All posts by Mrs C


Due to your unexpected absence from school on Thursday due to the boiler problems, please can you all ensure that:

  • The article is completed and submitted to your teacher asap for feedback.
  • The peer to peer feedback for your allocated magazine, is completed if you can i.e. if the Draft 5 is there and then email it to that person.
  • Get someone to read your article out loud and then embed the MP3 and summarise any issues – typos, punctuation issues. See post below.

and if you have done all the above:

  • You choose your two adverts – one music based for your genre and one product based for your target audience and complete that post (see below).

Please be constructive.  Working in your pj’s in your duvet sounds like an idea way to get lots done – don’t waste it by doing nothing.

Then all you will have to do is tweak and finalise on Friday.

Good luck.

Mrs C and Miss Hales






  • After tweaking in light of comments and assessing other submissions, please create your latest drafts.
  • Submit these for one to one feedback with your teacher who will write some comments on a feedback sheet for you to use for final tweaking.


  • Ensure you have 2 relevant, genre associated adverts and have completed the Advert blog post.


  • Load to Issuu.
  • Load all 3 final pages as jpegs with pdfs onto your home page with the Issuu embed.



Advert choice

In order to make the presentation of your pages aesthetically pleasing with the programme ISSUU, you need another page.

Whilst, you won’t be assessed or moderated for this page, it will fit well with evidencing how well you understand your target audience – an advertiser will not advertise in a magazine if the target audience would not be the kind of consumers for their product.

Have a look for an appropriate advert (make sure the resolution is good so that it doesn’t come out pixelated) that might appear on your inside cover of your magazine.  Look for other products, other than music related products (albums, tours, concerts etc).  You can also find a music album, tour or music related advert that fits with your genre for the back page so that your ISSUU presentation is a completely mini magazine.

Here is a slideshow with a couple of ideas.



You should then make sure in the post on the blog that outlines your choice of advert that ‘you appreciate this isn’t going to be marked but for the purposes of presentation, having an extra page in the magazine helped make the ISSUU platform work better.  However, it was an interesting exercise in reaffirming that you knew who exactly your target audience were i.e. young teens and you can then outline briefly their demographics and psychographics (remember yougov research) and explain why the advert would fit in your magazine.


Article – Task 3 – final draft

You should do the following:

  • Embed the first draft in the blog @ 500 words as a ball park figure.
  • Ensure you have shared the draft article with your teacher who will scan it for major issues.
  • Then ask a peer to read the new version out and proof it for errors.
  • Record this reading and embed in the blog as an MP3.
  • Reflect on the feedback from the teacher and the peer and put in targets.
  • Embed the final article in this same post as the new and improved version.
  • Then transfer to the DPS and see if it fits! If it doesn’t then you can put in …. continued on page X…..if this is the case make sure that your full article is clearly signposted in the blog for the examiner to read.

Writing the Article

Task 1 – Enquiry – LANGUAGE ANALYSIS blog post.

Choose one of the double page spread articles below that is similar to the sort of article you wish to write.

Don’t worry if you end up changing your mind later.

  1. Biography 
  2. Intro to a long read.
  3. 10 Tips for Life
  4. Q&A
  5. New Band
  6. Album Reviews
  7. Interview

Use this document to help you unpick the article and explore how the journalist is using words to create a tone, an impact and communicate their ideas.

You analysis should be between 350-400 words and should be typed into your blog along with a link to the article you’re discussing.


Idea Development

Develop an idea for an article and think about your approach.

Your article will need to match your photographs, but you still have quite a lot of possible angles (see examples above).

‘A hook’ is a treatment for an article. It usually is part of the pitch that a writer or journalist will make to their editor before they are given permission to spend time writing the article. The hook should include:

  1. Who are you writing for?
  2. What is important to your audience?
  3. What news is currently trending?
  4. How are you going to start
    1. Remember you might not write the whole article!

Here is the full article on good hooks for magazine articles. Which includes some good ideas on how to start.

Write a blog post on your plans for the article called ‘Planning the Article’

Preparation for writing the article

Choose one of the following tasks:

  • If it’s an interview you should develop a range of questions (and answers), which you can build into your article.
  • If it’s a review of an album or a gig, you should develop some details of the event and elements to review
  • If it’s a general article about a genre of music (10 Best…) you should do some research into the music and famous artists/albums.
  • If it’s a biography piece you need to invent 5-10 interesting life events of your star / band that the audience want to know about.

If your article does not fit into one of these discuss your planning ideas with your teacher.





Article Planning

Task 3


  • Write the first draft ready for feedback and redrafting and embed in the blog in its entirety after your teacher has given it a quick scan.
  • You can do this on classroom so that your peers can proof it and your teacher can give you some feedback too.

DPS – Feedback

Get a different student to have a look at your DPS:

Ask them to consider the following:

  • Are the media forms present that are conventional for a DPS – byline, standfirst, columns text, page numbers, drop capitals, headline?
  • Is the layout considering where the fold will be in the DPS?
  • Does the image create enough visual intrigue for the reader to stop turning the page and read more?
  • Does the language and register in the headline create enough interest for the reader to commit to reading the copy?

Create some targets from the feedback and amend accordingly.

Ensure your blog is up to date including all the reflections and design skills.

Then relax – it’s Christmas.

We will be working on the article after Christmas when you can then tweak the final version once the copy is placed in the DPS.


Double Page Spread

What is a double page spread?

Quite simply, an article that takes up 2 pages and includes copy and photographs. It is usually the ‘centre’ two pages of a magazine and will usually feature the main cover star from the front cover. In other words, it is THE BIG STORY.

In the New Year, we will be focusing on the copy, headlines, captions and how to write the main feature for the double page spread. Writing well and in the right register for your audience is a skill all media communicators need to master.

In the meantime, mocking up and drafting your double page spread should be done before Christmas.

Here are some classic examples of music magazine double page spreads.


Here are some basic conventions, codes of how a double page spread usually appears.

  1. The image will go across the two pages or be on one with the writing on the other side.  Usually the photo goes on the left but not always.  The writing in a column will NEVER be split across the staple line!
  2. Stand first– this is an introduction to the article – it will sum up/precis what the article is all about and entice the reader to read on.
  3. Drop capital – it extends down 3 or 4 lines.  At the start of paragraphs the first letter is often much larger; makes reading easier and acts as navigation through the text.
  4. Quotes – can be controversial and used to break up the copy/text or act as a headline and could use a larger, stand out font.
  5. Headline – sometimes a quote from the interview with the artist. Often uses alliteration so that the headline stands out.
  6. The By Line – says who the article is by.
  7. Direct address – the model will often break the 4th wall.
  8. Columns usually 2 or 4 with equal guttering (spacing horizontally between paragraphs and vertically between columns).
  9. Colour scheme – continues with the brand, vibe of the other pages i.e. cover colour scheme.
  10. Page numbers and a little version of masthead or logo somewhere on the page.
  11.  Instead of full stop at the end of the article they use a small block or something to do with their logo/masthead (for example on NME they might have an ‘n’).
  12. Appropriate language/register to establish a relationship with the target audience.
  13. They may have a release date for album or a tour date.
  14. On the photo they usually have somewhere by it the name of the photographer.
  15. Questions to the artist from the interview will be in a different colour, and the name of person who asked the question.

Design Skills 1

As part of your exam at the end of Year 13, you will be asked to reflect on your skills – post production skills, digital technology skills and research and planning skills. To get the top marks you must be able to describe the skills and most importantly, explain how they were significant in affecting the product.

For example, by using the Image Adjustment in Photoshop, you were able to make the main cover photo of your model less over exposed and give her a warmer, orange glow. This improved the star image of the model as it created a much more eye catching image – making her appear more homely, healthy and friendly.


By using a 60’s inspired font, imported and installed on Indesign, the masthead for the psychaedelic rock magazine called Drifter, gave a conventional vibe for the reader. It was prominent and a classic repertoire of elements for the genre of music with represented the retro/vintage feel of the magazine.

Task 1

Take at least 2-3 screengrabs/shots of your product being worked on in either Indesign or Photoshop. Then comment on how that particular digital skill was used and how it affected the product using as much media language as you can.

Contents Page feedback

Once gain get a peer to address the following areas.  Get a different student from the one before:

Questions to ask:

  • How does the Contents Page work in tandem with the front cover?
    • Is the font/typeface consistent with the front cover?
    • What genre of music is the Contents Page featuring?
  • Describe the images of the stars using adjectives.
  • Which coverlines tempt the audience to read on and which ones stand out and why?
  • How do the coverlines reflect a music magazine? If they don’t,  which ones need to be adapted?
  • Which areas, aspects have distracting areas of integration of copy and images?
  • What aspects do you consider conventional or unconventional (page numbers, inserts, captions, catchy cover lines, editors comment?
  • Summarise and then act on their feedback with @ 5 specific targets to address.