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Thursday, 8 October 2009

Reflective Summary of Year 12

In Year 12 I produced a music magazine. It included:
- a front cover
- a contents page
- and a 2 page article spread
aimed at a young female audience between 16-25.

From this, I have learnt new skills and grown more confident working with the school's equipment and they're software such as Photoshop.

Before I created my music magazine, I didn't realise how much planning that would have to be involved. I know now that it is essential to do this, as it helps a great deal. Handing out Questionnaire's to the public, taking various photographs in different locations at different angles and shots, design ideas and analysing other established magazines is very important and I found doing this benefited me a lot.

Handing out Questionnaire's helped me to receive feedback and opinions relevant to my project. This was important as I wanted to know what people like to see on a music magazine (colours, images, stories) and what captures their attention and persuades them to purchase it.

The skills I gained were printing, photography and written theory. Also editing and cropping of images in Photoshop as well as creating style fonts. The manipulating and cropping of images, where I could make them smaller or enlarge them. Using different font styles; editing the size and colour, while also making it look realistic and at a high standard. I used a lot of colour throughout my product and began to change the tone, creating various effects. I used a digital camera to take photographs, in different sized shots and angles, while also using a tripod to maintain good focus. I found that having the camera in focus is when you receive a high quality image, making it look very professional. Cutting the images out, making sure that they were tidy and at a high standard was very important. This year, I want to develop these skills, along with learning how to video and edit the footage I have recorded.

My music magazine was aimed at a young female audience between 16-25, based on the genre pop and therefore I had to use a relative colour scheme which was quite feminine. I analysed various music magazines; their front cover and contents page and often an article page, looking at the typical conventions and connotations that were present, e.g. the barcode, date and the magazine's website. The majority of them all followed the typical convention of traditional types of artists on the front cover, who were mainly young, attractive women with slim/slender figures, with their lips slightly parted, showing a glimpse of their white teeth; while their hair was blown back. According to theorist Marjorie Ferguson (1980) this is known as the Chocolate Box. Other poses would include Invitational where there would be emphasis on the eyes with them having a mystery mood or the Super-Smiler where they would have a full face, wide open toothy smile with a ‘look at me’ mood or aggressive, demanding hard sell approach, at various shots such as medium close up or close up from a low angle etc.

From looking at various genre of magazines it taught me the important ways of targeting magazines; what looks eye catching and stands out, what makes a good colour scheme, the layout of the magazine and how it should be positioned. I didn't want a magazine to be too condensed together where the text is not very clear to read while at the same time you want a magazine that has enough text positioned in columns with the same width and height that has a simple layout and is clear to read, with high quality images. Careful research enabled me to target my product more accurately.

If I were to do this project again, I would improve on my time. Last year I felt as though I didn't give myself enough time on certain parts of the project, one of which was the location of my photographs. These were only took in a house or inside of school, when instead they could have been taken at well established landmarks on Tyneside, with a higher decorative background such as the Quayside. This would have made the magazine look a lot more professional and eye catching. Also, the quality wasn't the best and I feel as though I could have captured the photographs at a much higher standard without becoming blurred.

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