Friday, 5 March 2010

Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?

My planning and preparation was an extremely important element in the production of my magazine because I researched what my magazine would need to be successful and laid out what I needed to accomplish carefully. Drafting was also important as it allowed me to set out how I was going to organize my production before hand. Organizing my time was also imporatant as it meant that I would not get overwhelmed with work and end up rushing certain parts, I managed to keep to my schedule and not hand in work overdue.

I was not previously experienced in photography however I feel I did an acceptable job as my shots were all clear, good quality and displayed the images the way I had first intended them to. I chose to shoot my photographs from upwards so as to give the subject a feeling of power and toughness which is a common characteristic of a lot of hip-hop/grime artists. The costume was just casual, urban style clothing with a hoody and cap etc, which is relatable to my target audience. I also had my model look quite casual with a slight bit of aggression which reflects the aggressive nature of grime music as well as the aggressive content of the article, which is also a common convention of hip-hop magazines. I made sure to shoot my pictures on a plain white background so that it looked professional.

The influence for my magazine came from a lot of other magazines such as hip-hop magazines like The Source and XXL, I also took influence from rock music magazines such as Kerrang! as it has a non-mainstream, "underground" style that I wanted to show in my magazine as Grime is a lesser-known non-mainstream genre and this sort of style would be appealing to my target audience who have a strong focus on things considered as "cool". I tried to make my layout exciting with the fonts and the way I organised the different parts of the page.

I had not had a lot of experience with photoshop and Quark Express before I created my magazine. I had created a student magazine front cover with a partner which was my only prior experience with photoshop. I found that this helped me adapt to the program and I became more proficient with it as I worked on my magazine.

My audience research gave me a great understanding of what things would appeal to my target audience for example when I asked a member of my target audience what he would like to see in a grime magazine he said that he would want it to be real and up to date with new music that is not just mainstream. I made sure to let this influence my final product. He also commented that he would like to see other subjects such as film and video games included in the magazine so I also included this. Before I modified any of my magazine I made sure to consider how the target audience would react to this change before I made it.

The biggest thing I have learnt from undertaking this project is that organization is key to creating a successful publication and that target audience must always be carefully studied and evaluated and must always be thought about carefully when producing a product.

What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?

The production of my media product was made a lot easier by the use of new computer based technologies such as photoshop and quark express. I was not before experienced with these programs however through my use of them I became a lot more proficient and feel I now have a good understanding of how they work. I used a DSLR (digital single lens reflex) camera to take my pictures which made my photographs look very professional as the quality was excellent, it was also a lot easier to get decent pictures as the large memory of the SD card meant that I could take many pictures and choose the best one. Photoshop is a great program for magazine production as it allows people who may not be experienced with magazine production to make their work look professional. Also Quark Express allows people to easily organise the page so that it resembles a professional publication.

Blogging is an excellent way to present my work because it is easy to access as it is not stored on one computer but on a website so I could work on my media even when not at home or at college, it also means that my teacher could keep track of how my work was coming along as I did it. Putting my work on a blog also meant that I could utilise resources such as youtube, embedding videos into my various peices of work and also allowed me to import my own saved pictures onto the blog, illustrating my points better than if I had just used text. The use of blogs also meant that it was easy for me to look back over my other pieces of work and keep a track of what I had done. The use of new technologies with the production of my media projects has helped me greatly to present my work in a clear and coherent way.

Thursday, 4 March 2010

How did you attract/address your audience?

I addressed my audience in a mostly informal way as this is the writing style that appeals to young people as formal styles are seen as boring and a formal style would not fit the subject matter of hip-hop music because hip-hop music uses lots of slang and has a straight to the point mentality. For example below are some sample lyrics taken from some of the featured artists songs.

"Still, I'm looking for the perfect view
The way I see it, that's right next to you
I know you've probably heard it before but still
I love it when you flex like that for real"
-Dizee Rascal's "Dance Wiv Me"

"big bar writer
calm, not hyper
grew up on dragonball-z
and street fighter
BMX rider
ga'll dem creeper
full time mic man
part time grinder
if u dnt like me i dont like u neiva"
-Chipmunk's "Who Are You?"

I did not use a lot of slang because wanted to keep it accesible to people who may not be as faimiliar with hip-hop culture as a lot of fans of hip-hop music are also fans of other styles of music such as pop and r&b. I also included some american hip-hop artists such as Lil' Wayne but kept the focus on British artists.

I feel I succeeded in appealling to my target demographic as when I showed to some 15, 17 and 16 year olds they said that it looked appealling and was instantly recognisable as Grime magazine. They all agreed that it looked cool and authentic. The males found it more appealling than the female which is what I expected by the way I had organised the magazine. Everyone who read the magazine had a preferred reading except for one person had an oppositional reading to the part in which the AzA made negative comments towards Chipmunk. When I showed my mother she also had an opositional reading awell s an Aberrant reading as she did not fully understand the slang I had used, I expectd this as she is not my target demographic. The people in my target audience found the writing style and the visual aesthetic pleasurable. Overrall my target audience reacted positivley to my magazine and I was satified with the reactions.

Who would be the audience for your media product?

The audience for my magazine is 16-20 year old males. They will be casually dressed with Fred Perry, Bape and Nike clothing. With hoodies, jeans and tracksuit trousers and expensive trainers. They will be very concerned with keeping up with the latest fashions and music that is popular with teens. Most will be students at secondary school or college or if not they will be unemployed or D or E on the Jicnar scale (lowest grade workers, semi/unskilled manual workers). The psychographics of my audience is Underacheivers and Radicals. They're social values are Materialists. They will enjoy mostly grime and american hip-hop however they will also enjoy R&B and some pop artists. They will spend a lot of spare time on facebook and playing video games such as Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto. They will enjoy mostly action movies and comedies such as The Bourne Identity and Pineapple Express, they will also enjoy urban movies such as Kidulthood and 8 Mile as they will feel that they can relate. They will like to socialise, go out on the weekend drinking and partying, putting fun before work. They will have an open mind to things such as drugs.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Double page spread

What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why?

My magazine would be distributed by a smaller distribution company such as MMC this will give it a feeling of being less mainstream. It will be sold in supermarkets as well as places that grime music fans are likely to shop such as music shops like HMV. I would have my magazine have a strong online presence as this is a key way of contacting the target audience. I would have GrimeNation have it's own website with regularly updating blogs as well as it's own Youtube channel that would update with video interviews with artists, behind the scenes videos, live performances and music videos. I would also have my magazine's own Facebook, Twitter, Myspace etc. accounts so that fans could contact the writers and are reminded of the magazine when they update. This youtube channel is similar to what I imagined for GrimeNation:

Viral marketing would be a very important element to the marketing of my magazine. Many other magazines utilise the method of internet distribution such as the source:

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

How does your media product represent particular social groups?

Before I created my magazine my target audience was 16-19 year old males from a middle class background and it has stayed relatively the same. They would have to have a small income to be able to afford the £2.75 price of the magazine. The fonts and layout of the magazine appeal to young men as it is seen as a non-mainstream, underground type magazine which is seen by many as "cool". The artist on the front cover is a young male teenager that the audience can relate to who is also representing male youth fashion with his casual style of hoody and t-shirt and earphones inside the magazine. This representation fits dominant ideology of young males with it's fashion however the content of the interview might not fit dominant ideology as it is quite oppositional to traditional stereotypes of young people.They will be students at high school or college, if not they may be unemployed or be D or E on the Jicnar scale (lowest grade workers, semi/unskilled manual workers) as they will be very young and new to the world of work after having recently finished with secondary school. The psychographics of my audience is Underacheivers and Radicals. They're social values are Materialists.