Question 4: How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Due to this being a college production, we had no budget to work with. But due to the technologies we had made it easier for us to make a decent production. Most of the technology we used for this trailer production I found very difficult to use due to the fact that I had never used it before, this made it very time consuming for me to complete the simplest of tasks. I would say that throughout this period of designing my poster and magazine cover I have become more confident when using Photoshop. I have managed to use techniques I wouldnâ€™t have been able to use before; I have also learnt how to use more effects, so my work looks more professional. I would also say that my premier pro skills have developed as well. I had used the program previous in my AS media class but I still found it difficult to use and also struggled a lot. Whilst completing my A2 trailer in my group I learnt different techniques and effects which can be used to make a trailer look more professional, it also helped that some people in my group had previously used the program so they were able to teach me new things. I would say that if I had to use premier pro on my own I would be able to make something which looks half decent due to my familiarity with the program and the new skills I have learnt. PREMIER PRO: Before we used premier pro we had to ensure that we had all the right footage before we started arranging our trailer and editing it. We decided to follow our storyboard and film as according to prevent confusion. Once we had all the footage we filmed we transferred it from the camera to the Mac, where we then uploaded it into Premier Pro. When we uploaded all of our clips into premier pro we realized that we were shirt a few clips. We had no normality shots, so we had to then re-shoot these to put in our trailer. When we had uploaded all of our final footage, we could then start working and re-arranging out clips. On premier pro, they provide you with a timeline, which helped us organize the length each clip should be, it also helped us with the timing of the whole trailer in general. This was useful because if our trailer was too long we could cut it down, and if it was too short we could make it longer. The program had a lot of helpful features, I learnt how to shorten clips and how to fade clips in and out, which became very useful to know when editing my trailer. We also decided to experiment with text, which was also an option on the program, this enabled us to add in text where we thought was necessary, I personally think that this made our trailer look more professional. We were also able to change the font if this text to fit our genre, so we decided to go for a typewriter font because this looked the most scariest, which is important when you have a distinctive theme to your trailer. Premier pro also gave you the option to change the duration the text was on the page and the speed in which it came In, which meant that we could change these to fit in with our trailer. We were also able to add in sound effects, we decided to add in sound effects that were appropriate to our trailer, for example the sound of wind, because our trailer is a horror trailer we needed to ensure that all of these elements linked in. Once we selected the track that we liked we had to save it then import it into premier pro, we then were able to drag it onto our timeline to the appropriate place. This track had to correspond with the clip to make sure that they worked together. Like I previous mentioned in the first paragraph I had little skills with using this program, but am confident that if I had to produce anything like this project again, I would be a lot more confident using the program after everything I have learnt.
PHOTOSHOP: I was quite confident with using Photoshop as I had developed a brief understanding of how to use it, after using it to complete my AS music magazine cover, double page spread and contents page. Because I learnt quite a lot of techniques last year I was able to adapt them when compl eting my horror magazine and poster. I was also able to experiment with different layers, exposures and gradients to see if I liked them. Because I had previously used the program it made me more confident to try out different ideas which helped me with my ancillary texts, horror magazine and poster. I was able to use my own photographs and my own texts that I had chosen, this meant that I could use different programs combined with Photoshop to help complete my final ancillary texts. I still struggle with using Photoshop because I have only used it in media when I needed to, which meant that I did find some things frustrating to do. I also spent a lot of time trying to work out how I could put a shadow drop on my price and how I could make my gradient look a good balance. These things that I have struggled with this year, I now know how to do if I ever use the program again. Because Photoshop has so many options, I think this can sometimes confuse people, but practice makes perfect and it has certainly showed. I compared my last year magazine to this year, and I can personally tell that this year one looks a lot better due to my development of Photoshop skills. I also used some of Photoshopâ€™s features that I never realized it had, for example I used the program to scan in my storyboard and my worksheets which I never knew was possible until another group member showed me how. This is also more examples of how my skills have developed. I believe that Photoshop was the best program to help me with my ancillary t exts because it made them look very professional and a lot like a realistic magazine and poster would look like. I would defiantly say that my Photoshop skills have developed this year and I, as well as others have taught myself different techniques to complete in my work. This has helped my progression in the program and will continue to do so.
GOOGLE: This search engine enabled me to gather all of my information for my 'research and planning section' It is very popular amongst teenagers when gathering information as it is worldwide and well known. I am very familiar with Google as have used it from a very young age. I used all of its features such as the maps section for locations near me that I thought would be appropriate for filming. The images part, which helped me find images that I thought were relevant to my coursework. The web section when getting all of my information for my research and planning and also the mail section which helped me and my friends email information over to each other when needed too.
WIKIPEDIA: Wikipedia is a lot like Google, I am very familiar with it and it is very helpful when researching various topics and when finding out information relevant to your topic. I used this a lot in my 'research and planning' section to help me find out information about the horror audience and the production company. Wikipedia is good because it comes up with useful information on anything you are learning about and is very popular with teenagers, as it is useful when completing coursework.
DAFONT.COM Dafont is a website purely for the use of text. It is a site where youâ€™re able to download fonts you have created for money or for other people to download and use. Dafont helped me pick texts for my ancillary texts, it helped me pick appropriate texts for my two pieces of work. Dafont is also good because it has different categories with themes which help you find the font for you. I decided to look under the titles 'horror' because
I am doing a horror magazine and thought I may find a good one on there. Unfortunately I found them all too predictable so decided to go for a font under the title 'eroded' because I thought this would give my magazine a quirky feel to it. I have been very familiar with this website for a few years so it was the best option for me, to use this for my text on my magazine. I think that all the fonts on Dafont stand out really well and give your work a good finish which is why I chose to use the website. BLOGGER: This website was the website that I had to upload my work onto. I had previously used this program last year, so I was a lot more experienced this time around when using it. I personally think that blogger presents your work in an orderly fashion and makes everything look well presented. It also makes it easier for other people to see your posts. Blogger is very simple to use when you get the hang of it; which leads you to do more experienced things on it. Blogger allowed me to upload pictures and videos to back up the information I had written and also produce a link between the two, to help the audience engage in my work. YOUTUBE: When completing my research and planning task, I used YouTube to research trailers. This helped me with my trailer analysis and also helped me to see what techniques they used to see if I could adapt it into our group trailer. YouTube also helped me analyze the codes and conventions that are used in the trailers. I also got to see the difference between low budget films and high budget films from the trailers. I also got to see the difference in age, some trailers that were old shared different conventions to those that were newer, and I wanted to incorporate both of these elements in ours, so it was good for this purpose as well. ISSUU: I used Issuu to convert all my word documents into a file that I would be able to upload to blogger. I used this program last year as well as I found it very helpful and it saves you having to move all of your text and pictures onto blogger, when you can just keep it as one file. VIDEO CAMERA: We used a video camera to film all of our footage on for our trailer. We used a tri-pod for still shots and hand held for disorientated shots. I had previous experience with using a video camera but I wouldn’t have said I would have been confident using one on my own. By doing this film trailer I was able to try out and learn different camera movements and angles I wouldn’t have used if I would have been on my own. I learnt how to pan and zoom at different angles to make them look effective. I would say that I am a lot more confident using a video camera than I was last year and I believe that my camera work has improved throughout filming this trailer. Some of our camera shots were unsteady and a little off focus but this is to be expected by students filming as we are inexperienced due to some people, and also because we had 0 budget to perfect this in expensive software. DIGITAL CAMERA: I used a digital camera when taking photographs of my main cover image. I have previously used a camera so this was not proven difficult for me, but indeed an easy task. If I were to do this task again I would have liked Sam (The girl on my front cover) to have worn a plain black shirt as I believe that this would have made her more scary. I would also have her looking down because I think this would add to the confusion of my horror poster. I would also have liked to try out different angles and positions to have more of a selection of photographs. MAC PC: For our trailer we all, as a group worked on it on a mac computer. I believe that most of us in the group were familiar with a Mac but never used it for a long period of time, so this gave us a good excuse too. The mac computers had various editing software’s on it such as 'premier pro' which made it more appropriate for us to use as this helped us with our trailer. It also taught me and my group the different functions on a mac, for
example how to print screen.