My Magazine Front Page Swede

 

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Original Magazine Cover

Copied Magazine Cover

This was a highly useful task to learn how to effectively use InDesign to create magazine covers which will be very helpful when I come to design my own magazine cover as I will be able to add my desired effects to the text and imagery.

It was also helpful as a way of learning the technical conventions of a magazine cover for example I now understand what kind of information goes into a cover line and how to make certain parts of the cover lines stand out. For example in the magazine that I was copying certain parts of the cover lines were in a bolder typeface and in red so that they were more prominent to the audience.

I believe that I was somewhat successful in replicating my chosen magazine cover as I found the same image and used the same colours for text however their are some things that I thought I could’ve done better. These include:

  • Placing the cover lines closer together
  • Not having such large gap between the cover lines and the edge of the magazine cover
  • Not having uneven gaps between the masthead letters
  • I also struggled to find the exact font for some parts

Below are some YouTube videos that I found helped with this task

A Front Cover Analysed

This task helped me to understand how every aspect on a music magazine cover contributes to the appeal for a target audience. For example the target audience for this particular magazine was middle aged men.

Combining the skills of audience profiling and textual analysis will be highly useful when I come to make my own music magazine as I will be able to effectively market my magazine to my target audience in order for my magazine to be as successful as possible.

Audience Profiling

Above is a magazine cover that I have deconstructed so that I am able to work out its target audience, demographics and psychographics. This is useful as to know your target audience means that you can use the aspects of mise en scene to create the ideal and most effective magazine possible which would increase sales. An audiences psychographic includes their interests and personality attributes whereas an audiences demographic includes gender, age and socio-economic group.

Completing this task and learning about target audiences will be very useful when I come to create my own music magazine as I have the knowledge to portray my intended narrative most effectively.

So… How can an image communicate meaning?

I have learnt of many features that help to communicate meaning in media including the aspects of mise en scene. The aspects of mise en scene are:

  • Costume
  • Lighting
  • Acting
  • Make up and hair
  • Props
  • Setting

All of these aspects work together to portray the intended narrative, for example if the lighting is dark there are connotations of fear and danger.

Another important aspect in conveying an intended narrative is by the use of the camera. Angle and distance play important roles in portraying an idea. Examples of distances and their uses are:

  • Close up to show emotion and feel connected to the character
  • Mid shot is used to see more of the character and what their body language is like while also being able to see some emotion in the characters face
  • Longshot is used to show the character in relation to its surroundings
  • Extreme long shot is also used to show a character in relation to its surroundings but can also be used to show vulnerability and isolation if the character is alone in vast, bare surroundings

The angle at which the photo is taken also helps in portraying an intended narrative for example:

  • A low angle is generally used to show superiority and power
  • A high angle is typically used to show inferiority, fear and vulnerability

Knowing this will be very useful when I am creating my own music magazine as I now know how I can best get across the intended narrative which in turn will increase my sales.

 

Conventional design features of a magazine

Labeling this magazine with the technical conventions made me realize the importance of using typicalities when creating a magazine so that the magazine is successful and lives up to the audiences expectations. These technical conventions include:

  • mastheads
  • main cover lines
  • main cover star
  • cover lines
  • pugs
  • plugs
  • price and issue
  • bar codes
  • insets
  • captions

This will help me when I create my own music magazine as I will be able to use these technical conventions in order to increase sales and make my magazine successful.

The Camera Talks

This task of creating a mood board helped me to understand what makes a good photo as I had to pick my favourite 9 shots from all of the photos that we took and write the denotation and connotation of each image.

My favourite photo out of the selected 9 is the low angle photo in the middle of the mood board as I believe that it was most successful in portraying our intended narrative. I think this as the low angle creates the idea of superiority, strength and power which represents the narrative of the rebellion of the girl in the photo.

I thought that we were quite successful in portraying our ideas, which was the main task focus, however I feel that we needed to take more time adjusting the camera so that the images were fully in focus and lit with a correct level of brightness. For example in my opinion the middle photo in the top row is too dark so we should’ve used a slower shutter speed or made the F number smaller. This will be helpful when creating my own music magazine as I now have a better understanding of DSLR cameras and how to fix issues like lighting and focus and I also have an idea of how angles and distances can convey a narrative. This will be helpful as getting across my intended narrative will make my own music magazine more successful and it will increase sales.

Technical Camera Terms

Above is a collection of photos that we took displaying different distances and angles to convey a narrative.

I learnt from the task the importance of aperture and shutter speed in creating a narrative. Aperture is how big the hole is to let in light. If more light is needed a smaller F number will be used whereas if less light is needed a larger F number will be used. Shutter speed is how quickly the shutter closes over the hole. A high shutter speed is used in bright light as not a lot of light enters and a low shutter speed is used in dark lighting as a lot of light can enter.

The use of camera is a very effective tool in conveying an idea. The distance that the camera is away from the subject of the photo and the angle that the photo is taken at is key in portraying the intended narrative. For example a close up is used to show emotion and to feel connected to the character and what they are feeling where an extreme long shot can be used to either show the relationship to the character and their surroundings or to convey loneliness and isolation. The angle at which the photo is taken is also useful. A high angle is generally used to represent vulnerability and inferiority whereas a low angle portrays power and superiority.

My image that uses mise-en-scene to communicate meaning

Made with Padlet

Our music genre was country and western and in our research we found that the conventions of country and western are:

  • Denim clothing e.g dungarees
  • Plaid shirts
  • Acoustic guitar to give off a relaxing and laidback vibe
  • Cowboy hats as the music genre of country and western is generally prevalent in America

Creating a mood board will be helpful when I am designing my own music magazine as it will help me to understand the conventions of the genre of music and what mise en scene should be.

In this image people were asked to stick a post it note on the model dressed as a country and western star with a word that they thought described her costume in relation to the music genre. Examples of these words were:

  • Laidback
  • Family friendly
  • Earthy
  • Helpful
  • Chill

This was useful for us as it gave us gratification that the conventions of the country and western music genre were noticeable and prevalent. This will also be useful when creating my own music magazine as getting peer feedback will make sure that my magazine is as effective in conveying my ideas as possible.

In my opinion this is the best shot from the photoshoot as the mise en scene worked well collectively to depict the message of a country and western singer. The aspects of the photo that showed this were:

  • The plaid shirt is a convention of country and western however the purple in the shirt gave off a feminine vibe which created a caring and family friendly tone
  • The straw cowboy hat fit with the conventions of the genre but also the fact that it was straw gave off a softer, more caring and helpful feel
  • The hair of the model was loosely curled giving the impression of being laid back, approachable and care free
  • The body language of the model suggests a strength and independence but also gave off the feeling of the feeling that the character was caring as she was looking at the camera

This task will be useful when I am creating my own music magazine as I am aware of how each individual feature in the photo adds to the idea that I am trying to convey for example the fact that the cowboy hat was made of straw gave a feminine and caring feel while also sticking to the conventions of the country and western genre. This attention to every little detail that I have learnt while doing this task will make sure that my music magazine is as successful as possible.

 

Print Media that Communicates Meaning

This task taught me how important every aspect is in media in creating the desired narrative for example the red colour of the dress suggests romance and passion. In this task I analysed the mise en scene and thought about how these aspects added to the overall vibe of this individual tour poster. This information will help me when creating my music magazine as:

  • I know what needs to go on the tour poster, as using Blumler and Katz’s theory we can tell that this particular media is an informative piece of text, and the uses of each aspect
  • I understand how the colours I use will convey a message and give off a specific vibe
  • I understand about the body language of a model and how it can be used to show a certain idea along with the costume and makeup on the model
  • I am able to choose a typeface that would suit the poster and convey the message that I was trying to put across

All of these aspects will make sure that my magazine is successful in portraying my ideas and that the artist has sales and and audience to perform to.

 

So…I’m a media prosumer

Media has many different uses and gratification which are stated in Blumler and Katz’s theory. These uses are:

 

  • Entertainment/Diversion
  • Social interaction
  • Personal identity
  • Information/Surveillance

 

In this task I created a collage named ‘My Media World’ with images of the media that I consume and prosume on a regular bases. Then I labelled some of the images with their main use from Blumler and Katz’s theory so that I could learn what I mainly use media for. For example I labeled the image of the Snapchat logo with entertainment and personal identity as I get enjoyment out of using the app and also when I receive images that people have posted or when I post an image myself I am adding to my personal identity as it is reaffirming who I am. This will impact me when I am producing my magazine as I can direct my magazine to fit one of the uses and gratifications in Blumler and Katz’s theory. For example I could include strong opinions about a particular topic/band so that people can gain a strong sense of personal identity. However it would also be beneficial to use as many uses and gratifications ats possible to maximise popularity and sales.