Archive for the ‘Laura Carroll’ Category

3.  What have you learned from your audience feedback?

From the music channel research I did and whilst thinking about the genre of music that concrete disco play, we came up with a list of    appropriate music channels in which we wanted our video to preview on these are; MTV dance, VIVA, DanceNation, Clubland TV and KISS. Of all which are appropriate viewing ages for the audience we were attracting, over the age of 16. We also used a program called find your tribe to see who the appropriate viewing audience would be and that we were going in the right direction.
Before making our own video we looked at videos of other artists in the same genre to see if our demographics were correct, we also used an animatic version of our video so we were able to use this to give an example of what our video would look like. We had 2 versions both with different storylines fitting the genre, and showed it to people within our target audience so they were able to choose which they thought looked better and what fit with our band and the look we were trying to achieve. We wanted to see what the preference of our target audience were because they are the ones who would be watching it, they all thought the idea of the video we originally used fitted best because of the fast paced editing.
From our research we discovered that we were looking at a younger target audience and that older generations would show no interest in listening to this type of music and watching our video. We designed our own fiction target audience of what we thought they would look like and then prepared a questionnaire in which we spoke with people aged 16-18, with the questionnaire we actually used 2 because we didnt feel we received enough information from the first set of results. From the results we established that our audience had agreed with the age in which we had chosen for our music and genre and felt that our own video fit the connotations of a video in the same genre as it has the fast paced editing, with the appropriate kind of characters that fit well too. The audience also fed back their comments on the DigiPak and whether they thought that it worked well and fit with the rest of the media productions we had made, and this was the case people commented on how they liked the look of the Andy Warhol theme throughout and how the colours worked well to fit the bands name. So we found that this was all productive research.
We spoke to the band previously in our research to discover who they thought their target audience was and what sort of people came to watch them at gigs, this was helpful as it was firsthand information that was correct. Once we had completed our tasks we also sent these to the band to get their feedback and see what they thought and if there were any improvements that they thought we could make.

Link to wix production:!


Concrete Disco – Play For Your Life

This is our Music video created by Anthony Szymaniak and Ciaran Walsh using Apple Final cut pro express.

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

During the production of our video we used I-macs because it enabled us to use software and programmes that are not available on other computers. Because of this one of the programmes we were then able to use was final cut pro express this programme allowed us to edit and capture all of the footage. We used it in the planning stage to practice certain ideas first before the real thing; it enables us to add effects, such as reversing and editing speed. This also meant that we are able to edit the colour of the footage, because it is user friendly and easy to use.  Whilst using this we also used power point and Microsoft word at different stages of our project for evaluating and analysing texts. And photo shop to put together the digipak this meant we were able to change the colours and textures of each picture to keep the continuity of the Andy Warhol grey theme throughout our whole production as the colours reflected the bands name concrete disco therefor linking everything together.
During the filming we used the camera (Nikon D40) in which we needed to get the focus correct, aswell as the white balance. Along with the camera we used a tripod to enable to catch certain shots we wouldnt be able to holding the camera, for example in the narrative part of our filming we balanced the camera tripod on top of a wall so we could get a shot in birds eye view from above to see what was going on from a higher perspective. We were also able to use the tripod to capture normal shots such as panning and framing shots. Although the batterys didnt last that long on the cannon camera which meant that we had to go back to school to charge the battery and were hanging around until we could film again this then meant that our actors were hanging around too and was very time consuming.
As well as using the cameras to film we used a digital camera in the production of our video to capture images to use in stop motion whilst the band set up we used a camera on a tripod and continuously took pictures, this meant that at the beginning of the film we were able to use them to give a more effective but different aspect to the film.
In addition to using the apple final cut pro express, and photo shop we used other applications such as microsoft, powerpoint, wordle, internet  myspace, and wordpress. Having access to these helped us to design our digi pak before we made it, we used myspace in the very beginning of the project to research the band and were then able to see what they were like, listen to the song and begin to come up with a narrative.

Link to wix production:!

In what way does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions?

Our task was to plan and make a music video following the conventions in which they are usually structured, this includes; the camera shots, mise-en-scene, the way in which it is edited, lighting, sound, props, etc.  Whilst conforming to these conventions we also tried to incorporate the conventions specifically used in the genre of music these include fast pacing of editing, in a darker scenario whilst trying to portray the personalities of the characters or artists involved.


Whilst planning what to do with our own music videos we researched videos of a similar genre to see what we enjoyed and how they were made successfully, one in particular that influenced our groups ideas was chase and status ft plan b – end credits, this too incorporates the mix of both narrative and performance which is what we wanted to do. The music video end credit’s has a lot of face pace editing and quick cuts which was what we were hoping to achieve in our own video. We were also able to analyse their choice of shots seeing if there were any different ones we too could introduce into our own video. The videos fact cut and mix between narrative and performance almost have disorientated and ddelusional characteristics which I feel are portrayed in our own video.


Because we wanted to use narrative and performance encourparated we need to use represenation correctly, a chase scene has been used in other influencing music videos with artist of a same genre, such as chase and status end credits and dizzee rascal sirens. Within our own music video we tried to follow the connetations and sterotypes that surround the youth, we used very exaggerated ‘chav’ and ‘geek’ looks within our characters. When it came to us personally filming the band ‘concrete disco’ it meant we needed to have everything prepared to be able to get all the shots that we wanted possible, we used a number of different shots and techniques to acheive this. In the music video we needed to get everything to fit with the time of the music in the chase scene and for the performance sequence too, we used handheld shots to make it feel more authentic whilst still trying to keep the same ‘black and white’ concrete feel. Within the digi pak we added logos and barcodes for authenticity, these gave the cd cover a more professional look that people would be able to notice as a serious a real advert for a musical product.

Link to wix production:!

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

I believe that the combination of our main product and my ancillary texts have been both effective and successful because they all have a relationship. Each of my media texts are linked together! In both the poster and magazine cover I have used photos of the band keep with the same ‘Andy Warhol’ type theme. This is effective because as an audience, the ancillary texts offer more advertisement of the band, as well as the music video. Unlike the video, and even the poster, a magazine can be re-read/seen, passed through other members of the family and friends. The magazine also offers more information on the band, for example how they met, interviews, or simply pictures of the band. In the society we live in, when we like a media product we tend to want to know all there is about it including the stories, and people involved. For example my magazine poster advertises the characters, shows the ratings from magazines relating to the musical genre, and shows the release dates.

It’s important to recognise the link between each piece of media we have produced as we have tried to keep a consistent theme throughout each of them.  It is significantly key to make sure that the products are distributed to the correct target audience, because a brand creates individuality for a product to keep consumers buying into it. we used the Andy Warhol, but black and white theme consititantly because it related to the bands ‘concrete disco’ name and kept what we was doing coherent, as when you think of the name ‘concrete’ it is a dull and faded image that comes most readily to mind. When deciding how to place the picture we had influence from bands like Blur because they have had a similar theme of the 4 photos of each members of the band in a grid like set up.

When creating our magazine advert we wanted to keep the same theme, the contrast of the black an white features on both the front and the back of the cd covers. We looked at posters from other artists to see how they portrayed their band in the posters and came to the conclusion we would stick with the simple grid like images to keep it recogniseable but with added text around it, when doing this we used colours that would stand out from the original black and white theme, for example a red ‘realised’ stamp was used to attract attention because that is a vital peice of information on the poster.

The initial influence of our poster was the Andy Warhol look that has also been used by by bands such as Blur. We researched many different types of advertising from peoplewithin the same genre, but felt we could keep this look continuing throughout our project.

Link to wix production:!


Spike Jonze :

Posted: March 28, 2011 in Laura Carroll

Spike Jonze :

 Spike Jonze (born Adam Spiegel; October 22, 1969) is an American director, producer and actor, whose work includes music videos, commercials, film and television.

Spike jonze works mainly on music videos but over the past ten years has branched out and began to work on films; the most well know is being John Malkovich.  From a young age he started photography and began to create magazines with his artistic nature, his interest in magazines allowed him to co find ‘dirt’. He has worked with MTV on more than one occasion, He was also a co-creator and executive producer of MTV‘s Jackass.

On music videos, he has directed for the Beastie boys a lot as well as REM at the start of his career after he began to shoot for; fat boy slim, the chemical brothers, ludicrous and kayne west. He is own of the few music directors who has also been successful on other platforms, and have directed  mainstream films such as ‘where wild things are’.

Examples of his work:

 Notorious B.I.G – Sky’s The Limit :

This video helps to demonstrate the originalty that spike jonse has in his work. In this video he takes the usual conventions of a rap video – the big house, nice cars, stereotypical star personas of gangsters and women. Not like most other rap videos he plays on the content of the video, he uses notorious B.I.G’s son and other child actors to star in the video. This adds a different element which will attract more people to watch the video as it is an original and interesting idea which has comic value in the content of the video.

He also includes slow motion footage in a lot of the video, along with the soft lighting and tracking shots they all show the rap genre of the video. Jonze then adds in a mix of footage of the artists at home in a ‘real life’ scenario and then in a stage like setting where the artist are the only people in the shot. Most of the shots of the artists are taken form a low angle looking up at them, this is to show their superiority in their minds but this helps to identify the artist.

The Pharcyde – Drop

In this video it is clear to see the immense effort and work that went into the video. It has a very different idea to an old school hip hop video. The video is acted out in reverse with the artist even learning their lyrics backwards to make the video look clearer. The genre is ever evident in the video, the tracking shot of the group looking up at them as they act and rap to the camera is typical of hip-hop music videos as it presents the artists in the video clearly, also the setting of the video helps illustrate the genre of the music, the video starts with the artist in a back alley way of an American street, typically to match the stereotype of the genre, this setting is

continued throughout the video with the artists moving through the streets then down graphitized back alley ways. I like this video because of the sheer effort put into the production which make a very original music video, I really like how the reverse shooting makes the video very different to others of the same genre.

The Pharcyde – Drop


In this video it is clear to see the immense effort and work that went into the video. It has a very different idea to an old school hip hop video. The video is acted out in reverse with the artist even learning their lyrics backwards to make the video look clearer. The genre is ever evident in the video, the tracking shot of the group looking up at them as they act and rap to the camera is typical of hip-hop music videos as it presents the artists in the video clearly, also the setting of the video helps illustrate the genre of the music, the video starts with the artist in a back alley way of an American street, typically to match the stereotype of the genre, this setting is continued throughout the video with the artists moving through the streets then down graphitized back alley ways. I like this video because of the sheer effort put into the production which make a very original music video, I really like how the reverse shooting makes the video very different to others of the same genre.



End Credits is a song by dance/electronic production duo from London Chase & Status. The song features English rapper Plan B.
“End Credits” is the theme music track for “Harry Brown“, an upcoming British crime thriller film directed by Daniel Barber and starring Michael Caine, Emily Mortimer, Iain Glen, Jack O’Connell and Liam Cunningham. The film also features actor and artist Ben Drew (Plan B).
The song was released through Mercury Records in November 2009.

The song was written for the film and was chase and status biggest hit so far, the song lyrics show us what the concept of the story is, about death and how he is preparing himself for it. Its about someone being close to death and eventually dying.

The music video shows the different gangs and the amount of violence that happens these days. Although the concept of the video is based around the film Harry brown, the older mans best friend has been killed because of a teenage gang and he takes revenge on them, the music video is based around the violent parts of the film.

This music video is a mixture of narrative and performance. It shows PlanB as he sings and performs but also shows the story, there has been some editing done to show the narrative with the performer in there singing at the same time. Also during the video there are times when words are spoken over the song which relate to the video being shown, for example one character walks down a tunnel and as he says ‘hes got a gun’ we hear the sound gun shots going off.

There is an obvious connection between the videos and the lyrics of the song, all the lyrics that are sung are mirrored in the actions being taken in the video for example as he is singing about dying and being at ‘heavens door’ we see a body floating throughout the song higher and higher in the sky.

Plan B is an English Rapper/Singer turned actor from east London, his music is inspired by the crime and decline of morality in the rough parts of London he grew up in, his music helps him to express his views on drugs, rape, murder and underage sex. Plan B’s fans arent just those who share the same lifestyle that he used to have, since his debut he has featured in alternative music magazines and played many festivals , he uses his guitar to give his hip-hop a unique sound, which attracts people of all different musical backgrounds to listen. His music together with his movie roles in films such as Harry Brown, where he plays a cold-blooded gangster from a crime-ridden London estate, makes him one of the most controversial artists of the moment. Chase and status are a dub step/grime/ drum and bass Dj duo who have the ability to cause madness when they perform. Their fan base is very similar to Plan B, with their music appealing to people outside of the urban stereotype and into the alternative music world, also playing festivals such as Reading and Leeds.

The music is this video reaches out to the younger generation of the urban industry although, more musical genres will enjoy listening to it as it collaborates so many styles.


The music video focuses on Plan B and his character Noel during the whole video although whilst we see clips of the film we do see the other characters,

The video is set outside on an abandoned estate, in Walworth, London which was due for demolition.

The location was perfect as the graffiti conveys the rebellion against society, Drum and bass mixed with PlanB’s explicit lyrics is appealing to the youth of urban environments where this music is there escape, just like the graffiti can be an escape. Stereotypically, graffiti lends itself to this genre.

I feel from the lyrics, this song is mainly about regret. The singer is however being positive about his situation, and the intro music feels slightly uplifting, he is full ‘hope’ for better things. Perhaps he has done wrong, maybe pushed someone close away, or hurt them, and regrets his actions, hoping they’ll be there ‘at the end’ of his life, or forgive him? His heart is feeling ‘pain’, showing he feels remorse over whatever he has done.

The mood of the video is very contrasting the song sings of regret and remorse where as the video only shows anger and unhappiness.

I think the video fits perfectly to the time that we are in today it shows all different aspects of urban youth society and with the mix of genre expresses some kind of identity. The controversial lyrics and images work well together and I think this really appeals to the audition because it helps to draw attention to what they do and helps to convey the message they are trying to get through to the audience.

For the first 45 seconds until the music starts the whole video is in slow motion, it then all speeds up as the beat of the song changes and so does the pace of what is going on. At first he is only lying down as he begins to tell the story, as we start to see what is happening the rise in pace of the song mirrors the actions being taken in the video. An example of this is, as it starts to speed up we are given a college of images which are flashed against the screen, after this we see a lot more movement.


Beyonce – Listen.

Posted: March 28, 2011 in Laura Carroll
Beyonce – Listen.

‘Listen’ is a 2006 R+B, soul song recorded by American singer Beyoncé. The song was written by Henry Krieger, Scott Cutler, Anne Preven, and Knowles, and produced by The underdogs Matt Sullivan and Randy Spendlove for the soundtrack to the 2006 musical film. “Listen” is one of four compositions written specifically for the Dreamgirls film. In the film, Knowles’ character Deena Jones sings the song to assert independence over her controlling husband. The song is remembered as one of Knowles more heartfelt and emotional ballads.

The relationship between the lyrics and the visuals is clear in this video. The feeling and mood of this track is very emotional and deep and this is made apparent. There is a frequent use of negative words and emotions which help create the mood of the track, facial expressions and visual movements involving eye contact also help create this.

The track carries a slow tempo and this is made apparent by the camera shots and editing. There is certain emphasis on the sounds and big notes in the track by the change of camera shot or angle. The camera move smoothly from shot to shot without too much contrast (only when emphasis is made on particular foregrounding instruments.) The genre of this track transcends from soul to adult contemporary and a bit of R&B. The camera work consists of mainly close-up and medium close-up shots. This is done so that the audience can see the emotion on the lead singers face, this is particularly important in a song which has a genre of soul. Due to the song being written for the 2007 movie Dream Girls, Beyonce appears in costume as Deena, dressed in a 1970s-era gown. Inter-cut into the video are scenes from Dreamgirls, most of which depict Deenas relationship with Curtis. The mise-en-scene allows us as the audience to clearly see the change in character and scene. This inter-cut of camera work makes the video more interesting and gives it added depth and meaning

The narrative and performance of the video is very apparent due to the inter-cut of scenes from Dreamgirls. However, throughout the remains of the video Beyonce conveys emotions and anger by a choreographed dance routine. Beyonce is often thought of when you speak about choreographed dance routines in her music videos, and she didn’t disappoint in this either. There is also lip-sync which makes the video more realistic