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Lauren Reeves

Media Production

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Unit 7 LO3

Term 2 Week 9 Blog

This week, I worked more on my InDesign piece. I also worked on missed work that I missed uploading before.

Through my InDesign work, I worked more on the content and how it looked. I delved deeper into how I wanted the overall booklet to look. I settled on a fairly monochromatic theme with muted tones but bold text.

I worked more on my Photoshop skills as well and created more images for, including the front cover, for the project. There is a detailed explanation in a document below.

front cover.jpg

Here I explained how I created my visual aspects.

illustration explanation

picture explanation

 

And here is my research on the genres.

Horror and Mystery Genres 2

 

 

I

 

 

 

Term 2 Week 8 Blog

So, this week, I was not very productive.

I became very ill the Saturday before and the Doctors are having my appendix checked as they think it could be related to that. It is currently, Saturday the 11th and I’m still not better so that’s why my productivity levels are not the highest.

I wish I could say I got some work done but I have barely left my bed the past week however, I intend to make up the work load next week when I am better.

Term 2 Week 7 Blog

This week, I had one main focus which was to work on my Booklet on InDesign. Currently, I am unable to upload it as it, for some reason, is not on my Onedrive so it must be on my T-drive.

Once I have uploaded it, I will be able to write more.

During this week, I discovered that InDesign is much more difficult than I once presumed. I mean, I thought Photoshop was complicated but it’s a piece of cake compared to InDesign.

I focused on setting up the main core of my booklet by designing the layouts and inserting the text. I wanted to put the content in first before I got to the aesthetic of the piece.

I did use this website, however, for inspiration. (Unknown author, unknown date. Indesignskills.com. Last accessed: 11.03.17) When I get to the actual look of my project, I will definitely be using these techniques as they look really professional.

More will be written once I have uploaded my work so far.

Term 2 Week 6 Blog

This week, I focused on two subjects. Illustrating and Editing.

Although I missed Monday, I caught up on Tuesday by working on my illustrations for my project. I am using a technique I discovered last year which entails drawing over an image on Photoshop only using black ink and then removing the image and being left with your drawing. I have included my work below.

To say that this method takes a lot of time and patience would be an understatement but I really like the end product I get when I use this technique.

I also worked on editing one of my pieces this week as I mentioned before. I (mainly Greg) edited my 5 page story down to 3 and a half which I was satisfied with. I spoke to Celia who said that my story length was fine so I am hoping to include it fully in my work.

I definitely found the editing part difficult as I found having to condense my work down and removing details could lower the quality and it would end up not making sense.

I hope that my illustrations will add to the tone of my work and make it more aesthetically appealing.

Unfortunately, the computers weren’t working most of Tuesday which was extremely irritating but luckily I was able to finish the illustrations throughout the week.


Tips for Editing

I found this website really helpful when editing. It helped me take away unnecessary clutter without compromising quality.

Term 2 Week 5 Blog

This week, we worked a lot on decluttering and attention words. We started off by refreshing our memories on essential types of words. We wrote down the definitions for the following words.

Noun- (subject) a word (other than a pronoun) used to identify any of a class of people, places, or things

Adjective- a word naming an attribute of a noun, such as sweet, red, or technical.

 

Adverb- a word or phrase that modifies the meaning of an adjective, verb, or other adverb, expressing manner, place, time, or degree (e.g. gently, here, now, very). Some adverbs, for example sentence adverbs, can also be used to modify whole sentences.

 

Verb- (doing words) a word used to describe an action, state, or occurrence, and forming the main part of the predicate of a sentence, such as hear, become, happen.

 

This definitely refreshed my memory as the last time I covered this, I was in school. I realized how important it is for us, as creatives, to fully understand what we are writing.

We then worked on attention words. These words are mainly adjectives that show and don’t tell. We worked on decluttering our work and other writers as well. We were told to sum up our stories using the six word memoir technique. Here are my results:

 

A hungry boy dies having eaten.

The lost lose their own.

Teenage terror; under every rock.

Month missing, dead a day, full stomach.

Teenagers planning a massacre in England’s front room.

Kings Woods; Terror behind every branch.

Hurt people hurt people.

 

This was difficult but really thought-provoking. It really made me think about what I was writing and how more can be less. Trying to sum up your story in six words is tough but I would definitely use it, especially for taglines.

We then had to work with Syntax. We were told to change the sentence: ‘The man ran down the road towards his house.’

Here are my best variations:

 

The delivery guy shot down the road towards the house.

The assassin slithered down the road towards the house.

 

This was a really interesting exercise as it got me thinking about describing my characters without actually describing them. Using the technique of using someones profession instead of their identity to describe them was describing the character without actually saying much. I will definitely be using this technique in the future.

Afterwards, we worked on using different words outside of what we would usually say. Using a synonym can create a different tone.

Shoes: Heels, boots, sandals, trainers,

Food: Meal, lunch, breakfast, dinner, dessert, pizza, sandwich, burger

Clothes: Attire, clothing, outfit,

By using synonyms, we are able to really set the tone for our work which I found really useful.

The website I always use for synonyms is Thesaurus.com. I have found this extremely helpful with my work as I feel it really improves it’s quality. I believe this website to be an essential to all writers.

 

 

Term 2: Week 3 Blog

This week, we continued writing our stories for our project. I continued writing my piece on the shooting range. I wrote a piece on the 999 call made by the characters friend.

Working on this piece was a challenge as I find writing main dialogue in a script format to be quite difficult. Having to express a characters emotions purely through their words proved to be rather interesting. I had the main idea of the phone call and just wrote what I thought was most appropriate. Afterwards, I went back and edited several times before I was happy. However, even now, I find it likely that I will go back and re-edit as my ideas grow.

Operator: This is 999, what emergency service do you require?
Lincoln: Police
*Dial tone*
Operator: This is Kent police, how can I help?
Lincoln: Hi…um, I don’t really know what to say but I think my friends are planning something bad.
Operator: Ok, could you tell me what you think they’re planning?
Lincoln: I don’t know but they keep saying they’re gonna set bombs off at my school. They say they’re gonna get revenge on everyone.
Operator: What is your name?
Lincoln: Kara Lincoln
Operator: And what school do you go to?
Lincoln: Towers School in Kennington, Ashford.
Operator: And what are the names of your classmates?
Lincoln: Harry Kemp and Alex Mitchell. Please, they keep talking about it. i think they’re gonna do something soon. I thought it was a joke at first but it’s getting serious.
Operator: We will, Ma’am. Have they physically done anything?
Lincoln: They’ve been getting into fights for years. They get bullied a lot, always have been. But its nothing more than usual. Well, last week, the guys that usually bully them stuck their heads down the toilet and flushed it. They also sprayed them with ketchup and threw them into the lockers.
Operator: Ok and what are the names of the boys that are bullying them.
Lincoln: [REDACTED] *Beep noise*

I will insert the recording for this at a later date. I enjoyed writing this piece as I got to work on my script writing/dialogue skills. I had a rough idea of what I wanted to write with this piece and I feel that I have put across the emotion I wanted.

After this piece, I worked on an interrogation log.

The following is a transcript released by Kent Police after the trial of Mitchell and Kemp. This shows the first interview police has with Mitchell.
Tape starts.
Parson: This is DCI Parson with DI Ennis. It is 1100 hours on Wednesday, April 17th 2002. Present is suspect is Alex Jacob Mitchell with his lawyer, Hugh Brent. Suspect stands accused of planning assault with a deadly weapon, planned murder and owning firearms. Interview begins now.
Ennis: Mr Mitchell, do you know why you are here today?
Mitchell: You just said so for your little tape recorder. You think I’m gonna kill someone.
Parson: Mr Mitchell, we have strong evidence suggesting that you and your associate, Harry Lee Kemp, are planning to launch an attack on your school, Towers School in Kennington.
Brent: (Scoffs) What is this so called evidence, Detective?
Parson: We have received information from someone who wishes to remain anonymous.
Brent: That’s all you have? An anonymous source? (Scoffs) That isn’t even enough to keep him over night.
Ennis: True. However, we received this call last week and of course, as it is our job, we had to investigate these claims. We found several videos of your client, Mr Mitchell and Mr Kemp, buying a collection of large knives and blades through CCTV. We also have footage of you buying the ingredients needed to make up to 10 pipe bombs. We also have a witness statement saying that they sold Mr Mitchell and Mr Kemp, two shotguns. The seller was told they were for hunting and that both of the suspects had ID claiming they were over 21. If you put that with the phone call we received, that is enough for a warrant to search your home. Our other officers are there right now.
Mitchell: (Scrape of chair can be heard) What the fuck?! They aren’t allowed to do that!
Ennis: Yes we are, Mr Mitchell. That’s how the law works.
(A loud scuffle is heard with unintelligible shouting. Chairs scraping can be heard as well as loud banging.)
Parson: Detain him now!

(The rest of this interview has never been released to the public. DCI Parson claims ‘Our suspect, Mr Alex Mitchell, was detained during his interview after assaulting an officer. DI Ennis was attacked by the subject and has sustained a broken nose and bruised collarbone. Searching the suspects house, we found several firearms, multiple bombs and an arsenal of knives collectively. Both suspects have been arrested.’)


I really enjoyed working on this topic as it was really interesting and fun as there were so many different turns I could take my work. I learnt a lot more in regards to genre conventions as I didn’t want to fall victim to any of the classic tropes. I went through this piece several times, changing the sentence structure through syntax and really thinking about portraying this characters through my writing in the same way I see them in my head.

Most crime pieces focus on the Detective and their journey to solving the case. However, my piece focuses on the perpetrators themselves.

For example, The Redbreast by Jo Nesbitt focuses on the Detective and his character. The story is seen from his point of view.

With my story, I wanted to show the suspects/criminals from an unbiased view. Obviously, Detectives always have a biased view of the criminals they catch. But we don’t hear much from their families and the positive things the would have to say. I wanted to write right in the middle.

I also wanted people to visualize the interrogation room and tone of voice they spoke in. I want people to really connect with this story. I feel that if your reader can really see the scene written in front of them, then you have done your job as a creative. I can only hope to have that affect on my readers.

We worked more on Audio this week as well, I recorded the 999 call using two classmates and also recorded an interview with a classmate. Both will be uploaded once I have finished editing it.

 

The Redbreast – Jo Nesbitt

 

 

Term 2: Week 2 Blog

This week, we continued researching our chosen area. I will upload my research when I can as it is currently on my college account.

I started writing my piece on the idea of two teenagers planning a massacre at their school and setting up a shooting range at Kings Wood. I have written it more in an article form/police report as I wanted it to feel realistic. I felt that if I had written it like a story, with dialogue etc, then it would’ve seemed fictional.

With stick forts and dancing shadows, Kings Wood has a lot to offer. High points and nature trails, woodland animals and flowing rivers. Families have been coming here for generations, walking their dogs and bonding with their children. Nothing bad could ever happen here, right?

Behind the tall hill known as Robins Point, lies smashed bottles and empty gun cartridges. The product of two teenagers planning a nightmare. Back in 2002, 17-year-old Harry Kemp and 16-year-old Alex Mitchell routinely visited here for target practice. The two planned a massacre at Towers School for over 6 months after being continuously bullied for years.

After bragging to their friends about their plans for ‘ultimate revenge,’ the police were alerted and intervened 2 weeks before the planned attack. Police reportedly found 5 firearms with hundreds of bullets as well as an arsenal of over 20 knives and 8 pipe bombs. Police also found over 50 hours of video footage of the two planning the attacks.

“Mate, I’m so ready for Judgement Day. Gonna be fuckin’ mental.” Boasted Mitchell, a twisted grin on his face, resting his chin on the barrel of a sawed off shotgun. The two were sat in Kemps bedroom.

Judgement Day was what the boys called their planned massacre, 9th May 2002.

“My first is gonna be [REDACTED.] Dumb bitch deserves it. We’ll be gods.” Muttered Kemp, loading up his chosen shotgun.

After the two were arrested, Kemp was diagnosed with Anti-social personality disorder as well as manic depression. Mitchell was diagnosed with schizoid personality disorder as well as depression and psychotic tendencies.

Both are being held in separate maximum security prisons where Kemp has attempted suicide multiple times.’

 

Image result for zero day film

For this piece, I took a lot of inspiration from the 2003 film Zero Day. The film is told th

rough handheld and security cameras. It only shows the facts, what the characters actually said with no outside opinions or bias.

(Image taken from Alchetron.com)

I also wrote another piece, taking inspiration from the Barabara Forrest/Mary Ashford case.

In a somewhat grisly coincidence, it seems that two women, Barbara Forrest and Mary Ashford, were both victims of a similar crime committed in the tiny village of Erdington, some five miles outside of Birmingham in England. Both twenty-year olds—who happened to share the same birthday—had been raped and strangled, their bodies were found 300 yards apart, and both had been found on the same day—May 27th—157 years apart (1817 and 1974)! Even more remarkable, both had just visited a friend that evening, both had changed into a new dress that night, and both had gone to a dance (where they presumably met their killer).  Still not remarkable enough for you? How about the fact that the man accused in both their crimes was named Thornton, and that both Thornton’s were eventually acquitted for the crime?

– Jeff Danelek, 2011.Toptenz.net.

Here is my piece so far. It is just a basic outline of the article I’m writing.

On 11th April 1903, 22 year-old Elizabeth Mason disappeared in Kings Wood whilst walking her dog. Authorities were alerted yet all they found was the dog and her pearl bracelet. To this day, she has never been found.

On 11th April 2003, 27 year-old Rachel Carter, nee Mason was walking her dog in Kings Wood. Police were alerted when the dog was found by itself. Rachel was nowhere to be found. All that was left at the scene was a pearl. Rachel’s family  strongly deny her ever owning any jewelry containing pearls. To this day, she has not been found.’


Although I was ill during the week and had to miss two days, I was able to complete the questions set for us by Leasa which I will leave a link to.


Zero Day – 2003 American Independent film.

Barbara Forrest/Mary Ashford case information.

Research Questions– For Leasa

Term 2: Week 1 Blog

This term, we are working on a project called ‘The Walk.’ We have to chose an area (street, village, forest etc.) to write short stories about, fiction, non-fiction or poetry. In the chosen area, we are to chose between 5-7 landmarks to write about and then produce a leaflet.

From the moment we were told we had to choose an area, I already had Kings Wood in mind. Kings Wood is in Challock near Ashford, a place I hold very close to my heart as I spent a lot of time there as a child.

I already had several ideas of what fictional stories I wanted to write, the ideas including:

  • Young children going missing
  • Shooting range used for target practice by teenagers planning a massacre
  • Body of a woman found in early 1900s, then 100 years later, the body of another woman with the same name is found.
  • Park rangers tales

For the visual aspect, I really wanted to make the stories look real by putting them into a police report like format. I also want to include supposed mug shots of the criminals from the 2nd idea as well as crime scene photos from the missing children cases.

As for the audio, I am still stuck on the idea. I’m not exactly sure how to create an audio piece that would fit with my work and its genre. I contemplated creating an audio clip of a mother calling 999 and reporting their child had gone missing. However, I am not sure if that would’ve actually been made public if the case was real.


Also this week, we worked on rewriting stories to different genres. I chose to rewrite The Empty House by Algernon Blackwood into a children story. However, I did not get very far.

‘If I was to rewrite this piece to be more child-friendly, I would definitely change the language used to be easier for children to understand and remove unnecessary descriptive language.

I would also add humour. For example, the idea of the so called haunted house, actually being occupied by a homeless man with a gassy stomach. I got the humour idea from the children’s horror film ‘Monster House.‘ Whilst it is scary for children, it also contains a lot of humour. 

The plot would be a lot more comical and would not be extremely complex or layered so that the intended audience could understand and follow along.

The entire story would have an overall light-hearted tone, taking inspiration from writer Enid Blyton who wrote mysteries for children i.e  The Famous Five.’

 

We also worked on genre conventions. We looked at travel writing, crime, horror, sci-fi and childrens books.

The main genre that stood out to me was crime and horror as they had the most notable conventions.

For example, in many horror films the main plot goes something like that:

  • Group of friends (usually teenagers) go to isolated location (cabin in woods/haunted house etc) to get drunk and have fun. After some very basic character tropes have been shown (the nice, quiet girl aka The Final Girl. Next, the ‘slutty’ girl who has sex within the first 15 minutes of the film and is the first to get killed. Then, the Jock who acts tough and tries to defeat the evil but ends up making really dumb decisions. Finally, the goofy guy who has a thing for final girl and is there purely for comic relief.)
  • Once each of these characters have been introduced. Little things start happening, Final Girl gets scared but everyone else shrugs it off. The ‘slut’ is the first to die. The decide to split up, aka the dumbest decisions ever made and if you ever in a real life situation like this and you make one of these decisions, you are an idiot.
  • Everyone dies, Final Girl defeats the evil. The End.
  • I think I’ve just summed up 50% of horror films in two paragraphs.

The Empty House – Algernon Blackwood. 1917.

Monster House– 2006 American movie.

The Famous Five – Enid Blyton. 1942- 1963.

 

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