Foundation Portfolio

Question 1:
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? Looking into my research into thriller genre conventions I found it easier to base my film on similar films. Using things like low key lighting, no dialogue and no identity to the villain adds mystery to my media product. I saved nine frames from my opening sequence and chose the main aspects that develop forms and conventions of real media products. We used the film seven as the main product that we would create a similarity to, as it does not use the identity of the killer but mostly close ups of an evil plan that will be revealed towards the end of the film. The main aspects that contribute are:
The Title of the film For the title of our film we used a black background with white writing to stand out to the audience. Dear Diary.. connotes a secret book in which the murderer can talk about all of his victims to. The book is a treasure to the antagonist as it hides all of the evil plans and evil things that they have done where nobody can find out.

Setting/Location The setting that we chose for our film was at night time in the a dark room with one light concentrating on the diary, the lighting elsewhere is dark and miserable which is similar in most thriller films as they use low key lighting.

Costumes and props The costume that we used for the murderer was a long black coat as black is the colour of evil and darkness; we dressed the victim in casual clothes as if they were a normal person living a normal life hiding no secrets. In this picture there are scissors on the table which could be a sign of danger like in most thriller films would use either a gun or something that can do harm to another person. We also used pictures and posted notes in order to make the audience feel like them murderer is planning something evil to do with other people. Camerawork and editing Most of the camera work that we used was pans and zooms to concentrate on one subject of the film. In this picture we overlapped two clips to give an exaggeration of the people that the murderer is planning to murder throughout the film. We used continuity editing like most thriller films use. We use many fades to make it seem like time was passing by but it had taken the murderer a long time to create a horrifying death for the victims just like the film seven. Title font and style For the opening credits we used the picture of someone s wrists with credit that look like they had been scratched on. These create a genre of a thriller film because it is creepy. The main title that we used was big bold writing in white on a black background to again show that the diary is a big part of the murderer s life. Story and how the opening sets it up The opening creates a sense of mystery to the audience as the identity is not shown and the murderers back is the only thing that is facing the audience. The opening also shows a book at the beginning which is a major part in the film, it is a story itself to the murderer and

the audience has already been shown it. The opening already creates a thriller genre as we are shown a murder within the first 2 minutes of the film which leave the audience wanting to watch the rest of the film. Genre and how the opening suggests it We first only see the murderer s feet and back which creates a mystery to the audience. We see the feet of a person walking into a very dark room with no lights but a light shining on one object, the diary. Not seeing the identity of the murderer creates a sense of enigma as this could mean that the murderer is hiding something very big that the audience is most likely to learn during the rest of the film. How characters are introduced The murderer is introduced as we are shown there back using scissors to cut up peoples names and cross out their faces. This could mean to the audience that they are violent and have a bad attitude to life. The first victim is introduced in casual clothes to seem like a normal young teenage boy, until he gets killed by the murderer.

Graphics/special effects/colour correction etc. We have used black and white as colour correction in our media product as it gives a sense of no emotion and a dark and gloomy atmosphere; this is common in most thriller films. Special effects that we have used includes slow motion when the victim is being killed to show how much the murderer is enjoying the action and that it is going to be a good memory of theirs.

Question 2:
How does your media product represent particular social groups?

I am comparing the character from my media product to the character called Esther in the psychological film Orphan about an orphan that plans to kill the family that have adopted her and have an evil mind. Both villains are wearing long black winter coats in order to fade into the background rather than stand out to other people. The antagonist in my film has shown her just about to murder an innocent victim, whereas, in the film orphan, Esther is shown to have set something alight and is planning her next move on how to get away with it. Similarly, their roles in the films are evil characters planning and plotting to get away with all kinds of different murders in order to get what they want. Like one another they both have little dialogue to show a sense of mystery about them to the audience, not knowing what they are going to do next. Both of the characters are similar in ways that they have has bad experiences in the past. Maybe Esther s real family abused her and possibly the villain in our opening sequence could have been bullied or tormented and are out to get the people that hurt them. The make-up that Esther is wearing is pale and unwell looking which makes her look like she has something wrong with her , or even no emotion, on the other hand our villain is not shown in the opening sequence as her identity would be kept secret until the end of the film. A prop that the murderer is holding is a long wire in order to strangle the victim with. Esther is not holding as prop but as we can see in the background, a house/tree house has been set alight which is obvious that the orphan has been involved by the small grin on her face, we can also see a child climbing down from the tree house as if she tried to burn them alive, which in

some aspect is similar to our film at the end when the diary tells the audience that the murderer had burnt the victim. This identifies my character with a social group of being an Emo which stands for emotional. They are not the typical stereotype of a teenager or child, they are not attention seeking, but they hate life and are not very religious. The society thinks about them as failures; they are not strong enough to hide their emotions, they're sensitive, shy, introverted, and often quiet. Usually, Emo kids like to express depression, confusion, and anger; all because the world fails to understand them.

Question 3
What kind of media institution might distribute your product and why?
Film Distributors promote and publicize media products to its potential audiences in order to persuade an audience to see their film or be drawn to the suspense of it in collaboration with film production that creates the film. A similar film to our two minute opening sequence would be se7en as it is a psychological thriller and the beginning has plenty of close-ups and does not once show the antagonists face throughout the whole opening sequence. I have found the UK theatrical distributor for this film and also saved movie poster of different films that they have distributed, this company is called The Entertainment Film Distributors , who have also distributed thriller movies such as Scream and The Texas Chain Saw Massacre who both do not include the antagonists identity. For my film I would use the Entertainment Film distributors as they are UK based which is where my film is going to be based. They distribute theatrical releases, and DVD releases. They have been successful in the past when releasing films into the United States. They have released a wide range of thriller movies which means that they know how to attract an audience. With the advertising of scream and Texas chain saw massacre they both have a similar product, with writing in bold down the bottom and a picture of a masked antagonist which has obviously attracted audiences to these films in the past and this would be essential to my film. Releasing popular films in the past such as Lord of the rings has led them to have a very high financial credibility, which could lead to a vast amount of advertising.

Question 4
Who would be the audience for your media product?
The target audience for my media product is represented by Jamie, a teenage male belonging to a socio-economic group of C2,D and E. Our film is aimed for both male and female as it does not include action, however I have just used a male as an example. We have targeted our media product around the ages of 15-25.

Jamie represents the target audience for my production. He is an 18 year old male, comes from a South London town and loves technology. He loves watching new films at the cinemas, mostly thriller and action films on his free weekends. He plays Xbox, and likes to spend his time at home on face book socialising with his friends. His favourite game on the Xbox is Call of duty as there is a lot of action involved. Jamie does an apprenticeship in a live events organisation as a promoter, therefore the socio-economic group that he would belong to would be c1 or D which is the target audience that my production group has aimed for. He spends the wages that he gets from his apprenticeships on new Xbox games and DVDs. His favorite film is law abiding citizen as it is full of mystery and suspense. It includes action, violence and revenge.

He likes to use his computers for face book and online games; he can also use his Xbox to play call of duty online with other people that play it around the world. He owns speakers and headphones to interact on online games with other players.

His favorite TV show is 24 which is mostly about plotting revenge on other characters and each episode keeps Jamie engaged and wanting to watch the next episode.

Jamie owns an iPad to watch and download films on for free, he also uses his iPad to listen to music on, his favorite music is garage music and drum and bass.

Question 5

How did you attract/address your audience?
In order to attract the audience I used elements in my film which created similar effects to those created in other thriller films. I used the 15-25 year old target audience, men and female throughout my film. I also used genre conventions to attract the audience and to create suspense and leave them wanting to watch the whole film.
I have not shown the identity of the antagonist to generate enigma, this is common in most thriller films as the killer is mysterious and unknown. These pictures relate to the younger target audience as this is a typical picture of a younger girl surrounded by her friends most likely to be at a party or a club.

In this cut, we have used a similar part of the film Se7en with the same target audience including scissors and creative equipment as if an evil plan is being developed.

In this scene, we see the murderer and a teenage boy with casual clothes on which is can be easily recognized by the young target audience. It is set in a college who the target audience are familiar with in everyday life.

In this part I have used a theme of death to contribute to the genre conventions, and attract the audience as the camera has shown the killer murdering the victim.

At the end of the opening sequence ive shown a close up of the diary in order to address the film Dear Diary and to create a plot twist of a crime that the antagonist has now committed and has to live with .

Question 6
What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?
During the creation of my media project I have learnt many new skills in different technologies, including the use of technical equipment, computer software and internet websites.

Production Equipment: In our film my other group member mainly used the camera and I directed, however, to get a grip of how to use a camera I filmed the point of view shots and handheld I used the camera for myself and set it up, I also used a tungsten light in order to achieve a dark gloomy atmosphere around the book but shined the light onto the book to create an atmosphere of it being a treasure to the murderer. We also used a tripod in order to keep the camera still and record without shakiness to the moving image. This is the tripod that we used to help to stabilize the camera. I learnt how to position the tripod bubble level in order to make sure that the angles of the camera were not canted angles. If the bubble does not float to the center top of the level, the surface is uneven.

This is my group member positioning the camera to the right height and focus. I learnt how to use the zoom and focus at the front of the camera. We did not use an external microphone as we did not include any dialogue in our opening sequence. The problems that we had were bad lighting so we changed the white balance every time that the lighting was different on each take.

This is the tungsten light which turned very hot when being used for a little while. In between shots we had to turn it off so the heat did not effect our filming. We also had to be careful when putting it back in case it was too hot.

Final Cut Pro:
A very important computer software program called Final Cut Pro, an editing program designed by Apple allowed me to edit my opening sequence. I learned many different skills in using final cut pro and it has definitely benefitted me for my work in the future. Log and Capture I connected my tape from the camera using a tape deck which was connected into the back of an apple Mac, and opened final cut pro, in the file tab i pressed log and capure and clicked on the capture now button which immediately began to capture my video clip, it took a littloe while but i could start capturing my video where i wanted it to start from. Timeline- The time line window runs across the bottom of the screen and it is where all the clips are edited. I learnt how to cut unwanted playbacks out of the sequence and how to also add clips together. Using the spacebar I could play and pause my video where I wanted it to be, I could also use the left and right arrows to plays my video in nano seconds which was essential in cutting at the right part to match it up with another cut. Colour correction- Our video was all in black and white which was easy for us to use the color correction tool. By clicking on the effects tab and then the video filters folder. I then clicked on image control and desaturated each clip in order to make it black and white. This took a little while as we had to go through each clip and do the same for each one. Key frames- In creating our film we experimented with key frames which then I became able to rotate a moving image and also when creating our titles we was able to make them become bigger or smaller and also move them around within the range of the image. Exporting- We needed to export our film in order to post it onto the web and place it onto our blog. First we rendered our sequence to make it easier and quicker to export and then we clicked on file and export and export QuickTime movie. This was a long process and we made a mistake by exporting the unwanted scenes at the end of our film which then ended in us having to do the whole process over again.

Internet websites I used 3 different websites in order to help with my film and coursework. These 3 websites were blogger, scribd and YouTube. I also used Google to work on my research for my blog.

The website Blogger was essential in creating my website , to store research, videos and pictures. It helped me to create a portfolio of my work. When I first created my blog I used my own blog which then created a link to the group blog. I created new posts on blogger and used html links to post videos onto the site.

The website scribd is a site that allows you to upload documents which are then converted into a format that blogger can process. All I had to do was to upload a file and wait for it to be converted, I then embedded the link and posted it onto a new post in html form on blogger.

I used You Tube in work in order to upload videos that I had created including my preliminary and opening sequence. Once they were uploaded I simply embedded the code, copied it and pasted it onto the compose tab in blogger. I also used YouTube to help me with my research into opening sequences. I repeated the process in embedding it, copying and pasting onto blogger.

Question 7
Throughout my project I have created a preliminary task and an opening sequence and developed many different new skills. I have learnt how to use a camera and use Final cut pro to edit. I have also developed skills in how to perfect my work in many different ways by directing. I now know how to create a match on action shot and make it flow, and make sure that no extra objects were in the shot unlike my preliminary. I am going to show how my camera work has improved and also how my editing skills have developed by showing screenshots from my preliminary and my opening sequence. Preliminary Task
For our first shot we used a still establishing shot with no camera movements.

Opening Sequence
However, in our opening sequence beginning we used a handheld in slow motion with a black and white colour effect. The match on action that we used in our opening sequence included the killer lifting up the weapon to strangle the victim and the match on action shot going to a close up of the weapon being used on the victim Most of our shot were over the shoulder to create a mystery of the killer s identity. For our close up we used a medium close up of the book which then was a handheld zoom into a close up.

The match on action that we included was a simple one of Elizabeth walking through the door and coming through on the other side of the room.

We used one over the shoulder shot throughout our preliminary which didn t show the other persons shoulder just their head. The way my skills have developed throughout editing has been a huge change, in the preliminary task we did not use any camera movements apart from one small pan, however we was constantly using camera

movements in my opening sequence. Editing for the preliminary took an hour and a half, however fro the opening sequence it took just over 4 days to complete as it was more technical and detailed. We did not use any special effects like colour correction or fade in we just used the simple razor tool to join all of our cuts together. The camera work that we made sure we used was only a match on action, 180 degree rule and a over the shoulder shot. There was no soundtrack involved we just kept it at the noise that was in the background whilst filming it and the few lines that were said in it.

We also used a point of view shot, which focuses on the murderers shoes; this was also in black and white and slow motion. For our camera movements we used pans tilts and zooms to create an atmosphere of a thriller film when showing a close up. We used a pan when we showed the book of all the victims, a tilt when the murderer strangled the victim and zooms all of the way through the sequence. I gained many new skills when editing my opening sequence, these include being able to use slow motion and speed up time. We also learnt how to create the film in different colour and tones. We used fade ins and fade outs to create less jumpy cuts, we also learnt how to use key frames in order to make the titles rotate and move into a position that we wanted them to be. We used a montage to create two different views from the audience, one showing the murderer cutting paper with scissors and another that views the book with all of the victims. I learnt how to create moving titles with the use of key frames. We also added sound to our clip in order to give a creepy atmosphere of the killer. In creating the sound I learnt how to cut it to where I wanted the sound to be and to match it up to where we wanted the sound to go to match with the action in the film.

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