My name is Thakshana Yogeswaran and I am a media student at The Latymer School. My candidate number is 9179.

I am working in Group 3 with Gift Emesi (9044), Angela Chen (9025) and Monica Aghadiuno (9365)

In order to view my work please click on the 3 labels on the right named A2 Research and Planning, A2 Construction and A2 evaluation.

Group 3 - Music Video

Inside Panels

Inside Panels
Our Digipack, top left - back, top right - front, bottom left - inside panel, bottom right - inside panel (CD)
This is a link to our website, click the image above to enter our site

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Evaluation Q1: In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

My three media products use, develop and challenge forms and conventions of real media products in a variety of different ways, which I will be discussing in detail throughout this post.

Music Video

Band Identity

Simon Frith

In Simon Frith's theory, he believed that all music videos can be split into three different types of music videos:

We adhere to his theory as our music video falls under the two categories of narrative and performance, similar to other pop/r&b videos. 


Genre Conventions

Similar music videos such as Fifth Harmony's 'Boss' and The Saturday's 'Higher' show how performance is used in a typical girl band pop music video. There is a variety of dance moves as well as lip syncing. This also fits in with Andrew Goodwin's theory that music videos demonstrate genre characteristics, and one of the main characteristic he found was that typical girl band videos include dance performance. We have therefore, used this convention.

Above is a snippet from our video
showcasing lip syncing and a dance routine. 

Another genre convention we follow is fast-paced, disjointed editing. An editing technique that is commonly used in many music videos. I have provided an example of Pia Mia's 'Do it Again' where the editing is so fast it's almost garish for the audience but still works in context of the video.
I have also added an example of this technique used in our music video.

Challenging Goodwin

However, we also use, and to some extent challenge, one of Goodwin's conventions about 'the voyeuristic treatment of the female body'. This is a convention that is followed by many mainstream pop/r&b music videos where women are often sexualised and are used as 'visual props' throughout the video to attract the 'male gaze' and make it appeal more to their male audiences.

A really controversial example of this in recent times is Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines'. The video is basically a lot of scantily clad women dancing around him in a sexual nature. There was also a version of the video released on Vevo where the girl was actually topless as opposed to the censored, milder version that was uploaded onto YouTube.

Extract from article about the controversial nature of the song. 
Even the meaning of the song was interpreted in many different ways and it received really negative feedback due to the connotations of 'rape'. An article released by The Guardian describes how certain student unions had to ban the song due to the implied connotations. This again, reinstates the point that music videos can be interpreted and maybe even misinterpreted in many different ways. 

We adhere to this theory in the sense that we want the audience to watch the girls, however, in our music video, we purposely tried to avoid sexualising the girls in the band and broke a common convention by doing so. Instead, we tried to spread a positive message. One of the most important messages we wanted to convey through this music video is female empowerment.  Therefore, we have sections in the music video, like the bit where the guys are serving us wine, which explicitly connotes that the female is in control. 


One of the biggest pop music videos that came out in 2015 was Taylor Swift's 'Blank Space'. This video has mainly narrative in it and has racked up over one billion views! The video is visually enticing with the audience hooked on the storyline and this video, similar to ours, in a way showcases a dominant female character. 

We also have four narrative sections in our music video - one for each girl, showing each of them with their love interest. However, again, the girls are shown to have more power over the guys as they are controlling their every action, eg. pushing him away, pulling him in, placing a hat on his head etc. 


In the narrative sections we also use Carol Venallis' theory that 'actions are not necessarily completed - they maybe disrupted or interrupted in some way', since the narrative sections are intercut with the performance sections. Also certain actions throughout the music video aren't completed on camera so the audience can only assume what happens next. A good example of this kind of music video is Taylor Swift's 'Out of the Woods'. The narrative in this video is really disjointed and fragmented as it switches between scenes and locations and there are also jumps in time in this video which hooks the audience in. 

Similarly, in our music video, the audience don't really know anything about the guys in the video and apart from the few seconds that they are on screen with us, the audience can only assume the relationship between us and them and therefore fill in the gaps as to what happens once they walk off screen. One example in the video is through Angela's narrative section as she leads Mario off into the distance, the audience can only assume what happens next as it is never explicitly revealed. 


Other conventions that we used and developed in our music video include Andrew Goodwin's theory that there is a relationship between the lyrics and the visual and the need for a lot of close-up of the artist (visual hooks).

Lyrics and Visuals

We drew a lot of inspiration from certain lyrics in the song to come up with ideas for our music video. One of the key themes that we had was the colour red, which we derived from the title of the song 'Red Planet'. I have included a few examples of the red imagery that we used on the right. We also had a consistent theme of red flashes throughout the music video.

Music video - red flashes example

There are also certain lines in the song which connote love and passion, such as, 'my heart beats', 'for you and I to explore things', 'the way you make me feel, I can never explain' etc.

We therefore chose to include the male characters as our love interests in order to be able to connote the theme of love better. We also used four heart-shaped, red balloons throughout the music video, but the use of it was significant during one line in particular (my heart beats), as it is a play on the words as the lyrics are talking about an actual heart metaphorically, but we used plastic balloons, as opposed to representing a fast heart beat in a more realistic manner in order to restrict the amount of power/control a guy can have on our emotions.

Visual Hooks - Beauty Shots

Beauty shots are a common feature that occur in a lot of pop/r&b videos, as shown below with Little Mix's 'Move' and we have also used this convention in our own video.

Little Mix - Move, beauty shots
D4MES beauty shots

Editing to the beat

Another convention that we used in our music video is Carol Vernallis' theory that 'editing matches musical phrases or beat'. We used this quite a lot in our music video as our song has quite a strong beat and since we wanted it to be non-linear with fast-paced editing, most of the cuts match up to when the beat changes.

An example from very early on in the video is when my solo starts and the word 'I' is repeated quite a few times to match the beat of the song so we edited the video to also match this by adding the effect that changes every time there is a new 'I'.

Album Digipak

We adhered to most album conventions and I have shown this in more detail in the Prezi below:


We have adhered to most of the conventions of an artist website by creating a website which is interactive and works in synergy with the rest of the campaign. The website is essentially the 'hub' of the whole campaign so it must connect everything together and promote the artist and provide many purchasing opportunities for the audience as in essence this is why a record label subsidises artists', to make money.

 There is also another factor that we must take into consideration when considering artist websites, which is participatory culture, an idea formed by Henry Jenkins. The audience need to be able to interact with the website in more ways than just looking at visuals or video, they need to be able to physically do something that makes them more connected to the website and the artist. Especially now, since the recent proliferation of web 2.0 and technologically converged devices, like the smartphone, the need is more of a necessity if you want to create a successful marketing campaign.

Similar to One Direction's landing page, we decided to have one for our own website as it straight away promotes not only the music video and the band, but encourages the audience to buy the album. It's making it easy for the audience to buy into us as a band.  Below I have shown the different interactive features present on the landing page alone.

I have made an annotated screen recording showing the interactive and purchasing opportunities in Fifth Harmony's website, the annotations are clearer if you full-screen the video. I have also included a key which shows what the different coloured annotations stand for;

I have also made an annotated YouTube video showing all the purchasing and interactive opportunities that are prevalent in our own website.


Evaluation Q2: How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?

We created our main product, the music video, and the ancillary texts, the digipak and website, with the intentions of creating a synergistic marketing campaign which successfully markets the band's identity and effectively sell our products to the target audience.

Band Identity

According to Richard Dyer's Star Theory; 

  • 'Stars are constructed, artificial images, similar to any fictional construction - even if they are represented as 'real' people or authentic musicians'
  • 'Stars are manufactured by the music industry to serve a purpose - to make money out of audiences, who respond to various element's of a star's persona by spending their money'
  • 'Stars represent shared cultural values and attitudes and promote a certain ideology'
  • 'Stars can provide audiences with a focus of ideas of 'what people are supposed to be like''
We used his theory throughout this project to create a star image for our band through the use of costumes, personalities and also the three media texts as we felt that a band identity was vital for our campaign to be effective. 

I looked at Jess Glynne's marketing campaign to draw inspiration for our own marketing campaign. She had a really successful and synergistic campaign. I have analysed it in detail below:

Although all three products stand to promote a different product individually, they have to work together and be synergistic in order to promote the artist and to persuade people to dedicate their time and money into it. Below I have embedded a Padlet showing synergy across our own marketing campaign:

Evaluation Q3: What have you learned from your audience feedback?

We used various different ,methods to obtain audience feedback on all three of our product, ranging from an anonymous survey on SurveyMonkey, to getting written feedback through the use of carefully tailored questions.

Our Target Audience

Our primary target audience is fans of pop and r&b music as this is the dominant genres in the song that we chose to do and also because a mainstream girl band stereotypically produce music of that genre.

Our secondary target audience are the younger generation, ages ranging from 16-25 as our band message would be more relatable to them and also the girls in the band are either 18/19 years of age which again makes it more relatable to young adults.

I'd say the appeal of our band is also skewed more towards females as we are a girlband representing friendship and female empowerment. Topics that may not appeal as much to the male audience.

Appealing to our audience

We used researchers Bulmer and Katz' theory that individuals may choose and use a text for the following reasons - this became known as 'uses and gratifications':

  • Diversion - fun, entertainment, escape from everyday problems and routine

Stereotypically, music videos are said to engage the audience in a different way to traditional media platforms such as film and TV. They use elements like fast paced, discontinuous editing to hook the audience in and they have to be visually enticing for the audience to carry on watching it.

We included things like fast-paced, non liner editing styles, choreography, video effects and also the narrative to appeal to our audience and provide a short period of entertainment for them.

  • Personal Relationships - using the media for emotional and other interaction (eg substituting music videos for reality) 

The interactive features on the website conforms to this idea of creating personal relationships through different texts.

Also in terms of substituting music videos for reality - our music video provides an insight into a group of really close knit friends who started off as best friends and ended up being signed a label and making music, their dreams are now reality. The audience can use as us examples to aspire to have a group of close friends and social interaction is the biggest thing that we can provide for them.

  • Personal Identity - finding yourself reflected in texts, learning behaviour and values from texts

Each girl in the band has a slightly different character trait that is specific and unique to them so the audience have four different opportunities to connect with whichever member of the band they have the most in common with.

  • Surveillance - getting information from the texts
This is more prevalent in our website than the other two texts. The website provides audience with things like institutional information, upcoming events, tours, personalised information about the girls and also BTS images.

This is the anonymous survey that we set up on SurveyMonkey
What I learned from the SurveyMonkey survey:
  • 82% of the responses received were from female audience members suggesting that they engaged with the video more
  • 90% of the responses were able to identify the genre of the music video correctly showcasing that we successfully bought across the genre of the music using the video
  • Popular criticism's about the video were:
    - 'the flashy effects were a bit too prolonged and ongoing which was quite garish to watch'
    - 'some of the editing was a bit too fast-paced which meant we couldn't actually register the action'
  • Popular compliments about the video were:
    - 'the dance choreography was really well put together'
    - 'the band actually looked like a band and they all complimented each other'
    - 'the video was fun and exciting to watch - it had me gripped from the very beginning'

Overall, from the online survey, I feel like most of the people who watched the video, really liked it and they had a few pointers which would've made a huge difference if we had time to go back after hearing this feedback to change it in order to suit the needs of the audience better.
A common comment that we came across a lot, was the comment about there maybe being too many flashy effects and that maybe reduce the number of flashes just to make it a bit more easier on the eye.


As well as doing the online survey, we also interviewed a variety of people from different genders and ages with six questions:

a) What did you think of the music video overall? You're overall opinion on it would be..?

b) Can you suggest any improvements/anything that you didn't like about the video?

c) Can you guess the genre of the video?

d) What would you rate the music video overall out of 10?

e) What are your comments about the album digipak and the band website?

f) If you saw all three elements on completely separate occasions, would  you be able to identify that they are from the same marketing campaign?

Below are four different peoples answers to the questions above:

Evaluation Q4: How did you use new media technologies in the construction, research and planning and evaluation stages?

We used a variety of new media technologies throughout the whole project which enabled us to produce all three media texts to a very high standard. It enabled us to access information easily for the research and planning stages and it also made communicating with each other a lot easier. The recent proliferation of digital hardware and software really aided us in the process as well.

Research and Planning

Web 2.0

Google - During the research and planning stages of this project, we could enter a search into Google and it will give us millions of related results in a matter of seconds. This enabled us to research into things like pop music, artist identity, genre etc really easily. We also used Google Images to search for costume inspiration, and again we were met with loads of results which we did use to come up with our final outfits.

YouTube -

We also took advantage of YouTube during this process as we created a playlist where any of us could add songs/music videos that we found inspirational and then we could all access it from anywhere and they'd all be in one place as well. YouTube is a free video platform that we found useful throughout the duration of the project but especially useful in the beginning stages where we were coming up with ideas and forming our own music video.

Facebook -

We also set up a Group on Facebook where we could post videos, messages and so on for the rest of the group to see. Again, this enabled us to easily communicate with each other and we would stay in touch even out of school hours and discuss the project and the things we wanted to achieve each week.

Mobile Phones

All of the members in the group had a smart phone which meant we could take full advantage of these technologically converged devices to aid our project. Smartphones have a lot of features integrated within them such as social media apps, web 2.0, a camera and so on, all of which we used throughout the project.

WhatsApp - We set up a group chat on WhatsApp, a social media app that we all constantly use meaning we could reach each other really easily to discuss anything relating to the project. We could also send pictures, videos and voice notes through this app. We used WhatsApp to discuss important details about our project and we also used it to keep our other actors informed about all the shoot days, what they needed to do and what they needed to wear/bring.

We also used our phones to constantly take pictures and videos documenting the process. An example is shown to the right, where Gift filmed herself dancing to our song, putting some moves together to see how they work. She then showed us for approval.


Canon 5D Mark II Camera 

This is the camera we used to film the whole music video as it had high definition video capturing capabilities. This was the first time any of us had ever operated this camera. However, once we were taught how to use this camera properly and learnt all the features it had from our media technician we were confident enough to operate the camera on our own. The camera also allowed us to manually adjust a lot of settings such as white balance, aperture and brightness and contrast which meant we were able to individually tailor each individual shot to achieve the best possible outcome. However, one problem we faced with this camera was manually focusing it in the shots where the camera was moving, but we came across this problem quite early on during the test shoot week so we were aware of it and made sure the shots were focused in our real shoot. Even with caution, this issue lead to a few shots having to be retaken multiple times.
I have included pictures showing me operating the Canon 5D Mark II camera.

Leapfrog Lighting Desk, Monitor and Arri 1000K Lighting Rig - 

Similar to the camera, we were taught how to operate the lighting desk and the lights by the media technician as we had never used any of it before. The lighting desk and the monitor controlled all the lights on the lighting rig and any colour could be achieved using the coloured filters. This helped us achieve all the colourful backdrops that we used throughout our music video. However, setting up the lights before each shoot was the most time consuming part of every shoot. Even though all our lighting set-ups were pre-set and saved onto the monitor, the positioning of the lights had to be changed to suit each individual set up that we wanted in order to achieve the most desirable lighting for each shot.

Adobe Premiere Pro -

We were all quite confident in using this software as we had previously used it when editing our AS coursework. We used similar techniques that we learnt previously but then we also researched and added some cool new effects. Premiere Pro was a really effective editing software as everything was easy to understand and also we could create multiple video and audio layers on one sequence which helped us edit in the non-linear fashion that a music video is edited and also came in useful when adding the effects. A visual of the multiple video and audio layers is shown above.

We used basic tools such as the position/motion tool to position each shot and zoom into it if necessary, the crop tool to crop shots, and we also used the opacity tool to either increase/decrease opacity where necessary.                                                                                                                               We also used other basic tools such as cross dissolve, horizontal/vertical flip and procamp for the grading process.

These are the different effects we used from Premiere Pro to get our basic music video cut and edited together. 

Adobe Photoshop -

Web 2.0 -



Prezi was an online web tool that I used throughout my evaluation to present my work in a more interactive and visual way. It was a really effective method of presenting information as it could be embedded into my blog, viewed in full screen and you can also add pictures and videos to it. However, one thing you couldn't add were GIFs, this was quite disappointing as this is one of the web tools that I love using the most.

Padlet -

Padlet is another web tool that I used to present my evaluation in a more visually appealing way as opposed to block text. The software allowed me to add different sections and also add pictures/videos to it as well. However, initially I found it very difficult to use as there was little guidance as to what to do, but eventually I figured it out and after that it was simple to use and helped make my blog look a lot more appealing.

Survey Monkey -

We used this online survey generator to collect some audience feedback for our music video and website. This was an anonymous survey and we collected some really good feedback and answers using it. It was also very easy and straightforward to use.

Imgflip -

Imgflip is a web tool that I used to create the GIFs that you see throughout my blog. You can either convert certain parts of a YouTube video into a GIF or you can turn images into a GIF. Either way, I found this site very useful throughout the whole project, especially the evaluation.

Blogger -

This is the software I used to present all my answers. I found this site very effective as I could embed many different web tools, pictures and videos to make my blog visually attractive and also present all my answers in a nice way. However, formatting on blogger was always something I struggled with as sometimes, the formatting would look good whilst you're editing your blog post but once you publish it, it changes making it look quite bad and unorganised.