Tuesday, 19 July 2011

WS - Common Conventions of Music Videos

In the short space of time that we have been studying Music Videos for the A2 course, we have learnt a number of things about them, and picked up on many different aspects of Music Videos that are common and occur in a large number of videos.

Like in the Slasher genre that we studied last year, there are many conventions that frequently appear in different Music Videos. Some conventions can appear across all three types of video (Concept Based, Performance Based and Narrative Based Videos).

Conventions that seem to be appearing so far, and exist in the Music Video Industry include the following:

Camera Shots/Angles:

  • Close Ups - very commonly used in Music Videos to show the expression of the band/singer or the actor in the Narrative based videos. Can also be used to show lip-synching.
  • Extreme Close Ups - similar to Close ups, ECU's are used to show close up detail/emotion in the bands/actors as well as showing where lip-synching has been successful.
  • Long Shots -  Long Shots can be used to show the whole band in a performance, or a larger setting for a narrative based video.
  • Dolly Shots- Dolly shots are often used in Music Videos
  • Panning Shots - Panning Shots are often used to view the whole band without cutting the footage, or to show an extended area in a narrative video.
  • Tilts - Like Dolly shots and panning shots, tilts are often used to follow the movements of the bands/singers/actors.
  • Often very past paced editing is used in Music videos. For example, there are 162 different shots in the 220 second long Britney Spears Video, "Hit Me Baby One More Time".
  • The pace of the editing is almost always in sync. with the beat of the track.
  • SFX often used in Narrative based videos. 
  • Jump Cuts are the most common 'type' of cut in Music videos, as the idea is to 'jump' from scene to scene, band member to band member.
  • Reaction Shots - These are very common in Narrative based videos as they show the relationship between two or more people.
  • Often very unusual settings. Unusual settings make the videos stand out from other videos.
  • Iconic, standout characters and costumes are usual, again to make each video stand out and be original.
  • The mise-en-scene will often be linked with the lyrics of the video. Occasionally, what is happening on screen will have no link to what is happening in the song. If the video is Performance based, then it is likely that the mise-en-scene will include band equipment and microphones etc.
  • The mise-en-scene will often reflect the time of the video or the song.
  • The sound, obviously, is mainly the soundtrack.
  • However some videos may use SFX for sound, and may use some of the sound from the filmed action.
  • Various diegetic and non-diegetic sounds are sometimes heard in Music Videos, as well as the obvious music and vocals.

An additional, early list of Music Video conventions that I made in the first week of the project includes:
  • Male/Female Gaze
  • Actors/Dancers/A band
  • Glamorous Females/Males (depending on the Target Audience - fits in with the male gaze theory)
  • Interesting, abstract or strange settings.
  • A singer.
  • A narrative, a performance or some sort of concept.
  • SFX
  • Recognisable singers/bands or actors in the narrative.

1 comment:

  1. need to proofread blog for missing pics like this


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