Here is my letter to future media students explaining what transferable, technical and creative production skills will be gained from the course.
Since beginning media I have learnt many new skills that are transferable and will be useful in my daily life and future media projects. An example of one of these transferable skills is folder management. This was very important when organizing my various drafts of my magazine pages as well as images. Creating an organised filing system with well named files is essential for working efficiently and productively. Without a goo filing system documents can easily get lost leading to unnecessary work.
Another skill that is very important in media is organisation and time management. This applies to all aspects of media including photo shoots, production and blog posts. Organizing and managing your time when completing a photo shoot is very important to ensure you achieve all the photos that you need within the time frame. When producing your music magazine it is important to manage your time correctly so that you Finnish it comfortably rather than rushing to get it done near the deadline. In my opinion time management and organisation is most important when completing blog posts. Keeping on top of the blog is still something I struggle with but I am beginning to learn how to manage my time effectively.
The final transferable skill that I have developed is communication. Communication is important when trying to present your ideas to the audience. When producing your music magazine it is important to communicate your brand and genre effectively. Communication is also important for getting feedback on your work.
Throughout making my double page spread and contents page I have learnt several new design skills. One tool which I have used often is the drop shadow tool.
I used it to add depth to some of my images. Without it the images looked very flat against the background.
Here is an example where I used it on my contents page. As you can see it just added an extra bit of detail to give the magazine more quality.
Another tool that I used often was the letter spacing tool. I used this to alter fonts to make them fit in spaces etc. This allowed me to use the same font frequently but change the appearance of it.
Finally, another tool which was useful was the drop capital. I used this at the start of the article on my double page spread. It helped give the DPS a conventional aspect.
Moving forward I hope to learn more skills that will help me when working on future projects and continuing to develop my music magazine.
Whilst creating my magazine cover I have learnt many new design skills and production techniques within Photoshop and InDesign.
Firstly, one of the tools I used in Photoshop was the image adjustments section. More specifically adjustments such as brightness/ contrast, vibrance and colour balance. Colour balance was particularly useful for making colours pop.
Another tool that I used whilst designing my magazine cover was the gradient effect:
I used the gradient tool for the background of my first draft, It gave the magazine a more professional look and adds depth to the cover. Before, when the background was plain white the magazine looked flat and unprofessional.
Finally I played around with the text spacing tools in my second draft to create an overlapped design.
I think that this design looks good and works well with my genre of grunge. Although the writing is not legible it ads to the aesthetics of the magazine.
Before I begin taking photos for my magazine it is important that I reflect back on my mission statement and what I have learnt about mise-en-scene and camera that I can use to communicate my ideas in this photoshoot.
My mission statement:
Vital aims to reflect on the legends from the origin of grunge and show the importance they had on modern music as well as shed light on the grunge bands of today and express the raw energy within the grunge genre.
Throughout the process of photographing my star it is important that I keep my mission statement in mind so that the photos reflect my genre and brand.
Mise-en-scene and camera angles are very important as it will be used to portray my genre. My mise-en-scene will include:
- Costume- The costume is relatively simple and includes baggy blue ripped jeans, a checked shirt, black jacket and accessories such as a chain, rings and sunglasses.
- lighting – I will use studio lighting which is attached to my camera that flashes when I take a photo. I will set the brightness level relatively high to ensure good quality images.
- Action- I will have my model do various different positions such as sitting on a chair and standing normally.
- Make up and hair- No make up is needed for my genre but the model will wet his hair to give it the grunge look.
- props- Throughout the photoshoot I will not use many props as I want the emphasis to be on the outfit. Despite this I will include an acoustic guitar and/or a microphone on a stand.
- setting – I will take photos in the white and black studio and decide later which one I prefer.
During the photoshoot I will experiment with different camera angles and incorporate things I have learned. For example low angles looking upwards make the model look big and powerful whilst high angles looking downwards make the model look small and vulnerable.
When Creating my music magazine there are multiple aspects that I will have to consider in order to be successful. These include Mise-un-scene, camera, layout, typography,AIDA and Blumler and Katz’s theory.
Firstly, I must consider Mise-un-scene. This includes:
- Costume- It is important that the costume of the model reflects my chosen genre
- Lighting- When photographing the model it os important that the lighting creates a mood that corresponds to the genre.
- Action- The position and stance of the model must be fitting for the genre.
- Makeup + hair- As well as clothing the model must also have an appropriate hairstyle and make up, in order to suit the genre.
- Props-Props such as guitars and microphones could be used to portray the genre.
- Setting-The area in which the photos are taken is important as it will determine the mood of the photograph.
The next important component to consider is Camera. Understanding the different settings and components of the camera and how they can be used to effect the photo is crucial , as well as understanding the effect of camera angle and framing.
Layout is also important when designing my music magazine. I need to establish wether I will create a conventional magazine or an unconventional. I think that I will include some unconventional features whilst keeping the magazine quite conventional.
I will also have to look at typography and do some experiments with fonts before making the magazine.
I must also look at AIDA, which stands for audience, interest, desire and action; and refers to the stages an individual goes through when purchasing a product, such as a magazine.
Finally I should consider Blumler and Katz’s uses and gratification theory to further understand how to make my magazine desirable for the specific audience. His uses and gratification theory shows us how we use media to meet our own needs and that we play an active role in choosing the media we view. The theory assumes that there are five reasons as to why we certain media:
- Information and education
- Personal Identity
- Integration and social interaction
In order for my magazine to be successful my music must provide these five components.
An Image can communicate meaning in multiple different ways. The term mise-un-scene is used to describe the things used to give an image meaning. these components are abbreviated into the acronym CLAMPS:
- Costume- often what people are wearing tells you something about them and communicates meaning.
- Lighting- Lighting can be used to create a mood. Dull lighting may suggest sadness, and that something bad has happened whilst bright light can suggest happiness.
- Action-What the people are doing in the image is an obvious way of communicating meaning that can be very effective.
- Makeup- Makeup is used to make someone look a certain way. It can be used in many ways to tell a story or an insight into that persons life.
- Props- Props are important for adding depth and meaning to a character .
- Setting- Setting is arguably one of the most important aspects of giving an image meaning. It controls the whole mood and meaning behind the image.
Camera framing is also very important when trying to communicate meaning. Camera framing refers to the composition of the image. Camera angles are also very important for communicating meaning. For example a high angle looking down on a subject will make the person or object look vulnerable whilst a low angle looking upwards will make the subject look powerful and large.
In this image there is a very good composition. This is due to the direction of the lines on the floor and bushes that lead yo to the subject (the person). As for the subject, they are placed perfectly on the image. The person who took the photo must have payed close attention to the rule of thirds.
Understanding how to give an image meaning will be very important when creating my magazine cover as I can now use composition and mise-un-scene to give my images a meaning.