Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Ancillary Tasks

These are our 2 final ancillary tasks created alongside our film:

This is our film magazine review:

This is our poster:

Monday, 2 May 2011

Evaluation Question

4. How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?

Without the media technoligy that we used our film would not be made to its highest standard, without any technoligy the film would also not be able to compete with other films with a similar genre.

One key piece of technoligy that we used was the computer, we could use the internet for research and use youtube to watch similar films to our own, we also used youtube frequently to import files to and from our computer. On the internet we could also use other programmes which helped enhanceour blogssuch as 'Prezzi'.  Without the computer we would not have been able to show our progress on 'Blogger' which showed all of our research and planning in making te film. The computer also came with programmes such as 'premier pro' and 'photoshop'
 which were key programmes when making the film and ancillary tasks. To communicate with eachother via computers we used email, which is a very quick and simple way of sharing information with the rest of the group.

When searching for other films similar to our genre we used google search, google search gave us the highest rated information about the horror genres and related films. Youtube was used to get inspiration from other phcological horrors e.g. we watched the trailer for the film 'Pi' on youtube which helped us with a few shots within our film. We also used a website called freesound.com which we used for all the sound effects e.g. the screem when the man in the mask is revealed.

During the filming ad editing procces we used adobe premier pro, this programme was perfect for editing as it let us put in the required effects to show our characters mood and state of mind. It the main proggramme for our film and without it we would have found it very hard to put all of the shots together. Premier pro also let us put in titles and headings which was usefull for our final peice. Adobe photosop was very usefull to for the making of our ancillary tasks (poster,magazine review) as we could create different colours and layouts to show the genre and meaning of the film. For the filming progress we used a standard digital slr camera and tripod which we obliously used to film the final product. The slr camera was very easy to use and the footage was easily transfered on to the computer via a memory stick.

For the evalution stage ofour project we used proggramms on the internet such as 'prezzi' and 'vokki'. Prezzi is a service which liks texts, youtube videos and images together to make your evaluation look more interesting as their are many features to play around with e.g. background colour. Vokki is a funny service in which you type what you want the on-screen cartoon to say and they will voice it out for you,it makes you blog look that bit more exiting instead of using just text all of the time.

Overall using technoligies witin your project is very important, in the making and planning of the film and to show your proggress in a tidy and fun way. ]

3. What have you learned from your audience feedback?

After creating our film we have received lots of audience feedback to see if it achieved what we set out for it to do. most of the feedback is on a positive not and contains valuable criticism to help us see the Film from the audiences perspective. Some of the feedback is from  a director that our media course teacher has been in touch with. This gives us a perspective of someone that is a professional film maker as well as our target audience. 

"The camera work, acting, directing in general. Kept me watching. 95% of shorts dont!I will plug it out there a few times tomorrow, Took a note to do that. :) "

"If uneasy, disorientation and sudden fright were goals, then, mission accomplished, I say. Nice editing, sound placement, believable acting, nothing seemed to lag.

Pretty impressive work!

The only thing that stood out, was that the film seems to have been flipped horizontally in one shot as the steering wheel appears on the wrong side. "

"really un-settling, the audio works to stellar effect w/ the minimalist'ish vid... bravo sir, bravo!!!"

"Really nice work from your students there, Andy, I liked the use of sound especially.
I agree with klawful about the final image being unnecessary - better to leave things on the black screen I reckon."

"Truly impressive stuff. In my day teenagers made films about playing football and getting off with girls, not sure what's up with the youth of today!

I kind of agree with the comments about the last shot, but having said that it is a great shot, and sometimes it isn't a bad thing to give closure. I think it's been in vogue a lot in recent years (or maybe just films I tend to want to watch) where dour endings, or loose end endings have been flavor if the month. Sometimes I just want to be uplifted at the end of a film goddamit!!

I hasten to add I was in no way uplifted by this film though!"

"It is indeed impressive work. The kids did really, really well! And yes, it's really nice to hear the attention paid to the audio... it's so often relegated as an afterthought or secondary element. I do also agree with Klawful that the final scene is unnecessary.

Top work."

"This is really very, very good dude. My 7 years teaching at an FE music college meant I had to be encouraging to people a lot less talented (relatively) than it seems your students are. Massive kudos to them.

I had expected the significance of the number to be explained in some way, and it was nice that it wasn't that literal - leaving an empty feeling, similar to psychological disorders, so quite evocative as a piece. Well done to them.

I know that it's always important to get some critique back to students though so here's a couple of criticisms if I HAD to have some:

    1 - Those gasmasks are very 'done' as a prop, and a little too trendy if you know what I mean. I've seen them so much that they're less freaky to me now if that makes sense. Something a bit 'quieter' would have been more edgy in my opinion.

    2 - The choice of Radiohead was nice but that Portishead tune, although extremely appropriate, is also very over used. Almost anything else would have been better simply for the sake of originality.

The main themes from the feedback are mainly positive with people liking the editing and the sound. All the feedback is extremely valuable as it also contains criticisms that we can learn from. Getting audience feedback has been helped us see the film for what it is as a final product as opposed to what we have created through shooting and editing. We have both watched the film so many times in the creation process that it is harder for us to gage what works and what doesn't. Im happy with the feedback we have received as it has helped us analyse the film. 

All of the feedback above has been received after we made the film, however we also received feedback for the film during the process too. This was important to us as we wanted to get a feel for what people thought of the film before we finished it to give us some improvements etc. We showed a 3 min roughly edited section from the film and showed it to our media class consisting of around 25 people aged between 17-18 in a focus group style. We gained lots of feedback about what people liked and didn't like about the film. For example their was lots of criticism of the sound not quite fitting the images and therefore we were able to change and polish it before the final edit. There was also different opinions about shot sequences which we were then able change due to the feedback and to try and create a more seamless piece of work. Receiving feedback during the creation of the film meant we were able to make the film you see today and was a vital part of our creation. 

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

2.How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?

For our final film piece we created 2 ancillary tasks to go with it, a poster and a film magazine review which I thought worked very well and mached the themes and genre of the film.

Friday, 4 February 2011

1. In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Film Review

For our first ancillary task we are going to produce a magazine review for our film. To do this we have looked at film magazines such as empire and total film and have looked at the conventions that make up these magazines.

This is a magazine review from Empire of the 2010 film Salt. We have created a template below to follow so we can follow the same conventions. The layouts are quite basic but very effective and it is clear that it is a magazine review.

After looking at various other layouts of magazine review such as: 

Using similar conventions to the reviews we have researched here we have created our own review below. This was created using Adobe Illustrator CS5: 

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Research And Creating The Poster

Firstly we are going top do some further research into movie posters to get a better understanding the codes and conventions typical movie posters. For our poster it is important that we include all the conventions so that it looks professional and is instantly recognisable as a poster.

Requiem for a dream is a very similar genre to what we hope to achieve and therefore it is a good poster to view. I like the two large pictures involved here as it does not give the film away at all. However this poster could be seen as quite cheap as the two pictures are actually screenshots from the film. This does not show too much creativity, however the poster is effective. The poster has all the actors and the directors name on it and most importantly the film title in a large font so that it can be easily read.

I think these two posters are effective as they are minimalistic at to the point. the posters feature the two main characters in the film and it does not give the story away. The different posters are very effective as it gives the variety and people aren't going to be bored of the same poster. They both show the actor/actress' names and the poster on the right also contains the tag line "Everyone wants to be found" which gives the viewer slightly more information relating to the story which leaves the guessing.

I think this poster is effective on many levels. firstly the use of concentric circles around the astronaut relates closely to the title "Moon". The poster keeps the story from the audience well however after watching the film the poster has more relevance. Sam Rockwell's character is very small on the poster, this may be because he feels isolated and alone on the film the same can be said about the black space around the edge.

After looking at these posters and others earlier in the blog, it seems that the most effective posters are those which are quite simple. We have put together an idea for our poster which was made by  Tom. However this is not the final design:

Our first attempt at a poster wasn't bad however it did not look professional and received lots of audience feedback about it being to busy which we agree with. we wanted to keep the digital font as this represented the time 19:22 which is highly relevant to our film. After some criticisms we decided to create a new poster taking into account our feedback.

This is what we created:

This poster has improved from the last on as it looks less busy but still has the Digital font. We have also chosen to highlight the title in red to make it stand out. We showed this to our audience and received some further audience feedback saying that the poster was a bit boring and needed something extra. We then decided to have more information at the bottom and the creators and actors names at the top. We also added a chemical formula for Korsakoffs psychosis to make the poster look more interesting. We also decided o take numbers 19:23 and 19:24 out of the poster as they were bigger than the title and took away from it. Like the Lost In Translation poster we also decided to add a tag line to our film to reveal slightly more to the audience.

This is our final poster:

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Filming and Editing

The filming process was relatively straight forward and was completed over four sessions spanning 2 months. The majority of was filmed at Sam (actors) house with the car scene filmed at Linford Bottom. Overall we think that filming went quite smoothly as we paced our filming over multiple sessions in order to take our time with the shots we used. We had a rough script of shots that we wanted to use and the general direction of the film however when we were filming we also experimented with different shots that we thought might work and we could try out in the edit. this gave us some variety when it came to the edit and gave us some back up shots too. The whole sequence was filmed on a Cannon HV30.
This camera has a HD option however we decided not to use it as we only had standard def tapes and HD also takes up a lot of hard drive space for a video that is going to end up on YouTube. The camera worked well enough on standard definition and also helped us to create some of the shots. For example we used the light on the front of the camera for the final shot to give the shot a dark and disturbing feel which I think worked quite well.

Overall I think our filming when quite smoothly as we did not encounter any problems with sound or with the footage we recorded, however we did have to revisit a couple of shots to get correct continuity.

The editing process was quite straight forward however was quite straight forward however quite time consuming as it was very easy to keep tweaking and changing around to make it more polished. To create the edit we used Adobe premiere pro CS5 which was able to cater for everything we wanted to achieve. The editing took place in between filming sessions, this was so we could get a rough idea of what it will look like as we were still creating the film. This helped us get a feel for how the film will look and also gave us some direction. It also helped us to receive our audience feedback as we were able to show roughly edited short sections from the film and gain valuable feedback to help improve and polish the edit.

Our film uses many different effects available on premiere pro that help to follow the conventions of the genre. For example there is quite a lot of blurs in the film as this is to help convey the characters state of mind.  The sound in the film also helps to do this as it consists mainly of distorted drones and uneasy sounds that help the audience get in the head of the character. The sounds (apart from the songs) are all obtained from freesound and are layered to create a more polished sound as opposed to a single distorted sound. The sound also helps build up the tension in the film. This is most apparent in the last shot which I think shows his state of mind the best. The use of titles in our edit is particularly important as it highlights the time at which his hallucinations are occurring and also helps represent the story to the audience. The use of black clips in the film also and the flashing light also helps to create a distortion effect that the audience can relate to.