Archive for the ‘Creative Media Production’ Category

Web Part 2

Posted: December 9, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 15_17, General
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For LO2 you need to plan your web site – this must have multiple pages and feature graphic and text content at a minimum. Write up your plan as a report, using pictures, screen shots and mindmaps to show how you have considered the following –

a) purpose of the web site- what are you making it for? If it is a portfolio site, what is it’s purpose? e.g. business goals, objectives for website, blogging, social networking, information provision etc.

b) target audience – Who is it for? Make a profile of your target audience –  e.g. What will users need/want to do, general public, audience targeted by age, gender, interests etc –
How will you consider them? e.g. obtain information, purchase products, establish user trust in site, user/customer testimonials, first impressions.

c) content – what will it contain?
List out what you need to put in it – E.g. site layout (e.g. creating a site map, identify site structure and navigation, identify content for individual page)
Sketch out the look of the pages / construct tests and screen grab – e.g. page layout (shared borders [top, bottom, left, right], page body [text and graphics], navigation bars and buttons)
How will people move around it? annotate your images –  e.g. site navigation (navigation bars, links back to home, parent and child pages)
Purpose of individual pages and the specific content – E.G. types of pages (Home, About Us, Terms and Conditions,
Contact Us), downloads, mailto: links, products, information, services, third party advertising

d) production plan – make a detailed plan as to what assets you need and when you need all the assets, and finish the design, publish, how to test etc. Consider how different people will use it – e.g. screen display sizes, colour schemes (web colours supported), font styles, multi browser compatibility, W3C guidelines and accessibility recommendations, WaSP Web Standards
Look at the potential costs involved and schedule accordingly – e.g.  costs such as hosting, copyright, royalties, other services; timing of launch
Is it good vaule? e.g. budget feasibility, budget based on professional rates,
timescales, costs such as hosting.
What help do you need? What assets do you need? How long will this take you to make?  E.G.production plan, resources, timings, personnel, plus a relevant launch date, plan for feedback
Consider the Legal & Ethical issues – E.G. libel, copyright, intellectual property rights, privacy,protection of personal data, bullying stalking, impersonating others, misrepresentation, royalties
How might it raise money? Is this a relevant way to monetise? – E.G. potential revenue, for example, advertising space, sponsors etc.


Web Part 1

Posted: December 9, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 15_17, General
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Just to recap on what you should have done last year –

You need to analyse (ie examine (something) methodically and in detail, typically in order to explain and interpret it) a range (Typically 3 or more) of contrasting (ie Different) commercial (making money) websites, evaluating (form an idea of the value of):

a) purpose – What does it do? Why? E.G. information, e-commerce, promotion/advertising, downloads

b) visitor needs – What does a Visitor get from the site? Why do they visit or revisit? E.G. obtain information, purchase products, establish user trust in site, user/customer

c) information flow – how does the information contained in the web site read? How is it organised? Does this make it easy to see or harder? E.G. site layout, page layout, site navigation

d) features – what does it contain (in a web sense) E.G. text, navigation, links, graphics, background, general design, rich media

e) benefits increase – what is it designed to give people (host, writer or viewer) E.G. increase sales, cost savings, accessibility to audience, wider
audience reach, available 24hrs a day/7 days a week

f ) content – what is in it (from a media sense) e.g. types of pages (Home, About Us, Terms and Conditions), downloads, mailto: links, products, information, services,
third party advertising.

Once you have analysed the sites, this will give you a better sense of how to talk about your own site – from design to inception.

Pitch Checklist

Posted: November 28, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 16_18
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This is a general pitching checklist, but I have added a few things specifically for OCR:

Originally posted by V Renee on Nofilmschool

See all the basics of storyboarding in infographic form!

Planning is just as important to filmmaking as the camera itself, and one way you can be prepared, especially for those chaotic days on set, is by storyboarding. This process helps the director, DP, and other departments pre-visualize what shots and scenes are going to look like before they shoot them. It can be a bit difficult to know where to start if you’ve never done it, but this infographic by Jugaad Animation helps walk you through it step by step, explaining key components, as well as what to look out for as you go. Check it out below:

Originally Posted by Robert Hardy on Nofilmschool
Final Cut Pro X Storyboarding
I’m not sure about you guys, but I’m terrible at drawing. Even stick figures give me a hard time. It’s embarrassing.

Unfortunately, storyboards are an integral part of the pre-production process for some people, which puts artistically-incompetent folks like myself at a major disadvantage when it comes to producing pre-visualization content. And even though there are loads of software solutions for creating storyboards out there, many of them are overly-complicated and too time consuming to be of any practical use.

FMP Overview

Posted: November 18, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 15_17, General
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 In this project you will devise a sequence featuring Visual and special
effects, script is, shoot it and design the sound.

You could recover Film and / or TV with this – as long as it meets the

  • The final sequence must be up to 5 minutes long
  • You will have devised, tested and implemented a Visual Effects Sequence
  • You will have devised, tested and Implemented a Special Effects Sequence
  • You will have undertaken Pre Production ( for the effects and for
    the sequence)
  • You will have Directed & Shot the effects sequencesYou will
  • have edited the effects sequences
  • You will have devised the sound design for the effects sequence (and contributed to the overall sequence)

As we progress through the project, you will set further tasks to do
dependent on your chosen direction of study.

 You will need to construct a personal plan to show what you are doing
and how it fits in with the units you are covering.

So, for example…


Unit Criteria

Submission Date

Research Simple VFX

  • Get hit by a car (Road Safety Advert)
  • Landing like Hancock / Man of Steel
  • Green screen in a location (including
  • Crawling out of a TV (The Ring)
  • Lightsabers (Star Wars)

Look at how they were used in the film / TV show

Use at a tutorial to recreate it

Produce a VFX Breakdown to show how you did it

Unit 44, outcome 1







Unit 44, outcome 2








Look at professional
SFX / VFX breakdowns: for example –

  • Superman
  • American Werewolf in London
  • Scanners
  • Star Wars (1-7)
  • Lord of the Rings / Hobbit
  • Jurassic Park
  • Avatar
  • Etc

Unit 44, outcome 1

Unit 45, Outcome 1



Simple SFX Tests:

  • Zombie makeup (Walking Dead Etc)
  • Broken Arm
  • Black eyes & Scars
  • Flying Helicopter
  • Miniature person in a giant world (The

Look at how they were used in the film / TV show

Use at a tutorial to recreate it / use Media Make up professional

Produce a SFX Breakdown to show how you did it

Unit 45, outcome 1







Unit 45, outcome 2 & 3









Criteria for Part 1 – submission 13/12/16 and 6/2/2017

Unit 44: Visual Effects for TV and Film

1 Understand visual effects techniques and their
application in audio-visual media products

P1 Learners analyse a range of
visual effects techniques, and their application in digital post-production,
using examples from a variety of audio-visual media products


2 Be able to produce pre-production materials for a 2-3
minute audio-visual sequence, containing planning for visual effects

P2 Learners produce
pre-production materials for a 2-3 minute
audio-visual sequence, including:

a) treatment or concept
with planning for a minimum of three different visual effects

b) script
identifying the
planned visual effects

c) storyboard
identifying the planned visual effects

d) relevant recce(s)
and risk assessment(s)

e) production schedule

M1 Learners produce a proficient storyboard for a 2-3 minute sequence, which includes sound, mise en scène, production
directions and the planned visual effects, which are appropriate to the
intention of the 2-3 minute sequence. The storyboard produced is generally of
a good technical standard


Unit 45  SPECIAL

Understand special effects techniques

Learners analyse a range of special effects
techniques and their use in film and TV production using examples from a
variety of audio-visual media products



Be able to plan and test the chosen special effect, and the footage it will
appear in

Learners develop an idea for one special effect from the following list:

  • mechanised prop
  • stunt prop
  • scale model
  • prosthetic makeup
  • pyrotechnics




Be able to plan and test a chosen special effect, and the footage it will
appear in

Learners plan one chosen special effect, and the sequence it will appear in,

a) storyboard

b) relevant plans and/or sketches for the chosen special effect

c) mock ups relevant to the chosen special effect

d) detailed risk assessment for the special effect production

e) recce

f ) risk assessment for production of the footage

g) permission to use special effect

h) other relevant legal requirements

i) compliance with relevant health and safety requirements

j) following relevant safe working practices

Learners produce a storyboard that shows relevant camera directions related
to the sequence and chosen special effect. Learners produce detailed
annotated sketches.

plans are produced that are related to the footage in which the special
effect will feature

Learners produce a comprehensive storyboard that shows relevant sound and/ or
sound effects related to the sequence and chosen special effect.

sketches and plans represent the special effect from a number of angles

Learners follow safe working practices to a competent level by:

a) testing possible materials and techniques to ensure that they are feasible
and appropriate for the creation of the special effect

b) ensuring that the special effect is safe for use during the production of the




Guide to timings for
Production schedule:




10, 14/11

Explore VFX
and SFX

11, 21/11

Cardiff Trip Tuesday22


12, 28/11


13, 05/12

Testing of VFX & SFX

14, 04/12

Sequence Analysis for SFX, VFX and Sound





15, 02/01


16, 09/01

Pitch Ideas
for Film

17, 16/01

Experience Week

18, 23/01

Pre Production – Test Shoots

19, 30/01

Pre production

20, 06/02

Pre production, Go into Production

Half Term,


21, 20/02

/ Filming

22, 27/02

Filming /
Post / sound

23, 06/03

Filming /
Post / sound

24, 13/3

Filming /
Post / sound

25, 20/03

Filming /
Post / Sound

26, 27/03 *f

Filming /
Post / Sound





27, 17/04

Final Mix

28, 24/04


29, 01/05

Final Film
Submitted: Grading for VFX, SFX & Sound.

30, 8/5


31, 15/05


32, 22/05




Major Project: Research into VFX & SFX

Posted: November 16, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 15_17, Creative Media Production

You are going to make a 5-minute short film. You will need to produce 3 visual effects and 1 special effect, plus at least one of each of the types of sound for the sound design.

The best place to start is research. You will need to analyse at least 4 sequences (scenes, bits of films or TV shows etc) for the VFX, SFX and sound units. I recommend using the same ones for each unit – that way you will get a deeper analysis.

I have compiled a playlist of VFX & SFX breakdowns and tutorials. Please watch as many as possible!
Select a Tutorial and recreate it. For example; flying, knocked down by a car, hands on fire or cloning are good starting points. Watch the tutorials, film for the effect and then follow it to get to know After Effects better.
This will also help you to analyse the sequences in more detail – so try and recreate the effect they have done. You can then use this as a VFX breakdown to better explain the analysis.
This analysis can be presented using a number of techniques. Start by storyboarding it. This can then be used for SFX , VFX and sound separately – one storyboard, photocopied and used for 3 different analysis. Sketch on each version to identify and describe the elements you are looking at – and then either do an AV presentation or write a report on it.

TV Show – Sample Materials

Posted: November 14, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 16_18, Creative Media Production
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You should now have completed your industry research (the Case Study) and have completed your Treatment (Proposal plus details about Style, equipment, access etc), along with cast (Suggested stars and more realistic options), target Audience, budget & Funding, Production Schedule (with launch date and contingencies), legal & ethical issues and scheduling time… and put them all in the submission folder on the Creative Arts Drive.

Now it’s time to move onto the bit where you prove it.

“Sample Materials” are simply the things you do to show what it will look like. So, all the things you said it would be in the treatment, you need to show. So, for example  – if you are making a comedy, write a script that is funny, and turn it into a short section of your TV show – that is funny.

You could film a section specifically to  show the style of the show. You could design the logo and make an opening sequence.  You could make a trailer, only shooting what you need for the trailer – key shots, key actions etc.

You could do promotional material – trailers, teasers, posters etc. You could shoot a whole test episode. You could actually make a key scene, or do test effects. The choices are wide, and depend on what you have planned!

At the most basic, for a pass you could write a script, do a storyboard and a design for a poster.
For a merit, you would need to make these things – so, shoot the script, make the poster using good quality images. For a distinction, make it look like an actual TV show…
Remember, the submission needs to show your involvement. So, for most written work this needs to be your version. When it comes to making videos, this will always be a group effort – so make sure you are able to show your contribution to the production.

TV Show Development

Posted: November 7, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 16_18
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You are developing your TV Show in line with ProfesisonalBoradcast expectations.

Look at the show that are influencing you, and research them –

  • conventions of the genre
  • Production companies- who owns what, who makes it, who broadcasts it.
  • How it makes money, how much money it takes to make
  • Actors, stars and people who are in it – what else have they been in?
  • Locations – where are shows shot?
  • Sets – what do the sets look like? How are they made?
  • How is the idea sold? How is social media used?
  • Target Audience – make profiles of audience using BARB, Yougov, IMDB etc.
  • How is it broadcast? How is it distributed?
  • What regulatory bodies look over it? Check out Ofcom’s broadcasting code.

Armed with this information, you need to write your treatment.

You will need to describe your idea a simply as possible – Name the show, Tag Line (Tweetable), then simple description to make it memorable (25 words).

Then you can go into detail, using the research from the existing shows as a model.


  • Write a  proposal.
  • add details about style & content to make it a treatment.
  • Add suggested Cast / stars
  • Add Target Audience – based on Profiles developed base don influencing shows.
  • This should give you ideas about Budget and Funding – potential advertisers, potential cost etc.


SBA 2016: Friday 23rd September

Posted: September 23, 2016 by Alan Hardcastle in CMP 15_17
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Aim – to ensure all planning is complete ready for filming.

Objectives – Complete all Pre-production, complete draft report to company, ensure Technical Crew are prepared.

We have the first 6 companies assigned and the project is moving.

We will start of the session by reviewing progress – it is vital that you are reporting back to the tutors, so we need to get into the habit of doing this as a group.

Within today’s session we need to ensure we have a clear picture of what we are doing for each one – so all planning, including proposed shooting dates, questions, storyboard, shot lists and crew must be complete.

You also need to make sure you can use the equipment – so the crew need to go and shoot a short piece to demonstrate use of Camera, sound & Editing. This will be completed within the session, and will identify any issues you need to sort out before a site visit.