Narrative – PMA and RA


Risk, danger, mise en scene, props, make up, setting, costume, lighting, acting, body language, gesture, facial expressions.


Use the these documents and ensure you have ample detail on them to cover yourself and your actors for risk and also you are absolutely sure about props, make-up, costume, locations etc.

Take copies and put them in a shared Google Drive Folder

Production Meeting Agenda
Risk Assessment

Narrative Story/Shot Sheets


Structure, coverage, chronology, conflict, disruption, resolution, equilibrium


These are examples of really detailed storyboards.  In the professional world you would be required to complete individual drawings for each and every shot.


  • Break the narrative into key scenes i.e. bedroom, park, dancing in flour, escape…
  • Each separate scene becomes one A4 landscape drawing – stick people are fine.
  • Each A4 sheet is annotated with specific shots and descriptions of angles, movement, framing that you want to take and ensure you have when you are shooting that scene. This will ensure you have coverage, a variety of shots and enough footage to be able to convey the narrative.


Narrative – A Step Outline


Illustrative, disjunctive, amplified, anachronic, linear, episodic, thematic, binary oppositions (conflict), stock characters.

Now that you are aware of the elements that help contribute towards a narrative in terms of structure, characters and key themes, you will need to outline your own ideas.

The more detail you can add at this stage the better as then you will be able to complete a storyboard much more easily.


Take a copy of this document and complete it as a group.

You will have developed a simple narrative structure to your video in three parts:

  1. The Beginning – How do you establish the story / theme in the video/ characters?
  2. The Middle – What is the development of the story or the conflict within the theme?
  3. The End – How does the theme/story resolve or does it? What end message do you wish to communicate?

Shaping the narrative in your music video.

Even if your video is thematically based (images and ideas about jealousy for example or entrapment or starting over)  you should consider it as a narrative. This means, however abstract and thematic your video might be, you should show narrative development and characters progression.

Narrative Structure – Recap and new Key Terms


Narrative Structure, characters, binary opposition, theme,

Remember the broad ways in which the narrative of a music video can be described…

  • Illustrative? – give examples
  • Disjunctive? – give examples
  • Amplified? – give examples
Task 1

In pairs, retell a classic fairy tale to your group.  Once upon a time…..all the way, to they all lived happily ever after. Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood etc

  • Linear?
  • Beginning, middle and an end or…
  • Example in a music video?
Task 2

Now identify the key moments that might relate to the key terms above for the classic narrative structure.

Task 3

What about the following terms too:

  • Anachronic? (flashbacks, flash-forwards, out of sequence)
  • Episodic? (Short self contained scenes usually thematically linked)
  • Parallel? (Cross cutting between two scenes that meet at the climax)
    • Example of music video?
  • Linear – runs in chronological order

Drama is conflict (the resolution often reveals the theme)

What are the binary oppositions/conflicts in your fairy tale:

  • Love v Hate?
  • Rich v Poor?
  • Greed v Generosity
  • Old v young
  • Innocence v corruption

What narrative function do the character have?

  • Who is the villain?
  • Who is the victim?
  • Who is the hero?
  • Who is the donor?
  • Who is the adviser?

Remember: music video narratives are rarely complete as this does not encourage an audience to revisit it as there is no need to – everything has been said.

Music video narratives are often thematic and have episodic and anachronic elements to make the narrative more challenging and therefore likely to be ‘watched again and again’.

You should use these key terms as part of your reflections on narrative – pay particular attention when outlining your narrative story-line in the next post.

Project Folder Management

You must use proper file and folder management during any project.

Please follow the instructions below for setting up your project folder on the Media / Film computers.

Some of the file types may vary, so if your doing a print project the edits will be Photoshop or Indesign Files instead of Premiere Files. Equally your drafts will be PDFs and Jpegs rather than video files.

Risk Assessment and Production Meeting Agenda – Performance Shoot

Departmental Risk Assessment

Preproduction Essential Documents

These are 2 documents that you must complete and upload to your blog.

You will need to consider the risks of being on location and discuss them with your teacher and your peers to ensure your own and others’ safety.

If you intend to leave school during ‘frees’, your parents/guardians have to have signed and returned your risk assessment document.

You cannot take non-Media students out unless we have permission from their parents/guardians too.

Check: is the location you have opted for the right one for your performance. Think carefully.

Production Meeting

This is vital so that everyone knows what they are expected to bring for the shoot – costumes, make up, props etc.

You must include photos for costumes and props. Order on amazon, ebay now. Don’t wait until next week. Visit charity shops. Ask Mrs Cobb as Media have a good collection of costumes and props and so does she.  The devil is in the detail – no wrong socks, hairbands on wrists, irrelevant necklaces or earrings!  Make every detail count.

Check the background too – is there a random car, rubbish  bags, your own camera bags?  Remind yourselves of these essential checks on the PMA.

Star Image – the performer


How the star/band/performer is represented in your video and on the digipak and social media page is crucial in constructing the values, attitudes and beliefs of the artist in the mind of the target audience.



Music videos are made primarily to promote the star, in order to sell their music, in order to make money…well mostly!

They are also constructed to construct a set of desires in the target audience to be like them, think like them, love what they love, be involved in their lives & buy what they suggest.

There are huge synergies between marketing and star image! We don’t just buy a product we also buy into the values of the star image and in purchasing their product emulate them. Media representations of the star image is crucial in terms of raising an audience awareness.


They are essentially walking talking brands, who use their branding to advertise, publicise and sell to fans. Stars have to remain constantly interesting to keep the fans intrigued – the star image evolves and is constantly reinvented by media companies! In fact Stars could be seen as its own special kind of ‘species’.

Richard Dyer Handout

Richard Dyer is a theorist you need to learn about. He came up with some concepts about how ‘star image’ works in the media. The link to the concepts booklet is in the menu at the top of the blog. Find it, add it to your drive, print it, LEARN IT!



Your task is to take the ‘star’ (performer, duet, band, group…) you analysed when you did the genre analysis and create a ‘concept board’ on how they are ‘represented‘.

Find examples of news stories, incidents, events, digipak covers, music videos, articles, blogs, tweets that all contribute to their ‘star image’. The way they are represented is called their metanarrative (over arching story about them).

Image result for pinterest

And remember, just as you do in your TV drama analysis – you must add ADJECTIVES to how they appear through that particular event, story, picture etc. You can do this task as a group but must all equally contribute to the page.

This is a link to an excellent example. You should have at least 15 – 20 images and comments.

Visual Shot List – padlet

Instead of a written list of shots we want you to create a visual shotlist of the kind of shots you want to include in your performance shoot.  This is a group effort so share a board amongst you.

However, certain genres (types) of music rely specifically on certain shots as part of the repertoire of elements (conventions, ingredients).  For example:

  • Heavy rock might have canted, hand held camera shots with whip pans a plenty, which helps convey a genre that is energetic, anarchic and rebellious.
  • Indie acoustic might include smoother, longer, pull focus shots that represent the artist as sincere, laid back and unhurried.

You should study other bands of a similar genre and YOUR OWN and then collate @ 9 screen shots and make some GIFS (FOR MOVEMENT) of conventional shots, frames, angles they use in their performances. This way you can begin to learn what is conventional to your genre – remember you have to please your audience so need to make sure your video conforms to their expectations so that it is ultimately, THE SAME BUT DIFFERENT so that it will follow conventions but be different and new and unique enough not to be boring.

You should look at at least 3 – 4 other music videos and use shots from these. You will then title the shots with an explanation of the shot i.e.

  • close up of guitarist’s instrumental mastery represents his skill and talent
  • whip pans between band members looking at each other underlines their close team work and energy
  • master long shot of band performing as a unit portrays their oneness
  • mid shot pan of band members makes them appear approachable and ordinary to the audience
  • extreme close up of lead singer’s expressive face and vocals etc represents him as extraordinary and intense

Always add in some textual analysis….how does that shot help represent, connote, convey, portray the star and ultimately, the genre?  YOU NEED 9 DIFFERENT TYPES OF SHOT; distance, angle, framing, movement, special.

Made with Padlet


Some analysis shots in a different format.