Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Eval Q6 Learning on Technologies

What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?
As always, there are many past posts on this blog, Horror, BritCinema etc you could + should revisit to help with this, such as: fan-made Rear Window (Hitchcock) re-edit; Polldaddy; online slasher sitcom Holliston; copyright; using Vimeo if copyright blocked; self-published short film; genre vodcast (+ instructions); researching UK releases/distributors; YouTube annotation tool; using YouTube for quizzes; researching recent horror egs (+ presenting as vid); screenshots; eg of behind-scenes vid; promo page for cheapo slasher; soundtracks; Hurtwood House student egs; other schools' work; being creative with blog vids; IGS work screened at film fest; BoxOfficeMojo; adding audio to your blog; Blogger gadgets; class of 2009 tips; [ALL egs FROM THIS BLOG ONLY; MANY MORE ON DBHORROR + BRITCINEMA BLOGS; UPDATED 8TH APRIL 2012]
EMMA: Emma's A2 Eval is worth looking at for exc. answers; this one is fairly brief with minimal multimedia tho'.
ROB: Good detail in this webcam vid, BUT the absence of any imagery to support what he's saying is particularly glaring for this Q; talking about software without screenshots of it is a little too abstract.
ROAM: Similar to Rob's, but especially worth a look for the good detail on use of the web that he starts with; its easy to overlook or whiz past this point, but research (and the pre-production process generally) is as important as the editing or post-production.
CHRIS: Video with good detail and well supported by on-screen stills/video sequences, plus some additional screenshots below the vid with caption tool used to make the point.
BECKY: Lacks a little detail on some of the software BUT a different approach well worth a look. Uses well-designed embedded Word docs for part of this, including a starting montage page with logos of the key technologies used; then each technology clearly distinguished with an image + different font colour.

I'll outline several ways you can think of approaching this Q below.

Before you can discuss what you've learned, you need to list what you've used, with some examples of how you've used it.
  1. Brainstorm technologies used (note the word 'process' in the Q; you should, fairly briefly, address the technologies used in the research and planning, which is part of the construction process). [there is a list below to help you]
  2. Begin to jot down examples of how you've used each.
  3. You really need to include screenshots (or record the screen while you run through steps taken) to show how you've used the technology. 'Before-and-after' clips are useful here: clip A shows the original footage, clip B the edited version with FX applied, and here's how we did it (jpgs or video of the software screen).
  4. You are trying to show off here!!! So, detail on how you improved shots/FX/sequences etc (eg by tweaking FX) is useful.

TIP: It'd be particularly useful to pick out one or more scenes (doesn't matter if only a few secs) and really drill down into how you achieved an initial basic version of this, and how you then improved upon this using more sophisticated tools/technology, taking care to detail this. This helps to get marks for "ability to refer to the choices made and outcomes."

As you run through each, or as an overall conclusion, you should add a summary, addressing some of these:
  1. Which tools were particularly useful?
  2. Were you surprised by what you could achieve? (If you've used video-editing software previously, discuss this, but just make sure you're clear on what NEW learning has taken place)
  3. In general, how did the technology help you to get your creative vision onto the screen? (its useful to think especially about how you were enabled to signify your genre)
  4. Do you think it would have made any difference if you'd used analogue technology, like the young chaps in Son of Rambow or your Media forebears a decade or so back?!
  5. The means by which you got aud feedback is rather relevant here! (generating rough cuts wasn't always so easy)
  6. Did the technology place limitations on what you could achieve? What additional technology might you have liked to use?
  7. What do you think could be achieved using similar technology to that you've had access to? (you might refer to films such as Le Donk and Scor-Zay-Zee or Colin here - see BritCinema blog for posts on digital film-making and ultra-low budget film-making)
  8. What have you learned?!?! This is the basic question, so, whether for each point or as a closing summary detail/list what you can do now that you couldn't do before starting Media Studies!

Screenshots (using Grab - or Preview if on a newer Mac) are key!.
You'll find yourself referring to a lot of ground covered in your blog; don't simply state 'you can find it there'; provide a clearly set out hyperlink to any relevant posts, with some basic info on what you're pointing to (and could also copy/paste then edit such material, though this might result in an unwieldy post!)

Some technologies used
(Italicize all site/software names): blogger + individual blogs, Facebook, Youtube (and other video-sharing sites), googlebooks, Amazon/Play + other retail sites (with user reviews or 'look inside' feature on Amazon), IMDB, search engines (did you narrow search results by adding words/Boolean terms?), newspaper + mag sites, other blogs, e-zines, fan sites, online Lib catalogue, Scribd, divshare, vimeo, Mac/PC + software, scanner, USB sticks, email, mobile phones, digital audio recorder, still + video cams, iMovie, Photoshop, VLC (for screenshots?), Garageband, LiveType, Final Cut Express 4...
You might include detail on the range of resources you used in your research and how you located these (avoid stating 'they were on a trolley in the classroom'!!!!!!!)

An alternative model follows:
1: Take a sheet of paper for each (DON'T use a computer yet) and brainstorm/list technologies use, leaving a blank line after each for further notes
2: Write in 2+ egs of how you used each technology (you can add more specific details later)
3: Beginning with R+P, start writing/typing up answers to each of the 3 section.

For each section, you could use the following Qs as a framework:
    (i) Start with a list of technologies used for this part of your work
    (ii) Give 2+ brief egs of your use of each (you can provide greater detail in accompanying video/s)
    (iii) Discuss/evaluate your use of each
    (iv) (if appropriate) Discuss how tech'y enabled you to collaborate as a group
    (v) (if appropriate) Discuss how tech'y enabled you to get aud feedback
    (vi) (if appropriate) Discuss how tech'y enabled you to learn about conventions from real media texts
    (vii) (if appropriate) Discuss how tech'y enabled you to identify and access useful 'old media' (film, music video, newspaper, book, mags etc)
    (viii) Discuss what difference it would have made if, like Media students from a decade+ ago, you'd had to rely solely on 'old media'
    (ix) Evaluate (summative comment) how well you've utilised the available resources; could you have made more/better use of any particular technologies? What have you learnt about these techs and their usefulness?

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