focus on gratifying the audiences need for information as well as entertainment.
After creating a first draft of our website on Wixs, we created a small focus group from our target audience made up of Emma, a 17 year old Electropop fan, and Myles, an 18 year old fan of UK music, and asked them to navigate through our website so far and give us feedback, this is what they came up with:

EMMA - "OMG it looks so professional! I can see there are buttons everywhere for me to navigate through the website so thats a pro."
MYLES - "It's very colourful, I'm guessing that's a theme you were trying to present?"
EMMA - "You should have more ways for the audience to get involved with the artist cause at the moment it just a one-way thing" 
MYLES - "Yeah, I agree. It's looking really good though, I'd definitely spend time scrolling through because of all the pictures and videos for me to watch"


We learnt from this feedback that our website was not yet gratifying our audience's needs for personal relationships, and we needed to include some content so that our audience can connect more with MiraJax as an artist. We therefore decided to include both a meet and greet and a competition for the audience to engage with:



Final Feedback:
At the end of creating our website we got a member of our target audience, Max aged 17, to navigate through out website and evaluate it:



His feedback was almost entirely positive and he picked up on positive aspects such as synergy between the website and social media pages which was very encouraging for our group. From this feedback we can see that we successfully gratified our audiences needs for diversion with elements such as our behind the scenes video and our competition.

Overall audience feedback was extremely useful for us throughout the whole of our project, and it was good to be able to connect with our target audience and find more about their needs. During construction it was essential to adapt our ideas to suit our audience, and during post-production it was nice to be able to evaluate our finished products and learn what we could've done to improve.

Friday, 6 January 2017

Evaluation Q4: How did you use new media technologies in the construction, research, planning and evaluation stages?

During the production of our three media products, throughout all stages; research and planning, construction and evaluation I was able to use a combination of both new and old media technologies to my advantage.




The main technology that was essential at every stage in this project was Blogger, I used blogger to update my research and planning, the construction process and now to post my evaluation. Blogger is extremely useful and easy to use and a great tool for this project.


Research and Planning
During the research and planning stages Web 2.0 was extremely useful, especially social media sites such as Youtube and apps such as Whatsapp. David Gauntlett talks about how Web 2.0 is now with user generated content and mass interactivity and collaboration, particuarly with the advent of social media. This meant that the web was extremely useful for us to research and share our ideas as a group. We also used our smartphones, which are an example of new media technology, to communicate with each other via apps.

Whatsapp
The first thing we did was create a whatsapp group chat with the three members of our group. We found whatsapp a good app to use as it enables us to easily message each other instantly and send photos and videos. The fact that we could easily send photos was useful for sharing research and ideas for things such as makeup looks etc. when planning our products. We could also arrange meeting times etc through this group chat.



Youtube
Youtube was really useful when doing our research as it enabled us to browse through the large collection of music videos on the Web to gain inspiration and ideas from. It is easy to share Youtube links between members of the group as well. We used clips from videos we found on Youtube to create our Steal-o-matic which was a vital part of the planning process.



Construction 
During construction, new media technologies played a vital role in producing our finished music video, website and album cover.

MUSIC VIDEO
Below I have created a Prezi identifying all the new media technologies we used in the production and post production of our music video and their pros and cons:




DIGIPAK
The construction of our digipak took place entirely on photoshop. However we initially had to take the promo shots we were planning to use on our album cover.

Cannon 5D MK 11 For Promo Shots
As well as using this camera for filming our music video we also used it to take the photos for our website and album cover. This camera was extremely good for taking photos as it is simple to use and can produce high quality pictures as you can see below:



Adobe Photoshop
We used photoshop to create our logo and also to layer all the elements of our album cover together. Photoshop was really great to use as it has a tool for almost any action you could want and allowed us to make our album cover look as professional as possible. Below I have created a table showing the Pros and Cons I found when working with photoshop:



WEBSITE
For the website, the software we used to create our website was WIX which is an online based website creator. This software was extremely easy to use and allowed us to create a professional looking website.

Pros:

  • Offers website templates which are easy to add your own information and images to.
  • Can be used on any device by anyone at anytime so is extremely accessible through the internet.
  • It is a free software.
  • Was easy to add purchasing and interactivity opportunities to our website.
Cons:
  • The site responded slowly and this was sometimes frustrating to work with.
  • The site sometimes did not save our changes or moved elements of our work around which was annoying.
Overall I think the pros outweigh the cons as although the software could be frustrating to work with it produced a more professional website than we could have hoped for.


Evaluation
Throughout the evaluation process I used many different web tools to lay out my evaluation and make it more interesting to read. Below I have created a slide show showing how I used these web tools:

Evaluation web tools from latymermedia

Overall I think that new media technologies helped us to create professional products easily. The proliferation of Web 2.0 allows us to create upload and share content with a wide audience. We were also very lucky to have access to high quality equipment when producing our video which meant the whole process was fun and rewarding.

Friday, 16 December 2016

Construction Post 6: Editing our Video

Editing our music video was a huge task that we started in week three of construction. To edit our video we used Adobe Premiere Pro and I enjoy using this programme as it is simple to make your video look as professional as possible.

EDITING OUR NARRATIVE FOOTAGE
The first thing we edited was our narrative footage as we shot this before our studio footage. We started by renaming all our shots and removing any takes we knew we would not be using. When planning our narrative we had previously written on a sheet of our song lyrics where different shots would be place in the song:

The lyrics with our planned shots next to them

As we had done this we were able to crop our shots by setting new start and end points and drag them onto the timeline with the correct lyric.

The next task was to create the split screens for all our shots and we did this by using the crop tool to make the shot smaller and changing the position to fit two shots onto the screen at the same time.
Position change tool

Crop tool
An example of our split screen.
We increased the pace of one of our shots to give it the effect of a time lapse as seen below:


via GIPHY

EDITING OUR STUDIO SHOTS
The next stage was to edit in  our studio shots between our narrative footage. When we began to do this we found that editing our shots to fit with the lyrics did not look that good, so we decided as a group to edit the shots to the beat of the song instead which looked more professional.
In our video we use a lot of fast paced editing to go along with the fast beat in our track:



via GIPHY

We were able to be more creative when editing our studio shots as we had not specifically identified what shots we wanted to go where. Therefore I personally spent some time making some sequences with quick cuts to the beat between our different coloured set ups and I am proud of some of the results I had:

TEACHER FEEDBACK
At this stage in our edit we showed our sequence so far to our teacher and in her feedback she said she would like to see more variety in our editing, for example in the bridge section we should use a slower editing pace with more variety of transitions.

We created this grid sequence using the crop tool to add some variety:


To create the sliding shots as seen in the gif above I used key frames so that the shots would slide across the screen after each other:
The key frames I added to change the motion of the shot.
We also added some cross disolves between shots to slow the pace down:

Use of cross disolve in our video
GRADING OUR SHOTS
The final stage after we had edited our sequence together was to grade our shots to make the colours more vibrant. I played a large role personally in grading our shots.
To begin with we used two tools, the three way colour wheel and adjust brightness and contrast.

However after grading our shots with these tools they did not give us the effect we wanted, it was hard to make the background as vibrant as we wanted without making the actors skin appear a strange colour. We also showed our video at this point to Josh aged 17 who is a member of our target audience and he said "The colours are good but they arent as vibrant as I would have liked. Maybe you can make the backgrounds bolder."
After speaking to our target audience and receiving some help we went about our grading in a different way using the levels and brightness tool to grade our shots. This gave a much more professional result making the colours much richer and the shots appear less flat.
Non- graded image
Graded image
After grading our video was finished, and as a group we were extremely pleased with the finished project and how far our video had transformed since the rough cut. 

Construction Post 5: Shooting our Studio Footage

We began filming our studio footage in the Seward Studio at our school on the week beginning Monday the 21st November. Prior to this shoot we had created a detailed shoot schedule of when we were shooting during the week:
 Our shoot schedule was also colour coded to our different set ups. We have three different lighting and props set ups, white, pink and blue, and we also left room for pick ups and taking promo shots at the end of the week. 

MONDAY
The plan for Monday was to shoot our white set up. At the beginning of the day we began by setting up the lighting, which was easy as all the lights were white, placing the balloons and boxes in the right place in our set up and getting Ella's hair and makeup done.
Our finished white set up.
Here is a clip showing Ella's finished hair and makeup look and Eleanor adjusting her hair during the filming session:

We closely followed our shoot schedule for the Monday which helped us get all the shots we had planned.

Mondays shoot schedule

During shooting it was important to always make sure our shots were focused and we did this on the camera by zooming in and focusing the camera on their eyes.



Eleanor experimented on Monday with the dolly, this was the first time our group had used it and after a while we managed to get a smooth dolly shot around our actors heads:

TUESDAY
On Tuesday we shot our blue set up. As we had on Monday we started by setting up our lights, as we had already created our blue lighting set up in our test shoot and saved it to memories on the lighting desk, this was easy to do. We also scattered blue petals as our props and our blue set up was ready to start shooting:


We then helped Ella do her makeup, we used bright blue colours to match the set up:
Ellas hair and makeup
After the success of Mondays shoot, we felt more confident using the dolly during Tuesdays shoot and got a lot of exciting footage using it which can be seen below:


We wrapped up Tuesdays shoot day with some reflections:

WEDNESDAY
Wednesday was the final set up; pink. The pink lighting which we had saved from the test shoot and our pink lollipops made the overall set up for pink look extremely effective as seen below:

We spent a long time on Ellas hair and makeup on this day and the results were very effective, I was pleased with the styling for this set up:


We worked extremely quickly on Wednesday as we were used to using the camera and shotting quickly. Therefore we had more time at the end of the day to experiment with different framing and shots, we came up with some origional ideas as a group and I personally shot some of the extreme close ups used in our video, as seen below:


THURSDAY AND FRIDAY
As our first three shoot days ran so smoothly, after reviewing our footage we had taken so far, we realised we did not need to shoot any pick-ups over these two days. Therefore this time was dedicated to taking our promo shots.

Overall I believe our studio shoot was successful and we managed to get all the shots we had planned and more.