Final Major Project: Week 6 production log

Since we are now on week six for our Final Major Project, it meant that I started to make a solid start on the first draft for my next double-page spread in the appropriate layout in the style of the magazine ‘Outdoor Photography’, and containing the relevant photos- all of which have been taken/sourced myself so will require no referencing, along with the majority of the written articles.

However, alongside my main production, a lot of extra or accidentally missed out information has crossed my kind via my tutors and fellow class members.

(Covers unit 8 3.1/1.1)- Unlike the very first draft I did for this project, I was able to just get straight on with using Adobe Indesign software since I knew all the software skills and tools off-by-heart at that point. These all included: planning and measuring out my paragraphing measurements in average sync to the magazine and also replicating the tiny page heading(s) with millimeter accuracy in distance and font style. This was also when I started to conduct the ‘first draft’ for my articles that would be part of that double-page spread. Like last week though, I did struggle to make a start with the article but this was due to more than having it come naturally to me; I suddenly remembered on Monday that I accidentally left the memory card with the photos I needed to use at home so I wasn’t able to make nearly an effective start as I could have. This was when I tried to envisage the photos as if they were in their position on the spread and produce what I could there and then. But on Tuesday I did remember the memory card and so I was able to progress effectively enough to complete one of the articles that day.

(Covers unit 8 1.1)- The fact that I used this specific kind of problem-solving skill actually gave me a lot to reflect on in relation to my own study progress and the industry. I know for a fact that, even though problem-solving skills like these are used in every aspect of the industry whether it’s radio production, TV broadcasting or journalism, the way I dealt with it wouldn’t be good enough as a working journalist because a solution would need to be done that moment in order for the news/project to still be published. However, the fact that I am not yet in that position but building up my skills to one day be in that position and I had no other suitable photo sources I could or wanted to use, it is still a valuable learning curve for me to reflect on in the future and for upcoming projects.

(Covers unit 8 2.1)- Whilst I was just over half way through the completion of my double-page spread this week, I did stumble over the concern for myself that I may not have included enough journalistic content within this, since the majority of it was taken up with my own experience article and photos- even though I was intending to replicate the style of my magazine. Even though I did consider my available options such as using my email interviews for why photography is part of the lives of those I email interviewed. I would put this into a format like found during my research where professional photographers are interviewed via the magazine on their work featured in it. However, in every issue, the first question always remains the same: ‘How do/would you describe your work?’ (Covers unit 8 4.1)- Since I wasn’t entirely sure about this idea because I was concerned it wasn’t ‘journalistic’ enough, I consulted my tutor over this matter and described that I could put it in the format of the magazine section involving this- which he seemed to approve and have no problem with, alongside the fact that it seemed to balance out nicely with research-related content and opinion/experience-related content. (Covers unit 8 3.1)- This was proved by both my double-page spreads because the amount of research-related content from both spreads would add up to approximately one whole double-page spread and the opinion-related content would add up to the other spread, resulting in a nice and justifiable balance.

(Covers unit 8 3.1/4.1)- Shifting my focus back to the main production of the week, this links back to one of my targets set last week which was to ask for more frequent feedback on my double-page spread drafts and articles from my tutor- which is exactly what I did today with the article I completed. This feedback was in the form of small correction notes on the printed version of it which he went through with me after. The vast majority of it was sentence structure and minor grammar with small prompts of where they should be positioned. This was fairly straightforward feedback in the sense that it only took me 10 minutes at the most to correct and, once it was gone through, it was clear where I went wrong. (Covers unit 8 2.2)- This feedback also reminded me of how the language in the magazine is very plain and not complicated to understand at all. Looking back at my writing, I saw that mine did ramble on a bit and slightly more than necessary too. But once I corrected those errors highlighted by my tutor, it did read quite a bit better and a little more like ‘Outdoor Photography’.

20160520_122930

(Covers Unit 8 4.1/2.2)- Even though I couldn’t help but feel a little disheartened with how much needed adjusting, it was outweighed much more by the levels of relief I had to asking for this feedback mainly because if I hadn’t and it came to my project being finally marked, it would have had a massive effect on my overall grade. And probably not a positive one. (Covers Unit 8 2.2)- This even immediately made me think of my research because the last thing I wanted was for anyone reading my double-page spread to think that I haven’t considered y research. However, the fact that this process does what it says on the tin: nothing but self-reflection, improvement and going back to my research in order to improve it reassured me that it would help me even more in the long-run. Also pointing out that this I building a stronger skill set and helping me to become more aware of my mistakes.

(Covers unit 8 2.1)- I had a bit of an interesting afternoon on Tuesday regarding my research portfolio; we went over the requirements for it as a class and it came to my attention that I had missed out a couple of minor elements within mine which were mainly measurements of various elements and paragraphs and a contents page at the beginning. However, I knew that this wasn’t worth threating over too much because it was easily fixable by going back through it and measuring all the element like page perimeter lines, paragraph texts and distances apart from each other. However, as a result of these or any additions/corrections to my research portfolio it will definitely mean updating my Harvard references for this to avoid any confusion, misunderstanding of the sources and possibilities of failing the unit.

(Covers Unit 8 3.1/2.2)- But in relation to the measurements for my double-page spreads, I realised that I hadn’t forgotten it completely because I carefully measured around the edge of the magazine to ensure my replications were as accurate as possible and also allowed the content to fit in more nicely. When it came to tiny measurements for the page corner titles and page number folios, I created my own little tool: I took all the measurements and distances in millimetres for the element and created a little box that held those same measurements. I then used the x and y axis tools within InDesign to move it by the millimetre to its position according to the magazine’s. When this was done, I could personally tell no difference from my double-page spread and the ‘Outdoor Photography’ magazine’s in terms of the corner title and page folio size/positioning.

(Covers unit 8 3.1/2.2)- In sync with my double-page draft created this week, it also brought my attention to the final draft I created last week- which as predicted, contained the same article errors I made this week. This meant that I had no choice but to revisit my first final draft and not so much ‘correct’ the mistakes but ‘adjust’ the articles to fit more into the language style of ‘Outdoor photography’. This was when I made the choice to attend the College LRC during the Friday this week in order to correct the article I produced this week along with half of the one I first created. (Covers unit 8 2.1)- When I sat down on Friday to have these errors adjusted, I was so happy to have my research portfolio now containing all the magazine’s measurements for everything. Since I mainly needed to remove chunks of text that didn’t really need to be there, it allowed me to play around more with the positioning of paragraphs and re-measure them to what they needed to be.

Here are the screenshots showing my production progress from the start of my double-page spread production on Monday to making the required adjustments on Friday:

spread 1 #1

spread 1 #3

spread 1 #5

spread 1 #7

spread 1 #8

spread 1 #9

spread 1 #10

spread 1 #11

(Covers unit 8 2.2/4.1)- I personally feel that from having to reorganise almost the entire layout of my double-page spreads and deal with the demands of the articles, I am well and truly proud of how my final double-page spread for the week has turned out; it looks much more spaced out like the magazine and as a result, looks much less cluttered yet clear to understand. I do still have only the smallest elements to put into lace such as the ‘in The Spotlight’ section but that will be completed net week since that’s the time I will be set to complete the final draft of the double-page spread. I personally believe that looking at the before and after comparisons of this week’s double-page spread, I feel that today’s adjustments to it after have made it look much more like the emulation of the ‘Outdoor Photography’ magazine. Even though it was only adjustments such as measuring the paragraph widths to the millimetre of the magazine’s, trimming the articles of unnecessary punctuation and text to replicate the style of those in the magazine, it made a huge difference by making the overall aesthetics of the spread look like I had made thorough care with using my research findings. This doesn’t mean that I didn’t use it at all before, this whole process just required updates and adjustments due to minor elements I forgotten about slightly. However, now having resolved all these, it shows that I have made my work even better as a result!

 

Here is the finished first draft for this week in Comparison to the adjustments I made to it on Friday:

double-page 1 draft 10

draft 1 before

double-page 1 draft 11

spread 1 first draft

 

(Covers unit 8 3.1)- Even though I was only half way through last week’s draft when I finished on Friday, I was astonished by the difference it made to it just like the first one- making it look more conscious on special awareness and orderly. Keeping in mind that I have also decided to reproduce some of my article for this spread due to the fact that I wanted to vary the theme of it a bit more since in the ‘Outdoor Photography’ magazine the articles, experiences and the photos are very rarely or never based on the exact same location.

Here is the draft from last week which I am currently in the process of adjusting:

FMP final double page draft 2 (PDF)

spread 2 adjusted draft

 

 Article Harvard References:

Double-page spread 1:

As a landscape photographer (Swales, S. 2016) Simon Swales has always been closely drawn towards the sea and mountains- as shown in his photography (Outdoor Photography, 2016). Having been a contributor to the OP Locations Guides since 2015 (Outdoor Photography, 2016)  Grace Pulford puts him in the spotlight…

GRACE PULFORD How would you describe your work? (Santillo, D. Smith, N. 2016)

SIMON SWALES I am predominantly a landscape photographer. I visited the docks, ships and shipyards and took photographs to use for my studies. (Swales, S. 2016)

 

GP How did you gain an interest in photography? (Swales, S. 2016)

SS I gained my interest to provide reference material for my own studies at Liverpool polytechnic back in the 1980’s. I visited the docks, ships and shipyards and took photographs to use for my studies. (Swales, S. 2016)

 

GP What Technology have you used within your work? (Swales, S. 2016)

SS I always use the RAW file format and convert to a jpg or TIFF using a pc so that the image can be displayed on a monitor. For this I use Adobe Photoshop. I only make minor adjustments with the software. (Swales, S. 2016)

 

GP What general advice would you give to any amateur photographer? (Swales, S. 2016)

SS Prepare to make a lot of mistakes. Eventually it will all come together and then you’ll get images that can sit with the best. (cameras / lenses) gets better all the time and computing software is the digital darkroom. (Swales, S. 2016)

 

Double-page spread 2:

As an beginning photographer, I have clearly used technology within my photos. To answer the question of which one, my phone. But nowadays, it’s simply not enough to state that. When it comes to my trustworthy Samsung Galaxy S5, I know that technology is helping me out. But without it I wouldn’t be holding the levels of admiration I have for my photos right now.

As an amateur photographer and journalism student, I know I still have a lot to learn about this art. During the introduction to Adobe Photoshop (Adobe, 2015) in the early development of this passion, I was better at losing track of all the editorial tools on offer than actually using them. I didn’t blame myself: from tools that adjust colour tone, cutting separate image elements, removal of hazes, to addition of blur effects, (Adobe, 2015) the whole package deal of it introduced that rush of anxiety inside me.

Having walked out with severe information overload, I can’t really agree that technology actually helps amateur photographers with this: many of the tools and software available today are highly advanced. Too advanced for the average amateur maybe? Referring back to Photoshop, adding how it can link to Lightroom which allows photos to be ‘easily’ organised and shared via Photoshop, (Adobe, 2016) it can somewhat mislead and often be hard to tell them both apart for their intended purposes.

On the opposite side of the spectrum though, I think of my first weapon for success… my Smartphone. Focusing on the two photos below, one obviously looks like the tone on it was adjusted. Try covering the left one up though and rethink: what perspective does it give? Does it look more like mist, or a winter sunrise? The effect tools on my phone were what asked those questions. In fact, it’s most interesting to see what just playing around with the tools can do to vary the entire atmosphere. From what I have witnessed, phones are slowly but surely convincing us that one shot will consider amateurs as professionals overnight. Looking back in time to when darkrooms were in constant use but the photographer was unable to reveal any photo until the end (Egbert, L. 2016). Now we have magazine adverts with full pages for endless lens options alongside the long lists with their prices (PARK Cameras. 2016.) I haven’t even considered lenses myself yet. Why? In my eyes, all a beginner should focus on their photographic device itself.

 

There is a difference between digital photography and digital image making. The end product in digital photography is the print and always will be. The end product in digital image making is displaying the image on a monitor. Technology and software is available to both beginners and professionals (Swales, S. 2016)

Yes I encourage beginners to use technology to TAKE shots. I then would say for them not to rely on editing software, if the shot did not come out… look at why? Was it the light? The film speed to fast? Software should be for touching up, slight tweaking or fixing or making dramatic editing changes that could not be done on the shoot itself. (Sedgwick-Jones, K. 2016)

 

Bibliography:

Advertisement for Canon from ‘PARK Cameras’. Outdoor Photography, (issue 203 April 2016) p.96.

Egbert, L. (2015). ‘What is a darkroom?’ Logan Egbert, available at: http://loganegbert.com/blog/the-darkroom-an-intro/ (accessed: 1st May 2016)

Outdoor Photography (Unknown author) (2016) ‘In the magazine this month…’ Outdoor Photography, (issue: 203, April 2016), p.4.

Outdoor Photography (Unknown author) (2016) ‘In the magazine this month…’ Outdoor Photography, (issue: 203, April 2016) p.4.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Kaye Sedgwick-Jones, 26th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Pulford, G (2016) Email to Simon Swales, 10th April.

Santillo, D. Smith, N. (2016) ‘In the spotlight…’ Dan Santillo’ Outdoor Photography, p.70 (Issue: 203 April 2016).

Take your photography further. (2015), [screencast] Available at: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/how-to/photo-retouching.html (accessed: 21st April 2016).

What is Photoshop? (2015), [Screencast] Available at: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/how-to/photoshop-cc.html (accessed: 21st April 2016).

What is Photoshop? (2015), [Screencast] Available at: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/how-to/photoshop-cc.html (accessed: 21st April 2016).

 

 

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Final Major Project: Week 6 production log

One thought on “Final Major Project: Week 6 production log

  1. Don’t feel too disheartened, Grace! There isn’t too much work needs doing on that article! The first draft should need some tampering with – nothing I’ve ever finished writing has born any resemblance at all to the first version. All part of the learning process, especially with regards to making sentences more active and less passive. Looking forward to seeing all your research collated and in one post.

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