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My Magazine Front Page Swede

 

This is the original magazine cover I decided to replicate in Adobe Indesign CC 2018.

 

 

Please click on the image to see a clearer image.

 

Reflection

I am pleased with how my cover turned out in Adobe InDesign and hope to be this successful in creating my own media cover alone. We did this task so that we could practice using an editing tool, in this case, it was Adobe InDesign CC 2018 as well as get used to looking and analyzing magazine covers so that we can create media that is as effective as professional covers and other media.

Within the covers, we see a range of different aspects that build together to create a successful type of media for a certain psychographic, by mimicking this cover I have further realized how important it is to take the mise en scene into account. The typeface it vital to display a mood to the audience, and the cover stars position on the cover affects how people read the front of the magazine and what type of moods it displays to them.

 

Successes

I have learned a range of different techniques to use in Adobe InDesign when I am creating my own cover and will use as many of them as I can to help make my cover more effective, I have enjoyed designing this cover to fit the original as best I could and have gained a wide range of skills to use in the future.

Some parts of my cover are much better than others and look visually more appealing, other areas of the cover do not look as similar to the original as I would like. I definitely feel like adding in some of the aspects from the original cover was more challenging than other parts, sometimes because it did not look similar or because the cover star blended into some of the typeface.

Three aspects I thought were the most successful include the layout as mine matches the original and it looks effective, I have matched the correct writing to the original so it appears professional and alike to the original cover. The fonts used in the cover radiate energy and power from the cover and I matched this by finding typefaces very similar to the normal cover.

Another strength would be being able to understand how the software works relatively quickly and being able to know what I wanted in the cover, this helped as I managed to execute the typefaces and colours accurately to the original.

The last aspect which was completed well was the typefaces as I managed to get each written part in the correct font or a font very close to the original, I found doing this part was quite stressful as it took me a while to find the correct font to the original. Overall I found that imitating another magazine cover was both difficult at the start but rewarding to see the completed product as it looks professional.

 

Struggles

Along with aspects that were successful there were also parts that were much harder to put into my cover, the first thing wad my cover star holding the dog. Due to the layout of the original cover, the front cover line travels over the dog in my cover replication which is not what should happen as every aspect of the cover star should be seen.

The photo that I chose to do my copy with does not fit with the theme of the cover so it makes it come across as very juxtaposing, the man and dog look very chill and calm but the writing over it conveys energy and slight aggression.

Another aspect is that I could not put the writing of some of the cover such as the magazine name behind the mans head so it does not look accurate to the original, it was an issue when some of the writing blends into the cover star such as the writing in the top right corner.

The last struggle was adding in the lines under the writing in the top right corner, it was difficult as the lines do not look straight therefor make the words look wonky on the cover which does not look professional. The thinness of these lines make my cover slightly lose its boldness and effectiveness, it does not appear to be as powerful and grabbing to a certain psychographic as I would like it too.

However, as my first mimic of a professional cover, I am pleased with how it turned out as a whole product of media and think I did this task effectively and successfully and will use the skills I have learned when I come to create my own media poster.

 

Three videos that I have watched to help with what I struggled with in Adobe InDesign are shown below.

 

A Front Cover Analysed

 

 

I have analyzed two music magazine covers to further highlight that different audiences will be drawn to different types of covers.

A professionally made cover of a magazine needs to be effective towards the set demographic and be punctual so that it can be as successful as possible in the media. To reach out to the correct group of the audience the colours used in the cover need to look appealing to that audience, for young teenagers bright exciting colours such as red and yellow might be used to catch the eyes of that audience, whereas for an older mature audience calm colours like cream and black may be used to emit a calmer more collected feeling on the cover.

The typeface of the cover will always be bold and big to further gain audience attention, normally the masthead will be the boldest line as the audience need to know where this magazine has come from and who the producers of it are. The plug will promote the magazine emphasizing the joy the audience can get from purchasing it, the pug will also do this by telling the audience what is in the magazine and what information they will be able to get.

The mise en scene for the cover star is very important as they speak to the audience the magazine is aimed at, it has to be specific to the demographic and the psychographic of that genre. The target audience are those groups who are most likely to be interested in a specific genre and watch certain shows, the magazine then has to focus on pleasing that group of people to help the product to be as successful as possible.

The design and colours in that cover will convey the interests of that specific group, it will tell the audience whether or not they fit into that category, each different magazine cover reaches out to different members of the public expressing feeling that only certain psychographics will be interested in.

Audience Profiling

This magazine by Mixmag is focusing on electronic dance music which is a big interest for those born between 1982 and 1999, to reach out to the specific psychographic the magazine cover needs to have the correct layout and colour scheme to attract the eyes of that certain group of people. All of the aspects in this cover reach out to a female audience as the colour palette reflect femininity, the cover star being a dark man with a little dog really appeal to females as the star is conveyed to be seductive and powerful.

The element of the dog further draws females in as it gives an aspect of cuteness. The typeface is a bold font which helps gain attention along with the colour, the captions involve information that would interest females further such as deals to purchase products and special deals. Although this cover is very stereotypical of gender it is made very professionally as the producers know what reaction they want from the audience and what they want to convey with the cover, through the use of camera angles and mise en scene this magazine cover calls out to the psychographic of mostly females and draws their attention with the colour and layout of the cover.

It is vital to research the target audience so that the producers know how to design the cover of a magazine specifically aimed at a certain demographic and psychographic, this magazine cover reaches out to young to middle-aged females due to the typeface and cover star that holds a dog. By researching the specific audience the producers now know what type of client they are creating a magazine for so can focus on what that audience prefers and enjoys, they can relate the inserts and cover lines to what the audience is interested in.

KYC refers to the producers being able to know your client which is very important as the producers need to know who their target audience is to then help the magazine be as successful and as popular as it can be. They have to design the cover of the magazine to fit into the preferences of that specific audience so that the client is satisfied and happy with the product they have purchased.

 

 

 

Conventional design features of a magazine

This is our interpretation of a magazine cover and how each ingredient in a magazine cover helps the cover to be powerful and have meaning, aspects such as colour add to the visual attraction of the cover. The two-shot of cover stars being two men help to gain audience attention as the colour of their eyes stand out and naturally draw attention to the cover, furthermore it is a mid-shot makes the cover more intense as they are looking right at the camera. The dark background contrasts nicely with the white typeface masthead further gaining audience attention, the red typeface stands out against the black background drawing eyes towards the cover.

The pug in the magazine tells the audience of the other articles in the magazine, it is in bold as it draws more attention making the audience want to read it. The way it is set out helps catch eyes, the plugs further help this as it is the bold typeface in the centre of the cover. The many inserts included in the cover tell the audience what they are buying and what other articles are in the magazine. There is a freebie located in the bottom left-hand corner further expressing that the money the audience pay for this magazine is worth it as they receive a CD of the music within the magazine.

Overall this is a powerful magazine cover as the main cover line stands out grabbing the audience attention and making them want to know what the magazine is giving them, the freebie CD further emphasizes the audience’s interest. The camera angles and shot along with mise en scene convey as a story of the two-shot and look inviting, the layout of this magazine is very well produced.

Within other music magazines, the same ingredients can be seen that assist the cover to look intriguing and attention-grabbing to the audience and certain demographic. The cover lines are smaller and are almost always located on the left-hand side of the cover as they are clearer to see as that is the way the magazines are presented, the mastheads are always presented in a typeface that stands out and looks bold and bright. Furthermore, the cover stars trend to look into the camera to give the cover an intense feeling as almost to single out members of the audience, the inserts in the cover give the audience a taste of what other articles are in the magazine.

The pug is normally a small box or circle that contains more information about what the magazine includes, the plug in the cover promotes the magazine and makes it look more appealing to the audience helping to sell the product. The main cover line is also in a bold typeface and stands out against the background, lastly the barcode, price, and date are always in the bottom right-hand corner giving the audience the information about purchasing the magazine, it tells the audience how recent the information within the magazine is and how much they are paying for the magazine. All these aspects in a magazine cover really help to sell the product and help it be successful in the media and with the audience.

All magazine covers include certain aspects, this includes:

Pug, plug, masthead, captions, main cover star, issue/date, cover lines, inserts, price, bar code and the main cover line. All these details help to sell the magazine to the audience and help it look attractive.

So… How can an image communicate meaning?

Introduction

In the media the use of camera aspects and mise en scene are used to convey a narrative and are used to represent individuals, groups of the public, events and many places. Every single part of a scene represents something and tells the audience a story, and therefore expresses emotions.

Within mise en scene there are six categories:

costume, lighting, acting/proxemics, make up/hair, props, and setting. This spells clamps that can be used to help remember the sections of mise en scene and to make sure you take into account each sector to help result in a powerful photo or piece of media.

Mise En Scene

All these parts can tell a character’s story or express a certain feeling to the audience, the setting of a photo would tell us of the person or object in that specific shot. All of the categories are interlinked to each other much like the media ecosystem, these parts are all as equally as important as the other and really help to put an image together to make it effective. Mise en scene can be clearly expressed in the tv series Downton Abbey, where the two classes of characters upper class and lower class are differentiated through the use of mise en scene. Whereas the upper-class characters wear suits and expensive dresses to state their importance, the lower class servants wear simple clothes with dark colours to show they have no power or significance juxtaposing the rich. The setting in Downton Abbey is in a mansion which displays the money the rich have and what they can afford, within the house the colours further convey the money and power. A red carpet flowing down the stairs represents royalty and shows the audience that these characters have importance, the many paintings presented in this mansion show that the money the upper class have has been passed down, it is old money.

The Camera 

For the camera uses, framing and movement are very important to help further express the feeling the mise en scene is trying to portray. along with these two ways of analyzing the distance, angles and aperture are vital. Depending on angles a person in a photo can be viewed in juxtaposing ways, but as with mise en scene, how the audience views the person also relies on the distance and framing. The importance of camera framings in scenes is vital to produce a successful piece of work to show to a specific audience, in movies all the shots taken are analyzed so that they have a response that the producers wish for. In chicken run the shots taken display a powerful feeling to the audience there are long shots and close-ups, in one scene there is a point of view shot when a character is calculating the chickens. By using this type of shot it creates a sense of suspense as we see the chickens from that character’s point of view, it is ominous and we get to experience the chickens’ fear. Along with these camera angles the distances and focus on certain objects also add to the narrative, how the photo is set out is very important in media production.

Focusing forward

By knowing about mise en scene and the camera I will use my knowledge to professionally layout designs on what reaction I want from the audience. I know which angles and distances to use to get the most successful response, I now find it easier to be able to tell a story from a photo and have it convey a powerful narrative. I am looking forward to designing my own proper work with a better more experienced mind in the area of how to create effective media for certain demographics.

 

The Camera Talks

This mood board of the nine photos that I personally view as the most successful demonstrates the power of having a good quality photo, the strong differences between each photo show how angles, lighting and distance, and many other aspects can change what emotions can be seen in each photo.

Along with each of the photos I have put the denotation down by it, the angles and framing of the photos help to express the connotations and narrative.

Girl face looking down- Conveys a sense of sorrow and mourning, dark lighting helps highlight this.

Two people on bench- Conveys anger and frustration as the models sit on opposite ends, the long shot helps the audience recognize the anger as the faces are difficult to see.

Girl face behind bars- Conveys intensity with facial expression, big close up defines the face and makes the bars look more realistic.

Girl looking out of blinds- Conveys an almost sinister mood as the model looks directly at the camera, the dark lighting reflects this.

Two people behind bars- Conveys seriousness as neither model is smiling, catches audience attention as they are both looking at the camera.

Girl looking down at boy- Conveys the feeling of adoration as the girl looks down at the boy, but there is also an edge to it as she looks as she could be stalking him.

Two people in a lift- Conveys a tense atmosphere as one model turns away from the other hiding their face, the dim lighting once again portrays the uncomfortable mood.

Girl behind bathroom door- Conveys fear and shock as the door is half closed, little lighting represents an almost sinister feeling. The audience feels fear as the model looks directly into the camera.

Two girls on stairs- Conveys a strong sense of power as one is above the other on the staircase, the body language tells us the story without the facial expression.

As an individual, I think I managed to achieve my aims for this task, by using a range of different angles and lighting as well as experimenting with different backgrounds I took some successful photos that had a clear storyline within them. It depends on the model’s proxemics and facial expression to help tell that story not just the camera position, by adding both together along with the rest of mise en scene you can create powerful photos that call out to the audience and grab their attention.

Focusing forward towards designing a magazine cover I have learned to take into account that all the angles and distances of the camera and how they can portray a mood are vital for creating an effective photo. Depending on how I wish the audience to respond to the magazine I will use the distances and lighting as well as mise en scene to create a cover that speaks out to the target audience.

Technical Camera Terms

This task we have completed helped us to understand the basic settings and functions of a DSLR camera, after being taught how to change aspects such as shutter speed and auto/manual zoom we had the opportunity to go out and take our own photos. Whilst taking these photos we also took mise en scene into consideration aiming to have each photo being able to portray a story, the different angles and distances help tell those stories.

The main functions we learned about were; shutter speed, auto/manual focal length, aperture, as well as composition, framing, and depth of field (DOF). For me getting to understand how to use the camera was both difficult and straight forward as I had used a professional camera before but did not know all the aspects you could change, some parts were definitely more complex to adjust than others. But I know the further on we get into the course the more familiar I will get with using professional cameras like the one I used in this lesson.

When we took the photos we took into consideration the layout and angles, we specifically chose the places to take these photos as the backgrounds would be effective. Every photo should tell a story and I think the two-shot one on the bench expresses the most emotion therefor telling a story, another photo that portrays a story-line is the two-shot ones taken in the lift as the placement and proxemics of the models displays emotion and story. We used a wide range of different shots and focuses to blur out the background or focus on a particular object, these aspects added to the composition of each photo telling a clear story.

Distances of photos further helped to express emotion, the medium-long shots of behind the bars represents a cage and tells a clear narrative. Certain angles helped represent moods of the photos such as the high angle in one expressed a sense of vulnerability, all these differences in the photos really convey a narrative and represent stories in their composition. By addressing aspects of mise en scene and the distances, angles, and compositions of the photos we have achieved the goal of telling a story through a photo.

In the future, I will be able to take into account the importance of how images are conveyed, by completing this task I have learned how distances affect moods of a photo and how vital it is for that photo to convey a narrative. For my own music magazine production, I will use certain distances to convey emotion and produce a purpose, each of those photos will have a clear narrative and represent and story to draw in audience attention. I want my music magazine to be as effective as possible so that it is as successful as it can be in the media.

These photos are the result of our photoshoot.

 

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

 

For this task my group was assigned with the genre of folk, folk is an old genre of music usually passed down generations and involves no prerecorded sounds and beats. Folk is associated with nature and spiritual moods as it is such a calm and chill genre of music, there is very little make up involved along with hairstyles with this genre as it needs to be as natural as possible so women mostly have their hair down.

The costumes are normally dark coloured and women dress in long skirts or dresses and men in casual tops or sometimes waistcoats and sometimes certain types of hats, the locations mainly involve fields and the countryside to reflect the chill natural vibe given by folk. Lastly, props mostly include instruments such as violins or guitars which add to the gentle vibe.

Made with Padlet

Please click on the caption to see all the photos

These are the adjectives used to describe the genre of music through the use of mise en scene. The outfit we designed for this genre clearly reflected the calm gentle vibe we hear from folk, the music style is very unique especially in the 21st century where most music involves strong beats and recorded sounds to help the music come together. In folk music, all the sounds are natural bringing a serene feel to the music as well as being noticeably different from other genres of music.

Many terms associated with folk music are all the adjectives in the image above as well as chill, calm, serene, gentle, energetic, sunny, joyful, soft. Most of the adjectives used to describe folk relate to nature and how it is viewed by people reflecting it into folk by the audience. The connotations for folk music are light materials that flow and that are darkly coloured, simple jewellery and some men wear hats. Overall the mise en scene for folk music is very simple and earthy as the music reflects the calmness of nature.

This is our final image.

I feel this image represents the genre of folk the most as the movement of the hair and shawl emphasis the calm gentle feelings we receive from folk music. All the aspects of the costume depict a sense of serenity as the shawl creates the prominent feeling of tranquillity and the connection with nature as it is naturally being blown up by the wind. The contrast of the yellow dress further gives calm vibes as yellow is often associated with the sun and brightness, yellow shows positivity and energy which is what folk music intends to make us feel. The freshness of the yellow against the detailed design of the shawl complement each other, drawing audience attention as the style is completely unique.

The three accessories definitely add to the style as the dark coloured necklaces mirror an earthy look conveying how folk music aims to connect with nature. The pink feather earrings match well with the lightness of the dress giving a light but bold feeling to the image as they stand out, the large hat adds to the chill vibe of the image as the soft texture of the hat reflects the soft nature of folk music. The pale colour further portrays the importance of staying close to nature.

As the shoot was taken outside the lighting we used was all-natural as it contrasted with the shade, this continues to emphasise the organic feelings produced by this image. As the model is close to the camera and also looking directly into it, it feels as if she is communicating to the audience, she makes a connection by drawing them in. The gentle smile radiates energy and contentment giving the audience a positive perspective on the image, the body language and angle of the model tell the audience that the model is welcoming, intriguing the audience to further analysis the image.

To conclude, this final image from the photoshoot is very effective as it displays all the characteristics of folk music and from feedback we know that the right reactions were produced with this outfit, our design of mise en scene for the music genre of folk was very successful as a chill calm vibe is created along with the effective use of body language and natural lighting.

A process such as this one will be very effective in the future when I come to do other products as I will know how vital mise en scene is for photos, through researching the genre of folk I definitely think we captured the correct aura of folk music by having every detail relating to folk. The mise en scene clearly depicts the music genre of folk as the dress and shawl give a natural feel and the lighting adds to the purity of the image, the audience feedback we received from our peers were very positive as they all picked up on the chill vibe and calm nature. Finally, the design of the image conveys the mood of folk music through the mise en scene, for future products I will always make sure to consider every detail of mise en scene to make sure that my product is the best it can be and that it is clear to the audience what it is portraying.

Print media that communicates meaning

In the image above I have annotated a music tour poster of the singer Birdy, I have detected the denotations and then added the connotations of each aspect in the poster. By analyzing the poster and picking out each communication idea such as costume, lighting, acting, props, makeup, and setting I have realized the importance of deliberate mise en scene set up to help tell a story.

By completing this task I now know how vital it is to focus on each communication idea to help tell a story in my media projects, each aspect is crucial in the design of media as it all comes together to present an effective product. The six communication ideas will affect my work and how it is presented to the audience whilst helping to show what demographic I aim to center my media products on.

So…I’m a media prosumer

We are all prosumers and consumers that live in a symbiotic relationship within the many types of media…

These four types of media can be shown through the Blumler and Katz uses and gratification theory which shows how we gain pleasure from media, these four sectors are:

  1. Entertainment and diversion: This is the type of media that allows us to escape from the reality of the world. Examples include Netflix, films and reality TV.
  2. Social interaction: This is the type of media where we get the opportunity to build relationships as well as providing a reason to talk. Examples include drama series and reality TV.
  3. Personal identity: This is the type of media where we can express who we are, our values and beliefs, and reinforce what we do not believe in as individuals. Examples include Facebook and culture magazines.
  4. Information and surveillance: This is the type of media whereby we learn about what’s going on in the world. Examples include the BBC news or the Guernsey press.

These types of media are depicted in my collage below.

 

 

By knowing how the Blumler and Katz uses and gratification theory works and affects us as individuals, it could help me with designing my own music magazine along with other products, as I would know what type of response to aim for to be a successful producer and get the best possible results.