Category: Creative Critical Reflection 1 (page 1 of 2)

Question 4: So… Did you integrate technologies (software, hardware and online) in this project?

Question 3… How did your production skills develop throughout this project?

Question 2: So how does your product engage with audiences and how would it be distributed as a real media text?

CCR 1 – How does my product use or challenge conventions and how does it represent social groups or issue?



So how did it go?

Now having finished my penultimate drafts, I feel like I have progressed in my skills during the time we’ve had to make the magazine. I have learnt that a magazine takes many tries, and I have taken in feedback from my first couple of drafts and changed my magazine entirely into something that works, and suits what my target audience would read. Looking at my first drafts, and my first couple of times on Photoshop and Indesign, the work I have done now shows many more skills and techniques. I have enjoyed working on this magazine entirely, although some has been stressful, but overall I am happy, I’ve tried my best, and am pleased with the outcome.

So… How is it going?

I believe my brand is clearly reflected in my design of my Front Cover, my Contents page, and my Double Page Spread. I have kept a consistent colour scheme which is typical for a hip hop magazine, and kept the same, simple font type, which also makes it authentic, and represents my brand well, in my opinion. From feedback, I have also received positive results, and negatives to my work have been pointed out and fixed. I have kept a thorough mise-en-scene throughout my pages of my magazine, keeping it edgy, cool, urban, and ‘gangsta’ – which is very specific to my genre, and I am happy overall with the outcomes of my magazine so far. My design skills have been good so far too, I have been able to achieve all of what I wanted to achieve, and have broadened my skills in Photoshop, Indesign, and am glad with my progress so far.

Design Skills 2

I have now completed my double page spread, and have learnt a variety of new tricks on Photoshop and Indesign to make my projects look the way I want them to look.


In my double page spread I used the Pen tool, which there is a screenshot of above to shape my text so that it is visible to the reader, and so that it didn’t go over 2 different background colors, black and red. As you can see below, the white text on my double page spread was going to go onto the black background, and I used the pen tool to draw a line around where I didn’t want the text to lie, and this was the result. I feel like doing it this way is more effective, and certainly will be easier for the viewer to read on the red rather than both, as it could confuse the reader or be difficult to read.

I also used the Ellipse tool (below) to make a circular inset on my page, with the ‘free poster’ text inside. I thought this was quite a cool way of adding an inset, as its not just your typical rectangle, and is more interesting.

On Photoshop, I used the Eraser tool (below) to remove some mistakes on my double page spread. My cover star, Bilal Assif’s hair in the photo I took is black, however you could see the white background through his hair. I used this to remove some of his hair, so you cant see the white background through his hair.

The overall affect of these new skills shows my authenticity towards my genre, my narrative, and my star image. I have kept good mise en scene for my photos keeping my images and backgrounds edgy, urban, and ‘gangsta’ which is the image I am trying to convey for my star and my magazine., my text will be specific to my genre, and the font is simple and specific to Hip Hop too, and It is clear and easy to read for the viewer

Design Skills 1

Before I started doing the Media Studies A-Level, I had never used Adobe Photoshop, Indesign and Bridge and was incredibly inexperienced. Now, after having a couple of months experience with it, and from having tips from my teacher and other students in my class, I feel comfortable with making my magazine.

This is one of the techniques I have learnt, and Its putting filters on my photos. This is extremely helpful with my genre of music for my magazine (Rap/Hip Hop), as this is what most hip hop magazines use, and I thought that by using them it would look authentic. For my Front Cover page, I used Bilal as my Star, and put a ‘Film Grain’ filter on him, as you can see below, and it made it look, in my opinion, more genuine for my genre, and makes it look more retro, and urban.

I have also used Photoshop to cut out my photos from their backgrounds, and I have done so with the ‘Quick Selection Tool’ and the ‘Magic Wand tool’. These tools mean I can take the picture that I want away from it’s background, and then add different backgrounds, etc. to my photos.

I have also learnt a lot about image manipulation, how to change people’s faces, such as taking freckles off of Bilal, etc. and, I can change the contrast of my photos, to again, make my magazine look more authentic.

Below is a type of tool I’ve used in Indesign, called the text tool. I have used this to add text into my magazine and other projects so far. I have used the font Berlin Sans Demi as my primary font.



So…. I’m ready to photograph my star.

By deciding my genre, and the specifics of my mast-head, and producing the agenda for my photoshoot, I have learnt that there is also lots to arrange in terms of mise en scene.

The clothing of my star needs to suit my genre, because if not, it is a give away and wouldn’t look authentic, and people could think its about a different genre of music to what it is. Secondly the stance and the acting of my star must be right, otherwise the same could happen. The lighting, props etc. also need to be perfect to suit the genre, otherwise It will not look genuine.

I have learnt about all the ways in which i will be able to make my star suit the genre, and be able to try and shoot him with the camera with various different shots, from close-up, to canted, to long distance, and more.

So…. I’m ready to make some media!

In the near future when I will have to make my own magazine, I need to consider all of the things I have learnt from this course so far. This includes learning about the target audience with audience profiling, finding out their demographics and psychographics, also includes the layout of the magazine to appeal to the reader and target audience and the rule of thirds, all to cater for the readers wants/needs. With layout for example, the differences between a pop magazine cover and a rap magazine cover are extremely different, the rap genre has a harsher  and more brutal vibe, conveyed by bold letters and intimidating main cover stars, whereas pop would contrast to this as it has a lighter, more playful vibe, which is usually expressed by popping bright colours.

We learnt about how when we look at a magazine our eyes look at it as if its clock, going clockwise starting from the top left. To catch the readers focus I must be able to position where I place writing, logos,  my mast head or main cover star, to get the reader to focus on my magazine, be interested in it, and read it.

This is what I will be aiming to do with my own magazine.

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