Welcome Message

Hello, and welcome to my blog. I am currently studying Media Studies at Ilkley Grammar School at A2 level and this blog will show you everything that I will be looking at this year. Each blog post will be like a piece of work that can be looked at individually. I hope you enjoy looking at my blog as I enjoy posting on it.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Promotions of other musicians - HH

Britney Spears has a large successful range of perfumes which sell herself as a personality rather than her as a singer. By having a perfumes that Britney has selected herself and apparently wears herself fans will want to buy the perfume to smell like Britney.

She has in total 10 perfumes sold in selected retailers her perfume Curious (light blue bottle) sold as the number one perfume of 2004, it was also honoured as Best Woman’s Fragrance in 2005.
Each perfume has a selected tagline, which gives more of a personality to the product.

All of the ad campaigns feature a much airbrushed Britney Spears wearing provocative clothing which display her figure as much as possible, and all include a ‘come hither’ expression from Miss Spears which is very provocative. Her perfumes are meant to be sold to women as a women’s perfume line, however the ad campaigns appear to be targeted at the male audience.

Her target audience for her perfumes will be similar to the audience for her music. This is tweenager and teenagers ages 15-24. For a tweenager (10-12 yrs) will look at this picture of their possible role model and will want to look like her, which to some extent is impossible due to the heavy airbrush and crop tool obviously used in the ads themselves. The ads encourage young women to flaunt themselves by wearing provocative clothing which they believe makes them look like their role model, and therefore beautiful.

1.   Curious
2.    Fantasy
3.   Curious in Control
4.   Midnight Fantasy
5.   Believe
6.   Curious Heart
7.   Hidden Fantasy
8.   Circus Fantasy

Introduction to Final Cut Express - HH

Final Cut Express (FCE) is the software I have used this year and will be using for editing my music video. This particular software is designed for advanced editing and so gives a professional finish to a finished product when used correctly.

There are many different aspects to final cut that make it much more advance than iMovie. iMovie was the editing software I used for my AS production. FCE is considered a step above iMovie in terms of it capabilities. FCE allows the user to do a range of effects such as layering clips and special effects which are beyond what iMovie is capable of.
FCE is a better system but is harder to get the hang of, and requires a greater understanding of the technology used. iMovie is easier to work with but does not have the best effects, but is better for beginner editors such as at AS.

The layering tool in FCE is particularly effective as it can place one clip layered over another. By changing the opacity of the clips both clips can be played together over one another. During the editing of our rendition of Threw It On The Ground I included repeat looping in the editing. This is when a section of a clip (usually around a second long) is repeated four or five times to create an effect of a clip being more in time to the beat of the song. For the song we remade this worked really well, as the repeat clip was mtahced well to the electronic beat to the song.

Exporting your finished video on FCE is also much more difficult than in iMovie. The video must be exported with specific adjustments and if not followed absolutely precisely than the video cannot be exported properly. This has been a problem so far this year, but I hope to improve this by learning to export more as the year progresses.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Girls Aloud promotions and advertisments - HH

Girls Aloud Promotions

Nintendo DS – In 2008 Nintendo signed Girls Aloud to front a series of TV ad campaigns. The ad includes the five singers playing games on the handheld Nintendo DS in the studio and as they relax at home.

'We all love our Nintendo DS’s…there’s always something to keep us laughing and entertained - the different DS colours mean we never get them mixed up too!” say the band.

KitKat – in 2008 all five of the girl band members stared in an advertising campaign for KitKat, KitKat’s biggest product launch in nearly ten years. The ad includes the five members of the girl band walking down the red carpet being snapped by paparazzi and cheered by their fans. The girl band reportedly signed a million pound contract with Nestle to advertise the new KitKat Senses chocolate bar. The advert was made by JWT with media planning and buying handled by Mindshare. http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/apr/07/advertising

The KitKat advert

Girls Aloud have also have their own line of cosmetics such as false eyelashes sold in selected retail outlets.
The eyelashes are styled to be as similar to each individual band member as possible. This way the consumer is buying the product under the impression that they can look like that particular singer if they buy their fake eyelashes. This is a great selling technique as young fans will buy the product wanting to look like their role models.

Other promotions include calendars, Barbie dolls, and their very own make-up range.
It is clear from the promotions and campaigns that the girl band is focusing mainly on the younger female audience. With the main idea being used that if you buy this product you will look that these women.

The very good and the very very bad - HH

Good Music Video: Bad Romance – Lady Gaga
I believe this video is one of the best videos ever created. It includes almost every aspect that makes a music video great. Examples include great shot variety, all three of Goodwin’s three types, Mise-en-scene, editing and much more.

Bad Romance was released in October of 2009 and reportedly had a million dollar budget.

The video contains controversy, strange ideas and a symbolic plot, which has been complimented by critics. These include Gaga being drugged by supermodels and sold as a sex slave to the Russian mafia. To read more about the ideas behind the music video please visit my blog post deconstructing this video. http://hattiesmusicvideo.blogspot.com/2011/08/bad-romance-lady-gaga.html

The song has sold 9.7 million copies worldwide in 2010. Gaga also received a Grammy award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. The music video was nominated for 10 awards at MTVs 2010 music video awards of which the video won seven, including Music video of the year.

The video received positive responses for its artistic treatment and visual imagery. It is obvious from the eccentric Mise-en-scene that a lot of the videos budget went on costume and props.

Gaga confirmed that the directed of the video was Francis Lawrence. Gaga said that she was impressed with the final version and that she could never have put her ideas together as well as he could. She quoted:

I wanted somebody with a tremendous understanding of how to make a pop video, because my biggest challenge working with directors is that I am the director and I write the treatments and I get the fashion and I decide what it's about and it's very hard to find directors that will relinquish any sort of input from the artist. [...] But Francis and I worked together. [...] It was collaborative. He's a really pop video director and a filmmaker. He did I Am Legend and I'm a huge Will Smith fan, so I knew he could execute the video in a way that I could give him all my weirdest, most psychotic ideas, [...] But it would come across to and be relevant to the public. Source - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bad_Romance#Music_video

Bad Romance music video

Bad music video: Friday – Rebecca Black

Friday by Rebecca Black was released in March of 2011. The ‘music video’ was produced and directed by Clarence Jey and Patrice Wilson. The budget has not been confirmed, but is obviously very low and has a similar look as the recent cheap Disney music videos made to date.

The song became a viral hit due to the criticism of the song’s lyrics, the use of Auto-tune on the singer’s vocals and the content of the video. On June the 16th the video was removed from YouTube due to copyright claims from Black. The video received more than 167 million views, and had over 3.1 million "dislikes" (87% of total ratings) from YouTube users. The comments on the video, which were mostly negative, were disabled in May 2011.

The music video content is very poor and includes a minimal array of shot types, mise-en scene and props. The video also includes very lazy editing such as poor special effects and a lot of continuous editing with very little cuts.

Friday ‘music video’

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Production Company

Production Company 1st idea:

Haye Fattie Productions
A Faye and Hattie production

Our first idea was to take the first letter from each of our names and switch them around and voila! It’s a Haye Fattie production.
This idea was thought up in a Eureka kind of moment. There are such bazaar production company names out there that really have no relevance, but our name does have some meaning and is does involve both the people in our groups name.

Faye + Hattie

Switch around the F and the H

= Haye Fattie productions!

Girl band music video directors

Girl band directors:
Jump – Girls Aloud: Richard Curtis directed the music video and included clips from his recent film at the time, Love Actually. Richard Curtis is a well-known Rom-com director, producing popular films such as Bridget Jones Diary, Notting Hill and Four Weddings and a Funeral. Curtis requested to direct the video as the publicity of the song would help promote his new film. The song Jump by Girls Aloud was also featured in the film.

Notorious - The Saturdays: This music video was directed by Syndrome productions. Syndrome work with MTV and their movie and music video awards. They also work with artists such as Eminem, Alicia Keys and Ke$ha. The company said they were delighted with the results of the super-glam and super-clean video.

Push the button – Sugababes: The music video was directed by American director Matthew Rolston and produced by Lindsay Turnham for Exposure Films. It was filmed in various locations throughout Shepherds Bush, London in July 2005 and first aired in the United Kingdom in the week of 12 September 2005. The video primarily focuses around the three members of the band dancing in an elevator for a CGI-animated skyscraper.
When I grow up – Pussycat Dolls: This music video was directed by Joseph Khan. Khan is a very famous director and has worked on music videos with artists such as Eminem, Janet Jackson, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga and many more. Khan also is a newly director of films, with his first ever film Torque. He also directs Television Advertisements such as for Vodaphone, Windows and Citroen.




A2 Brief and Markscheme

The brief:
A promotion package for the release of an album, to include a music promo video, together with two of the following options:

1.   A cover for its release as a digipak (CD/DVD package);

2.   A magazine advertisement for the digipak (CD/DVD package).

Assessment Criteria:

Research and planning – 20%                                                           Production – 60%

             Music video – 40%
                 Digipak – 10%

            Digipak mag ad – 10%

Evaluation – 20%

Sean Kingston music video

Sean Kingston – Sleep all day and party all night.

The song was officially released on the 21st December 2010 in the US. The music video to the song was released on the 5th December 2010 on to YouTube.
After watching this video in class, we all discussed the good and bad points to this music video.

The bad points are that the music video lacks shot types as it includes either close ups or medium shots. If this music video were to be marked at A2 level it would probably get a basic or even minimal as the shot types do not have a variation.

The reason for the medium shot only being used on the artist is because this is the most flattering shot type when focused on the body. By only including Sean’s head and chest the viewer cannot focus on his body. This is done because Sean is overweight and compared with other stick thin artists and celebrity’s he does not fit in.

The editing in this video is quite lazy and does not appear to be well thought out. This is because the shots seem to follow each other repeatedly and gets quite boring to watch after a while as there is no variety.

The good points to this video are the tracking of the house party shot. This gives a supposed 360 degree rotation of the house. This looks impressive and has creativity. The bubble writing edited onto the video are also quite impressive especially the animation of them moving across the screen. In some of the shots there is a bright blue light which has been edited with lighter opacity so it can blend in well with the actual video. This technique is called layering when two shots are played at once. We can achieve this on Final Cut Express by placing on clip on top of another.
Another good point about this video is the slow motion used in certain points. During the house party scene a girl bursts a balloon and glitter sprinkles out of it. It really like this idea and it is very effective in slow motion. I would want to incorporate this idea into my own music video.

Shot types used in girl bands

There is a range of different shot types used in girl band Music videos. Here are some of the different shot types used in almost every girl band music video.

Group shots

Close ups

Extreme close ups

Medium shots

Ideas behind the lyrics

Girls Aloud - Lyrics Sheet

0:15 Your eyes, tell me how you want me 0:20

I can feel it in your heart beat 0:24

 I know you like what you see 0:29

 Hold me, I'll give you all that you need 0:35

 Wrap your love around me 0:38

 You're so excited,

I can feel you getting hotter, oh baby 0:44

I'll take you down, I'll take you down 0:49

 Where no one's ever gone before

 And if you want more, if you want more

 More, more 0:58

Then, Jump! 1:00

 For my love

 Jump in! 1:02

 And feel my touch

 Jump, if you want to taste my kisses in the night then,

 Jump for my love 1:12

 I know my heart can make you happy

 Jump in! 1:16

You know these arms can feel you up

 Jump, if you want to taste my kisses in the night then,

 Jump! For my love 1:26

1:30 You told me, I'm the only woman for you 1:36

 Nobody does you like I do 1:39

 Then make a move before you try

 And go much farther, oh baby 1:44

 You are the one, you, you are the one 1:49

 And heaven waits here at my door

 And if you want more,

 If you want more, more, more 1:58

Then, Jump!

 For my love 2:01

 Jump in! 2:04

 And feel my touch

 Jump, if you want to taste my kisses in the night then,

 Jump for my love 2: 12

 I know my heart can make you happy

 Jump in! 2:16

You know these arms can feel you up 2:20

 Jump, if you want to taste my kisses in the night then,

 Jump! For my love 2:27

When you are next to me, 2:33 (Oooo)

 Oh, I come alive (yeah) 2:39

 Your love hurts inside (Oooo) 2:47

 Oh, it feels so right (Yeah) 2:52

 Come to me if you want me tonight (Jump) 3:01

I know my heart can make you happy

 Jump in! 3:07

You know these arms can feel you up

 Jump, if you want to taste my kisses in the night then,

 Jump! For my love 3:17

Instrumental 0:22     Finishes 3:39

The Co-op Film Festival

On the 6th October 2011, IGS Media students from years 12 & 13 visited the National Media Museum in Bradford for the 45th anniversary of the Co-ops Film Festival.
The National Media Museum
We arrived at the museum at 10am to find Oliver and James Phelps signing autographs (Fred and George Weasley from the Harry Potter franchise) this was a great start to the day. Immediately I got in the queue to get a picture with them, being such a Harry Potter fan. After waiting a quarter of an hour in line, Faye and I finally got a picture with the twins and then were asked, following meeting them, if we had any questions we would ask the twins in a question and answer session we would later attend.
James (left) Oliver, me & Faye >>>>>
We both made some contributions which included questions such as if the twins still met up with member of the Harry Potter cast, or if the two had any phobias. At 11am I attended the Q&A session with James and Oliver, where they were both interviewed and asked questions that students from different schools had wanted to ask the twins. 
At 11:45am I had the chance to interview Alicia Walker the Co-op Film Festival organiser who kindly answered some of my questions about the festival.
These questions included:

1. Exactly how long has the festival been running for?
2. How did you first get involved with the festival?      
 3. In your opinion what’s the best film entry you’ve had this year, and why?                     
4. How do you see the festival developing in the future? (possibly with technological advances)             
  5. The co-op film festival is a national film festival; do you ever get film submissions from international places?
6. Do you think the festival is known internationally?       
7. What do you hope the festival will achieve in the long run?    

8.How do you publicise the festival?

At 12am we all had the chance to see our own film openings and other films that had been submitted by other school in Screening 1. The screening lasted half an hour and included the film openings from students in our year which included Waxed, Wrenched and sleep tight. All of these film openings received a reward and looked really great of the big scene.

Britney Spears Re-make

Music Video Day

In the last term of year 12 the Media Studies department organised a music video day. On this day we attempted to re-make the original song ‘Hit me baby one more time’ by Britney Spears. This day involved shooting all material needed for the day in a short time span of four hours. This proved very difficult as to replicate each scene with the highest detail was challenging and took much longer than expected.
I took on the role as project manager for my group. This involved organising people as to where they needed be and what they were doing. The day started with us all in groups watching the scene we were focusing on replicating and working out shots and dance moves we would have to copy. Later on we practised our miming for the performance of the video.
When we began to film the gym scene I found myself organising the choreography and filming for some of the shots in the same hour and a half. This was very stressful and at times frustrating but overall we got all of the shots we needed for that particular scene.

At the end of the day we imported all the clips we had filmed on to Final Cut Express and watched everyone’s scenes from the music video we filmed in that day. The clips all looked very professional and replicated the shots in the actual music video well. The next week we started editing our section of the Britney Remake and made it as similar to the actual music video as we could.

The end music video looks very much like the original video, especially the editing. The shots are all very well framed and have obviously been filmed with attention to detail.

All in all the day was a great experience and helped all of us involved in the day with our organisation skills and time management. At times the day was stressful but the finished video shows for itself that replicating the music video was a success.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Girls Aloud background information

Girls Aloud – Jump

·        Girls aloud are a British Irish pop band based in London.
·        The band was formed in 2002.
·        This girl bands genre is pop, and appeals to a large range of audience which includes the tweenage, teenage and early adult audience which ranges from around 10-28 years of age.
·        They were created through the ITV1 talent show Popstars The Rivals in 2002.

·        The group consists of Cheryl Cole, Nadine Coyle, Sarah Harding, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh.
·        They are signed to Fascination Records and Polydor imprint.
·        The group achieved a string of twenty consecutive top ten singles, including four number ones, and two number one albums in the UK.
·        All their albums have been certified platinum, with their albums The Sound of Girls Aloud and Out of Control both selling over a million copies.
·        The song was covered by Girls Aloud in 2003 but was originally released by The Pointer Sisters in 1983. The song Jump (for my love) raced quickly to number #3 on the pop charts.
· The band split up in 2009.

·        Both Cheryl and Nicola have both successfully launched their solo careers with Nicola selling her hit Dance to the beat of my drum, being very successful abroad. Whilst Cheryl has sold the most records out of all the girls with some of her song such as Fight For this Love and Parachute reaching number #1 in the pop charts.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Threw it on the ground - How we made the video

The winning pitch was…. Threw it on the ground by The Lonely Island. This music video that was presented by Connor O’Loughness, was very popular with the rest of the class and so was chosen by the class to be re-made.
The original music video includes Andy Samberg the main vocalist on the band being given free things such as a hotdog, and then him angrily throwing them on the ground. This video focuses on a narrative and performance aspect. The video clearly has a comedy aspect and focuses mainly on Andy Samberg facial expressions, which makes the video even more comedic.
During filming the reenactment of the video I contributed by filming the energy drink and hotdog scene. I also organized a lot of the props that were included in the video such as the glasses and hotdogs etc. Filming was a challenging experience especially outside in windy conditions. Another aspect that I found difficult to film was getting the object that was being thrown on the ground in shot, as I needed a close up of the image, there was quite a small area that the item had to hit.
We had little time to film during school and managed to get scenes filmed in just under 45 minutes. We had to do other scenes outside school such as the birthday party scene and the Hollywood phoneys scene which took up more time as it involved more props and setting up for the framing of the shot.

With the use of Final Cut Express we could edit our music video remake to the highest quality. The slow motion tool and layering technique was proven most effective when editing and gave a impressive look to the overall video just as much as the official video. Final Cut Express can be difficult to work with at times, especially with having to render clips continuously. However I believe that the quality of the product is far more advanced than iMovie which I previously used through my AS year.

All in all filming was proven difficult at times, and we had to film all scenes in a short period of time of around a week, however the finished product is proof that the footage you can film and edit can be very effective and professional looking. 

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

We are the ocean - Confessions

Artist: We are the ocean

Song: Confessions

Chris’ cut


Holding the shot steady, where appropriate:
I would give this music video a proficient as the beginning shot is unsteady. This looks unintentional and does not look professional. I would have given this video a basic if it wasn’t for the rest of the shots being held very steady and meeting the criteria well.

Framing a shot, including and excluding elements as appropriate:
This video is at the higher end of proficient as the shots are filmed well with the appropriate backgrounds and angles. I noticed that the shots were framed in a particular away to stress the importance of the emotion the characters were feeling. Such as when the male and female characters are shouting at each other the camera is tilted and frames just their faces and expressions.

Using a variety of shot distances as appropriate:
This video did use a wide range of shots that were displayed well and I would think they were border-line excellent. However compared with Joy Divisions video which clearly uses every single shot type known to mankind, this video is in the proficient category.

Shooting material appropriate to task set:

Selecting mise-en-scene including colour, figure, lighting, objects and setting:
The clothing for the characters was done well as it showed the persona of who they were, through what clothes they were wearing. The film was edited in black and white which portrays a more serious meaning with a dark edge. The setting was well based in a train station and in the female characters house which gave the video more meaning. There was minimal lighting and objects and so I would give this video a minimal proficient.

Editing so that meaning is apparent to viewer:
I gave this video an excellent as their editing goes well with the dark and angry concept to the video. They included their clips in black and white throughout the video as it increases the dark and gloomy feel. The editing of the clips is of a faster pace when the speed of the song increases and they are also slowed down when the intensity of a shot is being portrayed.

Using varied shot transitions, captions and other effects selectively and appropriately:
I gave this video an excellent as there is a wide range of transitions and captions the selected clips portrayed the videos message well as the dreary and dark feeling is apparent right from the start of the video. Other effects including the shaking of the camera to make the shot feel more angry and tthe viewer more involved in the scene.