Monday, 31 January 2011

Album Artwork

Album artwork has developed since it was first used on vinyl sleeves. Columbia Records were one of the first to use album art with their artist and in 1938 they hired their first Art Director, Alex Steinweiss. Alex Steinweiss is credited with inventing the concept of album covers, and album art. After his initial efforts at Columbia, other record companies followed his lead. By the late 1940s, record albums for all the major companies featured their own colorful paper covers in both 10-inch and 12-inch sizes. Some featured reproductions of classic art while others utilized original designs. 

Artists began to use their album covers to make a statement of intent, either about their album or their artists themselves. Notable examples include; The Beatles'  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon. 

Pink Floyd- Dark Side of the Moon

The Beatles- Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band

Album artwork was originally used on vinyl sleeves and since then the way we listened to music has changed vastly. The two main types of hardware now used to listen to music now are CDs and portable devices. So to adapt to the new formats, album art has been digitized. This enables album art to be displayed and sold with the digital download, through  the likes of iTunes and the iTunes store. In an increasingly competitive industry album artwork needs to catch the attention of the consumer, as this could be the difference between the consumer purchasing or not purchasing the album. For this reason I am going to HMV to look at the the shelves to see what albums stand out. 

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

First Video Shoot- 19th January

This wednesday we are filming our some of the footage we need for our music video. I have assigned us all roles so that the video shoot runs smoothly and to make sure that we all have responsibilities. One of my roles is to manage the props, so based on our story board and my shooting plan I have made a checklist of the props and equipment we will need for this shoot.

  • Laptop- power cable
  • Mobile Phone
  • Dolls House
  • Cigarettes
  • Lighter/ matches
  • Photograph to burn
  • Wine bottle
  • Cardboard box (to hold possessions) 
  • Possessions- DVDs(La vie en Rose, Lassie, Chocolat, Romeo & Juliette) BOOKS (art book,  epping forest, "positive thinking...", "get out of my life...",  New york tourist guide, London tourist guide) CDs (eclectic mix) CUDDLY TOY, TROPHIES, PHOTO FRAME( photo of couple in side) 
  • video camera
  • tripod
  • Camera to take pictures of behind the scenes. 
I chose every item that is going to be inside the cardboard box for specific reasons. Through my research I found that props are conventionally used within videos to express views, ambitions, personality or ideas  that the artist has. 

  • Lassie- I chose Lassie as like the song it is all about not forgetting your home
  • Romeo & Juliette- it is a tragic love story, like the BF & GF relationship
  • Chocolat- again is a love story
  • La Vie en Rose- This film charters the rise to fame of Edith Piath, an older female artist who became famous due to her unique singing voice. An aspiration of my artist.
These are an indication of the acclaim my artist seeks, and it is a signifier for her desire to win awards for her music.

  • I chose the book about Epping forest as it is one of our filming locations
  • The city guides again represent her dream of fame and fortune, London and New York are often places where musical artist go to seek fame.
  • The books entitled "get out of my life" and "positive thinking..." were a more jovial addition as it fits in with the idea of a relationship break up. I though it was funny, especially the "Get out of my life book" as it basically the message intended, by giving all the possessions back. 
I chose a  bit of mix of music tastes and genres as speaking with Ellie I found that she is influenced by all sorts of music and she doesn't have a particular preference. 

SHOOT PLAN- 19th January 10

We are going to be filming all of the footage where the location is not important (as they are close ups),  all the footage of interaction between the artist and her boyfriend( break up) and the forest scene where the chorus is set. 

Here is the shooting plan that I created in order to help us know what we should be doing and so that we can tick it of once its done. I did this so that we film with a process in order to ensure that we do not forget any footage. I will print this off so that we can refer to it, as internet access wont be available.


  1. Spinning In circles w/ and w/o boyfriend
  2. Hiding behind trees
  3. Dancing
  4. Performance to camera
  5. Sitting mournfully on log (with cigarette and wine bottle) 
  6. Running through forest

  1. Lip Shot (1,2,3...)
  2. Guitar strumming close up (to show artists musicality)
  3. Facebook Chat ( demographic related)
  4. Caller ID 
  5. Burning photograph shot. ( to show moving on )
  6. Holding Hands 
  7. Bum Pinch
  1. Argument (mouthed words) 
  2. Handing box back 
  3. Box on the floor (thrown)
  4. Artist running (tracking in car/ static camera run past)
  5. BF & GF holding hands walking (back and front) 
  6. Ice cream in face

Madonna- Like A Prayer

I have chosen to analyse one of Madonna's videos as she is an extremely successful female artist and someone that my artist would aspire to be like.

Follow the link below to see the video:

Here are my analysing notes:

Although Madonnas genre is different to that of Ellie Tanners, I believe that it has been able to provide me with a better understanding of certain conventions that Pop and female artist's videos should display.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Lip Syncing Exercise

To help with the production of my music video for my chosen artist I thought it would be a good idea to practice by making a short video, selecting a clip of music from Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance". We took it in turns to film and perform. At first we were all quite apprehensive of performing in front of each other, but we slowly became more comfortable in front of each other. By going through this process together in has made us closer as a group which will help when it comes to creating our final video as we won't feel inhibited in front of each other.

After recording all of the footage I needed I then uploaded the footage on to the iMac. I used "Final Cut Express" to cut the footage, to combine it and sync it with the music. Once I had cut the footage and combined it with the music, I then used the program to add different affects to the video. This knowledge will come in handy when I'm editing my own music video, as I have a better understanding of how to edit the clips together smoothly and I have a better grasp of the different sorts of effects I can use on my video.

Overall I feel that this has been a hugely useful exercise and I have learnt more about the processes involved with making a successful music video.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Thriller - Micheal Jackson

I have decided to analyse this video as it is probably the most revolutionary music videos ever, because of the length but also the style and unique mix of narrative and performance.

Kate Nash - Mouth Wash

I have decided to analyse one of Kate Nashe's Videos as she is of a similar style to my chosen artist Ellie. I really like the way the narrative in this video is intertwined with a performance.  I also like the camera work within this video and I have decided to implement some similar techniques within my own video.

Here is a link to the video:

Here are the notes of my analysis: