Week 9 – Newspaper Page Layout Practice

Original

 

My Recreation

daily star recreate

Critical comparison

In terms of exact measurements there are several slight variations between mine and the original document. Several of the images and the portraits have different sizes due to an error on my part of not noting down the exact measurements. However, the offset of white at the edges is exact as is the header, the size of the page itself,the large background image and text box. By taking these into account I was able to get a rough estimate of the sizes of the portraits in the header and other images based on these measurements.

The page layout itself is 275mm wide by 345mm height, I was able to get this information by using the Daily Star’s website. The indents of white around the page are 10mm to the left, right and above. The bottom indent is 3mm as is the original.

In terms of imagery as I could not get access to good quality pictures similar to those used in the article in question I had to improvise the background image. This was in order to have an image of high resolution as there were none available online in a high enough resolution. The 3 images that are all located in red boxes are all similar to the ones used by the Daily Star and relate to the story in question and are relatively high in resolution. The images used for the authors of the story were acquired online and were edited to fit approximately the same size as the original as best as possible considering they have different resolution layouts to the originals.

With the header I replicated it to a good standard. I used the same colour scheme as with the original. However, due to the font the Star use for their headers not being available on the computers I used to create the layout I was unable to match this exactly. I was able to replicate the effect of the word TV where the T joins into the V with a black outline. As with the original I used a drop shadow on the portraits and with the box containing the words “all the top telly news.” I then angled the drop shadow and the box itself accordingly to match that of the original.

I also recreated the date of the article as with the original and the page number at the top in similar font (which again wasn’t publically available).

The portraits all have a red outline and are slightly angled with a slight overlap with the circular image partially covering the rectangular image.

As with the original I have included lines to help break up the layout and create a more professional looking layout. All the lines match the measurements of the original document exactly.

The advertisement box is not exactly to scale as I was unable to find the original documents measurements for this particular section. Therefore I approximated and believe it looks to a similar scale of the original. In future however I will ensure I have all the exact measurements prior to create.

I angled the headline and applied a drop shadow as was done in the original layout, and then used placeholder text inside the text box. The only issue with the text box is that I missed out the bolderised word in the centre of the centre column due to a formating error which deleted it.

The image at the bottom of the page, as with the portraits was the closest kind of image I could find to the original. But still allowed me to get the desired effect of the text wrapping around the image.

Overall I would say that my attempt was very close to the original. I could however improve in future with the addition of exact measurements and having access to higher resolution images. I did find that I had to resize everything at one point due to not formating my indesign document to the right dimensions. In future will remember to do this before starting work on a layout. With access to the correct font and images I think I could fully recreate an exact copy of the original.

Week 9 – Newspaper Page Layout Practice

Week 9 – A History of the Print Industry

A history of Print media in the UK

The first incarnation of the printing press was created by Johannes Gutenberg and was called the Gutenberg press. Many people mark this as a technological breakthrough which brought us into the modern era – a gateway to modern times.

Prior to the introduction of the printing press everything was written by hand. Very few people were able to read and even fewer could write. Only monks and the very wealthy were able to both read and write. Due to this the church had a stranglehold over information, all information came through the church and they were the only people who could properly distribute it.

The printing press enabled information to be transferred between people outside of the churches influence. Initially the printing press was used for the printing of bibles which vastly accelerated the production of bibles. Prior to the printing press it would take 2-3 years to write out one bible.

Other books began to be printed of ancient scholars such as Aristotle. As a lot of the information previously available was through the church many did not question information provided even though it was subject to human error.

The printing press caused a massive increase in the distribution of the written word allowing for an increase from 20,000 books in Europe to over 200,000 by 1500.

The availability of being able to distribute information at such an accelerated rate allowed for the spread of Protestantism. Martin Luther translated the Bible into German; this was the first time the bible had ever been written in any language other than in Latin.

People then began to use the printing press for monetary gain. As global business began to expand, the printing press allowed for money to be kept track of and allowed for a standardisation of language and numbers. Having multiple copies of books available allowed for all those involved to have a copy of information and understand it in the same way.

The same information was readily available, without the human error found in written copies, and could be quickly disseminated. This allowed for a spread of: scienctific research, record keeping and books – which heavily influenced the Renaissance.

The spreading of learning led to the rediscovery of ancient knowledge such as the poetry of Cicero and Plato. This became publically available and allowed for an overall increase in knowledge. People were able to rediscover lost information such as the recipe for concrete and underfloor heating – leading to a progression of technology. Due to this the church lost it’s strangle hold over information.

Between the 1500’s and 1650: America was discovered, trade with Far East and colonisation allowed for a growing middle class. This consisted of: merchants, traders, lawyers, scientists. These developments led to the first banks being created due to being able to keep track of money going in and out and legal academies.

Images also became available to be printed which allowed for the mass production of maps and scientific drawings.

In the late 1600’s (around 1690’s) newspapers began to appear in their infancy, the oldest of which was the Oxford Gazette. Newspapers started off as pamphlet like leaflets on single pages, just stating some information going on in the area.

In the 1750’s the industrial revolution began. This heavily influenced the print media and allowed for the new advancement of coal and steam powered machinery. Printing presses became steam powered and went from being able to print 100 pages a day to 10,000.

In the late 1700’s and early 1800’s novels and fiction began to become relevant. Due to an increased lifespan and overall standard of living people were beginning to want entertainment. This led to the creation of some of the first novels and by extension the first form of celebrities, made famous by their books.

In the 1780’s and 90’s the French revolution leg to a fear of the free press in England as many used it in France to spread propaganda against the monarchy. This led to stamp duty was introduced in 1811; meaning anyone who wanted to print had to pay excessively high tax, limiting those would could print and those who could afford to buy them.

In 1832 stamp duty was vastly reduced due to fears of the free press dying down after it having been many years since the French Revolution. Then in 1850 the tax was removed all together.

Around this time web rotary printing was introduced and led to a boom in the production of print media, allowing for printing to be done much faster and efficiently.

Due to a highly urbanised population after the industrial revolution many factories needed a standardised workforce which led to the modern educational system for industrialisation. Because of this development in 1870 the Forster Act made education mandatory for all children up to the age of 11. This led to a 99% literary rate (the literary rate was 97% in 2012) by 1900 giving the newspapers huge power through being able to supply information to everyone.

During the First World War many people blindly believed what was said in the news. The papers were very jingoistic, primarily using propaganda. Many papers intentionally misrepresented information; such as saying a battle was won when it was lost or not including death totals.

In the 30’s and 40’s news outlets became privately owned by several wealthy families. However, radio began to become prevalent during the Second World War as paper was rationed and many reporters had been conscripted.

People began to look to the radio for news. Print took on a more analytical role; expanding on stories rather than just breaking news. Television and radio were better at delivering immediate and up to date news.

The press had to resort to grabbing attention and becoming sensationalist. In the 70’s many papers cut down their size and amount of pages and began to simplify information to make it relevant to a broader audience.

In the 80’s and 90’s magazines began to become popularised. In 1986 the publication Today launched and was the first newspaper to be published in colour.  Within a year, all papers were printing in colour as printing in colour became cheaper due to demand. This led to the print industry becoming more visual.

Glossy magazines became heavily prevalent in the 90’s with the introduction of: lad mags, girl mags, special interest publications. The magazines led to a huge readership with large advertisement revenue. The industry became bloated until around 2004.

With the rise of the internet and broadband becoming a standard in many homes, the internet began to start gaining viewership away from print media. Print struggled against social media and online video, making print fairly redundant. Between 2004 and 2010: the print industry suffered a decline in readers and began to lose money, jobs started to be cut, people began to get news from online and due to the recession suffered heavy losses.

From 2010 onwards there was a large shift for print media to move to online. Many papers started to do exclusive content online. There was also a shift to a heavier use of imaging and making web pages that were built around scrolling on phones. Stories began to be written with more detailed headlines so people could get information without having to read the story itself. Websites with the most frequent updates and rolling content such as the mail online drew in more viewers.

However, jobs are not disappearing in the print industry but are more evolving into a more online based medium. Websites monetisation is lower online but is still effective. Journalists roles have changed with an increase in pace and there is a heavy idea around video and audio editing knowledge and creating a brand for the individual as well as the publication itself.

The importance of having a professional standard of writing and grammar skills as a professional writer

Having a professional standard of writing and grammar are vital to get a job as a journalist. A good standard of grammar helps to seperate professional candidates from those who are unsuitable for the role. It shows a level of intellect and care taken with the work. It shows the candidate has given thought to the writing of their piece. Also, without appropriate grammar it makes an article much more difficult for the reader to understand. The use of grammar can completely change the meaning of a sentence and can lead to confusion if not done correctly. Also it shows a lack of care taken, if a reader sees something written poorly it makes a bad impression on the rest of the publiction. As a professional, you will be expected to have a high standard of grammar and writing – due to the competetive nature of the industry poor grammar can lead to being replaced by someone whose quality of writing is of a similar standard with perfect grammar.

In summary, grammar and the professionality of which you write is as much a reflection of your work as the content itself. When you are paid to write articles a certain standard is expected which naturally extends itself to grammar.

Class based practice:

52de15b1-c94b-4f28-a9cd-7c8ed759f77f.jpg

The importance of the opening 25 words

The first 25 words are vitally important to whether a reader wishes to read the article. Therefore this should be engaging and attract the reader’s attention. This should be very verbal and full of action. In no way should it be passive, it should be a very direct short summary of the story. This first piece of the story needs to draw the reader in and make them want to continue to read the story. The opening of a story should pose a question without actively asking a question. It should include enough information to get the reader’s interest so that they start to ask themselves questions, prompting themselves to read further.

Good examples in the news recently are:

France “is at war” after Friday’s attacks on Paris, President Francois Hollande has told a rare joint sitting of both houses of parliament.

This opening is short and to the point. This was written 30 minutes after the story broke and therefore used the shock value of quoting “is at war” in order to gain the attention of as many readers as possible to follow the story as it developed.

About 30 minutes later the article changed the opening to read:

France is committed to “destroying” the so-called Islamic state group after Friday’s deadly attacks, President Francois Hollande has told a rare joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament.

Both these two opening share the nature of direct and factually accurate information. The points are a short summary which allows for someone to quickly glance at the story and know all the relevant details. This follows the format of what, when, who – stating what the story is, when it took place and who was involved.

An example based on research done prior for another article would be:

Jeremy Corbyn has created division within the Labour Party and the public after controversial views over the scrapping of Trident at the beginning of the month.

Week 9 – A History of the Print Industry

Week 7 – Front cover Practice

Front cover based on Empire issue

my empire cover

Empire issue my cover was based on

empire cover example

Screen cap of photoshop file

empire cover print screen

Evaluation

During this assignment I was tasked to recreate a front cover of a magazine. For this I chose Empire magazine. I felt this was a good choice as it was something that I was particularly drawn to and from prior evaluation found it was effective.

I tried to recreate the design as closely as possible. This was done by finding an image for the background that emulated that of the original. I found an image which was of grated steel and used this. Due to the dark nature of the cover I felt it would work well with the gritty image of Batman I had chosen to be the centrepiece of the cover. This also allows for the text to be easily visible without making the cover look visually busy.

The title font I used was from a .png file I had saved. I used this to create a sense of branding and draws attention to the reader by being a stark coloured contrast compared to the black background.

The font used is varied for different film titles to helped distinguish between titles. In order to have the text fit the area appropriately I had to have each line of text in a separate layer so that I could have less space between texts. This was a challenge and was quite time consuming. However I feel that this helped emulate the original image the front cover was based on. This also allows for the filling of blank space with relevant information that will interest the reader.

The centre piece of the front cover is an image of batman, due to it being of a high resolution and being a .png file this was relatively easy to implement. The image is a similar pose of that of the original front cover and focuses on the upper half of the character. This allows for easy positioning of text around the image. The image layer is above the title layer which allows for the picture to look more three dimensional and pops out at the reader. The other text to the side partial goes behind the image in places too. I did this again with the opening text at the top of the page again.

The price, date and website are inside the M in Empire to look the same as the original, this was relatively easy to do and only required making the text smaller.

Finally after doing this all I needed to do was add the barcode and a bit of information at the bottom of the page. I used one word of red text to draw attention with the word plus! This shows the reader there is extra information.

From doing this exercise I found the importance of how an image can look more professional based on the ordering of layers. Also using a colour scheme with minimal colours allows to highlight information and draws attention to important pieces of information such as the title.

Week 7 – Front cover Practice

Week 7 – Video Skills: Shots practice

Summary of filming process

Shot List Plan

Shot type Time (seconds) Over all time Length of footage
Establishing wide shot 5 5 15
Establishing mid shot 4 9 12
Establishing close shot 4 13 12
Close shot (3 shot sequence) 2 15 10
Mid shot (3 shot sequence) 2 17 10
Mid close shot (3 shot sequence) 2 19 10
Tracking shot 7 26 20
Tracking shot 6 32 20
Close (2 shot sequence) 2 34 10
Mid (2 shot sequence) 2 36 10
Close establishing 2 38 10
Wide to mid 2 40 10
Panoramic wide 3 43 12
Panoramic (fade between) 3 46 12
Panoramic (fade between) 3 49 12
Mid shot (3 shot sequence) 2 51 10
Close shot (3 shot sequence) 2 53 5
Mid close (3 shot sequence) 2 55 10
Wide (2 shot sequence) 2 57 10
Mid (2 shot sequence) 2 59 10

How did you translate your plan into reality?

In terms of taking my plan from the planning stage to the filming stage I created a copy of my plan in my notebook. I wrote out the plan in terms of what kinds of shots I would need and roughly how long I would like the clip to be. I would then write down how long I would like the original footage for the clip to be so that I could edit it down and meant that I had extra footage if necessary.

When it came to actually filming I had a basic idea of what the video would be. The basic idea was just shots of the college graduating from the outside with establishing shots of the buildings and ten progress into the buildings. In order to get a rough idea of how I was going to structure the video I briefly walked around the college to look for good places to film and looked at it from multiple angles using the camera frame as a way to check how good a shot would be. Once I had decided on several different filming locations I took a few minutes to structure which locations would fit best with which shot types and then took note of this, taking into account factors such as angling the shot from a certain height or perspective.

As the task required no specific narrative there was not much pressure on planning the actual content in terms of theme or story. Therefore I focused more on making the shots look professional and recorded each clip from multiple angles in the same footage so I could decide later which angle fit best with the shot. I also took a few shots that I hadn’t planned as extra footage in case it would fit better than a different clip.

As I was going for more of the building I focuses a lot more on recording structures and empty places, so the video would look more like a tour or a first person kind of perspective of the college. In a few places I found that the area presented itself better for a shot that was at ground level or table level. Due to not having access to a camera with a tripod I tried using my second hand to steady the camera and in some cases I used a table or a bench to keep the shot steadier.

How close to a professionally shot example do you deem your first attempt?

Example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ki3GaqfK8u4

The shot types used in my footage emulate those of the shots used in the video above. I found however since their shots related to a more human topic with interviews and shots of people it was a quite different focus in relation to shot types used.

Most of the shots I have used are still with no zooming or panning with the exception of my panoramic shots. The piece above pans slightly and focuses more on shots of action in mid shots and then has close ups of people faces. With the exception of the interview and piece to camera I have used similar framing and angles as the news piece.

The footage is obviously a lot more stable due to more professional equipment, and is higher quality due to a camera with a better resolution. This is something I can easily do in future with better equipment or the addition of a tripod to get stable shots. I could also in future use partial slow zoom in some clips to give a sense of movement on still shots, as done in this piece.

I am overall quite pleased with the footage and think it does come across as professional in several aspects. I think the decision to record the same shot from multiple angles gave me a lot more options in order to edit the footage in a clean and professional final video.

Obviously due to the nature of the task the one major difference between mine and the news piece is the lack of a narrative in my shots. While I tried to use establishing shots to help transition between areas of the college there is no real story or intent for the video. The establishing shots help to transition location and with the inclusion of different shots of a similar theme or area allowed for progressive shots, the lack of a narrative makes them feel empty. In some ways an audio track over the top talking about the college could help this and give the stock footage a purpose and give it the crucial human element it lacks when compared to the news piece. Also perhaps some form of music to give the piece some form of progression.

What can be done to improve?

While I am quite happy with the footage recorded, I found that it could have been improved by having access to a better camera or the addition of a tripod. This would have allowed for cleaner panoramic shots as well as stable footage with no shakes, creating a more professional looking product.

In terms of improving I think that I could have used more shots that related to the same subject (more 3-4 progressive shots). I think the addition of more mid and wide shots would have improved the footage. While I had lots of close up and mid shots I feel I only used wide shots for establishing shots and panoramic rather than to use in progressive shots.

Due to the lack of a human element in the video, it makes the footage almost appear lonely and creates an emotive feeling which was not intentional. Due to not being telling a narrative or having any structure to a story it is not as effective footage. The lack of a human element will make the footage less relatable and was purely for technical purposes.

In some cases I feel I stuck too close to my plan when I had a better shot in mind during filming. Rather than changing the shots I ended up strictly following my plan.

Without a direct narrative or story to centre the piece around it doesn’t quite come across as anything more than just an array of shots. The footage filmed is good in principle but without a purpose to centre it behind makes the footage difficult to use in a compelling way without a direction for the footage. In future with recording there will be a purpose for the footage rather than to just show different shot types and will therefore affect which shots are used.

Edited video

Video for upload

Week 7 – Video Skills: Shots practice