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Page 1: codes and conventions of music videos.



Page 2: codes and conventions of music videos.

Different techniques are used when creating a music video to construct the meaning of the video.These are called ‘Technical’ and ‘Symbolic’

TechnicalHow the meaning is conveyed using technical equipment such as the camera angles, the editing, the genre, diegetic and non-diegetic sounds.

SymbolicThe ways of showing meaning beyond technical techniques. This can consist of poses, facial expressions, gestures and the mise-en-scene within the video.

Page 3: codes and conventions of music videos.

Why are there codes and conventions?■Certain codes and conventions are used when

creating a music video to allow the audience to become familiar with that particular genre.

■This can provide a structure that the audience understands and enjoys.

■Codes and conventions also allow the lyrics of the song to fit into what is happening within the video.

Page 4: codes and conventions of music videos.

Codes and conventions within music videos:■Editing style■Camera■The style■The sound■Stereotyping

Page 5: codes and conventions of music videos.

Styles of music videos:


■ This consists of mainly the artist performing and dancing within the video.

■ An example of this is ‘Sin’ where the music video shows an ongoing performance from the artist.

This style of music video is not as common as it does not have a narrative to follow therefore making it slightly less appealing to re watch and be as drawn into.

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Narrative■ The narrative within a music video is the following of a story normally

linked to the lyrics of the song. An example of this style of music video is ‘The One That Got Away – Katy Perry’ This is because it revolves around the a romantic narrative surrounding a flash back and transitions to the preset time also including cross overs between the same past and present character.

This Is a narrative inspired music video as it has a linear narrative from start to end, including a start middle and end. It also has a style of narrative that grips the audience and keeps them interested.

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■ A mixture styled music video is one that consists of both of performance and a narrative. An example of this styled video is ‘Heathens – Twenty One Pilots’ This is because it consists of a solid narrative but also includes performance techniques.

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■ A cameo music video is a performance style video in which the artist/s performs in their own video however does not mime or perform to their song other than the acting they portray. A good example of this is ‘ A Change Of Heart – The 1975’

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Use of cameraThe use of camera can give a different effect on the video for example using only tracking shots and fast pace movement with the camera can have a completely different effect to using a range of different angles and establishing shots. This can change the style of the narrative and change the view of the watcher.However most music videos tend to use a wide range of different shots, angles and techniques.A lot of the time in popular music videos, over the shoulder and tracking shots are used to portray reality in the video. For example within poplar songs such as ‘Robbers – The 1975’ and ‘I Need Your Love – Calvin Harris’ this style of camerawork is used throughout

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■ Sound is essential within a music video as it is the main base behind all other factors in creating the video such as mise-en-scene and camerawork.

■ Sound within the media consists of non-diegetic and diegetic, non-diegetic to which is edited in at the final stages of creating the music video such as a song being put on top of the video. Diegetic sound is shown to be already present in the film. This can be portrayed in a music video as some music videos have pre performances that introduce and tell a brief story to interest the audience and allow the video to feel more relatable.

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■ Mise-En-Scene is also a large part in creating a music video and allow the video to attract the audience. Mise-En-Scene within a music video consists of:

■ Lighting – How well lit the scene is, using either artificial lights or natural lighting. Artificial light will be used when using plain backdrops within a studio, whereas natural lighting will be used outside. Natural lighting videos tend to be more relatable normally with a narrative whereas artificial light normally links to pop and dance style videos.

■ Costume – Use of certain outfits to set the scene and introduce characters■ Location – This can add a lot of effect to a video as it portrays the genre and style of the

video, normally linking to the type of song used.■ Colour – Different styles of tone, color and lighting can set a mood to the music video,

representing the lyrics to the song.■ Props – This is performance equipment and can link to the narrative of the video suh as guns,

alcohol, sports equipment, band merchandise.