FC: Task 11: Reflection on Research
1: Music Video Analysis | From researching music videos we've realised that although we've researched a slight variety of videos, they all fall into the mainstream genre so we think that our music video will also fall into this theme as there's so much you can do with it. However, one thing we've realised is that a performance is a typical convention because we saw it in practically all of the videos, including the ones with a narrative, so we think that we'll do one in our own music video because of this so it will look more authentic. Our favourite performance was the one in Ed Sheeran's because it was just the sign man using his hands and it was made interesting through the use of cuts and close-up shots with mid shots, but there weren't any dancers or excessive movement behind him so it would be easy to replicate - especially on a low budget like ours. Although, if we're going to go for a conventional pop/R'n'B song we thought that the Cheryl Cole video would be the best to replicate in terms of dance and setting as it seems like something we can accomplish, but wewould like to see more of a narrative just to make the video that bit more interesting. Our favourite narrative is from the Professor Green video as it's really funny and done really well through the use of editing that follows the tempo of the song. As well as this the use of screens was really clever and we would like to do something like this in our video, but we're not sure how it would work so maybe we won't. As much as we liked the No Church In The Wild video we don't think that it's something we would do because, firstly, health and safety, secondly, according to the guidelines there can't be too much violence and finally we wouldn't have the budget nor setting to make the video. Additionally, it doesn't have much of a narrative, which is something mainstream videos have and because of the nature of the video it wouldn't fall into mainstream videos that could be played all day and every day on a music channel, thus increasing artist awareness, instead it would probably be played after 9pm so young audiences couldn't watch it.
2: Also, researching Geri Halliwell's video I've found that women tend to be made to be seen as sexual objects through the use of mise-en-scene, where she wore lots of crop tops to show off her waist and through the use of close-ups on her face and body. This is similar in Cheryl Cole's video, so if we were to use a woman in our video then we would use close-ups and clothes to show off her figure to attract the male gaze, but to also want our female audience to aspire to be like her. Also, the editing was fast paced and what was being shot had lots of movement which reflected the tempo and genre of the song well, so if we were to do a mainstream song then we would include lots of fast paced shots and movement, such as dance routines in our video. I also really liked the use of dancers and extras in Halliwell's and Cole's video as it made it look like everyone was having a lot of fun and enjoying themselves, which reflected the genre of the songs, but was also visually appealing, so I think that it would be a good idea if we did this in our video as well - especially if we decide on a pop song. One thing I think that worked really well in the Call My Name Video was the use of different settings, which were more modern and up to date than Halliwell's - especially as today's modern audience probably haven't heard of Flashdance. However, the narrative behind Nikki Minaj's song, Cinderella, is something people have heard of, thus appealing to more audiences, and it wouldn't be as dated as Flashdance.
3: Also, we could achieve something similar in our own video as there aren't that many different main characters - Minaj plays both herself and the fairy godmother and you can tell the difference through costume, hair and make-up, which we can do and it doesn't cost much. The transitions were done really well, such as the fading transitions and could work well in our video - especially if we do a mainstream song and make our video in linear narrative and use it to show the passing of time. However, the use of establishing shots to show the vast setting might be a problem for us to replicate as we have a small budget, but if we do decide to use a setting like this we can just film the outside of a resteraunt or hotel and film the inside somewhere else. We also wouldn't be able to do that many special effects like the fairy dust. Finally, like both Halliwell's and Cole's video, Minaj's video also uses exhibitionism and attracts the male gaze through the costumes that show off her figure, but the costumes also show off her style and personality, suggesting that she wants to be put on display and therefore wants to be looked at, which is something we could consider for our own video. Overall, from researching these three videos especially, we've found that when using women in a music video it's become a convention for them to attract the male gaze, so this is something we will have to consider for our own video.
4: From Ed Sheeran's video we really liked the simple concept; there weren't any other settings, narrative etc yet it was still interesting and my favorite because of how they filmed and edited the performance. I really liked the use of other objects, like the paper and the couch and how it was edited in so quickly and to the rhythm of the song itself. I also liked the fact that they used a guy who used sign language for the performance because it's so unusual and unique as other music videos haven't done it and the fact that you're constantly zooming in and out, or seeing him from different angles because then you're not seeing similar shots over and over again, which can become boring after a while. One thing I've noticed is that dancers have been used again, like they have in most of the other videos we've analysed, which suggests that it's a convention of pop videos, so it's something that we should use in our own video. As good as it is, I don't think that we'll do something like it because I can't think of another song that uses as much imagery as this one and if we used a sign person then it would essentially be copying the video, which we don't want to do, but we really did like the use of setting and lights, so maybe we could do something similar in our own.
5: Finally, we're not sure if we would do something like the No Church in the Wild video in terms of concepts as the song we would choose would probably be a mainstream song, which wouldn't have a hidden meaning or message which could have a concept video. Also, concept videos are quite rare for mainstream songs and wouldn't really follows genre conventions because of this.
6: Magazine Adverts | The magazine adverts that we analysed were from many different genres and backgrounds of varying artists. From this research we managed to understand the conventions of magazine album adverts and what we need to do in order to produce a successful advert. | The main conventions used in this advert where the artists name/band in big lettering usually at the top of the advert. The name of the album- also in big lettering, popular songs featured on the album, the release date, an image of the artist/band and sometimes an image of the cover of the album.
7: Overall we preferred the style, colour pallet and shots on the Rihanna Magazine Advert. There was an underlying theme with two main colours, which worked effectively on this advert. This contrasted with the many bright, fun colours on the Katy Perry advert, however both work well fitting into the genre of music they are trying to target. This is something we will consider when created our own advert. The genre of music will be rnb/pop, focusing on a mainstream market. For this we can effectively take the use of two main colours as the Rihanna advert did and use certain ideas such as the ‘poppy’ ‘fun’ bubble writing used on Katy Perry’s album advert.
8: We may incorporate an image of the album cover depending on the layout we choose, if there are too many images already and if it fits with the overall theme of the advert. On the Katy Perry advert, I feel the album cover wasn’t needed because the background and main image was busy enough. Also the album cover shows such similarity with the advert, it blended in rather than standing out.
9: Although the Kings of Leon advert had all necessary information, we felt the colour scheme was not eye catching enough and looked bland and boring. However it worked with the theme of the album title. The image of the album cover was used as the main image which also helped the audience easily identify the album if they come to buy it. For an audience seeing this advert and album for the first time, they may not be drawn to it, or enticed into it due to the basic/ dull colour scheme. For the genre of Rock however this is a common feature, as ‘The Vaccines’ album also shows similarity on this. Taylor swift, katy perry and rihanna have a sugnature font/logo that it used throughout their adverts
10: Digipaks | From researching Digipacks we've found and understood typical conventions and features which we would use for our own, such as the use of a lot of photos of the artist, the artists name, album title, relevant colour scheme, record label information and legal information, all of which we would include in our own digipack. Our favourites were Katy Perry's, Rihanna and The Vaccines because both Katy Perry and Rihanna's fit close to what we want to produce, but The Vaccines style of digipack was really unique as it was made into a book and we thought that it would be a good idea to maybe do something similar as it would stand out from the others, although it only had pictures and we didn't think that this alone would be interesting for our consumers so we wanted to take some ideas from other digipacks we researched. We liked Katy Perry's because we felt that it reflected the genre well and the design concept was simple but it worked really well, such as making one of the CD's into a doughnut and the other in to a sweet. Katy Perry also has direct eye contact with the camera and thus the audience, drawing them in, which is really effective and eye-catching, so we can do something like this for our artist. Her digipack also has a mixture of lyrics and pictures, so it's not all the same and boring for the consumer, which we liked so we will probably do something like this ourselves
12: Rihanna was one of our favourites because like Katy Perry's it had a simple concept with a simple colour scheme of pink and red and it used a lot of flowers for its iconography and wasn't too in your face, but it didn't look boring either. It also made the CD's into roses, similar to how Katy Perry used images of sweets on her own and we thought that this was a good idea. The concept also involved some juxtaposition because the album's name is called LOUD, but she's closed her eyes, which we thought was a good idea and we really liked how her femininity was displayed subtly instead of completely on show like other artists, for example the use of rose's which connotes romance, love and lust, along with the colours red and pink which have the same connotations. This is further stressed through mise-en-scene where she's wearing a floaty dress that shoes off her figure subtly, unlike Katy Perry's album where she's naked, which could completely scare of female audiences as they could be intimidated by her body confidence. However we thought that Taylor Swift's digipack images were too innocent for the pop genre, but this probably had something to do with her age at the time of the CD being released, but like Katy Perry she was looking directly at the camera in most of her digipacks apart from her most recent one RED, which looked similar to Rihanna's LOUD, which signified growing up.
13: The digipacks we liked the least were Kings of Leon and Ed Sheeran's because we felt that they both had a fairly boring colour scheme; Kings of Leon's was black and green and would only really attract males who are into that genre of music, rather than a wide audience like the other two and although Ed Sheeran used orange, which is a bright and eye-catching colour, we felt that that was the only colour used and was thus a bit over the top, however the colour orange refers to his hair, which is why it could have been chosen. Also, the colour scheme for The Vaccines was mainly black and white, which could firstly reflect the genre of music like the Kings of Leon's album did, but also reflect the fact that these artists are male and therefore wouldn't have a colour scheme consisting of red, pink, blue or yellow likr the other digipacks, which is something we should consider for our own digipack. We also didn't think that these digipacks were as visually appealing to most consumers because of this and the use of images in the digipack that didn't really have anything eye-catching or interesting for the consumer, however we did like the fact that the images in The Vaccines digipack had pictures of them messing around being on tour and general behind the scenes images, which would cause the consumers to feel like they're getting to know that band better and thus create an emotional bond with them and is something we're considering doing ourselves.
14: As for font, some of the digipacks used typed text, but others used handwriting, such as Taylor Swift's, adding a personal touch which was something we liked about this digipack, but we weren't sure if this would work as well for mainstream songs or if it was best suited for country and acoustic music as that tends to be from the heart and personal. One thing we noticed was that Katy Perry's and the album's name wasn't displayed on the front of the cover which goes against conventions slightly, and won't be something that we'll do as our artist probably won't be well known so we wouldn't be able to get away with it. The font/ typography we liked the best tended to be bold like Rihanna's one and The Vaccines because it drew the consumer in so we'll probably do something like this for our own. The one we liked the least was Kings of Leon and Ed Sheerean's because it was too small and it looked boring because of this, so ours won't look like this.