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.

 

 

Advertisements
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

4. How did you use new media technologies in the research, planning, construction and evaluation stages?

For the overall production of our media product, the research and planning I used a variety of internet search engines and resources to look for information and inspiration. Search engines, in particular Google, were used to find out some information on the band, as they were unknown to my media group at the beginning of the coursework process. Once we had gained an insight from the use of search engines to who the band were and the type of music they produced, we could then use more search pacific sites such a YouTube and MySpace to develop our research further. We also used the bands website and MySpace for images and logos that we could use in the first stages of our planning. As our research became more advanced, we used sites such as Google and Wikipedia to provide still images and information that could be used in a number of topical essays that would become part of our planning and development. For these essays, we studied other music videos of particular genres and themes and the Directors websites were also used here for additional analytical understanding and knowledge.  When presenting all of our planning and research on a blog, we used www.wordpress.com. This blog site allowed us to share information and communicate with our teacher at different stages in the planning and development. By using this blog, each member of the group could post their work individually. This website also allows for photos and videos to be embedded in the posts, so that both individual and group work could be formally presented and further explained with photos and screen grabs. However, on occasion, the site would not allow us to post photos from the internet or some images that were saved in our area. To overcome this we saved the images we wanted to use on the blog on the E: Drive. The images were then more easily accessed and uploaded more quickly onto the blog.

Whilst on location filming, we used Cannon digital cameras, a Nikon D40 and a tripod. We found this equipment very easy to use as we had used it for filming last year, so the cameras were very easy to handle. In addition, the tripod was very useful when helping to steady shots or do panning shots. However, the battery did not last long on the Cannon camera, so we had to return to school to charge it. This proved time consuming and extended the filming process. It also caused a problem as it meant our actors had to stay around for longer, which wasn’t the best situation for them. Once the camera was charged we continued filming and managed to finish when we had previously planned. For Editing, we used Apple’s Final Cut Pro Express. This proved quite problematic as we had new Apple Mac computers installed and were used to the editing package used on our previous computers where we had previously practised editing for our ‘pink panther’ task. The new editing package was similar and easy to get used to, so it didn’t cause a major problem when editing the video. Although, there were some saving issues, the package was effective and useful for producing an effective and authentic music video for our music track.

When constructing the Digipak and Magazine advert. We used Adobe Photoshop. At first this was difficult to use as I had never used photoshop before. It took a few practises and development on other pieces of work before I understood how to use the package effectively and correctly.  We had some problems with the layering techniques and moving around text and images. However once I had grasped how to use the programme, it was straightforward then onwards. For The CD cover, we needed almost a grid style format for the images.  I tried to create same sized images for this piece using freehand, but the images were not all the same size, which made the overall look of the cd cover unprofessional. As a response to this, using the Photoshop elements package, I learnt how to create a gridded back ground so I could copy the images over and make them all the same size. It was easy to use the effects tools to create the black and white images seen across our ancillary tasks which proved very useful and contributed to our product as a whole.

In addition to these packages, websites and other technologies, our group decided to use the ‘create your own website’ feature at http://www.wix.com. This site allowed us each to present our evaluation using edited visuals images, videos, links and music. Although the group realised that this would be a more time consuming alternative to using voice recordings to assist our evaluation, we realised that this website was easy to use with limitless ways to present our evaluation in a visually inventive style. The website features tutorials for help, but the elements were very easy to use, especially in contrast to the Photoshop package which proved more difficult. There were lots of templates, icons, animations and text to choose from so that we could all create a unique yet exciting website in which we could present our individual evaluations. Even though this option was more time consuming for the group, it was encouraging that we could make such a site that allowed us to use so many different features to produce an effective and impressive visual item in addition to our blog presentations.

http://www.wix.com/lil_lucyf/mediaevaluation

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

A brand creates an identity for a product, so as part of a media package branding is important for making sure the products being distributed are recognisable to the target audience. As a group, we have tried to make a consistent link between each of our texts to create a brand image.  Whilst undertaking our CD and magazine advert research, it came apparent that cd cover designs often reflect the personalities of the band and the genre of the music. It was also evident that a continuation of image was used throughout music videos and whatever adverts, covers or any other means of promotion was used to assist the music video, as seen in these examples for ‘Dizzee Rascals’ music.

        

When referring to the music video, we tried to continue brand image and personification of the band members throughout the editing processes. We tried to use clips that reflected aspects of their personalities, for example, the clip of the main vocalist laughing and the many facial expressions of the drummer and matched them to different sections of the music. These personalities were then portrayed similarly in

the CD cover, by the use of edited images from the video/photo shoot. The combination of the two tasks created an overall memorable and recognisable product for our target audiences.

. We used a black and white effect on the photos taken from the music video shoot and edited them to mimic the recognisable works of Andy Warhol. We thought the black and white effect was a creative choice as it creates an image that can be associated with the band name and consequently makes the products, as a whole, look professional. Although the ancillary tasks black and white colour scheme does not seem to comply with typical media conventions of the genre, we felt the products combined with the satirical chase scene in the video created an overall colourful and exciting product which would appeal to target audiences.  From our audience feedback, the black and white effects on the ancillary tasks were noted as intensifying, which reflected the nature of the chase scene which was exaggerated by fast paced editing and quick cuts. Furthermore we used photos of the band members that give an insight of their personalities and so that the target audience can familiarise with the band. Again we incorporated these photos and the black and white effects on the advert for continuality, authenticity and branding purposes. Moreover, we used the same fonts and colours used for the digipak, so the overall presentation of the products is consistent and recognisable. It was important for us to present an image of the band that could be recognisable and replicable across other products. It is also evident from the magazine poster that we have been influenced by the works of Andy Warhol and from other bands such as ‘Blur’.  Although we have used the ideas of these artists to our creative advantage, we have made our own products look unique and presentable by choosing appropriate colour schemes, formatting, fonts and images so that the overall presentation of our main product and ancillary texts is professional, effective and can be recognised by our target audiences.

1.      In what ways does your media product use, develop and challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

The song we have created our media products for is ‘Play for your life’ by Concrete Disco. The genre of the music is a mix of dub/electronica and we have tried to conform to the conventions of the genre by using a variety of editing, colour and structures.

For our music video, we combined narrative and performance, which was influenced by our research into other established media products. The performance scenes of the band also act in accordance with with ‘Goodwin’s analysis’, as close ups of the band meet the demands of the record label. This also aids the construction of band image and may contribute to any motifs that the band may wish to continue across products. Our initial idea was the chase concept. This follows genre conventions as a chase is associated with quick cuts and fast pace editing that is often seen in current music videos such as, ‘Chase and Status – End Credits’.  This also shows a link between music and visuals as the scenes are cut to the pace of the music. When the pace of the song tempo is slowed at the intersection, the editing slows down accordingly. Additionally, after this section the song returns to a fast pace. Here the frequency of the cuts increases greatly and a hand held camera is used to reflect the almost ‘frantic’ pace of the music. When referring to intertextuality, our music video mirrors scenes from ‘Harry Brown’, a film which was then used to create the ‘Chase and Status’ video, ‘End Credits’. The chase narrative has been used across media texts. This was beneficial to the group as it allowed us to construct a realistic media product. Our narrative plot links directly to that of the film, as it is based on a housing estate and youth crime. Although this is directly linked, our video undertakes a sardonic approach which we thought would appeal to our target audiences and paralleled the nature of the band.  The visuals make a direct link with the lyrics of the song. We felt the satirical tone of the music video narrative echoed the main lyrics ‘play for your life’. The scene where the youths approach the ‘geek’ character reflects the negative representation of youths in today’s society and how youths are commonly portrayed in modern media texts. We felt this imitated the lyrics ‘pay your dues by day, by night you do as you like’.  Using conventions of real media products would be beneficial to our product, as the band is currently quite unknown and exclusive, and therefore audiences can associate their music with something similar already established in the market.  This genre is associated with fast paced music. We edited the video material to the fast tempo of the music as seen in many real media products distributed by bands such as ‘Pendulum’ and ‘The Prodigy’.

The characters in our media product follow the stereotypical connotations of groups represented across media products currently. We used the representations of youth groups such as ‘chavs’ and ‘geeks’ to our advantage, so that the characters are strongly portrayed and instantly recognisable to the viewing audience.  Intertexuality continues throughout our ancillary tasks. We have incorporated the works of Andy Warhol into our magazine advertisement and our CD cover. We edited the pictures using Photoshop in order to create the print effect.  Again, these were made in black in white which may seem to deviate from conventions; however as a group we felt this was more effective as the photos mirrored the band name ‘Concrete Disco’.   We also used the ‘parental advisory’ logo on our cd front cover and various other logos such as distributors and barcodes on both our digipak and magazine advert. Such logos and barcodes are used on purchasable media texts worldwide, so the use of these on our own products adds to the verisimilitude and authenticity to our product as a whole.

http://www.wix.com/lil_lucyf/mediaevaluation

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

We used many different websites for our research and planning. Websites such as www.youtube.com and www.myspace.com proved to be the most helpful as they allowed us to view and listen to the band and figure out if they be suitable in our music video. The band have their own myspace and facebook page which were useful when researching their music. Youtube was very useful as it allowed us to look at established music videos and get some ideas for what to put in our video. www.wordpress.com was a blogging site that we used to keep track of our work load and publish all our research. The site itself was pretty simple to use and we found it quick and easy to upload essays, pictures and videos that were relevant to the project.

For our filming a Cannon HD video camera was used, it wasn’t the most hi-tech camera so we knew that we would have to experiment with our shots. We used a variety of angles to add a frantic feel to the video. The camera controls were simple enough which proved useful and we learnt fast so got to filming pretty quickly. As we had such a variety of shots to film the actors often had to repeat the same scene several times so the camera could capture the action from different angles, this proved worthwhile in the end as we had a lot of shots to choose from when it came to the editing. We didn’t have any problems upon filming our chase scene, but the band performance did prove more difficult as there was a lack of light in the location and we had not additional lights to help this.

Editing proved very successful as we were using very sophisticated software which helped the video run smoother and give it a more professional finish. We used Apple’s Final cut pro express which was difficult at first to learn how to use. For example we weren’t sure what each of the editing tools should be used for. We practised our editing techniques by making a pink panther video, where we edited videos to appear in time with the beat of the Pink Panther theme tune. When mastering the techniques we found the Mac computers were a lot more advanced than normal PCs and were useful as the editing overall seemed to be a lot easier.  The footage was split up into seperate timelines this allowed us to access specific scenes with ease. From this we could just trim the videos into the desired positions, allowing us to add certain cuts into the main sequence. A big part of creating a music is to have the video in time with the track. to do this we had to add beat marks throughout the tack to allow us to adjust our sequence to be in time with the music, we felt this was achieved within the finished video.

We used Nikon D40 digital cameras for our band photo shoot, which we found to be very successful as they gave the photos a much more defined finish. So when adding the photos to the magazine and CD cover’s made them look a lot more authentic and believable. We also used photos of the band setting up their equipment to create a stop motion introduction to our music video this made the video seem more exciting and original.

Editing the magazine and CD covers proved very successful when using Adobe CS5 Photoshop as it allowed us to trim our photos and manipulate the backgrounds and designs of the cover. Overall the covers looked professional and the lasso in particular was very helpful was it allowed us to cut out around the pictures so we could add them to a plain background, instead of having the location in the background.Changing the contrast of the picture allowed us to manipulate the black and white colouring and we eventually had the picture mostly in black with a few white patches just to define some of the facial features, this gave it a very retro look, that we felt would potentially make it stand out from other album covers.  

http://www.wix.com/kidletz/anthony#!question-four

This is the Pink Panther Editing exercise

What have you learned from your audience feedback?

When originally planning our video we hadn’t seen the video as being aimed at a specific age group, but soon we thought that it should be aimed at a teenage audience, the audience that is most linked when thinking of dance music. We used demographic targeting to understand who would be interested in the genre of the music video. We looked at many videos to understand how to capture your audience attention. So to really capture our desired audience we had to make a video that could sympathise with. We thought “chavs” and awkward, nerdy teenagers was a stereotype of teenage life that would relate to our audience.   Before filming we designed an animatic of what we wanted our video to look like, this helped with filming as we already had an idea of what shots we wer going to use.

We found that our video and digipack received good feedback and we felt that we had taken into account the preferences of target audiences. Most of the comments we had referred to our editing, mostly of the pace and how it linked well with the pace of music.

“Creates a story that’s believable and what you’d expect to find in a dance, high tempo music video.” this was one comment we received which we found positive as we wanted our audience to be familiar with the conventions of the music genre and to make sure our video followed these conventions. Even though we received positive feedback overall, some audience members suggested that we might need a greater variety of shots and suggested POV was one shot that would make the video more entertaining.

Our audience felt that we had done a good job with our digipak.

“By adding a slight piece of colour, it could create a different effect which complies to their genre.” One phrase that was often said was “it needs more colour” this was said as we went for just black and white colouring as we felt it gave the band an industrial kind of feel and went with their band name, “concrete disco.” But when looking at the feedback we feel that even the slight bit of colour would give the digipack a much better look.

As a group we feel we have met the task set to us by OCR and the music video we have created complements and promotes the band as well as presenting them to an audience as a fast paced, dance music band. We feel that the link between the band and narration sequence was pleasing to an audience and worked well with the music.

What’s unique about our video is that the audience can relate to it from seeing other music videos such Chase and Status’ End Credits, in the fact that it’s set in an estate. But the comical element of having a geeky teenager as the main character of the narration allows the audience to feel more emotionally attached in that they have been able to laugh at it, other music videos struggle to have a funny element. We feel proud that we have been able to achieve this.

http://www.wix.com/kidletz/anthony#!question-three

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

When first coming up with the idea of having the band performance incorporated with the narrative we know we had to advertise each member individually when film to show their stardom statuses. When filming we filmed each individual member of the band, this was done so that when it came to the finished video, viewers would have a good knowledge of each member. Therefore we were advertising there faces and their musical ability. As with all music videos, they brand the artist and their song by giving them the majority of screen time so that they receive recognition and publicity. Also when editing we really listened to the track and highlighted parts of the song that would suit the individual member when it came to their appearances for example the drummer appears when it get to a drop in the beat and is about to start again with the drums being heard loudest.

When it came to the creation of the magazine and CD covers we wanted to have a black and white faded theme going on, which would appear on both the magazine and CD, this made it look as if it’s Concrete Discos trademark. It also went with the band’s name, as the word “concrete” makes it seem very industrial, and the faded theme seems to go well when thinking of their name. We took group and individual photos of the band knowing they would be used as advertising tools for the magazine and CD, for example our magazine cover shows the group together which is typical when looking at other band’s magazine covers. The similarities between the CD and magazine covers show a recurring theme that is used to making audiences aware.  Branding was the key concept behind our music video. Definitions show that making a brand is leaving a noticeable trademark that an audience can recognise easily, whether it is a specific symbol or band lettering. Many bands use recurring features when it comes advertising themselves for example the band “the Libertines” have a personalised font type when the title of their band is featured on media products such as their CDs. Unlike the magazine cover our CD front cover shows each individual member of the band separately, this was incorporated from one of “Blur’s” albums which show each four members of the band in individual sections, like a colage, they are paintings by the artist Julian Opie. This CD is now very iconic and we went for a look that would be iconic. This can be refered to Andrew Goodwin’s theory of iconography. Where in “dancing in the Distraction factory” Goodwin talks of how artists can develop their brand, in and out of their music video, which, over time, becomes part of their star image.

Upon creating our magazine cover, we knew that it would be an advert for the band and their CD alike. Keeping this in mind, we used the black and white design which also features in our CD front and back cover. But we had a few bits of colour added into the magazine cover. Gold star ratings were one of the noticeable images added which shows the ratings other critics had given the CD. We also added a release stamp in bright red which was one the most noticeable features as it stood out upon the black and white cover, this would allow an audience to know when their CD would be available to buy. We looked at many music magazine covers when creating ours, NME was probably the most influential magazine as the covers showed the bands all together and we then decided to do this when producing our cover.

http://www.wix.com/kidletz/anthony#!question-two

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

For our media coursework, we were asked to make a music video, this allowed us to create a narrative and band performance sequence that would fit in with the chosen song. Having the difficulty of only being to choose songs that had no copyright, we had to use website such as www.soundcloud.com to find music that was free to use. We chose to use a song called “Play for Your Life” by the unsigned band “Concrete Disco” who we discovered through www.youtube.com and on the TV show, “Must be the music.” Using editing software, Final Cut Express on Apple Mac computers we went about forming our music video.

Before filming our video, me and my group looked at many well-known music videos for inspiration. We looked at videos such as Jay-Z’s “99 Problems” and Coldplay’s “Speed of sound” both directed by Mark Romanek.  We came up with the idea of chase sequence in an estate location, Jay Z’s 99 problems music video gave us this idea as it is filmed in Brooklyn, New York which is known for being rough and estate-like. We felt this would follow certain conventions of music videos of the same genre, such as “Sirens” by Dizzee Rascal, which is filmed in a rural, run down area and involves a chase. Goodwin’s theory of having a “relationship between music and visuals” in which is evident within these videos, for example in Dizzee Rascal’s lyric, “you can hear the sirens coming” link to the visuals of the character running away. This theory can also be seen in our music video by the way the constant chase throughout the video can be referred to the lyrics “play for your life” as it is similar to running for your life which the main character of the video is doing. When coming up with the chase theme we knew that we would have to film a lot of different angled shots as we felt it would go well with the frantic pace of the song. When came to the editing of the chase sequence we incorporated a lot of techniques that would help the video flow, while adding originality to the video. This was done by the way we used fast paced editing to help the story move along. These videos all follow Goodwin’s theory that “The Record label demand will include the need for lots of close-ups of the artist.

When it came to filming the band, “Concrete Disco” we again used a number of shots and techniques to get the right footage. Such as at one point we use hand held shots to make the band performance look more authentic as if it were a live show thus following a typical convention of a band performance sequence. To incorporate the band performance with the chase footage, we had to transition the different sequence at the correct time. Any director of music videos will know is that the image must go with the beat of the music. The beat was easy to locate in “Play for your life” and once getting to grips with the beat, we would switch from the frantic pace of the chase, to the footage of say the drummer playing up to the camera, which is seen in many music performances. To add originality to the video we added a stop motion introduction of the band setting up their equipment, we felt that it was different from other music videos of the same genre which would make it more noticable and entertaining but it also, allowed the audience to familiarise themselves with the musicians. This shows us following Andrew Goodwin’s analysis of following “genre characteristics,” in the sense that the dance music often include exciting, original ideas within their music videos, this to promote themselves to a broader audience.

Our Music Video really does show a sense of fitting in with certain stereotypes and connotations, such as the thuggish nature of “Chavs” or the clumsy, whimpish, traits of a “geek”  this often seen in such music videos such as “End Credits” by Chase and Status, which show the brutal, hoodie stereotype of a council estate played by the musician “Plan B”.

http://www.wix.com/kidletz/anthony#!question-one