FC: How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
1: We used YouTube a lot throughout the project such as for our research where we researched other artists and students videos. We also used it to upload our audience research, digipack analysis, costume and finally our finished product. It was useful in the fact that we could easily upload videos that we made onto out blog thus allowing us to be more creative. Additionally, if the video shook then YouTue was able to a adjust this. Also, we had the option of choosing the videos privacy which was helpful as it mean t that only people with the link could see it. However it look a long time to upload and sometimes the video wouldn't upload at all, causing us to waste time on editing the videos to make them shorter. YouTube has made an impact in our work as without it we wouldn't have been able to upload our finished video onto the website and overall it has allowed us to use videos in our coursework so we could be more creative. Using YouTube allowed us to create a successful product as it has allowed us to share our video with our audience for feedback to improve.
2: Xtranormal is a website where you can create your own cartoon video by typing in what you want to say and then the characters will say it. We've used t his in most areas of our coursework; for our evaluation of audience research which we made creative as we set it as a talk show where the presenter asked the star about the results.We used it again for our planning of genre conventions and we used a similar interview format but this time it reflected the R'n'B genre as we used stereotypical 'gangsta' characters in an alleyway. We thought that it was good at conveying our research creatively as we could simply copy and paste what we wrote in word into the speech boxes an luckily it didn't have a character limit so we didn't have to compromise on the quality of our work. There was also a wide range of characters and scenes to choose from, however, if we wanted some scenes we would have had to pay for them, but as there lots that were free we felt that we didn't have to use these. However, one disadvantage of using it was if we wanted to preview the video it would take up to 10 minutes sometimes to play . Also, due to the fact that the software used automated voices the words would sometimes come out wrong so we would have to change the spelling. Nonetheless, it was easy to export and embed onto our blog and we didn't have you use YouTue to do it so it saved time .Overall it hasn't had a massive impact on our work as we've only used it a couple of times , but this was because most of the other tasks involved pictures as well and we couldn't put these into the video but despite this we did really like it and we would have used it more as it allowed us to be extremely creative as we could chose the camera angles, facial expressions of the characters and background music and in someways helped us prepare with the editing of our own video as we learnt how important each angle was.
3: We used word to type up our responses to most of the questions and tasks of the research, planning and the evaluation, but we would then copy and past them into the various websites and software that we were using so we didn't really use Microsoft Word creatively. It was useful in the fact that it was quick and easy to use and reliable as it wouldn't crash like other softwares while we used it, however it isn't very creative, but it has had an impact on our work as it allowed us to write up most of our responses so without it the quality of work may not have been as good.
4: TIKI TOKI | We used Tiki Toki (an online timeline) for our research when we researched the history of R'n'B music and then again in our planning when we researched the history of 'We Found Love'. It was easy to use as you just needed to type the date in and then it would create a new post; you could also copy images and other links onto the post and it would show them all together so it didn't look boring with just text. You could also change the background of the timeline which meant that it looked visually appealing. There weren't any bad points of using it as it was simple but really effective and easy to navigate. Overall, it's made a slight impact on our work as we didn't just produce a plain timeline - we produced a lively one, so it's allowed us to be creative. However, we didn't use it for our shooting schedules or project timeline as it wasn't as clear as a simple calendar.
5: ADOBE PHOTOSHOP | We used photoshop to edit our photos in the ancillary task and it allowed us to be really creative as we could adjust not only to quality of the picture but also add effects like the leaves and crop it into panels for our advert and dogipak. To do this we clicked on the brush tool and then clicked on the leaf option (below). We could easily change the colour by clicking on the swash/colour box each time we used the tool. so overall it's had a massive impact on our work as we wouldn't have been able to do any of our work creatively without it. However, it did have some disadvantages as sometimes it would freeze while opening and closing, causing us to loose time and sometimes our work if it crashed whilst saving. Also, because we were not familiar with it at first we couldn't understand why it wouldn't let us do things, like paint on features and other similar things, but as we used it more we learned how to use it properly as well as knowing how to do more things on it like airbrushing, thus allowing us to be more creative.
6: We've used Prezi a lot through out our coursework, such as our research, planning and evaluation as it's a creative way of conveying information easily because we just needed to write the tasks in Microsoft Powerpoint and then import the finished Powerpoint onto Prezi. We really liked using it firstly because of this and secondly because it had a wide range of templates so our Prezi's could look different in terms of background as well as style. UNofrtunately, sometimes it wouldn't upload our Powerpoint presentations so we would have to copy and paste each slide onto Prezi which was very time consuming. Also, we had to make a couple of accounts as you can only have a certain number of presentations and we didn't want to delete previous work, so making a new account was the only option. Overall, Prezi has had a massive impact on our coursework as we have used it a lot simply because it is so s imple and effective and it has allowed us to be a lot more creative as there are different types of Prezi's, where some are 3D and others are 2D and you can choose different backgrounds, fonts and colour schemes.
7: POWERPOINT | We used powerpoint a lot as we found that we could make a presentation and then easily upload it onto Prezi, so we used it for our research, planning, showing how we constructed our products and then again for our evaluation so it has had a big impact on our work because we've used it so much. It's also really easy to use because we're only using it for this reason.However we couldn't really be creative with it, which is why we imported them with Prezi. Using Powerpoint also allowed us to make a successful product as we could easily see what we had done previously and thus constantly compare our work
8: Glogster in an online scrapbook which we used for our research of digipacks, magazine adverts, record labels and our moodboard for planning. It allowed us to be creative as we could put a mixture of text and images on one format where we had lots of resources and backgrounds so it would be visually appealing. Another advantage of using Glogster was that it was easy to use due to the obvious tabs and labels on the website. As we were really happy with it we couldn't really find any disadvantages apart from when we uploaded a number of them onto one post as it appeared white, but when you previewed it the glog would show up, so this must have been a computer malfunction. Overall, using Glogster has impacted our work as it's a platform where we could display the high quality of work needed while also being interesting and creative, which is why we've used it a lot.
9: Mixbook like Glogster is an online scrapbook, but unlike Glogster you can actually pay to have your book published or you can just view your book online.We used it for our reserach reflection as it enabled us to combine text and images creatively and it made a change from using Prezi which we had used a lot for our research so we felt that it would be good to use something else. We also decided to use it for one of our evaluation questions because of this reason. One of Mixbook's advantages is that it's very interactive; readers can click to turn the page easily. Also, you can choose the theme and colour scheme of the book itself, as well as personalising it with different stickers, fonts and pictures, thus allowing us to be really creative. Unfortunately, when the book is finished and embedded onto the blog it's sometimes hard to go onto the next page, which is why we've also included the link to the book just in case. Additionally, sometimes the website would freeze and the images or text wouldn't move for sometime so we had to save our changes, close it and then open the book again, wasting time. Mixbook hasn't impacted our coursework greatly as we haven't used it a lot because it is so time consuming, however it is incredibly creative and produces really good results.
10: We used a Blackberry then an IPhone 4 along with a HTC Desire S to organise who had to do what task and where and when we had to meet to shoot our video so all phones had a big impact on our work as without them we wouldn't have been able to keep up to date with our work. As we only used them for this purpose we didn't use them creatively, nor was there any problems with any of them
11: InDesign was used to produce our magazine advert and digipak and thus allowed us to be really creative as we could easily change our font and colour, along with how our advert and digipak looked. For example, when we wanted spaces inbetween our words in the advert we clicked on the space too (bottom right) and we could easily increase or decrease the width between the space. As for changing the colour, all we had to do was highlight the font we wanted to change, go to colour and select the one we wanted. Unfortunaltely, there wasn't much selection, but we could easily make a new colour and use that instead. Overall the software had a big impact on our work as without it we wouldn't have been able to produce our final outcomes. At first it was hard to use as we hadn't used the software since our AS coursework, but as time grew we began to understand how to use it thus allowing us to be more creative. Another disadvantage was that it took a while to load on the computer and sometimes it would crash causing us to waste time.
12: We used Blogger for our entire coursework as it was where we embedded and uploaded our tasks from our research to our planning, thus impacting our coursework because of this. We could have used other blogs like weebly or wix, but from previous experience we found that both of these websites were hard to use and navigate around which was why we chose Blogger as we could personalise and present our Blog creatively, personally and easily while also producing a good standard of work. One disadvantage of using Blogger was that if we didn’t upload or complete the tasks in chronological order then we had to constantly adjust the posts date so it would appear in chronological order. Also, it is fairly simplistic and there is only so much you can do to make it look personal as you can only adjust the width of the blog, font colours and sizes and background but nothing else. Overall, Blogger has allowed us to be creative to some extent as we could easily upload other creative websites onto the posts and we could change some aspects of the website itself, however on its own it’s not particularly creative.
13: DaFont is a website where you can download any font of your choice. We used it for our digipack and adverts and it has allowed us to be creative as InDesign is limited in fonts so by accessing this site we could chose any font we wanted in order for our product to look professional and authentic, thus significantly impacting the quality of our work. One of the advantages of DaFont was the amount and variety of fonts that we could use which meant that we could experiment with as many fonts that we wanted, however, as we worked on the college’s computers, due to the limitations on what students could do, we couldn’t download the font which meant that we had to print screen the word we wanted; copy it into paint; use the paint bucket tool to change the colour; save it as an image then either remove the background or import it into InDesign. This method took a long time and meant that our font was pixilated, thus impacting the quality of our work as it doesn’t look as professional as we would have wanted.
14: We used Google Docs to upload the slideshows of how we produced our final products. We chose this because it was quick and easy to use and, unlike Prezi, didn’t cause our computers to go as slow. However, it isn’t that creative, but we didn't use them to be creative – we used them as a way of displaying our journey to our final product. It hasn't impacted our work as this is the only aspect that we used it for.
15: We used FluidSurveys for our audience research as it is a quick and easy way of targeting our audience as teenagers are used to using the internet, therefore it was more likely that they would answer an online survey than one on paper. One advantage of FluidSurveys was that you could change the type of question easily, which would impact the result as some questions had only one choice while others were multiple choice. You could also easily change the order of the questions by simply dragging and dropping them into whichever order you wanted. Unfortunately, the website isn’t creative, but we didn’t want to use it for creative purposes.
16: SoundCloud is a website where you can upload and share your own music which is why we used it to upload our cover song onto. It was also really easy to embed onto our blog so readers didn’t have to click onto a link. It’s not particularly creative; however, it did allow us to easily share our song and thus tell examiners and markers about it as otherwise they wouldn’t have known that we were going to use our own cover song, thus impacting our work.
17: PowToon is an interactive presentation website which we used for our planning when we had to analyse the meaning of the song. We then used it again to pitch our music video to the class and then for one of our evaluation questions. We really liked using it as you could choose different themes, such as the mission one for our pitch, as well as colours and font. You could also add music to it if you wanted. One disadvantage was that sometimes it would go slow and make our computers freeze and it was sometimes hard to copy and paste work from powerpoint onto the slides as it would sometimes constantly paste the previous thing we had copied which was annoying as we would have to type our responses up again. However, it is a really creative way of displaying information and has thus impacted our work as we have used it a lot and it makes a change from Prezi which is similar.
18: Logic Pro 9 is audio editing software which was used to edit and record our cover for the production task. We personally didn’t use it as we didn’t have the software or equipment, but luckily we knew someone who had previously recorded and edited bands before. The advantages of using the software were that it was quick and easy to change and edit aspects we didn’t like as well as placing different effects such as doubling up the voice for the chorus to make it sound more authentic. It also didn’t take that long to record either which was really good as we were able to spend more time filming. One potential disadvantage was that because we didn’t know how to use it we weren’t able to edit it to exactly how we wanted so we had to work and communicate well with the producer, but if we didn’t then the quality may not have been as good. Overall the software has impacted our work as we’ve used it in the final video and it has allowed our work to be more creative and personal because of this.
19: We used Shara’s Macbook Pro to edit our video as it was easier to use than premier pro on the schools computer. Shara also used it to complete all of her designated tasks as it was her home laptop. Using it allowed her to be creative as she could easily access websites such as Prezi and Glogster for our coursework. However, sometimes due to the internet or computer malfunction it was harder to complete the tasks. Overall, using the laptop has impacted our work as it’s what we produced our final video on, thus allowing us to be more creative.
20: Similarly, Julie used her Acer laptop to complete the tasks at home which allowed her to access creative websites as well. Being able to use a laptop at home meant that she was able to more work rather than just at school and while we were editing the video and producing the digipack and analysis she was able to write up how we made each product as we went along, thus saving time as we didn’t leave it to last minute. Additionally, by using two laptops we could easily share the work load, thus significantly impacting our work as it would have taken us longer to produce otherwise.
21: We used our college’s camera to take the pictures for our advert and digipack. One of the advantages of using the camera was that we got high quality pictures that we were really happy with, thus allowing us to be creative with our final product as we had enough photos to choose from. It was also really easy to use so we didn’t waste time either. There weren’t any disadvantages to using the camera as we were really happy with them, however if we weren’t we would have had to book using the camera for another time which could have taken up to a week. Overall, using the camera has impacted our work greatly as without it we wouldn’t have been able to produce our final outcome.
22: We used this camera for our filming as the quality was better than the college’s. However, when we uploaded the video onto YouTube the quality wasn’t as good as the preview on the Mac, but this could be because of the quality of internet. Another advantage of using the camera was that it was easy to use and then preview our work so we could easily re-film scenes if we needed to. It was also small and compact so we could easily transport it. Finally, it was easy to upload the footage onto the laptop. Overall, using the camera has impacted our work as we used it for our final product and it has allowed us to be creative because of this.
23: We used a memory stick to transfer files to and from our laptops and the college computer’s so it’s been extremely useful in this sense. However, if one of us forgot to bring it in then we couldn’t do some pieces of work, so it has impacted our work as without it it would have been hard to stay organised and up to date.
24: When Julie had to make videos for the tasks, such as the digipack and costume videos she had to use Windows Movie Maker as it was part of the Acer Laptop. Using it allowed her to be creative as she could easily edit the videos and it didn’t take that long to complete.She could also put various transitional effects on, such as the cinema effect which she used for the costume videos and she could easily layer text over the video. However, saving the completed videos in the correct format took a while. Then uploading the video onto YouTube took a while as well as we could have been doing other tasks. Because of this it hasn’t greatly impacted our work, but using it has allowed us to be more creative.
25: We used Google Chrome when we used the internet to firstly access our blog, as well as using the creative websites. We used Chrome rather than Internet Explorer because it was quicker and it didn’t freeze or crash as much, but sometimes it did without saving our work so we would have to start again which was extremely time consuming. Overall, using Chrome has allowed us to be incredibly creative as without it we wouldn’t have been able to access the internet to do our coursework as well.
26: We used Twitter in both our audience research and then again for our planning; we used it to get people to answer the survey and then we used it to ask RocNation if we could use ‘We Found Love’ so it has been very beneficial. It was also really easy to use and communicate with others. However, due to the 180 character limit we had to sometimes cut the tweet in half and send out two. Additionally, it isn’t very creative, but we were able to get quicker results by using it so the benefits outweigh the costs.
27: We used Facebook in a similar way to Twitter as we used it to gain our target audience feedback on our final product where we posted an album of the finished product and people wrote what they liked/ disliked about it. It was extremely beneficial in this sense as we got feedback really quickly. Like Twitter it was really easy to use and communicate with our target audience and it ddn't have a character limit like Twitter which was really good. It isn't creative but we were able to get quick results
28: We used IMovie on Shara's MacbookPro to edit and produce our music video for our ancillary task. Below is a picture of us editing the fairground scene. We were able to do a wide range of things to our video, such as speed up the clips which features heavily in our video. To do this we had to double click on the clip and then a menu would pop up (bottom right corner) where we could easily change the speed. Underneath this bar was reverse option that allowed us to reverse the clip as well. We did this for the limo scene and parts of the wood scene.
29: We were also able to change the colour of some of the shots, such as the brick wall ones where we increases the contrast so the colour was bolder and thus suitable for the genre. Overall we really liked using IMovie as it was simple and and effective; it didn't take a while for our work to save, which is what other students using PremierPro said had happened with them. It was also really easy to use - we could easily cut shots and even zoom in further to some shots if we wished, thus allowing us to be really creative and impacting our product as it make it look more professional and reflective of the genre.