This week we looked at target audience, the Inverted Pyramid, along with looking at other key skills needed to write a powerful article and character description.
The first task for this week was to read a variety of different of written pieces and work out what audience they were aimed at. Each piece we had fitted a different audience in another way than another. One piece of text we had was the first chapter of the book ‘True Grit’, when reading it I thought it was aimed more towards a younger audience due to the language used, for example:
People do not give it credence that a fourteen-year-old girl could leave home and go off in the wintertime to avenge her father’s blood but it did not seem so strange then, although I will say it did not happen every day. I was just fourteen years of age when a coward going by the name of Tom Chaney shot my father down in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and robbed him of his life and his horse and $150 in cash money plus two California gold pieces that he carried in his trouser band.
You can see that Charles Portis used a quite simple language for a book that has a more mature story to it. Such as his sentences are quite simple as in they don’t really go into a lot of detail about how it happened just that the girl wants to avenge her father. More so Portis writes in the perspective of a fourteen-year-old girl and most books aimed at adults are also in the perspective giving this book a unique edge to its lead is very different for the target audience.
Another example of finding out a target audience from the writing is looking at a poem by Rupi Kaur:
Kaur makes it very clear in the first line whom her poem is aimed at with the use of the word ‘women’ but as you read on you can also tell that its aimed at feminist because you can see what her opinion on women are with the use of sentences “when your spirit has crushed mountains” this clearly states that Kaur believes are strong and powerful.
Once researching each piece I had to change one into another format, I did so with ‘True Grit’ to change it into a poem.
He’s body laid dirt on the dusty ground,
Birds flew from the trees,
Startled by the bang,
He held the gun by his side,
His cruel features didn’t even flinch,
As the mans lifeless body fell to the floor.
The girl cried,
Watching from the barn,
As her father was murdered,
By the man he saw pity on.
He rode of on his victims horse,
Leaving the girl behind,
Leaving her to plan her revenge.
I chose to make it into a poem because I thought an article was the obvious choice and not that difficult to do and I wanted to challenge myself by writing a poem I was able to do this. You can see that I used some direct quotes by writing ‘cruel features’ when talking about Chaney I did this to keep some of the features the book uses in terms of how his character should be thought as by the reader.
This week we also looked at character description by looking at two paintings and then writing a scene from the inspiration we got from the two paintings.
The first one we looked at was by Tom Phillips called Brian Eon you can see that the painting is abstract and with the use of dark colours it gives a dark tone as a whole. This meant that when it came to writing a piece based on the painting I had a clear idea of what tone I could go for.
As I looked in the mirror, I saw the person starring back at me. His eyes dark, as if all the light and happiness had been stolen from his life. His skin was covered in shades of black and blue, leaving trace’s of how he spends his nights. Nose left red as the blood dried. His clothes were baggy around his skinny frame. As I looked deeper into this man’s eye’s I released that man was me.
We also looked at this painting called ‘In the Dancehall’ by Isaac Israel. This painting uses a lot of reds that give an idea of potential scandal or danger. Plus this was painted in 1800’s meaning its very rare that two women would’ve been painted in this way, giving me an idea of how I could write the piece.
The music boomed around the pair as couples dance around them, paying them no attention, no focused on their own dance. Her arms rested on the other woman’s hips, gripping onto the scarlet fabric as her hips swayed. They were in their own world, drawing out everything that people were thinking but not saying. The taller women looked down to catch the eyes of the women she loved.
Overall I think doing this task allowed me to have a wider idea of how you could turn a piece of art into a story by just looking at some of the features of the piece, no matter big or small. You can see that for the first piece I used the colours of the painting to get the idea that he’s some sort of boxer, giving a reason for the use of reds and blues. With the second I used the idea that it was two women in love in a time were it was wrong but the two not caring because they are with each other, and with the use of the colour red it gives you that sense of danger. In the future, I might use the idea of looking at an image to get inspiration for a story.
The Inverted Pyramid:
We also learned about the Inverted Pyramid, the basic idea of the pyramid is that the key parts of an article are the biggest (5w’s) so they go at the biggest part of the triangle, which is the base meaning that the triangle is actually upside down. For example:
We also read an article that helped gather an understanding of what are the key factors of a good article, it did so by having an evaluation of each paragraph at the side explaining what they did and why meaning that I now have a greater idea of how to write a better article.
Plus we also looked at what constitutes an article, we learnt that this includes:
- Elite Person: A celebrity
- Unambiguity: The story needs to be easily understood
- Threshold: The scale of the event, the bigger the event, the bigger the story
- Exclusivity: A story that no other paper has
- Kaur, R. (2015). Milk and honey, accessed on 21st September 2017
Portis, C. (1968). True grit, accessed on 20th September 2017