Published on March 3, 2014
By Laura Boucher
Throughout our documentary we found media technologies very useful and were an asset in helping our products be successful. To begin with we had to do research into our topic. We did research into cyber bullying and were able to find statistics using search engines including yahoo and google. Furthermore we also used the child line website as they mentioned aspects of cyber bullying. The internet allowed for us to gather qualitative data in which allowed for our documentary to be very factual and rich with facts and information. Furthermore we also used the internet as a means of helping us to decide what channel we wanted our documentary to be featured on. We used the websites: bbc, channel 4, channel 5 and itv this allowed for us to make comparisons between the channels including the viewing numbers and the types of programmes that they display. The channel that we decided to go with in the end was BBC 3 this was because we found their target audience to be similar to ours- teenagers furthermore after looking at their programmes we realised there was some similar documentaries therefore we thought ours could potentially be popular with the viewers. Blogger was also a main website in which allowed for us to keep track of our documentary and our progress. It also allowed for us to see what we were lacking in ie where more research was needed ext. Moreover to embed our work on blogger in an effective and interesting was we used websites including: scribd, slideshare and prezi.
Another helpful piece of technology was Microsoft word in which allowed for us to create questionnaires which allowed for us to gain audience feedback which was the basis for some of the aspects of our documentary. This allowed for higher quality audience feedback. When planning our documentary we watched elements of documentaries which helped the quality of our documentary as it allowed for us to pick up on codes and conventions. To do so websites such as youtube, bbc iplayer, on demand and channel 5 player were used. Media technologies weren’t particularly used during our planning stage however I used word and also powerpoint as a means of noting down facts and creating mind maps ext. Furthermore initial notes and pieces of work were emailed to each other using sites such as hotmail. We took it very seriously as we wanted to ensure we had planned our documentary effective.
After we felt that we had successfully planned our documentary and had done enough research into our topic we decided to move on to the element of filming. We were able to use all our resources that we’d created using various technologies during the planning stage for example: we used word to write a script which we were then able to transfer to filming. Furthermore we used our story board ext throughout filming to help us see how far we’d got and what we were planning to film next. To ensure that our documentary was well filmed we used a camera from college in which also allowed us to take stills. This camera was: a cannon HG20 HD in which was helpful as for our reconstruction we wanted to add to the affect by changing the focus and adjusting the colour slightly. This helped for us to achieve the effect that wanted to an eerie, sad effect- we also played around with the manual focus in certain shots of the college as it added interest to certain shots. Furthermore the cameras also allowed us to zoom in and zoom out which was particularly useful within out documentary as we did lots of close ups and extreme close ups and we felt it helped to add to the effect. We used a tripod in which was very effective in allowing us to keep our shots still and frame them the way in which we wanted them to be framed- particularly using the rule of thirds. Moreover all these elements were essential in allowing us to create a successful product. We also used a shot gun microphone in which picked up diegetic and non diegetic sound. This was extremely helpful during interviews and vox pops as it picked up all the sound which was all clear. The microphone was easy to manoeuvre therefore allowed for us to get closer to the interviewees ensuring the sound quality would be decent. Moreover we also used headphones in order to listen to the quality of our interviews and vox pops. This was extremely helpful as if the sound was too quiet/too loud this allowed for us to manoeuvre the microphone accordingly. Furthermore the headphones allowed for us to choose appropriate locations as in some places the background noise was too heavily waited so we were able to move to quieter locations. In order to record our voiceover majority of people used the shotgun microphone however we found that this left crackly background sounds. So we decided to use a voice recorder which we felt left a clearer sound.
After the recording stage was finished we uploaded all our content to the apple mac in which we further added to final cut express. We also added all our clips to our folder in which we labelled with dates and with the content of the clips this allowed for all our footage to be in one place therefore it was easily accessible. After logging and transferring our clips we watched them all renamed them appropriately then deleted any footage in which we deemed as unusable. As all of our clips were so easily accessible it allowed for us to drag them easily onto the timeline. Here we again used our storyboard which was created in word which made it much easier to arrange our clips in the desired order.
During our editing a main feature in which allowed for us to create the documentary the way in which we wanted it was the tool bar. The razor blade tool allowed for us to cut up clips efficiently the edit was smooth, this was a very helpful tool as we used many straight cuts and this tool allowed for us to do so. Even though the majority of our work was straight cuts we also incorporated some other elements in which would add interest and such as a dissolve transition. For our title sequence a member of our group coloured in text in which was the title of the documentary ‘behind the screen’ the clip was extremely slow therefore we increased the speed on final cut express in which was really effective and we thought worked really well. In final cut express we also added effects such as ‘text overlays’ we mostly used this to introduce our professional interviews and their occupation an example being ‘Paul Ashdown- principal of the sixth form college solihull’ Moreover we also used various filters over certain images. This was mostly during the reconstruction in which created a darker picture in which added to the atmosphere in which we wanted to create for the reconstruction. Furthermore we decided to edit some of clips due to the fact the background was distracting or in some cases we had the microphone in the shot. Therefore we were able to use the crop tool in order to save our shots and ensure that the shots were a good quality and looked as professional as possible.
A major part of the editing process in which we think we left too late was editing the sound levels. We had trouble with our sound levels as in some cases they were too loud and in others too quiet. We edited the sound levels last yet didn’t have enough time to ensure that the sound was content throughout. To do this we had to edit the pink velocity line and we dragged it up or down accordingly. Moreover to ensure that the sound transitions were effective and worked well together therefore using the cross fade effect this ensured that the fade was smooth rather than a sharp abrupt ending in which we found was the case when we didn’t use this tool. Through watching other documentaries using youtube and various other sites we realised that a typical convention was music. Therefore we aimed to create a piece of music to be played throughout and also music for our reconstruction and various other music for other elements. We created the music in garage band in which we thought was an effective tool this is because there were plenty of sounds all in which emphasised different moods ext, for example there was ‘acoustic’, ‘guitar’ and ‘piano’. We mostly used acoustic and guitar as it was quite calming and we felt it effective throughout the documentary. We then exported the file as an MP3 and dragged it into final cut express and then we could edit it further deciding on how loud we wanted the music at various points within the documentary.
The radio trailer planning used similar technologies to that of the documentary. This was because we used technologies including word to write the script for the trailer. We also did a mindmap on word of ideas regarding the documentary. Moreover we also used youtube and sites such as the bbc to listen to various radio trailers such as the ‘grand prix’ from bbc 1 in which gave us inspiration and allowed for us to pick up on the various codes and conventions.
During the construction process of the radio trailer we decided to use the same voice recorder which we had used for the voiceover due to the fact it had created a clear sound in comparison to the microphone. However we asked our teacher Mike Hatton to be the voiceover due the fact we felt he sounded more professional in contrast to people in our group. We exported our radio trailer into final cut express using again the log and transfer element. Here we were able to use the cutting tool in order to add in elements of our documentary such as elements of the reconstruction and also facts we thought were interesting from the voiceover. We decided to use the same music we used from our backing track in the documentary to remain continuity, this was easy as we were able to export the music from garage band.
During our research and planning for our article we used more primary research opposed to the secondary research in which we used throughout the radio trailer and documentary. We looked at various TV articles in depth allowing us to learn the codes and conventions. In the end we chose a ‘radio times’ magazine as a basis in which we followed the typical style of large images in the top third a large title and text in the bottom third. We mostly used traditional means of drafting including: drafts on paper however we did use microsoft word to write some ideas down. We used microsoft word as a basis of planning ideas throught the entirety of the product.
To create the article we used a different means of software which we had not yet used. This was Adobe Indesign. This allowed for us to design it exactly how we wanted and it provided a simple layout. The article had been written in word therefore it was simple enough to transfer to by simply copy and pasting. We also used screen shots from our documentary as images as we wanted a direct link between the article and the double page spread. We decide to use photo shop to manipulate the images therefore make them look more professional. We created boxes in indesign in which allowed for us to add images and text accordingly in the layout of our choice (one which we mimicked from radio times)
For my evaluations I decided to present the information in a range of different ways: question 1 I decided to use Prezi- this was good as it was a different and interesting was of presenting information. I also used powerpoint for questions 4 and 2 as I thought it would be effective due to the fact that I am extremely familiar with it. Lastly I used word for question 3 which I am also very familiar with. This allowed for me to add images and graphs. I also used elements of youtube to present audience feedback as I felt it was an effective way of gathering opinion and reflecting upon the finished product.
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