Design Skills 2

During the making of my music magazine I have learnt lots of skills especially in regard to programmes such as InDesign and photoshop.

One of the most important tools I have found is the eyedropper tool. This allows you to grab whatever colour you want from an image and makes it easier for you to keep your design colour scheme constant. It is also useful for selecting strobe type and text settings from one set of text to transfer it to another. This was especially useful for my front cover where I used the same colours and applied them to different flowers to add texture and layers to my front cover. This tool adds consistency and makes your magazine feel more polished.

In Photoshop one of the most useful tools to me has been the lasso tool. I have used it to cut out my picture for my front cover from its original background and add it to my new background which was a block colour of yellow. You can make freehand, magnetic and polyagonal selections to get the closest cut to the image as possible.

So… How Is It Going?

Throughout Media Studies so far I have learnt a lot of transferable skills. These are skills I will be able to use for multiple purposes and across multiple careers. These include:

  • Research – To make my music magazine I had to do a large amount of research into the typical design features and content of other Latin music magazines.
  • Time Management – Finding the right balance between doing blog posts and practical work to create my magazine, but also balance my other commitments such as my other subjects, work life and social life has really helped me develop time management and come to a decision about which task is more important
  • Leadership – When I do a photoshoot I am in charge of the model but also taking the photos. A large amount of our photoshoots take a lot of prep time and directing a model whilst also taking good quality photographs takes large amounts of organisation
  • Communication – I have to have communication between myself and my classmates to discuss photoshoots or what they think about the designs of my magazine. But I also have to communicate a message to my target audience through my music magazine.

What went well so far:

  • My magazine has so far come out polished and fits the image I want it to
  • My magazine fits the genre I chose even though I chose quite a challenging one
  • I have learnt a lot of skills when it comes to using photoshop and indesign

What can still be improved:

  • Get better and more detailed peer assessments
  • Make everything more polished
  • Perfect my skills on indesign and photoshop

Design Skills 1

As I have been producing my music magazine I have learnt lots of new skills on InDesign and Photoshop. I have edited all of my photos in photoshop before adding them into my magazine to achieve the best quality images. It has meant that my magazine is more individual and unique through my editing.

Skills I Have Learnt:

  • How to cut out a photo from its background
  • How to add stroke onto text
  • How to change the opacity of an image

Image result for cutting tool photoshop

By creating layers in your image it makes it easier to manipulate it and get the exact image that you want. I was able to layer different colours and textures into my drafts to further weave the Latino theme into my magazine. The use of bright colours, textures and different layers make the magazine stand out to the reader and attract their attention when on the shelf.

Other Tools:

The rectangle frame tool in InDesign allows us to create a frame around our document to make it easier to fill in the background or for example add an image and fit it proportionally. It gives a really good idea of the layout of my magazine. It means I can fill in the background with anything, whether it be an image, colour or different texture. This is useful for my Latino magazine because I can create a perfect background for the star I am writing about. Latino stars are often bold and busy to look at so the ability to just put a block of solid colour behind them is really useful.

The text tool allows us to add text onto our magazine, if we need to add a masthead or just a caption for a photo. InDesign also has a lot of fonts that means we can create our magazine to be exactly how we want it. In my magazine to fit in with my genre I haveĀ  used a lot of bolder fonts but also some more relaxed ones to write my article with into my magazine. The ability to stretch and edit the width of the text is also really useful especially when making a masthead.

Before we began to use InDesign and Photoshop, we learnt about Mise-en-scene and media theories which pair together with computer design work to encode messages for the reader. Through my magazine I was want encode messages about being happy with who you are, being positive even when times get rough and how to keep a hold of where you came from. Being able to use certain skils in InDesign and Photoshop has really helped me to convey a bright, colourful and happy image that a reader can enjoy.


The Media Ecology. Map of Conepts and Mediascape

In this lesson we learnt about how media works like an ecosystem. All parts of media are connected and can’t survive without one another. If creators didn’t exist to make the media then an audience wouldn’t exist either, without an audience there would be no income for companies and it would become a continuous cycle, every single component is equally important. The definition of an ecosystem is “a community of interacting organisms and their physical environment”. Or “a complex network of interconnected systems”.

We used lego to create a basic understanding of how each part of an ecosystem is just as important as another. This then allowed us to create a poster about the media ecology with understanding of how important each element is.

I will use my knowledge of the media ecology to create my music magazine and enhance my distribution. When thinking about how to effectively sell my music magazine to please the audience I can refer back to this mind map and the information I know now.

Here is a presentation that includes more information about the media ecology.

Media Ecology – please click here to see the pdf

So… I Am Ready To Photograph My Star

Billboard is one of the more popular examples of Latin music magazine. “Billboard is the world’s most influential music media brand reaching key executives and tastemakers in and around the music business” They cover many types of music including dance, pop, hip-hop, country and rock meaning they have a lot of consumers. Billboard magazine helps to educate all kinds of people and guide them to what music they might come to love or hate. Billboard allows more people to be individual and discover themselves through which music they like, it allows pop to become less of the norm and other music genres can become more well known.

Billboard’s brand values include ” The Billboard brand is built on its exclusive charts and unrivaled reporting on the latest news, issues and trends across all genres of music.” Billboard find it important to represent all genres of music and to satisfy all tastes.

In our recent lessons we learnt important things about using our camera to our best ability.

  • shutter speed
  • aperture
  • framing
  • distance
  • shot type
  • angle

We have learnt that all of these things evenly contribute to creating the best image possible. We also learned to use the flash photography equipment and how to set it all up.

We also have to take into account the importance of Mise-en-scene

  • costume
  • lighting
  • acting and proxemics
  • make-up and hair
  • props
  • setting

Keeping all of this in mind I will be able to create the most successful cover possible for myself and for the audience. Stuart Hall’s theory of the star where he explains how messages can be encoded into media by the producer to attract a more specific audience. I will encode certain elements of tradition and culture to create a community vibe. I will also use Richard Dyer’s theory on how a star can be ordinary and extraordinary and present but absent. My star will be relatable in some aspects but they will still be out of reach to the audience. I can refer back to my pinterest board at any time if I am lost for ideas at any point.

So… I’m Ready To Make Some Media

So, after learning all about different aspects and theories of media I now believe that I will be successful in creating my own media. After having several lessons on Adobe InDesign and Photoshop I feel comfortable to create my music magazine.

I will use theĀ Blumler and Katz theory which includes 4 uses and gratifications. These are:

  • Entertainment
  • Social Interaction
  • Personal Identity
  • Information

I will need to consider all of these before I even begin to create my music magazine. They are key to finding out what interests and entertains my target audience.

Other factors that I will need to consider are:

  • Camera
  • Mise-en-scene
  • Layout
  • Typography
  • AIDA

If I don’t know my target audience well enough then it is unlikely my music magazine will be a success. By considering these factors I can shape my magazine around one type of consumer so it hits a large group of people. Now I can use my skills in Photoshop and InDesign my magazine will be recognizable to the audience through looks and also whats inside the magazine.