Saturday, 21 March 2015

Evaluation - Question 1





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




I followed many music video conventions to match the genre and music video features to create a professional finish. I watched different music videos to find myself different inspirations, which I did; this helped me get my footage with full confidence knowing what I wanted from the shooting day. Throughout my music video planning I started from not knowing what my music video 'narrative' was going to be about - however I had chosen the song 'Carmen' by Lana Del Rey. By analysing the lyrics I was able to construct a narrative that would appeal to my primary audience and a secondary audience, people who wouldn't usually listen to these sorts of songs, I made sure to have a narrative that had involved themes that are relevant in todays media and society i.e. teenage drinking. I didn't want my video to be a video condemning alcohol and saying that "drinking is bad" but it shows the dangers of leading a hedonistic lifestyle, where a person becomes so reliant on the drink she has to resort to crime. I thought this was relevant because a lot of music videos that fall into the indie/ indie-pop genre tend to have an underlying message within their video e.g. in the artist Hozier's video he chose to make a video that criticises the repression of gay people in Russia. "Growing up in Ireland, the church is always there – the hypocrisy, the political cowardice," Hozier told Billboard magazine. "The video has the same theme – an organization that undermines humanity."



Shot 1 – I chose to reverse the chronology in my music video by starting with my artist waking up on the streets, in order to engage my audience at the start and make them question why she's there and what happened the day before. This idea was inspired by Katy Perry's video for her song TGIF where she starts off in a bed with a random man and spends the rest of the video reflecting on what happened the previous night.





Shot 2 – This shot typifies the way a record company, such as my artists label Universal Music Group, would want their artist to represented. Another convention of an indie-pop video is to include handheld shots, which are often used to show a memory. I developed this convention by contemporising the handheld shot by adding an overlay of an iPhone on to the footage to add a sense of intimacy in the video, thus helping to connect Liberty Haze with her fans.


Shot 3 – The choice of location and mise en scene in my video is relevant to the music genre of my video and to the narrative of my scene e.g.  this frame shows my artist in a therapists room, this is inferred through the use of iconography such as the chaise long.







Shot 4 – The conventional Indie music videos mise en scene is usually simple. A prop can complete a scene, as audiences are able to physically see what the character/artist is currently doing. The indie artist Ed Sheeran does this in his music video for his song A Team, we see the girl using drugs. We as an audience assume this already, but our assumptions wouldn't have been fulfilled without the character actually showing us her struggles to feed the addiction. The idea of a character having an affinity with a particular prop is made apparent in this frame as the CCTV footage clearly shows her stealing a bottle of Vodka suggesting that her need for alcohol is so strong she has to rely on committing a crime.



Shot 5 - Here I have matched the visuals to the lyrics through the use of illustration; which is a term by Andrew Godwin, which shows that there is a correlation between the visuals and lyrics in a music video, the use of amplification and illustration is apparent in my video. Accompanies the lyrics "It's alarming honestly how charming she can be, fooling everyone telling them she's having fun."  I have illustrated the lyrics in my video by showing my artist at a party, however not fully engaging with it or the people there, as everyone else is dancing. The idea to do this scene was one of the first ideas I had as through research into Lana Del Rey herself I read an article that said how everyone thought she was that girl who was never upset and that she was always having a good time but Lana actually was depressed and sad about how bad her life had gotten. I then tried to illustrate through distancing my artist to the other people. I was also inspired by the media text 'The perks of being Wallflower' as there was a scene where the main character was at the home coming ball and was just isolated by himself, illustrating his feeling of isolation and neglect, which is what my artist feels.




Shot 6 - This frame shows another element that the indie-pop genre has which is the use of CU for the lip sync. The lip sync normally takes place when the artist is alone, thus creating a performance element to the music video. This shot shows my artist directly addressing the audience through singing the song to the camera; this then helps to create an affinity between my artist and her fans. I chose to edit this shot for two reasons: one, as if it were a mirror to reflect how my artist is constantly being surveyed, as she's in the public eye, to create a sense of voyeurism and the second reason was to reflect the idea that most of what you see happening is all in her head, so the mirror works as a window into her mind, thus suggesting that my artist is possible lost or broken. 







Shot 7- This shot exemplifies my use of lighting in the performance scenes of my music video. For this effect I used two soft-boxes acting as a key and backlight. I used the backlight to illuminate her hair and to create a more stylised shot.











Shot 8 - This shot demonstrates the idea of voyeurism through my artist’s mental state, as she is looking at herself in the mirror but her reflection isn't the same. I was inspired by many different media texts when I envisioned this particular shot, such as: photographs of illusions, films - Black Swan; as there’s a scene where Natalie Portman's character's reflection moves on its own, I was also inspired by other music videos that use voyeurism to show how their artist sees themselves: Lilly Allen- 22, Pink-Perfect and BeyoncĂ©- Pretty Hurts.


Shot 9 - This shot shows my artist falling asleep on the streets, this is then overlaid with a time lapse of a sunset. I have chosen to repeat the image of the sun set at the end of my video as well in order to capture my artists constant struggle from the moment the video starts until the second it ends as it helps to frame her cyclical narrative. I used time lapses to display the mundane reality of her repetitious daily life.




Existing media products:







Shot 1 and 9 – These screenshots are from Christina Perri’s music video for her song ‘A Thousand Years’ and Coldplay's 'Paradise' video. When researching indie artist’s music videos I stumbled upon these I was particularly influenced by the use of a time lapse to help facilitate their narratives. Seeing this, I then chose to implicate this idea in my video.













Shot 2 One of the many narrative conventions of an indie-pop video is to include handheld shots, which are often used to show a memory. I was influenced by this shot of Lana Del Rey in her video for ‘Video Games’ as she too had a shot of herself looking directly at the camera, creating a sense of direct address with her fans. Moreover, from watching other videos by Lana Del Rey and other Indie artists I discovered that they love to add home footage within their videos, which could be to make them seem more authentic and real or even just to further the narrative






Shot 4 – The use of CCTV footage in a music video helps to break the audience's intimacy with the character and in my video shows the audience the reality of her corruption. Albeit that Iggy Azeilure and Jennifer Hudson’s music video incorporated this idea because they wanted authentic iconography, as the video is based around a Bonnie and Clyde type storyline. I still feel that the way in which I incorporated it was valid and could be seen in music videos of today because it is something that engages the audience even more so, as the staccato movement of the footage makes it clear what it is supposed to be.




Shot 5 - Here I have matched the visuals to the lyrics through the use of illustration; which is a term by Andrew Godwin, which shows that there is a correlation between the visuals and lyrics in a music video, the use of amplification and illustration is apparent in my video. Many indie artists do this such as Taylor Swift; her music video for ‘Love Story’ is an illustration of the renowned tale of Romeo and Juliet, where she reenacts the infamous balcony scene. In terms of inspiration for the lyric "It's alarming honestly how charming she can be, fooling everyone telling them she's having fun." I was inspired by a scene in the indie film ‘The Perks of being a Wallflower’ where the main character is at a school dance, where you’d assume he’s be having fun and enjoying himself but he’d much rather be anywhere else then there. I originally planned to just have my artist alone, like in this screenshot however, I thought there would be more of an impact if I showed people behind her moving at a much slower pace to really capture her disengagement and lack of acceptance by others, or if you want to be deep, from herself, an issue many indie artists highlight in their songs.


Shot 6 - This screenshot illustrates another element that the indie-pop genre has which is the use of CU for the lip sync. The lip sync normally takes place when the artist is alone, thus creating a performance element to the music video. Many artists, from many different genres of music, inspired this shot, as it is a transferable music video convention. I was particularly influenced by Rihanna’s music video for ‘Stay’ as you can see in the screenshot she is directly addressing the audience through singing the song to the camera.





Shot 7- The three-point lighting used in Lana Del Rey’s ‘Video Games’ was where I took the inspiration for the lighting in one my performance shots. By placing a light directly behind the artist it really makes them stand out, as it is illuminating the edges of her hair, which is far aesthetically appealing to the audience.


I was influenced by this scene in Lily Allen's video for her song '22' because it showed the singer looking at her reflection in the mirror, thus creating the sense of voyeurism. However, I took most of my inspiration for my shot of my artist in the mirror from the media text 'Black Swan' as there's a shot where the actress Natalie Portman looks at herself in the mirror and her reflection moves by itself, thus creating a sense of psychological trauma within the character which I what I wanted to represent in my artist.