Tuesday, 11 May 2010


After finishing my newspaper product and supporting ancillary texts, I wanted to finalise my project by gathering a series of Audience Feedback to make sure that all three pieces followed the suitable conventions of current ones.

The Feedback is as follows: (thefeedback was gathered from a selection of random people who were neither teachers nor peers of mine to in order to ensure that the feedback I recieved was not bias).


- "The newspaper for me is a tricky one. It handles all of the conventions of current newspaper products, and it clearly well thought about. However, the images are quite dark and pixelated; maybe you could change these? The advert is a bit hit and miss also as it doesn't look very professional. Apart from that, it's a very well put together and generally conventional newspaper."
- "The images you've got are good, but not brilliant. I like the font and the layout as a whole, it looks very professional."

This series of constructive criticism was enough to help me edit my product for the final time. Although my images were indeed valid, I had to agree that the quality was somewhat lacking.

I worked on this by using my digital SLR camera with multiple mega pixel quality; this not only gave me a sharper image, but a clearer and more professional one. I changed most of the images on the front page, and even changed the advertisement. Although I liked the DogsTrust concept, it had no real relation to Harrogate or the Harrogate area. Instead, I created an advertisement based on a recently opened Flower Shop, used to support the greenery and well known flower shows of Harrogate. The colours in this image also seem to brighten up the bottom half of my newspaper.


- "The text doesn't really match the images and it doesn't seem to sell the newspaper very well."
- "Although the newspaper is visually pleasing, there's no real clarity in the sense that the images support the seasons of Harrogate and the slogan talks about Harrogate's greenery and there's no mention of a newspaper? Nice images though."
- "I can see your idea but it hasn't really worked."

After this feedback from my poster, I realised that I had made the right choice when asking for additional feedback. My target audience felt that my poster was a little off course and didn't seem to make much sense. I then completely re-directed the poster and sold the newspaper from a "value" perspective. I advertised the great value for money aspect by claiming that my newspaper was cheaper than others on the market. I also used my SLR once again to capture a clear image; this image being of 75p to support the text on the poster.


- "I love the scrolling text and the hyperlinked images. I can the similarities between your website and other newspaper-advertising ones. Images could be a little better though?"

All of the feedback gathered above, helped me to create successful products.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009


During the process of creating my own newspaper, a website to support it and a poster, I used the following programs:

- Photoshop
- Blogger
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Publisher
- Microsoft Office Live Small Business
- Paint
- Google

The PowerPoint evaluation shows how I used the above programs.

Monday, 30 November 2009


After analysing the methods that other newspapers use in order to advertise their product, I have considered the following ideas for The Harrogate Times poster I am creating:

- Landscape A3 poster to attract buyer + many of the posters analysed use a landscape format
- A colourful poster for visual purposes + colours must not be gender based
- The poster could contain one or more images, again for visual purposes
- The image(s) must link in with a slogan and the purpose of the poster
- The poster must be kept simple in terms of layout so the overall message is not too complicated
- The poster must be clear and coherent for the buyer to understand

I also have to think about the purpose and aim for the poster. Do I aim to sell the poster using a scheme that compares prices to other newspapers? Or do I aim to sell the newspaper through its news contents and attract the audience to what it contains?

Here are a list of themes I could base my poster on:

- Money: I could compare the price of The Harrogate Times newspaper with another ultralocal or national newspaper. This could be a successful approach to take, as the audience may feel that The Harrogate Times newspaper is good value for money in comparison with other newspapers. The only disadvantage to this approach may be that the buyer may not be interested in price, and more interesed in what the newspaper has to offer.
- Community: I could include information on the poster about events and community based experiences. For example, I could include information about the Car Free Day and the Bed Race in Knaresborough. Images from the event could also be included, or a group of people at the event. This sounds like an exciting concept, as the poster will show Harrogate as a community.
- News: The poster could include snippets of news and main headlines including images to support the stories. This would inform the audience exactly what the newspaper includes, and what type of news the newspaper advertises. The only disadvantage in doing this is the fact that headlines are forever changing. This concept is less strong in comparison to the other themes expressed.
- Events: Events in the Harrogate area could be included on the poster, as The Harrogate Advertiser contains all the latest events and information. This is similar to the Community concept. In my opinion, this would be suitable for every audience, and a community based concept would attract the younger as well as older audience.
- Sport: The poster could advertise The Harrogate Times' sport section. However, the downside to this would be that a limited number of the target audience would be attracted to this concept as the sport section is only read by a section of the target audience. This is the weakest concepts of all expressed.
- Harrogate; The poster could include a bit about Harrogate. For example, information about Betty Tea Rooms or Harrogate's flower shows. The Harrogate Times could therefore sponsor events such as The Harrogate Flower show on the poster.

I now need to consider a possible slogan to put onto my poster. Slogans are a method of marketing used to make the buyer remember the product.

Here is a list of possible slogans which refer back to the earlier themes:

- Slogans for the Money concept:
- Slogans for the Community concept:
- Slogans for the News concept:
- Slogans for the Events concept:
- Slogans for the Sport concept:
-Slogans for the Harrogate concept:

In terms of images, there needs to be a clear, cohesive link between both text and image in order for the poster to make sense. For example, if I chose my poster to be based on the Community concept, I could have an image of a group of people at a certain event, as opposed to something random like a medium shot of Harrogate.

I will begin drafting a few posters, experimenting with a few different themes...

For this drafted poster, I have chosen the Harrogate concept; this is based on Harrogate's greenery and it's well known flower shows. It contains three images of Harrogate's finest greenery with the title of the newspaper underneath in a large font in order for the buyer to identify the poster immediately. These three images will be replaced with more colourful images containing Harrogate's finest flowers, as I think these current images are a little too similar. In the bottom right hand corner, there is an advertisement for The Harrogate Flower shows, sponsored by The Harrogate Times. These two images are also temporary as I do not yet have any images of the flower show; this is a drafted piece. I have included reference to the flower show so that the reader is aware of the event. It also shows that the newspaper sponsors events such as this. There is a slogan in the bottom left hand corner taken from the slogans I earlier created, in order to support the images of Harrogate's greenery. The word "celebrating" also sounds as if the people of Harrogate should celebrate Harrogate's achievements. I really like this basic layout, but I am also going add in more features such as a link to The Harrogate Times' newspaper. I also plan to play around with the images and what effects I can add to them to make them more visually pleasing.

This screen shot shows that I have playeda around with the images a little. I used the Toolbar in Microsoft Word in order to achieve the slanted format and shadow features on each image. I really like this.

This screen shot is more of a finalised product although I still need a collection of my own images. Here, I have added in a link to the website as well as mini images of flowers in the flower for an added feature.

My final poster shows the newspaper's knowledge of Harrogate throughout every season. It also advertises Harrogate's well known greenery; I have done this by editing the same photo on Photoshop and editing it to suit every season.

Here is a screen shot of my final poster:

My reasons for deciding on this concept can be seen in the evaluation.


This particular advertisement for The Guardian includes the following conventions:

- Bright colours
- Retro/minimalistic layout
- Quotes
- Reference to The Guardian's website
- Large font
- Repetition
- Clear and coherent Standard English

I will explain the possible reasons for the conventions identified. The use of bright colours immediately attracts the reader, however there is a mixture of colours suggesting that the newspaper is not a gender specific newspaper (for example there are greys evident in the newspaper as well as pinks and greens). The use of bright colours may also appeal to the younger generation, and thus, captivate a wider audience. The reasons for doing this may be because the newspaper aims to attract readers outside of their niche market, but also to inform others about certain aspects of national news. The advertisement uses a retro sort of layout, as it is minimalistic, yet colourful; this may be used plainly to attract the attention of the buyer. A quote is added to the right hand side of the advertisement into a paragraph; a smaller font than the rest of the text. There is no indication as to where this quote is from, however, the reference to website underneath the quote suggests that an editor from the guardian newspaper may have written this. The use of repetition of the words "fact" and "opinion" plainly illustrate the newspaper's own conventions; the newspaper includes solid facts and opinions based entirely on national news - this is field specific lexis. Overall, I believe that this specific advertisement is very effective, as the use of colour attracts the reader attention, but also tells the audience a little about what the newspaper includes.

Here is an example of another advertisment for The Guardian newspaper:

There is a clear house style in all of The Guardian's advertisements; the same colours and techniques are used, including large font and use of quotes. The purpsose of this may be to not only attract the buyer, but to also help them identify which newspaper this advertisement is marketing. The retro design is again incorporated into this advertisement, and may have been influence from an artist of some period. The Guardian therefore, may be introducing some sort of art form nationally, as well as getting the audience to notice the newspaper itself.

Here is an advertisment for The Times. This particular advertisement includes the following conventions:

- Large title
- Grey/black midtones
- White font to contrast against dark background
- Image to support text
- Quotes from newspaper

In comparison to the advertisment of The Guardian, The Times takes a very different approach when marketing its newspaper. This specific advertisement is emotional, targeting the sensitive and caring characteristic in the buyer. For example, the image shown in this specific advertisement is of a shark trapped in a netting who has died from malnutrition. The buyer can easily establish what is going on in the picture, and thus, become interested in the emotional plea. The quote in white font beside of the shark image talks about what is happening in the picture, and what is yet to happen if we run out of seafood. The quote uses heartfelt techniques and uses imperatives such as "be part of the times" in order to urge the buyer to purchase the newspaper and get involved with what is happening. This advertisement is also successful as it focuses on the devastating reality of the world, but also uses a completely different technique to other newspapers such as The Guardian who use font and nothing else. The use of blacks and dark blues also add to the atmosphere of the overall advertisement. In my opinion, the use of an image such as this may attract the reader even more as there is concrete evidence to suggest that Sharks are endangered due to the continuous decrease in seafood.

This Daily Telegraph advertisement is very unconventional in comparison to the three previously analysed. For example, the advertisment fails to use large font to attract the buyer, and the minority of text makes the advertisement hard to understand overall. The background colour is also very neutral (making it non gender specific), and help to give the advertisement a serious feel.

The key generic conventions of an advertisement of a newspaper are as follows:

- Neutral colours
- One or no images
- Simple layout
- Minority of text
- Title of newspaper
- Large font for title
- Field specific lexis such as "opinions", "facts" and "news"


Here is a list of feedback I gathered after completing my website:

- The scrolling text on either side of the home page is very effective and the nice image of the grass really captures the greenery effect that you are trying to portray
- The images are clear and the hyperlinks and the overall layout looks exactly like the website of many other local newspaper web pages from this area
- The marquee is really cool and I haven't seen it much on any other newspaper web pages but it's really effective when showing the local news

As the feedback I gathered was indeed positive, I felt there were no necessary changed I needed to make. I believe my website looks incredibly familiar to current media products such as the Harrogate Advertiser, and I believe I have been successful when applying all the generic conventions of a website which can be viewed in the PowerPoint evaluation.

Here is a screen shot of my website:


To begin creating a website, I needed a program to build my website on. There was a choice of three programs which enable the consumer to build a sucessful website for their small business. However, I encountered specific problems when using each of this websites.

The choices were:

Weebly - "Create a free website or blog in minutes by using a simple drag and drop interface. No ads. One of Time's 50 best websites of the year."

The disadvantages of using this site were:

- Text could not be easily moved
- Text boxes could not be created
- The set templates were too fancy
- The whole site was difficult to manoeuvre and understand

Microsoft Office Live - "Microsoft office live small business get a free website and more. It's fast and easy."

There were no strong disadvantages to this program, although there is no text wrap tool.

Google Sites - "Thinking of creating a website? Google Sites is a free and easy way to create and share webpages. ... New! Create a site from dozens of pre-built templates ..."

The disadvantages of using this site were:

- No text wrap
- Text could not be easily moved
- Text boxes could not be created
- The set templates were extremely basic and were difficult to edit
- The whole site was difficult to manoeuvre and understand

The website which I decided to use was microsoft Office Live as it had all the professional features I needed to create a newspaper based web page.
Firstly, I began by choosing my template and layout, as Microsoft provides a series of pre-made layouts for its users.

This is a screen shot of the pre-made layouts on Microsoft Office Live

After choosing my template, I began to insert one element after another just like the newspaper creation process, just to see how everything looked on the page.
As I believe everything to look visually pleasing in order to ensure the reader's interest, I chose to use my current html skills and adopt them into the webpage.
From previous experience in web design and photography, I used html codes such as scrolling text and hyperlinked images; I used scrolling text to broadcast the latest news (just like Harrogate Advertiser does) and used hyperlinks and navigation features to enable an easy and accessible web page experience.

I also inserted a search engine and a weather section, in order to inform the reader about local weather etc. The search engine is also evident on the Harrogate Advertiser's webpage, helping readers to search for what they desire.

I inserted the same masthead which I use for my newspaper into the webpage, however, I also added a pre-made background to support the greenery of Harrogate. Although no images can be seen in any of the webpage titles currently, I felt that I should challenge the conventions in order to present a visual display. Soon after, I started to insert all of my articles and images to support the newspaper. I also inserted a 'What's on' in Harrogate section and also a section where reader's have the chance to ask the editor direct questions.


I researched into current web pages which advertise a certain newspaper.
Firslty, I decided it would be beneficial to look at The Harrogate Advertiser's web page and identify its conventions in order to understand a little bit more about how websites invite the buyer. Instead of analysing other ultralocal newspapers to the Harrogate area, I will also analyse a newspaper from a different local area, as most of these local newspaper are published by Ackrill Media group; therefore most of these local newspaper will have the same generic layout.

Here is a screen shot of the Harrogate Advertiser's web page.

The conventions I have identified are as follows:

- Organised layout
- Bold title (however, the title is not substantially large which is interesting, as the masthead on the Harrogate Advertiser's newspaper is noticeably big)
- Hyperlinks and navigation bar
- Search engine
- References to jobstoday and property today etc
- Date
- Updates in a scrolling marquee
- Advertisements
- Subheadings, headings and images
- Letters to the editor
- 'What's on' column

What cohesive links does the Harrogate Advertiser's web page have with the newspaper itself?

- Similar/same articles
- Brand identity and house style
- Date and time
- Advertisements
- Some form of navigation
- Same images

What differences does the web page and the newspaper have?

- Hyperlinks and search engines on the web page
- Small proportion of articles with a link to the full article on web page
- Comment options on the web page
- Web page has scrolling text and other visual aspects which the newspaper does not have

This variation of similarities and differences outline the divergence between the hard print copy of the newspaper and the interactive, modern and 'instantaneous' version of the newspaper in web pages.
New media, for example, the internet has been involved in the decline in profits of print media.

I have also researched on the internet into the common generic features of web pages. One website, Jerz Setonhill.com, states that there are five key factors you must follow to create a conventional and successful newspaper based web page:

- Lead with your best stuff: put your best stuff at the top of the page to keep readers engaged and entertained
- Inform with meaningful links: to provide meaningful information to the reader
- Employ consistent navigation: 'Home' link in the navigation bar and other consistent links
- Prefer simple designs: to avoid confusion and to get straight to the point
- Write scannable text: provide meaningful subheadings, bulleted lists and bold keywords

What about The Hereford Times?

Here is a screen shot of the Hereford Times' web page

Is there any relation between this web page and the Harrogate Advertiser's web page?

- Noticeably different layout
- Hereford has larger title
- Both have main web page conventions such as navigation, images and text