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Codes and Conventions of Music Videos

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Georgina bridges

on 27 February 2012

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Transcript of Codes and Conventions of Music Videos

Codes and Conventions of music videos codes and conventions are a way to create meaning in media. Codes are the things we expect to see (visual device) in a music video such as for example in a hip-hop/R&B music video we would expect to see expensive cars a jewellery. A convention is the story behind it (narrative device). For example; in R&B music video, we would expect to see women dancers wearing next to nothing. music videos can be catorgarized in different ways; narrative and performance are just a couple.
Music videos demonstrate different genre characteristics for example we usually see a stage performance in a metal bands music video but, in a boy/girl bands video we would usually see a dance routine which would not be filmed on a stage. Due to the demands of the record label, videos will often include a lot of close- ups of the artist or band which will often include a personal style of the artist so that when they re occur with another video the audience will know it’s them even if they don’t appear in the video.
In music video's mise-en-scene plays a large part Mise-en-scene is a symbolic way of creating meaning because its a meaning created beyond what is obvious to the audience, most music videos will use alot of props the producer will also think deep into the location and set of the music video and whether or not this relates to the song or not. each genre of music videos contain different codes and conventions. R'n'B Music videos contain simple settings and the women in them wear revelaing costumes as part of the representation of women being nothing but sexual objects. The videos portray the artist as being wealthy and powerful by using props such a "flash" cars, jewellery and big houses. Because the majority of R'n'B and hip hop artist are men, most of the fans tend to be women, so using women in the video wearing little clothing makes the artist look like they are in charge and powerful, again portraying the women as a "sex symbol".

Rock Music Videos have simple settings and dark colours, they usually contain a performance from the band or artist, we rarely see any objectification of women in these videos. In rock videos we would often see close up shots of the artist face and mouth to see that they are singing the lyrics ans to see the emotion on their face. the lightig is usually quite dark to portray the meanings in the lyrics of the song.

Pop Music Videos usually use flashing lights, bright colours, props and a creative location or background/backdrop. this is so that it will attract the attension of a younger audience.

Indie Music Videos in these types of videos we see that they are usually slow paced and mellow we see a lot of tracking shots especially reverse tracking, usually in long shot. we sometimes see a close up just we see the artist singing the lyrics.

All music videos use a variety of camera agles and shots; Crane shots: These are used usually when the music video contains the band performing usually on a stage this is used so that the audience gets to see the band from a variety of different angles. Close ups: We often see close ups ofthe artists face to show their emotion especially when the music video contains a narrative, this also happens so that the audience can see them singing the lyrics.these are also used to keep the record label happy, showing the artist will keep the fan base high. Low Angles: these are used as a way to make the artist or band look dominating. All types of camera angles and shots are used in music video's.

the process of editing in a music video takes a lot of time the same with film. This is because each shot needs to be selected individually so that the music is playing at the same time as the artist is singing and the correct emotions are being portrayed. ANDREW GOODWIN!
Andrew Goodwin states; there are five key points to a music video. 1) thought beats (seeing the sound in your head) 2) narrative and performance 3) star image 4) relation of visuals and lyrics/song 5) technical aspects of the music video all of the characteristics just mentioned represent Andrew Goodwins key elements. Thought beats This is the recognisable structure within the song like the chorus and verses, it can also mean how unique the artists voice is to whether or not the audience can recognise the person singing or featuring in the song. This is known as the star image, being recognisable through the way an artist sings or what there videos contain. Through the recognisable voice of the artist the audience can then associate things with the lyrics. Goodwin’s theory says that songs can be seen as stories and as the audience listens a story is revealed within the song, which is a means of communication from the artist to the audience.
Narrative and performance The audience only ever seem to get a little bit about the story being told throughout the music/lyrics, apart from what we see or hear we tend to make up our own idea of the story being told. The way in which narrative and performance are tied together can make it easier for the audience to watch. If the narrative is related to the visuals its easier to get a sense of what’s going on, if its not the audience has to think for themselves.

Star Image The star image created is vital for the artist. Record labels will demand a lot of close-ups of the artist to create the “star image” once the star image has been made the artist will be recognisable for the audience through there lyrics. For example Michael Jackson made his star image through his iconic dance moves and high pitched noises.
Relation of visuals and lyrics Illustrative: music videos can use images to allow the audience to understand the meaning of the lyrics, this creates a narrative Amplifying: this means the meaning is constantly being shown through out the video. It’s being taken “over the top”.
Technical aspects This refers to the use of mise-en-scene in a music video; Camera angles & shots, lighting, props, sound and editing.
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