Thursday, 8 January 2015

Thursday update 08/01/15: Sounds And Sound Connections

    Since Tuesday I have been exploring Rochester and the UCA campus looking for sounds to record and potentially use either in the current Soundscape or future projects. As of uploading this post I have gathered a total of 41 files of recordings that vary between 8 seconds and one minute that includes the following sources:
  • Bus engines
  • touching/poking/bouncing a balloon
  • Lower 2nd and 3rd campus floor ambience
  • footsteps
  • materials in contact with wood
  • sloshing water
  • an extractor fam
  • car engines
  • a zipper
  • fabric rubbing
     Several of them are of better quality than others and some are repeat attempts, but so far I have really enjoyed looking for sounds and for coming-on two days' exploration I feel I have built up a basic but solid sound library to work from.

    I managed to work out a way to upload my soundfiles to the blog. Blogger's video player does not appear to accept sounds on their own, so I experimented with what happens if I combined the audio files with a placeholder picture (in this case an open-source image of a P-47 Thunderbolt) to allow for a successful upload.

    However after listening to the recording several times I realise now that the propellor noise I had created using what I think was the sound of a toy lawnmower is a bit tinny. And I myself interpret it as either something that sounds more authentic to a 1940s recorder than a modern one, or that the engine is dying even before the alarm sound I created starts sounding off.

    For the pictures provided to me in the soundscape project I have had a few thoughts on what associated sounds could be present. From further examination I get the feeling I'm going to need to keep searching for all the sounds I need.

Picture One looks quite fluid. So I have considered using sections and moments of my recordings of moving water to simulate an aquatic atmosphere. I could alter the pitch  with what I have to make the sound file sound closer to what someone often hears when submerged underwater.

Picture Two looks fairly dry but the fibrous bristles that dominate the lower half of the picture could be one inspiration. I am tempted to investigate what sound comes from rustling spaghetti/pasta and disturbing the bristles on a toothbrush or the teeth of a comb to see what sound comes form these.

Picture Three I remmeber from my years of science in school: These are likely viruses. Again pasta or toothbrushes are two options for a source of the sound of hard collisions or I could try some sort of echo  as a really "out there" ambience. Maybe I record combing or rustling hair.
    As well as soundscaping I did spend a little time further trying to refine the story iea with a few idea-jogging phrases and images. It has helped me somewhat as I am building a more solid picture for an initial storyboard which I should see to doing within the next few days. The like-for-like practice on Tron Legacy has given me a better idea of how many sotryboard panels I may need.

Image references
  • (Video Image): US Air Force Photo, 2006; 140530-F-RN211-002; available at (last accessed 8th January 2015)
  • The three images footed by extensive captions were provided as the source material for the Soundscape project.


  1. Good work Mark!
    Re the story refinement...don't start storyboarding yet! You need to really nail the story and script before you start drawing...

    1. I'm coming on with the story. But yes, It's still too early to work on a storyboard despite a feeling of eagerness to get it done.

      I guess the Barcelona trip is getting to me. I need to breathe and calm down a little.

  2. Yes, Breathe......
    Get you story ideas up on the blog as soon as possible, even if just snippets... you will get feedback then, which might prod you in different directions :)