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Category: Creative Critical Reflection 1

So… How’s it Going?

Going well. Took the dogs out, vibed to some music and… Wait what do you mean this isn’t what you wanted?

Keeping on top of this blog and magazine has frankly been a roller coaster considering how late a lot of my work has been. The development process has been a cruel mistress (Or more like I am my own cruel mistress). That said, however, what can I take away from this experience? My concepts on Photoshop and InDesign have definitely improved; manipulating photos and making aesthetically pleasing assets has never been such a smooth process in the past. That said I’ve also managed to improve on what inherently makes an aesthetically pleasing product. Aspects like spacing and angles and what fonts combo well. Furthermore, outside of the tech world, I’ve managed to understand how to communicate with models and peers to improve my final products, that said not all credit should go to me.

Credits to:

  • Zoe – for being an outstanding star and my go-to for feedback and emotional support
  • Luke – for being a good star and overall just unit
  • Miss Cobb – for keeping me on track, despite our differences in philosophy
  • SAMString – for letting me use his likeness and giving me some information to base my dps off
  • SAMString’s Family – for reviewing my DPS, really unexpected

 

Design Skills 2

If Design Skills are so great why isn’t there a Design Skills 2?!

So it’s been a while since I last discussed what I’ve managed to learn throughout my Photoshop/InDesign endeavours. Here are some more things I’ve learnt during that time:

Photoshop

After painstakingly removing all the white line and weird outlines from my star to make her appear more natural, I noticed she had some holes where I had changed some colours. Thankfully there’s a history brush to restore mistakes like this- lifesaver honestly I spent 30 minutes on this

Trust no one not even yourself

Literally just use the shape tool and make banners out of them. Keeps everything clean and consistent so as to not detract from the main piece. As an example of this I made a cloud out of literally just circles 🙂

 

Indesign

I managed to blend triangles into the background by lowering their opacity and giving them a drop shadow. It makes them stand out in a unique way and fills the background as to make it not entirely bland and monochrome.

Adding drop shadows to everything turns out to be a really effective way to make text or images pop out and give some depth. It helps make my star look more real and less two dimensional as shown below.

Design Skills 1

Through endless pain and suffering I have gained experience.

Trial and error over the course of a few months (watching Photoshop tutorials on YouTube) has given me the experience to do various things in Photoshop that have given me an edge in designing my cover. In doing so, I have learnt many ways to convey many aspects of the EDM genre through my magazine and encode more information for my readers to decode. I have a few examples below:

Photoshop

1. Clipping masks

You can hide a layer behind another layer to give the foreground layer some flair. Examples may include patterns you can’t be bothered to crop or change the opacity for

2. Selecting colour range

Selects all of of a specific colour range. Really helpful to get rid of green screen backgrounds.

3. Adding effects and gradients

Much like clipping masks, adds premade effects which add some flair to specific layers and assets.

InDesign

1. Drop Capitals

Important asset for the double page spread, helps the reader determine where each line starts. The A+ determines the offset at which the character is enlarged.

2. Borders

Keeps text self contained and easier to read. Basically just used this to keep things neat so it’s easier for the reader to, well, read.

So I’m Ready to Photograph My Star

Light it up and Liquate

Come to think of it, I have had a lot of “Days of reckoning.” That said, recap time:

As the Owner, Designer, Writer and manager of B345Tcore my mission is to give light for people to discover the various corners of EDM, both in the mainstream and out of the mainstream. The idea to appeal to the broader genres of EDM. To accomplish this my magazine will have a focus on both aspects of curiosity and sci-fi. In order to accomplish that I need to consider my own star’s Mise en Scene; what needs to be done in terms of lighting, makeup, positioning, etc to convey these aspects.

Furthermore I shouldn’t put my star on too high of a pedestal, Richard Dyer’s star paradox states that a star is both extraordinary yet ordinary, present yet absent. This being said my star should convey these feelings whilst also being a model my audience can look at and say “I want to be like them”

In terms of composition I can use a wide variety of shots to convey various messages. A close-up of the face could show my model deep in thought, or a mid-shot of them looking into the distance in awe.

To wrap all these concepts together; I must encode these ideas I wish to convey into my magazine; in text, images, whatever, and ensure it is content my audience will happily decode and resonate with, aspects that are preferred by my audience.

So… I’m Ready to Make Some Media!

My wrath shall be unleashed between both heaven and hell.

So apparently I haven’t been making media these past few weeks, despite what Mrs. Cobbs tells me, that said: I’m at the starting line and ready to make my magazine. A quick recap in case you’ve forgotten (I most definitely have, hi future me.)

Mise-En-Scene:

  • Costume – What the subject will be wearing
  • Lighting – Mood meant to be conveyed
  • Acting/Proxemics – See lighting
  • Makeup/Hair – Co-insides with costume
  • Props – What should the subject use/hold to convey the narrative
  • Setting – Can’t have hardcore EDM set in a field, y’know

Framing:

  • High angle – displays weakness
  • Low angle – displays power
  • Extreme closeup – makes it personal, sensual depending on context
  • Mid shot – Fairly average shot, allows for expression and props to be shown
  • Long shot – Shows a grander scale
  • Extreme long shot – long shot but more
  • Rule of thirds – LOOK AT THE LINES MAN, DOES IT MATCH WITH THE LINES??

Magazine Metadata:

  • Typography – make it relate to the genre and easily understandable
  • Colours – along with lighting should be utilised to set a mood (Contrasting colours also just generally look good)
  • Relevant information – Pugs, plugs, captions, slogans, etc
  • Audience – Remember who it’s tailored for and apply details based on that information.

AIDA:

  • KYC – Know your client; if you don’t know who you’re appealing to and have no audience you won’t have a strong market.
  • Intrigue – Make sure the audience is engaged
  • Call to action – Not necessary, but can be used to engage the audience further, create hype, etc.

Other:

  • Look towards Blumler and Katz’s Uses and Gratification Theory to further understand audience interests and how their personal identity relates to such interests.

So… How can an image communicate meaning?

Rhetorical question, I’ve learnt this already.

Much like how someone’s body language can tell you a lot about how they’re feeling, an image communicates that same feeling from a fixed and more specific perspective. Confused? Example: an image may be taken of someone with a relatively blank expression, generally someone would take that as someone being neutral. However, the image taken may be from a close and personal perspective, the person coming off as more serious and reserved. Or maybe a shot from far away showing the individual as lonely. Perhaps a more dynamic angle shows the person as preparing for something serious, like a fight. Needless to say there’s a lot that an image can do to represent one’s expression and add small details to tell a different story.

This is essential to understand when coming to make my music magazine, as well as what I’ve learnt from mise-en-scene. Things like what’s in a scene, costume, expression that also combo well with filter, angle, distance to tell my specific “story.” I say story but all I’m doing is shooting a music cover, no need to be over dramatic here. Regardless these aspects on top of everything else I have learnt will come and hopefully form the perfect music magazine.

 

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