Skip to content

Visual analysis of grouped photos ‘couples kissing’

               Mickey and Minnie Mouse image      Rene Magritte – ‘The Lovers’

What is it? A cartoon animated image. Painting.
How was it made? Computer animated/cartoon artist drawn. Oil painting.
Who made it? The brand Walt Disney / employed cartoon artists. Rene Magritte.
What was it made for? Primarily entertainment purposes, made for children. Could be a logo used for advertisement purposes or possibly used on merchandised for the cartoon. Made for exhibition purposes as part of a collection.
Where is it? Could be a universal image used as a logo or on merchandise. Australian national gallery.
Why am I looking at it now? Entertainment purposes. Possibly entertainment or curiosity.
What sort of picture is it? Cartoon picture, connotes innocence and love. Ambiguous painting, very dark connotations.
What other pictures is it like? Other cartoons aimed at children also pictures in comic books and magazines for children. Reminds us of images from horror films.

What is the meaning of the picture? What does it make me think about?

Mickey and Minnie Mouse image:

There is a strong sense of love in the picture although there are underlying genders roles present. The colours used are bright relating to the idea it is a cartoon for children however there also cast stereotypical gender roles as Minnie is wearing pink and Mickey red. Minnie is also shown to lean over and kiss Mickey while he looks away which connotes gender role ideas that women depend on men. The kiss and the sparkles give the image a sexual feel.

The Lovers’:

The painting is very ambiguous; it is not quite clear to the reader what is going on. There could be questioning of identity and image within the painting as both faces are covered. The artist could also be testing the audience’s perception of relationships as we cannot make judgement on the kiss as we do not know who the characters are. Gender is not made clear either with the absence of the faces. There is also a very dark feel to the photo are the idea of faces being covered with cloth gives the idea of abduction.  This could also be an indication that something is morally wrong with the kiss and so the faces are covered.

What are the signifiers and what is signified? What denotation and connotation is present?

Mickey and Minnie Mouse image:

The cartoon characters are the signifiers and the ideas of happiness, love, joy and children are signified. The denotation present is the characters kissing. The connotation this brings with it is sexuality and stereotypical gender roles.

The Lovers’:

The signifier in the painting is the couple kissing with their face covered. Mystery, darkness, immorality are all signified. The denotation is the actual action of the kiss being covered. The connotation within the image is that the couple should not be kissing.

Auguste Rodin                                                              Robert Dosineau 

– The Kiss (Marble Sculpture)                          – Le Baiser de L’Hotel de Ville

What is it? A picture showing a sculpture, a piece of art, made as part of a group of reliefs, for an Art Museum in Paris. A professional photography.
How was it made? The statue itself was made by craving into marble, but the photo seems to be taken by a visitor of a museum. It was staged on the streets of Paris.
Who made it? The photo was probably made by a visitor, while the sculpture was made by Auguste Rodin. Robert Doniseau, a photographer.
What was it made for? The picture might have been made for personal purpose (remembering the moments spent at a Museum). The sculpture was made for a planned museum in Paris, as part of a group of reliefs. It was made to be sold to magazines.
Where is it? In a museum in Paris. The photo was taken outside the Hotel de Ville, in Paris. It can also probably be found in international magazines from that time and perhaps in postcards.
Why am I looking at it now? Entertainment or artistic purposes and the fact that it shows a kiss can have different meanings: love, passion, and goodbye. Entertainment.
What sort of picture is it? It seems as an amateur’s picture, showing a piece of art. It is a staged, black and white photography, showing the triumph of love.
What other pictures is it like? It is like other pictures taken of marble sculptures, but also a representation of a lovers’ embrace. Being black and white, it easily relates to other black and white pictures, giving connotations of the past. It also relates to other pictures showing love stories.

What is the meaning of the picture? What does it make me think about?

The Kiss:

It is a photography to show the artwork of the sculptor. It may have been taken by a tourist, or by a journalist.

If we think of the sculpture itself, it presents a couple who appears close, carrying, passionate. The sculpture makes you think about a couple being captured in a moment of intimacy. Also, by their positions (her face is hidden), it looks like he’s protecting her. The way he is holding his hand suggests closeness, protection, while she seems to be hanging on to him, like he’s her hope.

Le Baiser de L’Hotel de Ville:

The meaning of this picture is to show the triumph of love over the war. After Paris has been occupied during the Second World War, it was now free to love again. The picture is also a public display of affection, of happiness.

Also, the fact that the couple is in front of a hotel might make you wonder if they were lovers or just strangers that meet one night before. Was that their first kiss? Their last? Were they living in different places and Paris was their point of meeting?

Moreover, the artist wanted to show a stereotypical view of Paris, shown by the style the people in the picture adopt.

What are the signifiers and what is signified? What denotation and connotation is present?

The Kiss:

The signifiers are the kiss, the sculpture and the couple.

The signifies for  kiss are closeness, intimacy, a relationship, two people. The ones for a sculpture are: artwork, an artist, museums, stone, marble and the ones for a couple are two people or two sets.

The denotation is a sculpture of a kissing couple and the connotation is love or lust.

Le Baiser de L’Hotel de Ville:

The signifiers are the kiss, Paris and the couple.

The signifies for kiss are closeness, intimacy, a relationship, the ones for Paris are a big city,romance,  love, fashion and the ones for the couple are two people or two sets.

The denotation is a couple on the streets showing a public kiss and the connotation is given by the questions that arise: have they just met?, are they in love?.

Pictures added to the collection:

Danielle Lloyd kissing child

What is it? A still photograph of Danielle Lloyd kissing her child.
Who made it? Photographer for the Daily Mail.
What was it made for? A photograph taken to give validity to a story ran by the Daily Mail. Entertainment purposes. To sell newspapers/ generate views online.
Where is it? Photographed in London.
Why am I looking at it now? Entertainment/ interested in celebrities/Daily Mail reader.
What sort of picture is it? Very loving and emotive. Connotations of love.
What other pictures is it like? Similar to pictures of other celebrities, often photographed walking streets. Similar to photo-shoot photographs possibly a deliberate pose.

What is the meaning of the picture? What does it make me think about?

This picture is different to all the others. Although there is the link between all the photos of a kiss this is very different. This photograph shows a kiss between a mother and her child. While some of the other images had underlying issues of darkness or gender roles, this photo shows the love between a mother and son. There is a slightly false feel to the image as the celebrity knows she is being photographed and the kiss may be deliberate. For the photographer the photo possibly holds the meaning that this could sell newspapers however for the celebrity the image could hold the meaning that this will be giving her positive publicity.

What are the signifiers and what is signified? What denotation and connotation is present?

The signifier is Danielle kissing her child, the idea of love is signified by this. The denotation present is the kiss. The connotations made by this is the idea she loves her child, it could also be connoted however that Danielle is being fake and acting up to the cameras.

Vancouver Riot Kiss, 2011

What is it? A professional photography.
How was it made? It was a snapshot.
Who made it? A photojournalist.
What was it made for? It was made to be a part of a newspaper’s article.
Where is it? The picture was taken during the Vancouver riot after the Canucks lost to the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup decider.
Why am I looking at it now? Entertainment/reading the news.
What sort of picture is it? Very emotive picture, presenting two contrasts: riots and love.
What other pictures is it like? Similar to pictures presenting the triumph of love over war. Also, similar to photos presenting riots or the brutality of police.

What is the meaning of the picture? What does it make me think about?

The picture’s foreground is a policeman who looks scary. His position suggests that he is ready to do his duty, no matter what.  Behind him, there is a couple, lying down on the floor, kissing.  Behind the couple, running in the opposite direction, there is a crowd of people, including authorities.

Maybe one of them was hurt and can’t move. Maybe he is protecting her or maybe she is just scared.

The meaning of the picture is love’s triumph over the bad things. The two people seem to be trapped between the authorities and the rioters. The way the colour is constructed gives the picture an apocalyptic theme, but in which love still blooms.

For the photographer, this picture has a different meaning. Apart from what it shows, the photographer saw it as a way to promote himself and as a picture that might make it as a headline.

What are the signifiers and what is signified? What denotation and connotation is present?

The signifiers are riot, police, kiss and chaos, damage, injuries, danger,defence, love, closeness are signified.

The denotation is a couple kissing in the middle of a riot and the connotation is that love defeats any obstacle.

 

 

 

All the pictures share the kissing, which is a signifier. Also, some of the signifies are common: feelings, connection, maybe even love.

Titanic comedy spoof – screen shots

Scene 1

Screen shot from Titanic in which Rose as an old lady tells a group of her time on The Titanic.

How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rose mumbles, coughs and confuses her words
  • Rose has issues with breaking wind, which she does throughout.
  • The naked drawing of Rose also shows her to be rather undesirable.

Scene 2

Screenshot from Titanic of passengers boarding the ship

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Jack’s character is rather comical, he has a geeky image and a comical run.
  • Jack enters the ship by a rope getting caught around his foot, which drags him along with the ship as it moves away.

Scene 3

Screen shot from Titanic in which Rose in in her cabin with her fiancee admiring the extravagant artwork

How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Use satire to mock the characters’ values of high art by portraying ‘fine art’ as a stickman figurine.

Scene 4

Screenshot from Titanic in which Rose is having dinner with her family

How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rather than being upset by her family Rose is left upset by her weight.
  • While the rest of the family have small plates, Rose has a huge plate full of food.

Scene 5

Screenshot from Titanic in which Jack attempts to pull Rose overboard.

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rose comically trips over Jack which leads her to fall overboard.
  • Jacks attempt to rescue her involves Jack changing into a full scuba-diving outfit.

Scene 6

Screenshot from Titanic in which Jack takes Rose to a party and teaches her how to dance

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • The music being played is very modern and upbeat.
  • Jack teaches Rose to dance to a very modern and popular dance type which is in no way romantic or elegant.

Scene 7

Screenshot from Titanic in which Jack draws Rose as she lies naked

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Jack uses a very modern device to take a picture of Rose rather than draw.
  • Jack also mimicks Rose by changing the picture of her by drawing a moustache on her and then laughs to himself.

 Scene 8

Screenshot from Titanic in which Jack and Rose have sex in the back of a car

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • The car in which Jack and Rose have sex is very small and squeeks and shakes throughout the duration of the intercourse.
  • Through the windows of the car arms and legs can be seen pressed against the glass as the car is too small for the couple.

 Scene 9

Screenshot from Titanic just as the ship is about to hit an iceburg

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • The men watching from the tower remark about how they could not see if an iceburg was coming because of Rose’s size.
  • They miss the iceburg becuase they are distracted by Rose.

Scene 10

Screenshot from Titanic in which people are evacuating the ship on lifeboats

 

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rose’s size means the lifeboat in fact breaks when she is in it leaving her in the water.
  • The band who in the film play very sad music, play a very upbeat ironic song ‘Sugar we’re going down.’

Scene 11

Screenshot from Titanic in which Jack and Rose are both in the water clinging to a floating piece of wood

 

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rose does not take the situation seriously and begins to sing an upbeat song while in the water with Jack.
  • Rose also begins dancing which causes her to let go of Jack.

Scene 12

Screenshot from Titanic in which Rose blows a whistle to get the attention of a lifeboat

 

 How we subverted the genre to comedy in this scene:

  • Rose is left with a party blower, foghorn and symbols to get the attention of a lifeboat.

Scene 13/14

There are no screenshots available from the original film as these scenes we created for a comic effect.

Titanic – The Comedy Spoof

Titanic is an iconic blockbuster, famous for its heartbreaking portrayal of the real life sinking and presenting the audience with the envied romance between Jack and Rose. This romance/disaster film is one of the most famous of its genre. The objective for this weeks project was to come up with a well known piece of media from a specific genre and turn it into an opposite genre. As a group Titanic was an option which we believed was so popular with audiences of all ages that it would be interesting to transform into something entirely different. Titanic is a heartfelt romance, filled with the tragedy of the real life event it was based on, and as a group came up with the idea of changing Titanic from a romance to a slapstick comedy spoof. Films like this have been done before and have become very popular such as ‘scary movie’ a montage of spoofs from different horror films or films like ‘disaster movie’.  We found the best way to turn this genre around was by taking the iconic scenes from titanic and changing them for comedic effect. These were the scenes we chose:

Scene 1
Rose as an old woman is narrating the beginning of the story, explaining that she was the woman in the picture found in the sunk wreckage of the Titanic. However her narration is very unclear and we don’t actually hear what she is saying, all we here is coughing and mumbling and the camera then shows the ‘naked drawing’ picture of her, and it zooms out of the picture to see she was very overweight and the picture wasn’t at all elegant as shown in the real movie. It then turns into a flashback of the time she was on the titanic.

Scene 2
You see Jack now running onto the ship, his running style is very comedic, almost a skip rather than a run, he is very goofy looking and has a very prominent curtain hairstyle. As he is running up the ramp to get onto the ship, his foot gets caught up in the rope which was keeping the boat attached to the deck, he begins to panic and screams like a girl as the ship is very slowly pulling away from the deck. The camera zooms in on his face screaming and shouting for help, and then zooms out back to the ship to show how very slowly the ship is moving and how he is overreacting, he flashes to these to shots, until the crewman simply slip the rope off his foot and guide him into the ship.

Scene 3
You see Rose (her character is very large, but every man who walks past her, their jaws drop, and throughout she is seen as a sex symbol) she is in her cabin, which is very lavish, it’s the upper class cabin and seems very royal, just like the original movie. She begins to explain where she wants to put up the paintings, saying the room needs a little colour, her fiance makes a comment about her putting up the paintings and she claims ‘you obviously don’t know fine art when you see it’ and as she says that she lifts up a picture of a stick man holding a balloon.

Scene 4
Rose is at dinner in the banquet hall, she has plates of food piled in front of her and she doesn’t look happy, she begins eating but something doesn’t feel right, she then looks over to the table next to her and there are 3 stick thin woman eating only plates of green salad, they look over at her in disgust and Rose then looks down at her plate obviously very upset.

Scene 5
Rose is running down the deck, crying, obviously very upset, Jack is at the far end of the deck, lying on his back and looking at the stars, she carries on running, and crying so much, she doesn’t see jack and trips over him, she then gambols to the end of the deck where she crashes into the barriers and they break, she’s then clinging onto the side of the ship shouting for help. Jack runs to her rescue and with reference to the film begins taking off his shoes and jacket incase he has to jump in the water to save her. Once he has taken off his shoes and jacket, he then takes off his shirt, and his trousers, until he is naked, he then bends out of view and when he comes back up he has a scuba diving costume on, snorkels and flippers. He then runs to the edge of the barrier and help Rose up. her family and fiance then appear obviously having heard her cries for help and they then find rose lying on the deck panting heavily, and jack on top of her wearing a scuba diving suit. the camera pans from each of the characters faces to see their expression of this. They explain what happened and they ask Rose why she was upset. She ignores the question and asks Jack is he will join them for dinner as a gesture of her gratitude, he insists its ok, and as Rose and her family begin to walk away Jack hands rose a note which reads ‘meet me at the clock ;)’ .

Scene 6
Jack takes Rose to a party in the lower class quarters of the ship below decks. As they are walking down the stairs all you can hear is dubstep music playing. Rose turns to Jack and explains she doesn’t know this type of music or how to dance to it, Jack takes her hand and says he will teach her, there is then a ‘Rocky’ type montage of Jack teaching Rose how to ‘skank’ and rose sweating, not getting it at first but then getting progressively better.
 
Scene 7
After the party Jack and Rose run to Roses room. She knows that he’s an artist and he loves to draw so she asks him to draw her, naked. She lies down on the sofa in the lounge of the cabin and Jack sits opposite. He pauses and takes from him pocket an iPad. He then takes a picture of her and begins to alter the picture on Photoshop. The shot changes from Rose to Jack, they both have serious facial expressions, both looking into each others eyes, and then the shot focuses on the iPad. Jack is on Photoshop adding special effects, he adds clip art, places a hat on her head, a cat next to her and then draws a pencil moustache and blacks out one of her teeth, he then starts laughing to himself.

Scene 8
They hear a knock on the door of Roses cabin, they both get up, and leave out the back door, they run, laughing and giggling, they then skip down the corridors of the cabins. They come across a ladder leading downstairs, it leads them to the storage sector of the ship. They find a morris minor mini (1960s) and crawl into the back seat. The camera then shows the car rocking back and forth and in the windows you can see arms and legs pressed against the window (the car is too small for rose and jack).

Scene 9
You then see Jack and Rose run up to the top deck, laughing, hugging and kissing. You then see the two watchmen at their post, shivering in the cold, one has a pair of binoculars, one says to the other ‘god if there was a bloody great big iceberg we’d never be able to see it’. The camera then shows the view the watchman has through the binoculars, and Roses’ head is blocking the whole view. Next minute, the whole ship is shaking and you can hear crashing and screaming, and large pieces of ice are falling onto the deck, they look up and a large iceberg slowly passes the side of the ship. There is now panic, people running around, screaming and shouting. Jack and Rose look at each other and hug.

Scene 10
Everyone is now aware that the ship is sinking, people are running around screaming and crying, kissing goodbye their loved ones as the woman and children get lowered into the lifeboat. A group of four men are standing on the deck, they look at each other and one says to the rest ‘it’s been a pleasure playing with you all’ and they then begin to playing ‘sugar we’re going down by Fallout Boy’.  The scene then cuts to Jack and Rose who are fighting through the crowd to get onto a lifeboat. As Rose gets into a lifeboat, Jack tells her he’ll get on the next one and the shipman shouts, ‘no more room, lower it down’ however Rose is the only one in the lifeboat. As the boat has been lowered the ropes start to break under the strain of Roses weight. The  boat then crashes into the water and people then swim towards it, scrambling for safety, trying to get in, the boat crumbles under the pressure of all of the weight and Rose is left floating in the water.

Scene 11
Rose is in the water and is watching the Ship slowly sinking, Jack is still on the shift and he clings on for the duration of the ships sinking. The whole ship is now in the water, the lifeboats have drifted further from the scene and there are now thousands of people left in the water. Rose and Jack find each other in the crowd and kiss. Rose is lying on her back floating and Jack is clinging on to her arm to stay afloat. The time is going on, and the crowd is getting quieter, Rose is looking up at the stars and singing in a whisper ‘crazy in love by Beyonce’ and very limply dancing some of the ‘skanking’ moves she was taught. Jack starts to talk to her in a very shaky voice, he tells her he loves her, and not to ever let him go, Rose still dancing slightly, moves her arm which makes Jack fall from her, he then begins to sink and Rose turns quickly panicking and shouts ‘i didn’t think you meant literally’. Jack is now gone and Rose is left to wait for help by herself.

Scene 12
Rose hears voices saying ‘is there anyone alive out there’ Rose can’t turn around she’s that cold and the lifeboat where the voices came from starts to slowly pass her. She then spots a man with a whistle across his neck and she swims over to him to get the whistle. She then starts ferociously blowing the whistle to grab the attention of the lifeboat, the shot then is of the lifeboat which hasn’t heard her, Rose then starts blowing a party blower to get attention and the boat still doesn’t recognise her, she then blows a foghorn and bangs symbols together. The lifeboat then turns around and sees her.

Scene 13
You see Rose lying on the boat covered in a blanket, and she has flashbacks of her time with Jack on the ship, she thinks of the time they went ‘skanking’, when he saved her in the scuba diving suit, when he took a picture of her and when they slept together in the mini. The scene continues to show these flashbacks and finishes with a close up of her face which fills the shot.

Scene 14
The scene fades in with a close up of Roses face in the present day as an old lady. She appears to be sleeping in her bed, and calming instrumental music is playing in the background. We see and hear this for several moments and the camera then zooms out slowly and as it zooms out you hear Rose let out gas and a peaceful smile spreads across her face. You then see the ocean at night-time, you can see the moon and the glint of the moon on the sea. The screen fades to black.

Our video

As a group, we came up with a story for a video we’d like to produce. We decided the best thing to do is first have our story and then decide what kind of music fits it.

The story is the following:

 

“It was a sunny Saturday afternoon, so both Emmett and Aurora’s parents decided to take them to a picnic, in the field near their houses. The parents were sitting along the river, admiring their children, while they were playing hide and seek in the corn field nearby.

Emmett was wearing some ragged clothes that he received two years ago, when he turned 6. His mother has tried to throw away before, but without any luck. His scruffy hair made his eyes almost impossible to be seen. Next to him, Aurora was wearing a flannel shirt, denim skirt and pigtails.

As the children were playing, they noticed along the river a shadowy figure, which looked like it was calling them. With a normal curiosity for their age, they started crossing the shallow river. Emmett’s father saw the whole thing and shouted at the two children to come back, but it was too late. In a matter of seconds, they were out of the parent’s sight, on the other side of the river, running towards the figure.

They kept running for a couple of minutes, but realized they lost the figure that attracted them so much. As they were walking back to their parents, suddenly they went into a crop circle. Amazed, they explored around the crop circle and found a small hole in one of its corners. As they stepped through the hole, they found themselves in another world.

At first, they couldn’t believe what was happening in front of their eyes: the world they had just discovered was full of candyfloss, gingerbread and chocolate. Looking better around, they saw two Unicorns running around, a Phoenix bird flying above their heads and a Pegasus’ family.

The two children were overwhelmed with joy. Everything they had ever dreamed of was sitting right in front of them and nobody else knew about it. They were both in an amazing place, which has revealed its beauties for them.

Just as they were trying to reach the candies lying in a hollow, everything got dark. It was so dark that Emmett and Aurora couldn’t even see each other. As this was not enough, they started hearing frightening whispers. That is when they realized that not everything is what it seems and they become really scared. They started screaming for their parents, but soon realized that this was not going to help.

Having no other choice, they tried and find their way back. But it was pitch black around them, so it was impossible to distinguish anything. Realizing that they might not get out, the two children sat down and started to cry but, just as they were losing their hope, they saw a speck of light coming towards them. As it got closer and closer, they could realize it was a firefly, which, along with just enough light to see in front of them, brought them the faith they seemed to have lost.

The firefly created the impression that wants to lead the children to somewhere, so they stood up and just followed the small light in front of them, the small creature being their only hope. As they were walking, in the small light the firefly created, the two children see again the shadowy figure that brought them to that world in the first place.

Both Emmett and Aurora felt somehow attracted to it, so they headed towards it, leaving the firefly a little behind them, just enough so they can see where they were walking. Just as they reached it, the figure grabbed Aurora, trying to take her into the darkness.

Emmett wanted to punch the creature, but realized that it is not made of solid material, so all his efforts were useless.

Suddenly, the firefly made an unnatural noise and lots of other fireflies started appearing from everywhere, lighting up the whole place.  It was only then that Emmett and Aurora saw what darkness did to their magical world: it transformed it into a sad world, full of cries, shouts for help and monsters. The light from the fireflies burned the figure to dust and Aurora found herself free again.

The children, lead by the fireflies, made their way to a lighthouse in the distance. It was there that they could turn on the light again, so that the world became as bright and happy as it was in the beginning. Only then they saw the way they got in and they started running towards it.

Finally, the children got back to the real world. Seeing themselves out, they just rushed to the river where their parents were having the picnic and didn’t stop until they were in the hands of their loving families.”

 

The song we thought best fits our narrative is ‘Katy Perry – Thinking of you’, which can be found here.

 

After finishing the story, we tried to assign Vladimir Propp’s character archetypes and narrative functions to it. This is what we thought:

  • The Villain: The shadowy figure
  • The hero: Emmett
  • The donor: The firefly
  • The helper: The fireflies
  • The princess: Aurora
  • The father: children’s families

 

  • ABSENTATION: Emmett and Aurora leave the security of the home environment.
  • INTERDICTION: Father tries to stop them.
  • VIOLATION of INTERDICTION: The kids run
  • DEPARTURE: Kids leave home.
  • FIRST FUNCTION OF THE DONOR: Makes a little light, so that the kids can see.
  • HERO’S REACTION: Hero reacts to actions of future donor (kids go again to the shadowy figure… fail the test)
  • RECEIPT OF A MAGICAL AGENT: Firefly calls back-ups
  • GUIDANCE: Kids are helped to reach the light
  • STRUGGLE: Emmett and shadowy figure join in direct combat
  • BRANDING: Emmett fails in combat
  • VICTORY: Shadowy figure is killed
  • LIQUIDATION: Initial misfortune or lack is resolved (they find the lighthouse)
  • RETURN: Kids go home

105mc Music video narrative analysis

105mc Task 2 Music video narrative analysis

As a group we were asked to choose a music video which had a clear narrative. After a lengthy discussion and researching some music videos we all agreed on Katy Perry’s ‘Last Friday Night’ video. We felt the video had a clear narrative as it complied with the 5 stages of narrative as described by Todorov. We applied each of his stages to our selected music video.

The group agreed that the music video did not begin with stage 1 but stage 5. As the beginning of the video is Katy Perry waking up to the aftermath of the night before and the video is based on looking back on the past events we decided the video starts with the new equilibrium. There is then a flashback to stage 1, the beginning equilibrium in which Katy Perry’s normality is life as an unpopular student spending her time doing homework. Stage 2 is then the disruption of her studies as she can hear a party happening outside. Todorov states that there can be more than one disruption in a narrative which is what occurs in our selected music video. Later in the video another disruption is the fight between Katy Perry’s unpopular friend and the popular college jock. Stage 3, the recognition of the disruption, is evident when Katy Perry exits her house to see what is going on. Arguably stage 4, an attempt to solve disruption, is not present as Katy Perry actually joins in the party however it could be argued that this is the way the disruption is solved as it is no longer a disruption to Katy. We are then taken back to stage 5 where Katy is still awoken into what the audience assumes will be her new more popular life.

We analysed and listed the characters in the music video to question whether they had any resemblance to the 8 character archetypes Propp suggested appeared in all folk tales.

Characters in music video Propp’s character Archetypes
Katy Perry Princess
Katy’s male geeky friend Hero
College jock Villain/false hero
Katy’s female friend Donor/helper
Katy’s father Father

We also looked at Bordwell’s concepts of binary opposites. We could only find the stereotypical opposites of popular students versus unpopular geeky students.

Media Diary and Reflection – Shelley Phillips

My media diary, for days Wednesday 5th October – Friday 7th October.

Day Time Medium What Where
Wednesday 9:30am TV Jersey Shore, a 45minute reality TV show, channel MTV on Sky+1 planner Home
Wednesday 10:30am TV One Tree Hill, 45 minute TV drama series, channel E4 on Sky+1 planner Home
Wednesday 12:00pm Music Listening to my iTunes on my computer. Home
Wednesday 1:00pm Music Listening to music on a CD playing in the car whilst driving Car
Wednesday 6:30pm TV Jersey Shore, a 45minute reality TV show, channel MTV on Sky+1 planner Home
Wednesday 8:00pm TV Come Dine With Me, a 45minute TV show, channel ITV3 Home
Wednesday 9:00pm TV South Park, 25minute animation TV show, channel comedy central on Sky+1 Home
Wednesday 10:00pm Online TV South Park, 25minute animation TV show, watched on the internet, website xepisodes.com Home
Day Time Medium What Where
Thursday 8:45am TV One Tree Hill, 45minute TV series, channel E4 Home
Thursday 9:45am Radio Radio 1, Chris Moyles Show Car
Thursday 12:30pm Radio Radio 1, Sarah Cox Car
Thursday 2:00pm TV SpongeBob SquarePants, 25minute cartoon TV show, channel Nickelodeon, Sky+1 Home
Thursday 2:30pm Magazine Elle magazine, November 2011 issue, interview with Emma Watson. Home
Thursday 3:00pm Music Listening to the music on my iTunes on my computer Home
Thursday 3:30pm TV South Park, 25minute animation TV show, xepisodes.com, watched on the internet Home
Thursday 5:00pm TV Glee, musical TV series, 45minute TV show, channel E4 Home
Thursday 5:50pm Music Listening to my music on my iTunes on my computer Home
Thursday 7:00pm TV The Simpsons, 30 minute cartoon, channel 4 Home
Thursday 7:45pm Film Hocus Pocus. A Disney feature film, starring Bette Midler and Sarah Jessica Parker, released in 1993 Home
Day Time Medium What Where
Friday 9:05am Radio Radio 1, Chris Moyles show, Golden Hour Car
Friday 11:00am TV Advertisement A Guiness advert played off of youtube University Lecture
Friday 11:05am Video clip A foreign dance student whose work was sent to the Guiness company to create the previous advertisement University Lecture
Friday 11:20am Short Film Moth. Written by Clifton Stewart University Lecture
Friday 11:30am Blog Blogging for 105mc Cabinet of Curiosities University Student Hub
Friday 1:00pm Blog Blogging for 105mc Cabinet of Curiosities University Student Hub
Friday 2:00pm Radio Radio 1, Sarah Cox show Car
Friday 2:30pm Music Listening to my music on my iTunes on the computer Home
Friday 3:50pm TV The Simpsons, a 30minute TV cartoon, channel Sky 1 Home
Friday 4:15pm TV Family Guy, a 25minute cartoon TV show, watched online, xepisodes.com Home

Reflections

Over these three days I would say that some of the diary entry’s are fairly representative of my use of media on a daily basis, however some are not. I don’t feel that this media diary can be completely representative of my daily behaviour though as it’s only recordings of a short amount of days.

On a daily basis I usually listen to the radio, normally this is because if I am driving I would prefer to listen to the radio rather than to a CD, and I find this is the only time I get to listen to the radio as I don’t have one in my home. This is representative of my daily behaviour, I always listen to radio 1 also, and it is usually the Chris Moyles breakfast show. Other entry’s which are very representative of what I normally see and hear are: watching One Tree Hill on E4, I have followed this show since its first season, so every week I watch the latest episode, listening to my iTunes is another medium I usually listen to, whenever I am in my room I will have my iTunes on. Also entry’s like watching South Park on an internet channel are usual of my behaviour as I find this a ‘time filler’ show, and it is always readily accessible on the internet.

I was surprised by the amount of TV watched throughout these 3 days. I personally don’t think I watch a lot of television and usually I don’t have the time to watch a lot either. However this media diary has shown me that I do in fact watch a lot of television, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it just shows me that during my free time I tend to fill it with different TV programmes. I was also surprised about the pattern of TV programmes I watched, I mention South Park, Family Guy, and The Simpsons. I am very interested in animation and this media diary shows that interest.

The diary displays some aspects of continuity, however my schedule on different days obviously affects the type of media intake. For example on the Friday I was in University lectures and workshops, so the type of media I came across on these days was different to the type I come across in my free time. The short film Moth I would have never sort after to watch myself, but because I was in university this was presented to me. The 3 days does represent some continuity though, for example listening to the radio in the morning and my iTunes throughout the day.

If someone whom I didn’t know came across my media diary, I don’t think they could infer information about who I am, however they could pick out some of my interest by the entry’s I have written. Someone could see that I was interested in animation TV shows, and music, however programmes like Come Dine With Me and Jersey Shore aren’t necessarily programmes that im passionate about or that I really like, but it’s just a case of watching them in my spare time, whether it’s because a certain episode caught my eye or whether there was nothing else on the television. I don’t think a person could pass judgement on an individual over a 3 day diary of what media they have come across, but I think they would be able to get an idea of interests and personality by patterns over the days.

I don’t necessarily think this media diary is an accurate portrayal of myself, and I don’t think it would give an outsider an accurate portrayal of myself either because they are not given enough information to make such an assumption. I think if this media diary was carried out for a fortnight it would give an extraneous amount of detail about a persons every day media intake, and this would give an outsider a good idea about the type of person they are. I feel like my media diary reflects some of my likes and interest which I choose to watch, see and hear on a daily basis.

Media Diary and Reflection (Sam Baker)

Tuesday,
4th October
Time Medium What Where
8:29 Internet; social network Facebook: checking messages, browsing through
photos (15 minutes.)
Home, laptop
8:45 Internet; online newspaper Daily Mail online: looking at general news on Amanda
Knox trial and showbiz gossip about Cheryl Cole/Jodie Marsh (20 minutes.)
Home, laptop
9:07 Digital media; iPhone Texting flatmate to wake them up. Home
12:23 Internet; social network Facebook/Twitter: checking updates, scrolling
through feed (60 minutes.)
The Hub, during lunchtime break from lecture
15:00 Leaflet Individual handing out advertisements for Fresher’s
party.
High-street
15:10 Internet; email Checking emails on Hotmail (15 minutes.) Home, laptop
15:25 Internet; website + forums Popjustice: looking at latest music news, browsing
through forums (35 minutes.)
Home, laptop
16:52 Internet; social network Facebook: checking messages (5 minutes.) Home, laptop
17:00 Television Top Gear marathon on Dave, watching with flatmates. Home
19:00 Television Watching Fresh Prince of Bel-Air on Viva whilst
cooking dinner.
Home
20:47 Music Put on music in the background from iTunes,
recently added playlist – Rihanna, Natalia Kills, Marina etc.
Home, laptop
21:45 Digital Media; iPhone Text a friend, getting ready to go out. Home
Wednesday,
5th October
Time Medium What Where
12:00 Alarm clock radio Capital FM. Home
12:07 Digital media; iPhone Received text from Orange about their film offer. Home
12:11 Music Playing music from iTunes whilst getting ready. Home, laptop
12:46 Internet; email Checking emails, deleting junk mail (5 minutes.) Home, laptop
12:52 Internet; social network Facebook/Twitter: checking messages, etc. (15
minutes.)
Home, laptop
13:15 Digital Media; iPhone Used shopping list app for my trip to Sainsbury’s,
had an advert for Blackberry.
Home
13:30 Music Listening to music through my speakers whilst
shopping.
High-street
16:45 Television Watching the Jeremy Kyle show. Home
19:02 Music Playing music from iTunes whilst getting ready. Home, laptop
20:36 Digital Media; iPhone Text a friend. Home
23:46 Digital Media; iPhone Text a friend. Platinum
Thursday,
6th October
Time Medium When Where
10:30 Internet: social network Facebook: checking messages, updating status (10
minutes.)
Home, laptop
10:41 Internet; email Emailed lecturer about timetable. Home, laptop
11:33 Internet; website + forums Popjustice: looking at latest music news, browsing
through forums (20 minutes.)
Home, laptop
11:55 Internet; web browser Using Google to search about upcoming music releases
(15 minutes.)
Home, laptop
12:15 Internet; file-sharing website Youtube: watching new music videos through Vevo
application – Jessie J, Cher Lloyd.
Home, laptop
12:37 Internet; email Read reply from lecturer. Home, laptop
13:34 Internet; social network Facebook/Twitter: checking messages, etc. (1 hour.) Home laptop
15:00 Television Watching Shark Tank on Dave. Home
17:00 Television Watching the Jeremy Kyle show. Home
17:32 Digital media; iPhone Text a friend. Home
18:18 Internet; video-streaming website Watched Pride of Britain on ITV Player and Glee on
Megashare respectively.
Home, laptop
20:00 Television Watching Fresh Prince of Bel-Air on Viva. Home
20: 35 Internet; online newspaper Daily Mail online: looking at general showbiz
gossip (20 minutes.)
Home
22:24 Internet; social network Facebook: checking messages, etc. (25 minutes.) Home, laptop
22:49 Digital media; iPhone Text a friend. Home

After reviewing my media diary I was startled by the amount of time I seem to spend on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter; occasionally even hours at a time in quick succession without a break. From this I can infer that I like to educate myself in the lives of people I interact with on a daily basis – albeit others may class this as snooping – and maintain a strong desire to socialise with friends and peers. In contrast, the fact that my diary lacks any evidence of physical contact – use of emails, text messaging etc – could confirm a social awkwardness to individuals who practise more archaic methods of communication. On a personal level, I feel this simply shows my preference to a more quick and convenient way of life through technology.

The fact that I read through general news on the Daily Mail online publication could suggest I uphold an interest in currents affairs and am somewhat culturally knowledgeable; this may be reinforced by my use of internet forums as I am intrigued to hear other people’s views and opinions on different topics. However, the enjoyment I get out of reading showbiz gossip may also come across as quite superficial and distasteful. I feel it is clear from my use of the Popjustice website and iTunes that I have a passion for pop music in particular, and perhaps exercise this through watching music videos on Vevo as a form of visual stimulation or searching background information on Google to broaden my knowledge.

From reviewing my diary, it became more apparent to me how much media has become seamlessly integrated within our everyday lives; for example in terms of iPhones, they seem to act as cunning hosts of consumerism, where an app advertising a company contains an advertisement for a different company depending on the subject matter. It also came to my attention that I seemed to have a sense of reliance on media to do otherwise simple tasks such as texting a friend who was situated across the hall or even waking up in the morning to the sound of a radio alarm. Although to others this could be classed as sheer laziness, I believe it is an example of how pioneering digital media has become; helping to enhance and improve the overall quality of lifestyle – television has almost become a social event where all my friends watch and interact together. Conclusively, I believe the media today takes the form of many different roles: this includes communicating direct and efficient information, fulfilling our lust for entertainment and generally assisting us through our everyday routines.