Secondary idea development

Production Analysis: Idea Summary

Take 1. Transmedia Narrative carried out via Social Media Networks


The initial Pitch Idea was to carry out a fictional story distributed via online characters telling their section of the story on their personal profile page, either on Facebook, Twitter, You Tube or WordPress blog. Initial interest was very high with the Facebook “like” page for The Hashtag Life receiving 104 “likes” across the first three days. This idea was tapping into people’s browse-ability… having carried out audience research regarding their interest in following celebrities online and scrolling various news feeds to pass the time of day, I thought it would be relatively simple to give them something worth browsing for, and give them a story to follow. However, content creation and a narrative strong enough to maintain interest and engagement was just not possible as along with brows-ability came boredom and the need for something new and exciting. One thing I have learnt is that “fads” on social media come in have their moment and then go again just as quick. This led to the second idea, which focused more on making people on social media “be the story” themselves.



Take 2. Interactive Visual Linear Narrative


An interactive visual narrative, which engaged with the user more directly, still had the same themes as the previous idea as it still wanted to connect with an audience who could put themselves within the story. The three areas of interest to depict were; what would conversations on social media sound like if they were actually spoken in real life and would people ever say what they feel brave/bold enough to write on social media, how pictures are used to give a false impression of real life, making life in the online world look much more glamorous and the sociologically/psychological effects and processes each and every member of a social network goes through when viewing or uploaded pictures of themselves and other people. Each of these three concepts came under the overall umbrella of the blurring line between online and offline life and how people could engage with a narrative that addressed them. The main issue faced with this is the display method. Although the concept ideas are all to do with the same thing they are very difficult to express in a linear narrative that’s strong enough to tie them altogether and make them flow in an appropriate way that wouln’t make them seem cheap or stereotypical. By trying to display them in a chronological order via a linear click through, the point was just lost and instead the user was left feeling confused and unsure and it was easily forgettable. The stand-alone products themselves were much stronger and the finer details more obvious when displayed more subtly, something, which happened organically when, viewed separately. So this meant for a display rethink, which led to idea 3.


Take 3. Interactive Concept Visualisation


Idea 3 still focuses on the themes, ideas and content included in idea 2, however the structuring of the narrative has been changed. Instead of forcing a direct pathway through the information and forcing the user to understand and relate to what I am trying to make them connect with, I am allowing for the ideas to emerge more naturally. This in turn represents the whole overall process of the idea itself and how it came to emerge making me quite annoyed at myself for not realising this sooner! By pushing the ideas upon people in idea 2, they lost credibility; it was poorly designed therefore making it look tacky and overall looked very pointless and amateur. This method of display and adopting a more artistic approach is much butter understood by the user and much clearer. This way the project will stand as a conceptual artefact within its own right and encourage the viewer/user to really reflect on their own personal use of social media and their own engagement with it and how they allow for themselves to be viewed as well as how they view others, questioning all aspects of the project concepts. The decision to use a 3D gallery viewer with interlaced video, sound and image, as well as 2 user installations, which required direct users, input, the overall design was stronger and more engaging. The 3D gallery was instantly more engaging because it is something fresh and different from average web pages and reflected my own more personal “artistic scrap book type” style

Breaking News #ConversationCrisis

My main focus is to get whoever interacts with this project to reflect upon their own usage, their own dependance and there own behaviour online. This is the first video I have created for the project and it aims to win the audiences attention straight away, and be believable.  I feel this little video in itself done this because it shows how our smart phones are glued to our hands, even when they really shouldn’t be – for example in the middle of a sports game?! This video aims to poke fun at the fact that were all more engaged with what is going on online than we are with each other and the space around us.

The video itself gave me the perfect opportunity to develop my personal skills in scriptwriting, storyboarding, videoing and editing, something I was a little out of practice with.


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I recruited the help of BA Multimedia Journalism final year student and good friend of mine, Jessica Long, to help out with the news feature. Playing the role of stern and serious news reader, Jess did a great job and was a great help in terms of bringing her journalism experience to the table, which enabled us to strengthen the script and ensure the feature was edited appropriately to fit the new feature format. Alongside my collaboration with Dom White from Computing, Jess is my second cross course collaborative partner. Again I feel this has really helped my personal development and extended my skills because instead of getting somebody else to do the work for me, I am learning from them and working with them and broadening my own skills. This is so important for someone who lacks solid direction in terms of a career path so I feel this was a good decision.

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Overall, I am happy with the final product of this mini vid. However, the quality didn’t export quite as good as I expected which is something I need to look at for future video pieces. The sound as well wasn’t as clear as it could have been – ideally I would have redone this however time constraints just wouldn’t allow for it at this time. By doing this shorter video, I was able to overcome aspects of the problem I had faced with the previous idea which had been creating a narrative that was strong and engaging.

The editing software I used was After Effects and then Premiere Pro. Both programmes I have had totally minimal experience with however I feel I got the hang of them both quite quickly. The exporting process of videos however I need to look into, particular with regards to what channel I use to upload them to a web site portfolio page because an large embedded file will be difficult and slow to load and YouTube has its own readjusting thing it does to videos? ….



Production Analysis: Idea

The #Life is an Interactive Visual Design project, displaying the conseptualisation of social media in real life. Drawing upon common themes and opinions surrounding social media, it invites you to open your eyes wide and take a step back from something you are already seeing everywhere you look and to confront the idea that physical reality and a life lived online are beginning to blur. With a majority of the real world now logging in online, whether you are actively a part of it or not… you have heard of it, you are talking about it and it is undeniable that you can get away from it

The development of the idea has grown from the initial idea of the transmedia story initially pitched. This development of the project has grown from time, and commitment constraints faced by producing enough content and enough user engagement for the original story and more importantly the struggle to record the process for hand in due to it being live. I found it difficult to create a story strong enough to get across the issues and points I was trying to raise, and so by doing it this way instead the points become the piece themselves. Using already available online stories to create one overall “story” overcomes issues previously stated and allows the audience to essentially  ”be the story” because of the reflective response it aims to acheive. Although less interactive, I still feel this way will stand as a conceptual artefact within its own right and encourage the viewer/user to really reflect on their own personal use of social media and their own engagement with it and how they allow for themselves to be viewed as well as how they view others, as well as questioning the future of communication.


Life behind the social media posts.



This quotation of the meaning of the word “sonder” summed up quite nicely what this project aims to represent. The life behind what we initially see. Taking Instagram pictures, Facebook posts, Tweets, and looking at how they combine to create an overview of the lives we lead raises the question of how the media is allowing for us to glamourise our own lives… what we see online is far from what we see in real life. This portfolio collection will show the contrast.


Social Media and Life Glamourisation



There has been a constant debate about how super models are photoshopped for magazines and photographs, giving an unrealistic and idealistic image of what people should look like. Essentially this is basically what social media has allowed everyone, not just super models or industry professionals, to do – to glamourise their own lives by posted about it online and using image filter options. The images above have been taken from different media resources, some socila media and some from traditionalistic news broadcasters and demonstrates the contrast between what is actually real life and what is depicted in online life. Obviously the images are just a demonstration, and were taken at different times etc so would appear different. But if a larger scale collection of media at one given time were to be collected, this could give a really interesting outlook in how social media is glamourising lifestyles.

Additionally, by recording this level of online activity around one given physical space, it will demonstrate how “conversation” online is happening all the time and a given space is no longer what it seems or used to be seen as. This links back to the idea of story and trans media story – the story is already being generated organically through social media and it is my task to collect it and demonstrate how is it effecting everyday life.

The demonstration clip has been creating using the video creating functionality on photoshop. This was simple and easy to use however I fear that with large quantities of images and information it will be very slow and glitchy to work with. I think using a more video based software such as Adobe After Effect or Final Cut Pro would be better.