Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Year 12 - Amber Films - Homework for next week...

Bullet point your response - or use powerpoint - it's up to you.

All answers need to be brief.

1/  What's the rationale behind Amber Films, a small, independent film company based in Dean Street in Newcastle?
2/  How is the company funded?
3/  How was a film like Shootong Mapgies made?
4/  What's the impact of digital technology on the production, marketing, distribution and exhibition?
5/  How is the comopany trying to raise money for their new film?

Look at the websites for Amber Films and the Side Gallery and search this blog for various posts to help you.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Textual Analysis tips

Textual Analysis – The Next Steps

It is very important for everyone to review their progress in textual analysis. You are about to embark on an Assessment for Learning unit where you will:
a)      Find out more about how your work will be assessed

b)      Identify both good practice and become more critical in identifying how work can be improved

c)       Critically reflect upon your own work and make changes in your approach to boost your attainment.
You need to:
1)      Watch the exam text again

2)      Read through the assessment criteria (blue sheets) and identify what skills  / standards are required (you should all be aiming for Levels 3 and 4)

3)      Make sure you understand the three different assessment objects and understand what they actually mean by these terms a) Explanation, analysis and argument b)Use of example c) Use of terminology

4)      Using the stimulus material provided by SO analyse the strengths and areas for improvement in both essays

5)      Award marks and be prepared to justify your judgements making specific references to the mark scheme
Following this discussion, and following further analysis of good practice you will:
a)      Be expected to redraft your orginal attempt in order to put into practice “good practice”

b)      Sit another mock exam on textual analysis AND film institution the week before the Christmas hols.
Please note – you will be receiving your marked scripts early next week as we are currently identifying anyone who needs to attend booster classes in advance of the exam.
VERY IMPORTANT – our departmental blog – www.heworth.mediastudies.blogspot.com is packed with very useful revision materials and this is regularly updated so make sure you use it!!!!!!
Please remember – this is a very large class but teaching staff in Media Studies are very keen to support you in the run up to the exam and with your coursework. Always ask questions and seek out feedback if you are unsure how to make progress. 
Many thanks

EH, GW, SO

State of Play textual analysis model

Model Essay: State of Play

The extract immediately positions the audience as close observers of the chase. The medium close ups intercut between two different sets of feet, stylised in highly contrasting footwear – (trainers and polished black shoes), and combine with tracking shots to keep pace with the characters’ movements. The overlaying of diegetic sound in the form of tribal drums makes sense as soon as the handheld close up reveals the character on the run to be black. The music is effective in reinforcing his black identity, particularly through the use of bongo drums, arguably showing disregard for political correctness. The quick pace of the editing allows the director to establish a city location – very probably London – through establishing shots featuring crowds of people, contrasting in their behaviour compared to the black youth. At this point in the first narrative, the director offers a conventional representation as the black character is clearly experiencing disequilibrium (Todorov) and the audience is encouraged to believe this character is in danger. Arguably this supports the cultural view that black youths are both the protagonists of crime but can also be the victims. The director uses mise en scene in the actor’s gesture of looking behind him, with highly anxious facial expression filling the frame, to confirm disorder and vulnerability.
The editing performs a complex role in threading together three disparate narratives that by the end of the opening sequence seem to tie together. Throughout each sequence, representations of class and status are significant. In contrast to the very first narrative the audience are instantly cut to a radically contrasting character – a middle aged, middle class, white male. The director uses every aspect of mise-en-scene, clothing, (his suit, shirt, tie and expensive overcoat), his gestures (confident, strident walking) his props (the Financial Times) to communicate a man of high class and social standing. Mid shots dominate as a means to help communicate body language. He mirrors the first narrative in that he too is on his way somewhere, however his representation is so different to the black boy that the audience is intrigued as to how these two characters could be connected, if at all. To further complicate the sequence, a third narrative is intercut featuring a young girl, who again, through mise en scene is represented as lower class. The setting of the café connotates a working class environment, matched by her clothing and gestures (multiple consumption of cans of coke) indicating that she has been waiting for someone for some time, very probably the black youth. They are linked together through a shared social class. The other man is still at this point disconnected, primarily due to the major contrast in social class.The camera movement is highly significant in the café sequence as the camera steadily pans in on the girl from behind to establish the idea that she is vulnerable and quite literally “needs to watch her back”. Her significance is magnified by the camera tilting downwards to slowly reveal a briefcase, barely concealed by a bin-bag. The length of the edit on the briefcase as a key prop helps the audience to anticipate what is coming to the black youth.
Arguably the most interesting contrast in representation is focussed on the differences between the black youth and his assassin. The director uses close ups to reveal an arguably stereotypical representation of the black youth : gold earring, hoody, trainers , and in contrast the more middle class status of the assassin is more gradually revealed. Costume emerges as a vital aspect of mise en scene in establishing higher status through polished shoes and an expensive woollen overcoat. As his identity is revealed, his calm and controlled gestures  illuminate his experience in killing in cold blood. The medium close up of the assassin, aiming the gun from the point of view of the victim, reinforces his clinical, organised approach. The director uses deliberately complex camera work to build tension for the audience. At the point when the black youth is successfully hiding from the assassin the editing slows down and he fills the frame with the use of a low angle, however this misleads the audience as we see in medium shot the impact of the shooting as he slides down the frame and the camera remains static. In terms of status, the black youth is now defined as a victim, although the audience are compelled to wonder if his own actions have facilitated his violent downfall.
Sound plays an important role in establishing meaning, particularly through non diegetic sound to set the tone and pace of this action-packed sequence. Interestingly the director has chosen to completely avoid diegetic script. Arguably the lack of discourse between the characters forces the audience to rely heavily on visual codes – particularly mise-en- scene and editing – to piece together what promises to be a highly complex and absorbing narrative. The director has been highly successful in establishing representation of class and status as a major source of intrigue, leaving the audience perplexed at how such disparate characters could be interconnected. 
Potential Tasks
·         Highlight all media-specific language

·         Consider the introduction – is the question repeated or is a point made

·         To what extent is analysis balanced across the technical codes

·         The section with the motor-cycle courier has been missed out – is this a problem?

·         The LACK of diegetic script has been discussed – is it useful to sometimes discuss what is NOT THERE

·         Please note – this is NOT A PERFECT TEXTUAL ANALYSIS – what are a) the strengths b) the limitations

·         Think about everything you’ve learned about textual analysis so far – can you come up with the ultimate top ten tips!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Production, Distribution and Marketing...

OCR exam board guide to photography...

video

OCR exam board guide to camera shots...

video

OCR exam board guide to camera movement...

video

AS January Exam - Revision Guide

AS Media Studies Timeline

Section A: Textual Analysis: Our Work Plan

1.       Attempt 2009 Dr Who question in timed conditions

2.       Reflect upon feedback and redraft

3.       Textual analysis OCR sample scripts- research of Examiner’s Reports

4.       Attempt State of Play – representation of status/ ethnicity (mark and students redraft)

5.       Attempt Sugar Rush  - representation of Sugar Rush (mark and redraft)

6.       Attempt period drama e.g. Dowton Abbey or good text for age

7.       Also cover other representational issues – (age, regional/ national identity, youth culture, disability which was covered last year. PLEASE NOTE AGE HAS NOT BEEN CROPPED UP SINCE JAN2009, ETHNICITY SINCE JAN 2010 AND GENDER SINCE JUNE 2010!!!) 

·         By January exam should have completed a minimum of 4 textual analyses in timed conditions AND redrafts with teacher’s comments/ SA 

Section B – Film and Institutions

You will be covering a lot of material as this topic is challenging. It is VITAL that you use some time in the exam to work out the most relevant material and you should spend five minutes PLANNING your response to ensure you answer the question.

It is advised that you regularly respond to the long answer questions set by EH and GW on this topic so that you can draw upon this work in the exam. You should be familiar with at least one example of a Hollywood film that has been able to market a film at great cost and be confident to compare this to British examples (Independent Film companies) and understand the concepts of co-production, horizontal and vertical integration, synergy USING MEDIA SPECIFIC LANGUAGE AT ALL TIMES TO CONVEY YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THIS TOPIC. You should also understand the role of the British Film Council (linked to the British cultural Test) which can offer governmental funding) and Film Four as a major British production company, often working in co-production (increasingly with Danish/Swedish and global counterparts). Also think about using Michael Winterbottom (Everyday) as an example of a British filmmaker who does not use contemporary methods exhaustively and can be categorised as a traditional British filmmaker who is still making movies, without the intention of making massive profits BUT still successful in serving niche film audiences.

Regularly look at the past questions listed below and practise planning your response WITH DETAILED EXAMPLES, writing a highly effective intro (making a POINT in the opening statement) and ending with a thoughtful quotation. This is the best way to revise:

Jan 2009

·         Extract Monarch of the Glen AGE

·         Discuss the ways in which media products are produced and distributed to audiences in the film industry

 
June 2009

·         Extract Dr Who Gender

·         How important is technological convergence for institutions and audiences within a media area which you have studied?

Jan 2010

·         Extract Hotel Babylon Ethnicity

·         “Media production is dominated by global institution which sells their products and services to national audiences.” To what extent do you agree with this statement?” 

Jan 2011

·         Extract Hustle GENDER

·         Discuss the issues raised by media ownership in the production and exchange of media texts in film

June 2011

·         Extract Merlin CLASS AND STATUS

·         “Successful media products depend as much upon marketing and distribution to a specific audience as they do upon good production practices.” To what extent would you agree with this statement, within the media area you have studied?

Jan 2012

·         Extract Fingersmith SEXUALITY

·         To what extent does digital distribution affect the marketing and consumption of media products in the media area you have studied?

Synergy Revision...

From here: http://www.slideshare.net/wmorris/synergy-revision-10

Spiderman and synergy


Taken from here: http://www.slideshare.net/wmorris/synergy-covergence#btnNext

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Top Tips for A2 Production Work

 Key Points to Remember and Apply

1.Irregular blog entries are a dead giveaway that you’re not fully engaged with this project.

2. Entries do not have to be epic e.g. you can offer production schedules / a review

3. Entries shouldn’t be long but feature multi-media platforms

4. A clear project outline is VITAL, making intentions and responsibilities explicit.

5. Inevitably you will have similar entries at the beginning when you’re developing your concept BUT very soon your blog should emerge as distinct – a personal journey

6. Be reflective – discuss problems / how to overcome set backs – EVIDENCE THE LEARNING CURVE

7.Aim for 60 blog entries – you have until end of April so this averages at about 3 entries per week.

8. Integrate AUDIENCE RESEARCH through the stages of production – gain feedback on RUSHES (the filming) and the ROUGH CUT (first edit ) as well as final product. Audience Research could influence the direction of your construct

9. When filming make sure you can evidence you’ve been organised by producing production schedules / props lists /costumes / location detail – easy to produce but great for your blog

10. Could produce video diaries as reflective

11. When filming always start the camera ROLLING 10 SECONDS BEFORE YOU BEGIN THE SCENE and ALWAYS ANNOUNCE THE CUT AND KEEP THE CAMERA ROLLING.

12. Where possible frame the shot accurately

13. Try to film a range of shots from different angles

14. Experiment with different camera movements / position and continuously think about AUDIENCE POSITIONING

15. Build into your filming consideration of ALL ASPECTS OF MISE EN SCENE – excellent for analysis during evaluation

16. Don’t leave too much head space but remember you can crop and resize frames during post-production

17. Use generic conventions BUT try to challenge them too – GENRES ARE FLUID AND CONSTANTLY EVOLVING

18. Film Trailers – a) don’t have to make absolute sense but must establish genre and appeal to their target audience b) must be mindful that a range of locations / actors is vital c) sound is a VITAL technical code and should be thought about from the very outset

19. Music Videos – a)Film performance vide early doors from range of camera angles so you have library bank of footage b) evidence you’ve tried to ask for permission to use the song c) identify through textual analysis that even with slow songs you need a massive number of shots and costume changes

20. Short Films – Stingers are only five minutes and tend to be quite abstract but whole narratives can be communicated (v ambitious but when they come off they are highly rewarded as challenging and few will attempt them!) You MUST research the genre of short films – loads on web!

21 Documentaries – as above you must research stylistics of different types of docs before identifying and justifying chosen style. Must have a good concept and access to interesting subjects / topics – (Alex you have very promising material)

22.Don’t be a doooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooofus and neglect your ancillary work – both pieces combined are worth 50% of your moving image work

23. Every aspect of your production should be interconnected – RP + Main + Ancilliaries + Evaluations – generic conventions / house-styles/target audience

24. Original photography – and having a range of original images – is just as vital for A2.

25. Pace yourself – we appreciate Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeja Studies is not the centre of your universe and although it may not be your best subject  (Isla – we forgive you and understand you are an English Lang genius but if you don’t get an A in your Jan resit you will have to pay for all of us to go the pics!!!!!!!!! I’M JOKING!!!) and you MUST spread your attention across all subjects. WE UNDERSTAND THIS !!!!!!

26. Remember to keep your diaries up to date so your skills and concepts can be matched to the stages of production. This will help make preparation and revision for the A2 exam much easier.

27. Don’t hogg the equipment – we’re all in this together so play fair

28. Enjoy – use us / talk to us / listen to us (we’re old and have been doing this for ages).

29. Use last year’s work as guidance – we’ll give you a copy of the marks. Ignore this at your peril!!!!
There’s bound to be more ….. but this will do for now.


EH GW

Top Tips for A1 Production Work

 Key Points to Remember and  (most importantly) Apply

1.Irregular blog entries are a dead giveaway that you’re not fully engaged with this project.

2. Entries do not have to be epic e.g. you can offer production schedules / a review

3. Entries shouldn’t be long but feature multi-media platforms (including moving image)

4. A clear project outline is VITAL, making intentions and responsibilities explicit.

5. Your blog should read as a personal journey describing and evaluating the STAGES OF PRODUCTION

6. Be reflective – discuss problems / how to overcome set backs – EVIDENCE THE LEARNING CURVE

7.Aim for 60 blog entries – you have until end of April so this averages at about 3 entries per week.

8. Integrate AUDIENCE RESEARCH through the stages of production – gain feedback early drafts and different versions of each section of work. Audience Research could influence the direction of your final construct.

9. When filming, make sure you can evidence you’ve been organised by producing production schedules / photoshoots / flat plans / deadlines for copy– easy to produce but great for your blog

10. Could produce video diaries as reflective

11. When collecting your original images makes sure you evidence RANGE / VARIETY in terms of angles, costume, props, setting – DON’T OVER-USE THE SAME SET OF SHOTS

12. Where possible frame the shot accurately

13. Build into your PHOTOGRAPHY consideration of ALL ASPECTS OF MISE EN SCENE – excellent for analysis during evaluation

14. Use generic conventions BUT try to challenge them too – GENRES ARE FLUID AND CONSTANTLY EVOLVING

15. Evidence textual analysis evenly across all aspects of production – don’t neglect the CONTENTS PAGE – conceptually this is challenging. GREAT IDEA TO USE PREZI TO MINDMAP THE IDEOLOGICAL VALUES OF YOUR PRODUCT and to show interconnectivity across you fictional fully realised product.

16. Every aspect of your production should be interconnected – RP + Main + Ancilliaries + Evaluations – generic conventions / house-styles/target audience

17. Pace yourself – we appreciate Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeja Studies is not the centre of your universe and although it may not be your best subject you MUST spread your attention across all subjects. WE UNDERSTAND THIS !!!!!!

26. Remember to keep your diaries up to date so your skills and concepts can be matched to the stages of production. This will help make preparation and revision for the A2 exam much easier.(EH will make sense of this next lesson).

27. Don’t hogg the equipment – we’re all in this together so play fair

28. Enjoy – use us / talk to us / listen to us (we’re old and have been doing this for ages).

29. Use last year’s work as guidance – we’ll give you a copy of the marks. Ignore this at your peril!!!!

Important Deadline:

By the end of half term holidays all blogs will be checked to make sure you have included:

·         AFL style assessment of last year’s work – approx. 3 projects

·         Evidence of analysis of AS marking criteria

·         Research and planning linked to School Magazine

·         Presentation of school magazine

·         Post-mortem of what you’ve learned from this exercise – good practice and what can be improved

·         Presentation of brief for music magazine – intentions etc. including identification of target audience and genre / sub-genre

·         Evidence of beginning the process of textual analysis of front cover / house-style, photography/tags / establishment of ideological values through images and language

·         Remember to use MULTI-MEDIA platforms to evidence research and planning – we don’t want to see screeds of text

·         Also remember in producing a blog you are also producing a media product in its own biscuit tin

·         You should aim to feature between eight and ten postings to cover all of the above.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Horror Movie Poster Analysis...

... and a good one at that. I swiped this from slideshare and from this blog: http://paigesmediablog.blogspot.co.uk/



Yours need to be at least this good.


Friday, 14 September 2012

Homework!!!!!

Welcome back after yet another great set of results!

A2 Advanced Production: BRIEF'S NAME:

1. Which brief are you pursuing?

2. Identify if this is an individual or group project.

3. List roles and responsibilities if you are working in a group?

4. Write a brief summary of your CONCEPT for the main task.

5. List any ideas for LOCATIONS. (Mise en scene)

6. List any ideas for COSTUME and PROPS (Mise en scene)

7. Outline your ideas for each ancilliary task:

Task a) To be handed in by September 29th...

Task b) Add any further information which will give your subject teachers further insight into your CONCEPT (e.g. style models)

Thursday, 12 July 2012

AS Media Studies Print Production Work 2011 - 2012

Beth Drape

Rebecca Dafter

Kelsey Wink

Ryan Willis

Terri Sloan

Brandon Stephenson

Shannon Atkinson

Kirstie Maccoy

Rebecca Iredale

Reece Beveridge

Kate Meads

Adam Bennett

Alex Turnbull