POP MOODBOARD Through my research of the genre pop, I have found that the well known artists who fit into this category usually follow the modern conventions: trendy revealing costumes, bright contrasting colours, sexual body language and usually eye level shots. There is a consistent use of this throughout music videos, album covers and magazine adverts. Many popular artists use these conventions as a way to appeal to their target audience: the mainstreamers. I also found that despite these conventions for the pop genre, some artists don’t follow them. Some examples of these artists are Adele, Mika and We The Kings. It is clear throughout their albums that they have done that this statement is true. It is clear that a large majority of the genres artists consists of young females. This means that they typically sexualise their own bodies as a way to look desirable to the audience. Their bodies are clearly accentuated through the types of costumes they wear which shows off their breasts and legs. An example of this can be found in Demi Lovato’s ‘Sorry Not Sorry’ music video. Laura Mulvey would support with her theory on the ‘Male Gaze’. Her theory outlines that the females in the media are objectified for the male audiences preference. As many artists in the genre are female, they have to conform to this set image of being ‘attractive’. Although, the females may also want to show off their attractiveness to young females, acting as a type of role model for them to look up to. This is found to be the case in both music videos, digipacks and magazine adverts. As shown throughout the many examples, the artist is shown as being serious and desirable not only through their facial expressions but through their revealing costumes and body language. It can be argued that there is also a ‘Female Gaze’ where the males are sexualised as well which is shown in ‘Work’ by Fifth Harmony. There is also a consistent use of bright colours use, particularly pink and blue, in music videos and album covers which connotes the theme of a party or a sexual nature, depending on the location. This colouring in prominent in Demi Lovato’s ‘Sorry Not Sorry’ which is centred around a house party. Camila Cabello uses the same colour scheme in her digipack however, this contrasts the idea of a party with the theme of sexual behaviour. As seen, there is a lot of contrast and brightness used. This is a key way in which the artists make certain features stand out. Tove Stryke used this technique as a way to show off her name on the digipack cover so the audience would know that it was hers where as Charli XCX uses it to accentuate her lips making her alluring. Within pop music videos and digipacks, these conventions are obviously used and can be used along with complex editing techniques. ‘Secrets’ by The Weeknd shows complex editing throughout the music video which supports Carol Vernallis’ ‘Music Editing theory where she states that the effects in music videos make them unique stand out. The editing in this music video is unique as many pop music don’t use this type of editing and instead use quick cuts to transition shots. This carries onto digipacks as complex editing can also be used. Coldplay’s ‘Myloxyloto’ and Julie Bergan’s ‘All Hours’ show this in different ways. This then follows onto magazine adverts. Although, complex editing may not be used to make the article seem more professional, there is the thorough use of the typical codes and conventions that are used in the genre by the artist. Billboard is known for featuring famous music artists and examples can be found following this editing technique.
ARTIST MOODBOARD Previously, Selena Gomez has been involved with Disney, staring in ‘Wizards of Waverly Place’ which aired on the Disney Channel. After it finished, she was placed in a band called Selena Gomez and the Scene as the main singer. She started her solo career in 2012 with the debut of her first song ‘Come & Get It’ which got tenth on ‘Billboards Hot 100’ list. Since then, she has been releasing multiple singles and albums which have won her multiple awards. Throughout her career, her image has changed as a way to conform to the typical conventions of the pop genre. Within her music videos, Selena transitions between the use of a narrative and performance style, often using the two in some such as ‘Hands To Myself’ and ‘Bad Liar’. These both feature a narrative storyline while still including some shots of her singing the song. Although, most of her songs are performance based. This is common in the pop genre as many artists do this like Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj. The editing in her music videos conform to the genre as there is it ranges. Some scenes feature the use of slow motion and fast motion as well as overlays and enhanced colouring. In the music video ‘The Heart Wants What It Wants’, Selena used a grey colouring scene to indicate that the song Is upsetting while in ‘Love You Like A Love Song’, the colouring is vibrant and stands out t show that it is a cheerful, upbeat song. Her music videos use a range of camera shots and angles depending on the type of music video. For example in her ‘Bad Liar’ music video, a low angle shot is used when focusing on one of the characters while an eye level mid shot is used on her since she is lip syncing and the main focus of the music video. These is commonly used in her music videos as well as many other popular pop music artists. It is one way of representing the character as being relatable to you. Richard Dyer’s ‘Paradox of the Star’ theory is able to agree with this as it states that this is important in the media to represent the star as being relatable to draw in the target audience. Due to the audience being influenced by the artist through clothing and such, they are present in everyday life. The costumes she wears in her music videos accentuate her body. This is able to be done by through either wearing revealing costumes that show off her legs and cleavage or by wearing tight costumes. The make-up also helps as she wears dark eye make-up to look mysterious and desirable while the red lip stick shows off her lips. Laura Mulvey would state through her ‘Male Gaze’ theory that this is done as a way to draw in the male audience as this suits their needs. John Berger would further this though as he finds that not only does it draw in the male audience for their pleasure, but it also draws in the females audience since they look up to the artist. This makes them the surveyor as well as the surveyed (Men Look, Women Appear). Within her digipacks and adverts, the same image that is presented in her music videos is also shown. Not only does it suit the theme of her album and image, but it also conforms to the genre as women are presented as sexual beings within the pop genre. Overall, she conforms to the genre and is a key figure within it as many young people look up to her.
SELENA GOMEZ ‘SAME OLD LOVE’ This music video follows a performance and narrative style as it differentiates between lip syncing scenes and scenes that continue on with the storyline. Unlike most pop music videos, the colouring is dull as it connotes with the lyrics of the song which is about heartbreak. This doesn’t mean that there is no display of conventions that follow the pop genre though and her typical codes and conventions of her own music videos are clearly displayed as well. The artist is displayed as being attractive through her make-up and costume. Her dark make-up makes her attractive and alluring to the audience as it makes her eyes stand out. Although, the costume she wears is a dress that accentuates her body by showing off her cleavage and legs. This conforms to the pop genre as they rely on sexualising the female artists body. This was stated in Laura Mulveys ‘Male Gaze’ theory where she found that the media sexualises the female body as a way to draw in the male audience. She also found that there was also a ‘Female Gaze’ where the male body is sexualised instead for the females pleasure. Her body language also takes part in this as at the end of the music video, she stands in a powerful stance with her hand on her hips. Due to this, her legs are shown off even more, especially when she is moving around the stage. To enhance the image of sexualising the artist, close ups and extreme close ups are used often when showing her off. They usually focus on her feature, particularly her lips. From the multiple angles used, the viewer is able to see these features and focus on them, despite the quick cuts swiftly changing. The narrative scenes in the music video are the clear focus as a majority of the music video portray secondary characters who all have their different stories. Despite the variety in stories, these characters don’t stand out that much as they as displayed in dark coloured casual costumes shown through mid and long shots. The effect of the shots don’t allow the audience to draw attention away from the main artist in the music video as they aren’t the special ones. Due to the background having a dark colouring as well, the secondary characters blend into it. Richard Dyer’s ‘Paradox of the Star’ theory saw that this is clear throughout many pop music videos where the star is subtly shown as being special to the audience while also being relatable. This can be done through their actions and costumes that they wear. With the artist wearing a white shawl around her shoulders, she stands out against those who blend into the background. It also makes her more eye-catching and easier to recognise among the large crowds she can be seen in. Even though the music takes on a slow beat, the editing style is quite fast paced. The primary use for transitions are quick cuts which transition faster as the music video goes on. This follows the conventions of the pop genre as this is a popular transition which can easily progress the storyline of music videos. However, to make the music video more complex, there is the use of slow motion, easily seen at the very start of the music video but is still prominent throughout it. The slow motion enhances the fluidity of the artist as well as her features which make her more attractive. Carol Vernallis touched upon this when talking about ‘Music Editing’. She stated that special effects such as slow motion and fast motion are used within music videos as a way to make them unique among other music videos. Slow motion is also a special technique that the artist usually uses within her music videos for the reasons of accentuating body movement and sexualising her body to stay relevant with the pop genre.
SELENA GOMEZ ‘GOOD FOR YOU’ Good For You is a performance video that relies heavily on the sexualisation of the artist as it is a song with a sexual theme. Due to this, it makes it conventional to the pop genre where she is a popular figure. My conforming, she suits the target audience that she has gathered which consists of young teenage females. There is no narrative in her music video, though she is known for mixing between performance and narrative music videos. At the start of the music video, it is clear of the theme of the music video as well as the representation of the artist. Even though the scene is only showed for a short period of time, she is seen touching her lips, an act that can be sexualised. The scene then quickly changes to the artist laying on a couch and staring alluringly at the camera. The costume in this scene is of a pink silk robe which connects well with colouring which is connected to the pop genre. The robe though, sexualises the artists body by revealing her cleavage and legs. Costumes which do as such are largely used within the pop genre as it is conventional. Laura Mulvey found through her ‘Male Gaze’ theory that by sexualising the females body, it draws in more of a male audience as they take pleasure in such things included in music video. John Berger expanded on this with his ‘Men Look, Women Appear’ theory, saying that it’s not only men who are attracted to this imagery, but also females. This is because they look up to the famous role model since they aim to be like her and copy her looks. The sexualisation of her body is taken even further later in the music video when there are scenes of her naked within the shower. In these shots, the camera angles focus more on her facial expression instead of her body. Different camera angles also show of the artist as being sexual. The two opposing angles of a high and low angle are able to do this since in both scenes, the artist performs sexually. There is also the use of close ups and extreme close ups to accentuate her facial features and make her alluring to the audience. While this happens, she uses a direct mode of address while also acting alluring. Due to the theme of the music video heavily relying on a sexual theme, the lyrics amplify the visuals displayed. The artist presents herself as being sexual and is supported by the lyrics that talk about sexually pleasing someone. Andrew Goodwin’s theory on ‘Dancing in the Distraction Factory’ supports this as he states that the lyrics in a music video either amplify or contradict one another. These types of music videos that have connecting visuals and lyrics are preferred by a majority of the pop genres audience as found by Blumler and Katz. They came up with the theory of ‘Uses and Gratification’ where different audiences prefer different things, depending on what group they are from. The pop genre is known for having music videos and songs which sexualise females which means that a majority of music videos include a connection between them. The music video transitions change between quick cuts and a fade. The quick cut is able to change the scene to different angles focusing on the artist and show the different actions she plays out. The use of the fade splits up the music video into types of sections. It also creates a build up near the end of the music video where it is primarily used. The use of the fade makes the music video stand out against the rest of pop music videos as they typically only use quick cuts. Carol Vernallis said in her theory of ‘Music Editing’ that this change in transitions makes the music video unique and stand out. The use of the slow motion that is typically used in the artists music videos adds to this idea since many pop music videos are fast paced and don’t primarily use slow motion in most of their scenes.
My genre moodboard for media