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How does my magazine use, develop or challenge conventions?

My magazine includes a range of codes and conventions that make the magazine
fit the genre that the content of the magazine is based on and in turn make my
magazine more attractive to my target audience. To begin, the main colours
within my magazine from the front cover through to the double page spread are
red, black and white. These colours work well together and created quite a
dramatic look, especially when mixing the conventions of the colours. The red is
the main lighting on the images, and red often connotes danger and warns a
person as it is the colour known to be on warning signs. By using lights this
colour in the images I feel it created a powerful image of the main band, Exhibit,
who were an alternative band. By making their main theme colour red, it also
attracts the explorers and thrill seekers groups who want to try new bands and
an alternative music source rather than the main stream pop bands we hear
about. Also, by making my magazine a festival edition, those with more
adventurous personalities tend to visit the festivals and therefore will like my
magazine. However, as I have included a well-known name such as Ed Sheeran
on the cover, I feel like this encourages a wider range of people to read my
magazine, and therefore challenges the conventions as the magazine has been
opened up.
The colour black is a stereotype of dark, maybe heavy metal and serious music,
and often can have connotations of being quite sleek, which would be a pulling
factor to many people. However, the masthead is in a very grungy font with
sections missing out of the letters making it worn down, creating a rugged and
messy look opposite to the sleek connotations. Also, using black boxes around
white text also makes the information feel bold and takes the attention to the
information which is the main cover story and the skyline, highlighting the
special edition magazine. The colour white has the connotation of innocence and
purity, and also contrasts well against red and black. The colour white challenges
the conventions of the magazine as it appears quite strong and powerful,
however the white insinuates how the magazine can be suitable for a wider
target audience, and includes the key information such as all of the cover lines,
which as

How does my magazine represent social groups?

My magazine represents the stereotypical middle and working class, who enjoy
their music however take it further by attending gigs and concerts. The
magazine looks professional and neat, however some of the typography and
layouts may not be seen as clean, and therefore not attract the upper class. This
is because the fonts, especially such as my masthead font is as previously
mentioned quite grungy and dirty looking with areas missing, almost like a spray
paint look. Also, the models I used arent dressed in upper class clothes and are
instead in quite casual t-shirts, jumpers and jeans. I feel I represent from ages
17-26 as this is the ages that tend to enjoy a festival environment and are the
most likely to gain the most use out of festival information that is included within
the magazine. Also, this is an age of exploration and therefore this age group are
the most likely to want to try new music genres from usual and also new, up and
coming bands that they havent heard of. My magazine represents males and
females equally, as there are no dominant features which are specifically
targeted at either gender.

What kind of institution might distribute my magazine?

There are many magazine publishing companies in the UK, and one of the main
and most popular with a wide range of magazines for all target audiences is
Bauer Publications. Bauer publications would distribute my magazine, as they are
a publishing company with numerous popular magazines that they can easily
advertise and sell. They publish magazines such as Kerrang!, Heat and TV
Choice. It would need to be such a company as otherwise they may not be able
to promote the new magazine as much as needed. Also, as they have many
other music magazines I think the genre of the magazine would fit in well with
more of a music sub-group.
Who is the target audience?
From the start I wanted my target audience to be broad, as music is very open
minded and all kinds of people from different social, ethnic and age groups all
like music. In my mind, the main target group was more towards teenagers and
young adults from 17-26, however this can stretch with people's likes and
dislikes. The socio-economic grouping my magazine is aimed at mainly is from D
to group E. These go from Skilled and Unskilled manual workers to the
unemployed such as students. The genre of my magazine was music and festival
themed which is a very broad spectrum of music. I focussed mainly on V
Festival which is pop mainly however has alternative, dance and indie music
also. My main featured band were an alternative band which would attract a
wider range of people than just the stereotype of v fest. Therefore, the
psychographic groups that my magazine is aimed at is Mainstreamers who seek
security with charts music, explorers who want to find new artists, reformers who
want new music they can connect to, lads and ladettes who make up the festival
atmosphere and then Bohemian Main Pots. The geo demographics of the people
who attend the festivals are mainly going to come from lower class areas and
live in flats or student accommodation because of the main target audience
being students. However, there may be some upper class people depending on
their music taste and their culture.

How did you attract/address the audience?

For a music magazine, especially a festival magazine I felt that the language
register should be very informal also as my magazine is aimed at the socio
economic groups D and E, containing students and unskilled manual workers.
This meant simple explanations and words that make the information accessible
to a lot of people, all who enjoy music. The informality also makes it suitable for
teenagers and students who do not want to read formal magazines, stereotypes
being classical and traditional music, which are more high culture activities.
Linking back to a festival, a festival is an incredibly informal place which makes
the language register so suitable. The text and articles address the audience in a
friendly manner which encourages participation in gigs, festivals and the general
appreciation of music. The tones and language choices are very positive making
the magazine enjoyable to read and almost uplifting as many people turn to
music as a form of escape. Also, the themes with bright and bold colour schemes
attract the target audience as it is presented as an exciting source of
information. The typography i used was also informal, for example in the
masthead there are sections missing from the letters giving a worn down, grungy
almost spray painted effect, creating quite an upbeat and unique atmosphere for
explorers especially.

What have you learnt about technologies?

While producing my magazine I have learnt a lot of information about different
production programs and softwares which really enhance the final product.
Firstly, using photo shops wide range of tools to improve images. To start, using
the basic tools such as the contrast and brightness makes small tweaks that
sometimes need doing despite an almost perfect image, in order to show the
image in its best form when printed larger in a high quality. These can also be
changed to fit a theme, if the theme is darker the brightness can be reduced to
create continuity throughout the magazine and vice versa. I also used photoshop
to layer my masthead and image for my front cover. I used layers along with the
eraser tool to make the text go around the hair strands that showed due to the
image being high quality. By doing this, it resulted in a 3D appearing image
which showed care and a professional looking front cover. I also used tools to cut
out the main image and background and then layer them, to use black and white
and a colour pop effect to really draw the attention to the image and the reason
the image is there.

I also used InDesign to put all of the magazine together. This programme allows
for different page sizes, layouts for different projects and more in order to create
an outstanding final product. On this programme I learnt a lot about composition
and how to place and re-arrange objects on the screen in the right place. I used
colour swatching tools in order to create the right theme for the genre of my
music also. From this, I also learnt how to download fonts and use them within
the programme to create the best design.
I have learnt how technologies can also make a product distribute further and
engage the audience a lot more. Releasing an app that contains the magazine's
content as well as competitions and games can increase talk about the magazine
and the content, and it also makes it even more accessible for people to read as
they do not have to carry a paper copy around of the magazine and instead it
can be accessed from anywhere.

What do you feel you have learnt from preliminary to main?

From the preliminary task, I feel I learns things such as basic planning and
organisation. The planning side was very important as it meant I could organise
my thoughts into things such as visual posters and mood boards which created
the basis of my magazine. Also, in the preliminary task the analysis of previous
publications provided me with a wide range of information and industry
knowledge to make well informed decisions. I learnt how the most successful
magazines layout their pages in order to make them reader friendly, as well as
utilising the space the most appropriately.
Moving on to the main task, I feel like I really learnt how to use lighting for a
start. The lighting was very important when taking my photographs to use in my
magazine, and as there had to be indoor and outdoor shots and lighting.
Therefore, inside I had to use studio lights to make well lit and high quality
photos. I found the right areas to place the lights as well as deciding on the
filters in front of the lights to change the tone of the light.
Another area I felt I learnt a lot about was photo shop. Having to create
photographs for a specific task as opposed to just re touching a photo meant the
photo could be adjusted to a specific theme. This meant the brightness and
contrast as well as colour balance was more specific. Learning how to re-touch
images for blemishes or imperfections was important, especially for close up
headshots however I did not want to make them appear false, just to correct
certain areas. I also learnt how to layer images and how this could be used to
make the image unique such as making the focal point in colour yet the
background black and white. Even with my masthead, I added the text in photo
shop so that I could arrange it around the strands of hair that were picked up as
it was such a high quality image, which made my magazine a higher quality
product. I feel all small things that I learnt all collected together in order to
create a professional and sleek looking final piece.
The final area that I learnt things in from preliminary to main was the final
composition of the magazine in InDesign. I already knew the basics on how to
insert text and how to place images and create shapes etc, but putting all of
these together means all of these smaller areas have to be correct to make sure
the final product will be a high quality. I learnt how to make boxes transparent for
text, how to capitalise letters at the beginning of text and use columns just as a
few. I finally learnt how to export the final magazine in order for use and viewing
on multiple platforms.