Tag Archives: Media Studies

Key Terminology

As an introduction to Section B of the exam and to prepare us for the upcoming course, our teacher went through the key terminology that we need to know in order to understand and excel in this area of the examination in Summer…

  • Horizontal Integration: is an example of a partnership model. Companies which are on the same level of the industry, merge together in order to succeed. In the world of media, an example of this would be two production companies coming together to create a film.
  • Vertical Integration: The term to describe larger companies in control of every aspect of their business. An example of this is Apple because they own each aspect involved within production, distribution and consumption of their company; this has given them huge power and success.
  • Theatrical Exhibition: When films were in the beginning stages, they were shown in theatres as these were the most practical areas for a large number of people to watch something on a screen. From this, cinemas are often referred to as ‘Movie Theatres’. Theatrical Exhibition is simply a term for the displaying of films in a cinema/theatre.
  • Non-Theatrical Exhibition: The term used to describe watching a film from any source, except at a cinema or theatre. An example of this could be watching a film on Netflix on your mobile phone as this is not taking place in a cinema/theatre.
  • Guerilla Filmmaking: A way of making an independent film using props and equipment to a low budget. The term covers the idea that in the modern day and age, with more common and improved technology, anyone could make a film.
  • Technological Convergence: The term to describe existing technologies coming together to create an edited and more up to date technology.
  • Symbiosis: When companies come together in order to receive benefits for both parties involved.
  • Synergy: The term to describe two or more companies coming together in order to achieve a goal or objective that they could not have achieved independently.
  • Technological Disruption: Where a new technology is so much better than the old technology and so ruins/replaces the previous version. An example of this is when in 2007 Apple introduced their first iPhone; this day caused chaos for companies such as Blackberry and Nokia as everyone wanted the new and improved technology.
  • Media Ownership: The term used to describe the process of owning and delivering multi-media.
  • Media Conglomerates: The term to describe the larger companies that control everything. An example of this is Fox in America as this company holds huge control over the nation.
  • Concentration of Ownership: When larger companies buy smaller companies resulting in the majority of things being owned by said larger companies.
  • Targeted Advertising: Where advertising is chosen specifically for the audience seeing it. For example, an advert for a new toy or Disney film on a children’s television channel or programme as the product involved has a target audience of the people watching the specific channel/programme.
  • Un-Targeted Advertising: Advertising that is not directed at a specific target audience. An example of this could be a poster at a bus stop or a billboard on the streets.
  • Cross Media Ownership/Convergence: A term to describe when a larger company owns various different media products, for example Disney.
  • “The Big Six”: The six main companies that control everything…

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  • Distribution: The act of getting a film to the audience.
  • Exhibition: The showing of a film to the audience, for example a cinema.
  • “The Lionsgate Twenty”: The $20 million spent on advertising.

Production Log – 14th of January

Last night I, once again, charged up all of the equipment and asked my Dad to clear my SD cards. I also messaged Tom to check that he was still okay to come and film. In a panic last night, I checked the equipment bag to find a partially broken sound recorder and thought that it had been me that broke it! Luckily, my teacher already knew about this and so knew that it wasn’t me! I also could not find the audio cable and thought that I hadn’t checked carefully enough when given the equipment that I had everything, however when telling my sister in a panic, she checked and found it in the front pouch! This morning, I checked all of the equipment once again and began to set it up as filming would take place at my house. I then messaged Emelia, who could no longer come and help film, to run through the new storyline. It then dauned on me that we no longer had a mother figure as my mum had to go to Yorkshire last night… I messaged my close friend about it and she offered to come and play the role, I was so relieved! It also then dauned on me that I would have to teach Tom how to use the sound recorder as I would be busy filming with the camera and couldn’t really do both! At around 10am, Rosie and Tom arrived ready to film. This time around, Rosie was wearing a onesie and had her hair in the same style as before. After a quick introduction to Tom on how to work the sound recorder, I collected various toys and teddies from my room and placed them in the spare room so that it would look more like a young girls bedroom! We were now ready to start filming. After a few shots of Rosie in bed, I noticed that the recordings were not saving onto the SD cards. Luckily, my dad had cleared three more and so I could use these. We then filmed the inside part of the film opening, trying my best to stick to rules and theories such as the 180 degree rule. We then checked that the sound was recording before we went any further, luckily it was! Just before we began the filming of the outside scene, my friend Sally arrived. She let me do her hair and makeup and we packed up a bag of equipment, makeup, clothes and dressing gowns! I then asked Rosie if she could wear her Wellington Boots, but she had forgotten them and so I lent her mine… they fit her perfectly! I am happy with this as they are pink and so fit in with the stereotype for a young girl. After this, I grabbed my bike for our last shot and Sally, Tom, Rosie and I began our walk to a field. It was then when Sally told me about an open field that is surrounded by forest in Woodhall Spa. This sounded perfect and so we made our way to this field. After a really long walk, we had finally got to the field and it was perfect! Here, Sally put on her dressing gown and took off her shoes. We then filmed various shots including establishing shots, close ups and long shots. It was then time to do the final shot. This took a few attempts to get right as I couldn’t hack the smooth movement of the wheel. However, in the end I got a shot that I was happy with. We then filmed some sounds such as leaves crunching and birds cawing to add in in post production. On our long walk home, we stopped off in a sweet shop and I bought Rosie some sweets to say thank you for being so patient and confident! I am really grateful of Tom, Rosie and Sally for coming to help as without them I’d have been rather stuck! In our next lesson, Emelia and I will once again try and upload the sound and footage onto a MacBook and begin the editing process. We will have to be quick and efficient with this as we are fairly behind everyone else!

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Pictures taken at the end of a fairly long day of filming… Sally wore 3 coats in order to try and warm up after lying in the icy grass with no shoes, socks or coat! Tom is holding the sound equipment after a day of playing the role of the sound man and Rosie obviously fairly relieved to be finished… and fairly excited to be going to the sweet shop!

Decision To Start Again…

Emelia and I were hugely grateful for the various comments made when we showed our original rough cut to our classmates. However, we have together come to the decision to refilm. We have come to this decision for various reasons. Some of these include…

  • Firstly, we have decided to refilm the entire opening as we previously made some critical mistakes, such as breaking the 180 Degree Rule, that we can not include in our final product. Although we could simply refilm these specific parts of the opening, this is not an option for us as our original location is no longer available!
  • We also believe that the original location was a bit too dark and our lighting needed improvement in order for our film to seem legitimate and professional. In order to get over this issue, we plan to film in a much more open house with many more windows!
  • Due to problems with the SD cards, Emelia and I previously had to resort to filming much of the opening on my phone. Although this was not a huge issue, we feel as though our opening could be a whole lot better with improved quality and continuity. Many of our original shots were blurry and not in focus. This could have been due to the fact that we were inexperienced with the equipment, but could also be because of our pushed time limit and inclination to rush. In order to get over this problem, I shall invest in new SD cards and make sure that they are ready for filming the night before.
  • When watching our original footage, Emelia and I noticed that in many you could actually see us! These pieces of footage can not be used and so we have decided that when refilming, we need to be fully aware of shiny and reflective surfaces!
  • Emelia and I had not originally filmed the outdoors scene and so believed that if we were to refilm and do it all on the same day, the continuity of our opening would be a whole lot better.
  • Due to problems with equipment, Emelia and I had no sound for our original footage. Recreating the sounds needed in post production may have worked, but it would have included many hours of effort for an end product that would not fit perfectly in sync. Because of this, we feel as though it would be much better to have another go at filming the whole opening and having sound that fits perfectly with what is happening in the picture!

Overall, Emelia and I have chosen to refilm because we feel as though we could achieve a much better film. We had higher expectations for our opening and would like to meet these as best as we can. Some of the problems that we have encountered are impossible to rectify without refilming that certain shot. However, due to the lack of access to our previous location, the continuity of our opening would be a whole lot better if Emelia and I were to simply refilm the entire opening. Something that Emelia and I have to consider first, before rushing ahead, is what we are going to change…

Creating our Fourth Ident: Orchid

Due to the failure of our first two idents, Emelia and I had to come up with a new idea. Ideally, we wanted to do at least one ident as an animation because this would show more skill and would give our film opening a variety. Our previous idea of a dandelion did not work as it was too hard to draw and so this time around we had to think of something more simple. By using an animated and a non-animated ident, Emelia and I are displaying skill across the graphic side to the project. It was clear to us, however, that this ident would be more challenging for us to create as the software, Motion, was completely new to us and had a reputation as a tricky software anyway! Firstly, Emelia and I had to come up with a completely new idea for an ident. We wanted to stick to something simple and similar to the delicate and nature of the dandelion. Emelia and I found it fairly challenging to come up with something that would be both easy to draw yet aesthetically pleasing and delicate. When sat in my living room thinking about what we could do, I looked across the room and had an idea. This is what I saw…

16667322_696665187181472_2140167853_o.jpgIt was from here that Emelia and I decided to base our second and last ident upon an orchid. We felt as though an orchid is aesthetically pleasing and although may not be quite as simple to draw as we had originally hoped, would be possible when tracing. Our next step was to find an orchid photograph that we could trace. After a brief search on Google Images, Emelia and I found this image…17312654-Romantic-floral-vector-card-with-orchid-flowers-Stock-Vector-orchid-drawing-wedding.jpg

Emelia and I decided to go with this image as we liked the shape and layout of the orchid. However, we would not need to also trace the dotted background and writing. Once we had downloaded the image, we imported it into Pixelmatr. We used Pixelmatr at GCSE and so things came back to us fairly quickly as we used the software. In attempt to make the tracing of the orchid an easier and more efficient process, Emelia and I were given a graphic tablet to trace over the orchid. This, at first, proved to be a whole lot easier than using the mouse as it allowed you to move freely. However, for the thicker lines on the orchid it, surprisingly, proved to be easier for us to simply zoom in and use the mouse to trace over. We then added colour to our orchid. We chose to go with a fairly simple, yet elegant colour scheme and decided to keep it fresh and simple. After we had completed our own version of the orchid drawing, Emelia and I exported the drawing into Motion.

Now that our drawing was in Motion, Emelia and I could start animating our ident. Our ultimate aim was to keep it simple and so we wanted to add a glow or blur to the drawing. We sampled both of these and felt as though the glow fit in better with what we were trying to achieve. We decided to have this glow in a fairly bright pink colour. Although this may seem fairly random, the colour matches the inside parts of the orchid and so draws the whole thing together. The pink colour is also fairly striking and so may capture the attention of the audience. By using keynotes, we were able to alter when the glow came in, left and the intensity of it throughout. Emelia and I played around with this for a while but settled on the glow coming in and leaving fairly quickly as we felt it brought the ident to life. Next, Emelia and I had to think of a name and feature it in our ident. Ideally, we wanted a name that links directly to the ident alike other famous idents such as Universal and Lionsgate. The name “Orchid Productions” seemed a bit too short and plain and so Emelia and I settled on “Orchid House Productions” for the name of our second ident. We also thought that an elegant font would best suit the nature of the ident. Emelia and I thought that it looked best for our title to come in with the glowing to leave with it also. In order to achieve this, we had to use keynotes once again. These were the most difficult aspects to the software in my opinion. Once again, Emelia and I have decided to use the soundtrack from the opening over the top of the ident in order to bring it all together. Here is our second and last ident…

Considering how difficult Emelia and I found the Motion software and the tight time limit we had, I am happy with our animated ident. If we had more time, Emelia and I have agreed that the glow should be more subtle and the timings of the glow and titles would need more attention, but overall I am happy with the two idents.