Background on Zoom H2N

For my assignment, I have chosen to use the Zoom H2N dictaphone for my sound. This is because earlier in the semester we were given a workshop where we all tried out different technologies that capture sound.

3 that we trailed out 

  • Edirol
  • Fostex
  • Zoom

I chose the Zoom as it definitely gave the best quality of sound when practicing and it is very portable and small. The Zoom H2 features a built-in W-XY stereo microphone with five mic capsules, allowing front cardioid (90°), rear cardioid (120°) and 360° polar patterns. The result is brilliant stereo recording with natural depth and accurate imaging. A 3.5mm headphone jack is provided for you to monitor the recording.The Zoom H2n features ‘Mid-Side recording’ – this combines a uni-directional Mid mic that captures sound directly in front of you and a bi-directional Side mic that captures sound from your left and right. By increasing or decreasing the level of the Side mic, you can control the width of the stereo field, which gives you incredible flexibility over your recordings. If you record in RAW mode, you can even adjust the stereo width after recording.


websites looked at

Space Utilisation in an Identity

When creating my own identity it is crucial that I have a better understanding on placement, spacing and utilisation of other identities. This will give me more of an insight on how I should structure my own branding. Spacing can be really important to a piece. Letter spacing is the amount of overall spacing of a word or even a bulk of text. Letter kerning focuses more on the spacing better two characters. If a letter is moved closer this causes negative space, which can make one character appear to be a different one. For instance: if I had to characters C and an L and changed the Kern then the letters can appear to be an A or a D. This could change the full meaning of a piece and makes an identity look unprofessional.

my kerning explination.jpg

My example

I did some research and here are some examples out there on the market. These prove how how important spacing and kerning are.


This is a shop in America. The Name of the shop isn’t made clear and could be Misinterpreted as Kid Sexchange or Kids Exchange.


This Image is from Grand Theft Auto. The click lovers could be Misinterpreted and could be read as Dick lovers. This changes the full meaning of the text.

If the letter is moved further away it creates positive space. This makes each letter readable for the audience. However, too much spacing can be bad for an identity. It can end up making a group of letters become individual.

I have learned that depending on the type of text and the spacing of each element is valuable. This can affect how the eye runs across the words and change the meaning of the data given.

Blank spacing has positive connotations of a much more professional piece. Newspaper tabloids like the New day have lots of negative space. This helps to make the content seem much more important.

If I take on board this research then I will produce a much more professional identity. It will make my typeface look much more appropriate and help to communicate the right meanings behind it.

Reflection on Creativity and Design


When it comes to creative flair it is clear to see that lots of people are naturally creative at a specific time of the day where they are most creative. For me I personally find I am the most focused and creative around the evening hours of 7 – onwards. Other individuals take longer to develop creative skills and need more time to enhance these skills. many people tend to keep a pen/paper/Dictaphone with you at all times so they can record ideas as they think of them or see something they think will help them later on.

Leaflets are a good example of what can spark inspiration or ideas for a design. Leaflets all have specific typefaces from there fonts, layout, colour scheme etc. every design we see over time doesn’t always stick in our brains so by following the three main skills to becoming a more organised and prepared designer will help us in later life. In the real world of work we could be asked to write, design, present on a topic that we know very little about and by keeping a record of things may help to influence the piece to success.

There are 3 stages to aiding creativity


Collecting things that are raw material can be useful and they are not always inspiration or ideas but maybe handy to take influence from the written styles, house styles like colour pallets etc. There are a number of sites that are really useful when keeping collections in one place. Pinterest, Google +, one drive are all great for collecting. You may think that things are useless but most things will be relevant at some point


  • Observing life – drawing or photographs/videos
  • Books
  • Magazine – keep up with what’s going on, look at all genres too – you might not always be working in the area you would like
  • Found typography – Appropriate fonts for the story, shop signs
  • Stuff off the internet – Pinterest, google+, Deviant Art, YouTube, Blogs, Be aware that a lot of things online are opinion and not facts, look at colour schemes
  • Freebies – Flyers that get handed out on a night out, look at design
  • Leaflet racks – content of leaflets – how have they been written, how is it marketed to their intended audience
  • Clothing Labels/Tags – some are nicely designed – makes you think about it if you have to untie it, extra detail – makes it seem higher end
  • Packaging – is sells based on designs and products but the packing can reflect the product.
  • Photos – even one that have gone wrong, photos using other objects
  • Doodles


Cataloguing can be extremely useful as it is a visual aid that allows you to see exactly what you have saved for an idea. Google+ is visual through images instead of just a list like the favourites list are. In favourites it just saves the link and doesn’t show what it is actually about, this means it will be harder to find something useful when needed.

There are many different ways to keep a catalogue, for instance;

  • Sketchbook/Notebook – keep it on you all the time
  • Binders
  • Box files – to put things in
  • IPhoto/Flickr – some have lots of info on them e.g. date etc.


When creating a product, piece of writing or whatever needed it is important that we work to deadlines.

However, if the creative juices just aren’t flowing then you could change the environment you are in. Possibly go out for fresh air or go to somewhere where you can focus more Peace and quiet maybe key. If you have a mental block then there is no point just spending hours and not getting anywhere then Go to bed get some rest. In the morning something may come to you.

Brainstorm and mind map is a good way to get ideas onto paper, once ideas are down then it is easier to make better choices. Ideas will develop and possibly merge.

The use of mood boards can work to our advantage.  The advantages of a mood board is that it narrows it down ideas, clients can make them if you ask. Mood board are how it makes you feel. Key when trying to make an emotion.

Style boards are also useful this can layout ideas on how something will look. For instance, Colour Pallet can be chosen from an image that gives the feel you would like to portray.

As a journalist it is imperative I take these three skills and put them into my own practice. This will help me become a much better designer and keep up with current styles, whilst putting my own spin on a topic. The skills will help save time as I will have things that will give me direction when struggling. Over the next few weeks I hope to develop my own catalogue.



Statement of Intent for CATS Comparison Essay

For my comparison essay, I have chosen to look more in-depth at Rageh Ommar and Ernie Pyle. Both of these journalists/correspondents reported on war. some of the key things I will be comparing and contrasting are:

  • Their work
  • Political Views
  • Influences
  • Reputations
  • House styles and Technology’s

I believe that both Plye and Ommar will be really interesting to analyse as they both have served a long and successful career. Working in a different era will help to showcase comparisons in how they did their reporting and job. Even though they have a lot of difference they also shared similar traits as well. These two war correspondents worked years apart, but the way in which news is reported has changed.

I will use key quotes to back up what I am saying. There are many things I can do in order to gain knowledge on the reporters. For instance using the library facilities, use books, the internet and any other sources if needed.

The essay will be 2000 words in total and will contribute 30% towards my overall marks for CATS. 10 %, either way, will still be appropriate for the work count.

Potential Newsworthy Stories

Before deciding on the topic I am going to do for this task. I brainstormed a few potential stories and who I may want to interview for each one.

Hull City of Culture 2017 

There is a lot of things happening on the build up to the city of culture 2017. This could be an idea as it is informative and very newsworthy for local broadcasts. If I was to do this then I would contact the council to do a sit down interview on what is currently happening and what the expectations are in the next few months. Also Vox pops make the story more humanised as it shows the emotion running through local’s minds. Footage could be of the renovations of the city, blue prints and expected outcomes. Work men on work sites around the city developing what will be a modernised and better design.

Independent shops and business struggles

This was an idea as the independent coffee shop in the town centre has closed down due to lack of business and competition from other big named branded shops. Only a few months after the coffee shop did an interview speaking about the success of the business, it goes complete out of business and shuts down. Interview would be with the owner of the independent cafe and competitors in the market. Vox pops would add public’s views on what their preferences are – whether there more inclined to use branded shop in comparison to independent stores. Why they have this opinion and what they would like to see more of in terms of shops/businesses.

New boxing club opening up

This will be a VT package on a boxing club that has just opened and what they hope to achieve. Interview will be of the coaches speaking about what the club brings to the community and why boxing. Footage will be of the kids training inside and outside of the ring. General views, close ups will be seen within the video. I believe this one will make the best edit as there is so much that I could do with it.

By having options I can make a decision based on everything, I will look at accessibility, impacts, target audiences, what people in the city want to know and which I think I could do the best job at.

Reflection – Interactive Storytelling Software’s

As a part of my current assignment it involves me putting some research to different online sources that can help to create interactive and immersive stories. Some of the different sites I’ve looked at are:


My first thoughts when first going onto the website were positive. The website looked really clean and of a high professional quality. The navigation was simple and easy to use, the navigation and the content makes it user friendly. However, all isn’t great to use the software it has an expensive price of £370. This website/software rated as a really good website to use and one of the best. Lots of professionals use this.

If I was to get the software I could get the special education Klynt Edition available at a much better rate, it would be a one off payment of £36. This is much more accessible for students who don’t have a lot of money. Before buying the software I have signed up to a free trial to see how I get on with it.

After having a bit of a practice on it, I personally thought it was hard, I watched tutorials from the website and this explained what to do in a fairly simple way.


To be honest when going on the Website I was less than impressed. To be honest I don’t feel this is the right interactive storytelling software for my project. It focuses on the video and photography sides of things to create a story. In order to use this software, you have to download it onto your computer which takes time and is not compatible with all models of computers. There was an issue when using my windows Toshiba laptop. It came up with an alert saying that the software wasn’t available. However when using my apple laptop I was able to download it. Once I had I didn’t think much of it and ruled it out to use for this task.


To be honest I was quite impressed with first look. It was easy to sign up to and fairly simple to navigate around. I found it very interesting what the software has to offer, on here you can create a variety of things that include long form, web documents, interactive videos and animated data. This software looks like it could be an option for my assignment however, feel that I would have to spend a fair few hours to get to grips with the software.

Interlude –

This software is limited as it focuses on creating interactive videos. This is not the storytelling software I want to use for my assignment.


This interactive storytelling software is really simple as you can merge the uses of text, music, videos and images. I do think that it is simple and the limitations to using it means that the professional standards are put at risk. This I would use for a much more informal style of work.

Twine –

“Twine is an open-source tool for telling interactive, nonlinear stories.” I thought that the level of access was great you could download it, for both Mac and Pc or simply use it online. This was great for accessibility. However, I just didn’t understand the software at all it was confusing and there isn’t much guidance on how to use it. I don’t think I will be using this software for my project.

Line – timelines.

Personally I feel this software will be ideal for my assignment as it focuses on creating timelines. My project focuses on Malala and to truly understand her you have to understand her background and what’s happened in her life since.


Reflection on Don McCullin

As I was unable to attend the session as I had a hospital appointment, I was sent the PowerPoint presentation that was used in the session. In this PowerPoint it had links to YouTube videos. We all were expected to watch the links.

The documentary was really insightful as Don McCullin openly talks about the effects of his job role and from a personal level. He also explained the emotional challenges when having to photograph hard news. Some of the things he referred to was how it affected him emotionally and mentally. He knew full well that he would have to see some of the most tragic and upsetting scene in his line of work.

McCullin said  “photography for me is not looking, its feeling. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures.”

I did further research into Don McCullin’s and came across one of his books: Don McCullin (2003). When reading the book it set the scene about don McCullin and his home life then moved onto the different conflicts and wars. There were passages from Vietnam, Cambodia, and Beirut. I believe that McCullin when writing this book focused on the humanity aspect and throughout the majority of his work. In the book it showcased a large amounts of his photography work. The images I thought were quite disturbing and showcased the harsh reality of war. McCullin’s work is extraordinary as he was one of the first photojournalists to capture photographs the ways he did. His work draws viewers in and makes them connect with what’s going on in the image.

One of the images that caught my eye was;

don mcc


This image is so powerful, it really shows suffering and the mind-sets of the solider. This image to me shows the solider is dead behind the eyes. The emotions are very reserved, but at the same time showcase fear, sadness and so much more. I really like the negative space over the soldier’s right shoulder, it has a very faint outline of what looks to be a tank. It makes the danger seem incredibly close.


McCullin’s career began in 1959, he specialized in examining the dark side of society, from conflicts, poverty/ the third world countries and death. One of the most interesting facts I learned about him was that in 1968 when he was out doing his work, a gunman shot a bullet aiming for McCullin however, his Nikon camera stopped a bullet intended for him. He also has been awarded a number of awards for his photography.

I think by reading the content on the PowerPoint and conducting independent research on Don McCullin it is really humbling to hear and see some of the situations he was involved in. by listening to a professional it has opened my eyes. I don’t think me as a journalist would be able to cope with this line of work. I am too emotional and as I have a disability am at a disadvantage in this area.

War and conflicts are so important and it is cruel that there are people out there like McCullin, to capture and tell the events to viewers. Viewers will never really understand the enormity of the situation but images can speak millions of words. I truly am taken back by McCullin’s work as there is so much depth and skill. Most of McCullin’s work is in Black and White this helps to increase the level of depth. Grey scale makes viewers look at the whole image and not just the main focal point. A lot of the images feature people looking directly towards the camera, this increase the human quality and increase the emotion and connects with the viewer.