8 week ago we were given the task to research, plan, produce content and design a magazine front cover and TWO double page spreads for a magazine. I found my proposal very useful because it gave me a guide to follow all the way though my production and research. My first ideas were to fill the two double page spreads with the “How technology has changed” idea but it soon came apparent that I wouldn’t be able to fill all of that space. If I was to write another proposal I wouldn’t change or add anything other than I would do more planning before writing it. I think that my planning was effective because it made me think of more possibilities and ideas that I could add in to my double page spreads and front cover. It also allowed me to have a written plan to follow when I got stuck or needed to add something. I could have managed my time better thought the unit by doing more work outside of college and staying after but all in all I think I have managed my time well because I have hit all the deadlines that have been sent by out tutors to get the work finished. I did come in to a few problems over the FMP one of these was in the planning, I had planned to use the studio at college to take photos for my articles and front cover but there was a problem when it came to booking it and getting the right cameras out it took longer than expected and the date had to be changed. I could have planned my research and production more effectively by holding some focus groups or getting some feedback before I started.
When it comes to research for my FMP I have done primary and secondary. Starting with primary, I started by doing some textual and analysis for 3 magazine front covers. Within each of them I looked at the demography profiles which include age range, gender and many more reason why that magazine targets a specific audience. I also looked at the phchographic profile which helps me to understand what the people reading the magazine would be interested in and the cross cultural consumer characteristics. I also did all this of a double page spread from a magazine; this all helped me to decide what I needed to do to get those links and relationship with my target audience for my magazine.
After doing my textual and analysis I went on to do a survey about my magazine idea on the target audience that we were given in the brief. I asked them just a few questions on the codes and conventions and any suggestions that them have toward the making of the magazine. I then went away and analysis the results from the survey which were very positive. I then took on board what people had said in y survey and created some mood boards using images and designs that I liked the look and could have made them look better. On the mood board there were two main styles; a clean and simple design or a more busy and colourful design and by doing more audience research from this I came to the conclusion that I wanted to make something that looked clean and professional but was still eye-catching. Before starting my production I went away and did some research on InDesign techniques and how to use the program more professional and this really did help me to do something different. I then did more focus groups when it came to choosing different aspects of my spreads; my title, images and fonts.
When it came to me doing my secondary research I first looked at genres and what they are whilst decide what genre I was going to choose for my magazine, which I already knew from doing my planning, a technology base genre. Then I looked in to the codes and conventions for my magazine so I know what people expect to see when they pick it up of the shelf. Then I went and looked on the national readership survey for some helpful points and figures. After this I look at doing my bibliography using the Harvard reference which is a special way how to organise the references. My main source for doing my research was the internet but I did have a look in some magazine for help the internet was most effective because it saved time and had a lot of information on there unfortunaly the magazine took lots of time and there wasn’t much I could use. The findings I gathered helped me to shape my design and influenced my images, text and even layouts. I did have one problem when doing my research was the internet, because I was using it so much and was, at times, dependent on it when it went down for a day it was impossible to do my work and it slowed my work right down.
I feel like I could have done more research but that’s because you can never have to much, I could have done more surveys and documented all the focus groups I did. Doing more research could have help me to even further understand my target audience and people’s views toward my ideas and work. During my production I held focus groups to help judge my work and help make decisions and I did this for my fonts, layouts and even colour. This helped me because I made decisions knowing that my target audience is going to like it.
My Reflective Journal helped me when doing my planning, research and product because it gave me somewhere to think about why I had done what I did and how that was going to help me when it came to doing things in the later stages of the unit. The journal also helped me when it came to my audience feedback or ay words of wisdom that my tutors where giving me. It gave me a place to write it all down, not be selective of my words, and look over anything I may have missed or thought about. The reflective journal also helps me thought the FMP because it allowed me to document everything I have done from day one and by having this its help me not to forget or reminded me to do something.
I think that my magazine is fit for purpose and matches the brief that we were given 8 weeks, it follows the comment codes and conventions of a magazine with the barcode, price and page numbers as well as the images and text. I could have improved my magazine by making it stereotypically aimed towards men more than I have because it is a technology magazine and looking at my research that is what I found out about these types of magazines.
When thinking back and looking over the work that I have produced my technical skills have improved because before the brief it wouldn’t have worked so well. One of the big ones is InDesign and been able to make a magazine front cover and two double page spreads. For example, I didn’t know to make the edges of my images round and it had me stuck but by doing a quick google and asking a few different people I figured it out and now every time I may need it in the future I’ll know.
After I had finished my product I wanted to collect some audience feedback so I could see what people in the age range that I was targeting thought (16-24).
The first thing that I asked o the survey was do you think the magazine appeals to the right age range and 80% of the people I asked said yes but as you can see 20% said no and someone did leave a comment they said: “I do think the article about the Time could be seen as aimed to an older target audience” which is a fair comment because it contains older people opinions and thoughts.
Before I did my production I did do plenty of research to influence and guide me when making decisions and this was why it was effective, for example I formed a focus group for my sketch’s to find out what people liked and wanted form this magazine.
When I got the feed back from my product I agreed with the most of it, the first one I looked at was for my Apple Watch review article which 60% of the people said that the image was the best of the photo and someone left a comment saying that this was the thing that drew you in to reading the whole article. The other 40% was evenly split between the layout and colour which I also agree with.
When looking at the feedback for my second article and front cover everything was all even between the categories that I had set out in the survey which I do agree with because I personally don’t think there is one area in my work that is so much better than everything else. We didn’t get any feedback from a industry practitioner but this could have been useful to make sure our magazine was 100% right for the target audience and because they have a lot of experience in the magazine industry they know what there talking about.
My magazine doesn’t break and legal and ethical laws because I have taken all the images myself so there isn’t any issue with copyright and anyone I have interviewed I have gotten their permeation to use it in the article beforehand.
If I was to do the unit again here are some point that I would like to improve on –
Planning – I would have spent more time dong more in-depth planning going though more resources like books magazines and the internet. I would have done more audience feedback to make sure what I was planning was what liked.
Research – I would like to do more audience research and talk to a large volume of people so I could have gotten a larger range of opinions. If there was more time I would have liked to spend more time with people getting more and more opinions so I could understand what everyone wanted and try and peace it all together.
Creativity – I would like to learn more about different software and editing programs so that my skills can be improved but this will only come with practice.
Product – I would have liked to make the product more aimed towards men because in my research that’s what I found out about technology magazines and how they are stereotypically aimed to that gender. I could do this with colour and choice of photos.
Communication – I would like to improve my communication with my tutors so I could get more feedback to make my magazine better, but not so much I wouldn’t be producing my magazine indepentently.