All posts by sashabelford

Website Previous Students Work

I have chosen to analyse a previous student’s piece of work, specifically ‘The XX’ and their website. The alternative and modern day style allow for the audience to understand that this is not a conventional pop genre. I chose this website to analyse because it particularly interested me that many of my other peers were drawn to it as well. I wanted to research into why they were so intrigued by it’s simplistic design.

The website as a whole is very trendy. It follows a colour scheme that looks fashionable and works well together, giving it a sense of professionalism. The colours used are what we associate with as complimentary and aesthetically pleasing colours to our generation.  The use of purples and blues work nicely together and the plain black font makes for an easy read. This is one of the reasons as to why my peers found it particularly interesting to research into as well.

The background is very well photographed. Taking something as plain as electric wires in the air has shaped their whole website. The colours of the sky made for a beautiful background and the black wires created a sense of practicality as it matched with the text.

The text is very straightforward. I liked that it was so easy to read and the use of animation on the home page is visually intriguing for the audience. However, less important boxes of text could have been made to look more interesting as I found it didn’t really fit the genre as well as it could have done. 

The structure is also an interesting aspect to take into account. The site uses a simplistic static homepage, allowing thumbnails to take the audience to recent music releases and has multiple navigation bars, which act as hyperlinks that take the audience to different landing pages of the site. The above the fold page is the most important as it is what we are greeted with as soon as we open the page, the student did an excellent job of not overwhelming the audience with too many widgets. The home page also allows for the audience to scroll down and find more information out about the band, introducing their newest albums and some information about the band members, giving a sense of predictable pleasure.

I specifically loved the photo gallery this band have on their website. This allows for the visitors of the website to connect with the band members and get a taste for what they are like outside of performing, it gives of a positive tone and  is structured in an alternative and edgy pattern, catching the audience’s attention immediately.

The merchandise is very professional looking and I would personally invest in a product this good looking! The simplistic layout gives the audience the perfect amount of information, and doesn’t come across as being too ‘in your face’.

In general, this website looked very polished and professional. I was amazed by the simplistic yet effective structure and really hope to take this inspiration and incorporate some of these ideas into my own website, I can’t wait to see our finished result!

Website Terminology

Before creating our own website, we had to do some research into what makes a conventional website and how we wanted to promote our brand to visually intrigue our demographic. I found multiple similarities between a music magazine and a website as they both have similar structures.

The leader board is just a masthead and there are multiple aspects in which the website uses plugs to promote their brand which reflects magazine structures very closely. I learnt a lot about key terms which I have conveyed in the slide show down below.

I researched into the band Green Day and found that their site differs from most websites in the fact that it has a scrolling structure rather than a home page with a navigation bar which takes the audience to landing pages. However this is very effective as it is simple but also differs from other websites, creating a sense of authenticity. This task helped me to understand what makes a conventional and effective website, I hope to incorporate this knowledge into my own work.  

Evaluation of shoot

Our first shoot for our Digipak went really well. Though are intentions weren’t quite clear yet, we still had a strong idea on what we wanted our audience to understand when analysing these images.

Because we had discussed what we wanted to do with our shoot, we knew exactly what to bring. Dani was in charge of bringing the cling film and tinfoil, the models were in charge of bringing their own clothes and Haygan and I were to bring the equipment. We managed to organise a lift with Sam, one of the models, who tried to take is to Fort Richmond…we got lost so we had to compromise!

Luckily we were very close to a forest where we thought the man made textures of the cling film and tin foil would contrast nicely with the natural elements f the forest. The shoot went really well and I was very chuffed with the results. The weather was also the perfect condition to shoot as a plus., we were able to see the models clearly and create shadows if necessary.

Once we arrived, we evaluated the setting and figured out where would be the best place to shoot. We wanted to convey themes of: mystery, identity, isolation, surrealism and loneliness throughout the images, which we were able to achieve and were very happy with. The MES, camera angles and location worked in our favour and the shots we obtained were excellent! The models acted perfectly, even though their faces were covered and everything went accordingly to plan. 

These are some of the images we managed to take, although we may not use all of them, they most probably will appear on our website.

Contact Sheets

The pictures above are the images we collected from our highly successful shoot. We have picked out the images that best represented the Indie Rock style and suited our genre well. We did not delete the bad images as they could be used later on! However, these are the shots we felt happiest with.

The forest worked really well with our idea and contrasted nicely with the man made products we used to costume our two models, who were excellent as well! We were incredibly impressed with how the images turned out and we are truly excited to start working on how to edit and make these pictures look surreal and visually engaging. We collected 222 shots which were a lot more than we were expecting! But having too much is definitely better than having too little.

Some of these shots have the potential to make their way onto the Digi Pak and the others may feature on the Band’s website. The minimal use of mise en scene allowed for the band to be captured in their natural essence, the use of tin foil and cling film adds a surreal and almost dystopian effect to the image. We were truly happy with how they turned out!

I have learnt that it is highly important to create contact sheets of all our shoots as it allows for us to analyse which images work best over others. I am confident to start working and these shots and make them as creative and interesting as possible!

These are the contact sheets we collected:

These are some shots from our shoot!


Feedback on mock up and targets

With our DigiPak mock-up, we had to get some feedback on it so that we could make some improvements. We wanted for the audience to recognise the genre and emotion that the DigiPak gives off. We typed up different several different genres and emotions and asked five people to select the appropriate ones for our mock-up, in hope that the genre would be clearly represented. 

These are the results that we collected from the experiment. We were really happy that the majority of our class thought that the genre matched the images and texts perfectly.  This task helped us to understand what colours, typefaces and images portray our genre the best. The most popular response was Indie Rock and that it looked most creative. The most adjectives they chose were alternative, mysterious, sad, surreal and dark, which matched our genre perfectly.

The feedback from our peers helped us to understand the best suited colours, typefaces, and structure we should use when creating our own DigiPak so as to reflect the Indie Rock Genre. We know now that graphic design, dark and grungy colours, bold typefaces and creative photography all work together nicely to give off an Indie Rock effect.

Digipak Photo mock- up

This is my group’s photo mock-up of our DigiPak.  We collected existing photos that we thought related to the Indie Rock Genre and created our own graphic product that appeals to our demographic. This was a great task and will help in the production of our actual DigiPak.

These are the images that we felt best represented our Indie Rock Genre. We have noticed that Indie Rock stars often tend to keep their identities as hidden as possible. We therefore chose images where it is difficult to read their expressions. We added a sophisticated and simple white font so as to not distract attention from the actual image. When it comes to creating our own Digipak, we hope to incorporate some graphic design also.

We decided to choose these images and fonts so that our demographic could easily associate with our genre. We chose for the front cover, a man walking along the road on the yellow lines. We tilted the image to the side and added dark effects so that it captured the dull and mysterious aspect of the genre. We then chose a similar image for the inside cover and had a man stuck underneath the yellow lines in the road, creating a recurring theme. For the second to last page, we wanted to create a sense of authenticity and differ from the previous images. I personally really liked the inside image of the man laid down on the lawn as it captures him in his natural form. The last image is of a man tripping over the yellow line in the middle of the road, therefore we brought it back to the previous images we had chosen before to create a sense of professionalism.

These images were quirky, alternative and captured the style of Indie Rock perfectly. We thought that these ideologies best represented the style of Indie Rock and our band. 

Digipak Moodboards

My group and I created multiple moldboards that would help us visualise what our genre was all about. this is an incredibly helpful task to have done as we can now see the sort of colours, textures, styles, topics and themes merge together nicely to create an effective Digipak that relates to the genre.

These are the moldboards that we created and thought help fit the album, genre and star. Indie Rock is an incredibly artistic and creative genre so we decided to incorporate this into our designs. This helped us gather more ideas on what our Digipak could end up looking like.

The band is conveyed as alternative, edgy, involved in their music, passionate, intense and wavy.

The mood boards connote the inside mind of what it’s like to be an Indie Rock star. There is always something constantly happening, it is never calm. It’s always bubbling with new ideas on how they can make their music better for their audience. This displays just how caring and involved they are with their target audience. Indie rock ideologies often include having to deal with negative emotions. This is not ignored but embraced which is why a lot of Indie Rock songs are based on sadder more depressive topics than positive ones eg: breakups, depression, losing a love one etc. 

We have also decided for our band to be called: ‘Flatline’ and have chosen a few fonts that we like and may use for our Digipak design.

Digipak – Previous Students Work

I have chosen this previous student’s work, it is the Digipak cover for the album Seafret Oceans. This work was worthy of a band 4 for multiple reasons, I was particularly inspired and intrigued by the advanced use of Photoshop and hope to incorporate something similar into my own work.

I will be analyzing these Digipaks based on this assessment criteria:

I had to keep this in mind:

Use of camera and Photoshop:

For me personally, what caught my attention for this Digipak was the amount of effort they put into the Photoshop. The front cover is especially interesting as they incorporated the background into the main focus of the cover. I liked that the main cover star doesn’t have an identity as it creates a sense of mystery.

The colour blue is also a nice continuous theme as it relates to the title of the album. The use of camera is also really clever, the close ups allow the audience to connect with the performer on a personal level. I loved the extreme close up on the fingers playing the guitar as well as it relates back to the musical aspect and purpose of the album. As a whole, the use of Photoshop and camera allow for the simple images to look complex, creative, polished and professional. That’s why I would give this an Upper  Band 4.

Selection of Mise En Scene:

I really liked how this group didn’t go overboard with the amount of Mise En Scene. They kept it to a minimum but it all worked together nicely. For example, the frame used on the front cover has two purposes, it allows for the audience to see the title of the cover and also portrays the creative nature of the album. It could also act as a metaphor;not knowing one’s identity. 

The guitar strings are also a great prop to have, it represents the band’s passion with music and also promotes the genre of the band as a plus. The blue paint is a great use of Mise En Scene, it resembles the colours of the ocean but also create a recurring theme and metaphor which is later discovered in the music video. I think that this was an great way of using simple yet effective Mise En Scene. I would like to see a few more props as it may help communicate more about the band rather than the narrative but in general, it is a great piece of work. That is why I would give this a Lower Band 4.

The Choice of Words:

The album title is an excellent representation of what is happening within the narrative, though this doesn’t relate much to the performance or band, it is still an effective title and grabs the audience’s attention. The lexis ‘Ocean’ allowed for this group to be creative and shape their whole Digi Pak design on this one word. It created a sense of professionalism and look incredibly polished! As for the song tracks, I also believed they were very inventive but I wanted a bit of differentiation from one another as the majority were just one word titles.

I think in order to have made their choice of words slightly more effective, I would have created a bit more diversity and related back to the band rather than the narrative all the time. The title ‘Oceans’ was a brilliant choice but I feel as though they could have chosen a title with a bit more authenticity. It still worked incredibly well though, that is why I would give this a Lower Band 4.

Creative use of DTP:

I loved the use of colour in this DigiPak. The blue not only resembled their album title but also conveyed key themes such as: loneliness, isolation and sadness that are seen in the music video. I also find the contrast between the skin colour and the blue paint on the back of the album to be especially interesting. This communicates to the audience that these themes and emotions are taking over him, and I think that is very beautiful!

I also loved that the photo shopped image of the human head on the inside page had an image of the ocean. This, yet again, can be communicated as a metaphor, indicating that the performers mind is uneasy like the waves of the ocean. I thought this was a subtle and clever way of incorporating the key themes of the performance and narrative into the album cover. That is why I would give this an Upper Band 4. 

This task will definitely help me in the production and research of my own Digipak. I can see that in order to create a successful Digipak, I must keep in mind that the use of Photoshop, colours, imagery and themes will be important when designing an album to fit my genre. I am excited to get started!

Our Mission Statement

For our music video ‘Holding Onto You’ by Twenty One Pilots, we needed to appeal to our target audience and give them a taste for what was coming up in the album. We had to make it clear that our target audience would be able to relate to the album and therefore want to buy it. Our marketing strategy was to be able to connect with our audience on an emotional level and speak directly to them as this is what the band would want. We wanted to make the mission statement personal and down to earth. We did this by communicating the main themes covered in the music video, the type of genre it would appeal to and extra textual references to the issues of modern day society. Although the band believes they’re categorized as ‘Schizophrenic Pop’ we also wanted to combine the ideas of Indie Rock having a big impact on the style as well. This would allow for the band to attract attention and stand out from the crowd!

Our demographic are 18-24 year olds who enjoy watching media such as: American Horror Story, Orange is the New Black, The Voice and Skins. They also enjoy listening to a wide range of music in the Indie Rock/Grunge genre.  They are mostly left wing in terms of politics and fit into the social grade C2DE.

We want the audience to engage with our star on a personal level and in an emotional way. The music video communicates very serious topics that we hope would help reach out to those in need of support. They will invest time and money in our star by following them on all social media platforms, consuming the products and merchandise that they sell and promoting the band on their own personal accounts.

Their competition are:

  • The 1975
  • The Neighborhood
  • The Strokes

A similar trend in album designs when it comes to Indie Rock music is using very simplistic graphic design. They tend not to photograph themselves which reflects the modest and creative side of the genre. It grabs the audience’s attention in a unique and intriguing way, here are some examples:

The websites look simplistic yet effective. They often use just black and white which convey how in touch they our with this generation and that they are on trend with everything. Here is an example of the 1975’s website in comparison to Twenty One Pilots.

The 1975:

Twenty One Pilots:

Our Unique Selling Point (USP) is to give back to the audience and give them something that they can relate to during their time of need. It isn’t just a song, it is a platform for help if they need it. Our star image is trendy and ‘in with the kids’ so that if they need to open up, they feel close to an idol who is just like them and that they feel more comfortable with. We are innovating this image by reaching out to teenagers in need. Twenty One Pilots is not trying to establish a new presence in the market as they have been very supportive of these topics with their past music. We are mixing up elements of grunge, pop, indie rock, rock and electro into this album. We are emphasising the extraordinary!

Band-One Step Forward

Album-Two Steps Back

Mission Statement-

Best described as ‘Schizophrenic Pop’, The Flatliners take you through their journey, accompanying you on yours too as they express themselves throughout their own unique style of music. This really is an experience like no other as the band dive deep into key issues that modern society face today. With a target audience of 18-24 year olds, the band intends to open the young demographic’s minds with their new chart topping album ‘Made in the AM’.