This semester I am taking a Sound module in which we learn how to capture sound (with microphones and recorders) and how to edit it (with protools).
We had a project briefing that consisted on making a Vox Pop. A Vox Pop is a short audio exercise used by a lot of radios all over the world. There is an interviewer asking the same questions to a lot of different people and at the end he mounts them together!
First of all, we had to find a theme in order to come up with the question we wanted to ask. Then we learned how to work with professional recorders.
My main question was “what is your main goal in life? what is your role in the world?”. After I got my recorder from uni I spent the whole day asking people those questions and came up with about 30 or 40 answers. It wasn’t easy due to the windy weather but I tried to always put my back against the wind and the recorder in front of me. It was a good exercise because I had to deal with a lot of people and some are shy or don’t have the time or simply don’t want to answer. At home, after listening to all my answers. I chose the ones that were usable. I also thought about the soundFx that I wanted to include and got them at freesound.com
After this stage, the next step was to record my questions and my radio opening on a studio. At uni we have access to the studios and with Francisco Dias, a colleague of mine, we recorded our questions, radio opening and closing. I don’t really like how my voice sounds but I made an effort to do everything I could with this project so I would feel how it’s like to be in the different positions.
I drove my scooty to uni and started editing!! First I had to arrange and cut my voice recordings. I did the same for every other recording of the answers. There was a moment where I had to think which meaning or which type of vox pop I wanted. My questions were rather serious but the answers I got weren’t as deep as one would expect so I decided to go with a comic vox pop.
Some sound FX were added and I managed to make an effect with a recorded voice with the help of this video!
At the end I was happy with the outcome and learned a lot more about sound editing and capture!
There is a contest in Portugal in which everyone can participate and all you have to do is fill their model of a Sardinha (a fish) and fill it and paint it as you like.
The whole concept is to help saving the fishes and the winner has a prize money! I read the rules, checked the dates and decided to give it a try.
This is the model:
I made some small studies on my sketchbook and then began drawing them on my computer:
Small potato bag as a Sardinha
Making a Sardinha into a surf board
The more or less final ones:
The first one is a collage of pictures of old potato bags. I chose this theme simply because it reminded me a lot of my childhood and the games and races we used to do at school with potato bags.
The second one is a surf board drawn my be. I don’t think it’s finished because it could still have more detail but what you see is the general idea. Surf is one thing I think defines Portugal for me. Not so much about the sport but the ocean, the sun, the beach and the summer weather.
Unfortunately, as I did not finish these on time I didn’t send them to the contest on time. I was an opportunity lost. Hopefully I’ll be more organize next time to have my proposals ready on time.
By the way… After I drew my surfboard I found out that someone had had the same idea a year before and this is his Sardinha:
Lately, I’ve been searching about analog photography. I fell in love with it.
After seeing thousands of photos, cameras and rolls I talked with my mom and turns out she had an old analog camera!
I was so so so happy!
Next step was to actually learn how to use one of these… I’ve looked for the manual online and found the original one! There are a lot of things I still don’t know and honestly, right now, I am just experimenting with the camera. Although I understand that the technical aspects are very important I believe that experimenting has the same value.
After all the (not really) study I bought myself batteries for the camera, which were a lot more expensive than I thought, and a couple of rolls:
I am still on my first roll and don’t take as many pictures as I would with a digital camera because of the photo limit. I try to capture only the really special things through my eyes.
There’s this magic about analog.. You don’t really know what the outcome will look like (unless you’re a really experienced analog photographer) so there is always that surprise and happiness when you develop your roll!
I hope I finish my roll soon and I will surely share it here!
Before I start my post I just wanted to state that I have been reeeeaaally lazy on my blog pots…
So, I continue working with the producer for the documentary I mentioned a couple of posts ago. Sometimes it gets really hard because I am animating scenes where I can’t draw. I have to pick up pieces of drawings and make them move.. Given that, there are pros and cons of course.
The animation ends up being jerky
It’s hard to smooth with any brush because the texture of the drawing itself is really difficult to get
Everything looks the same all the time. What I do is just move pieces around
I don’t have to draw anything! I know I said it was hard like that but actually it makes easier between the client and the worker. Since I won’t be changing the drawings, the client always knows what to expect. It is really hard to not like the animators style if he’s not drawing.
There are times where a lot of graphic problems come up and it feels good to find a smart solution that works both visually and technically!
I am learning a different way of animating which is great.
I am also learning that dealing with “bosses” is not always pleasant. Especially when they take weeks to get feedback but then want things done urgently. It’s a part of the professional world and I am really glad I’m having a small little sense of it already.
Today I just finished animating a manatee swiming. Here’s a screenshot of the little guy:
In the beginning, I thought the module was interesting but it got even better!! Especially when I started to write!
This module’s final project was to transform our creative writing story into a small movie, therefore, a script. We could change some parts of the story but the main idea had to be there.
The final project was to write:
Statement of intent
2 to 4 pages of Script
Since I didn’t love the story I wrote in creative writing it was really hard for me to find the motivation to start. I spent last year in England so my writing got really really bad compared to what it used to be. Besides my lack of confidence, I didn’t find a way to turn around my story and I couldn’t think of it visually, as a movie…
The teacher Ana Sofia really helped and gave a lot of feedback on this project which made me want to do it little by little.
The script writing is really different from the “normal”. One cannot simply write about feelings and abstract things. Everything has to be highly visual so that the hypothetical producer, that reads the script, can already have an overall image of how the movie will work and how the characters will look like. Usually, the present is the only tense there is in the script. The text also has to be interesting and the writer has to find a balance between putting his style on the writing and keeping it visual!
It was a completely different writing exercise from creative writing. Although I feel like I learned a lot I am aware that I only know the basics.
Our final project for the sound part of LTAV was to make a small audio file of 30 to 40 seconds. The audio had to contain a dialogue between at least 2 characters and there had to be a big noise interrupting the dialogue. We had to present a script along with the audio so the teacher could see what kind of noises we would use. We could get sounds anywhere, samples, youtube videos, television, radio…
I gathered a lot of sounds and it was quite fun to play around with them!
My initial script was good but when I was done editing the whole audio I noticed it was waayyy too long. As I worked in GarageBand, instead of seconds, the measure was in “beats”. Well, I had 40 beats but it turns out that that was in fact 1.20 minutes so I had to cut a lot on my script.
I’ve been through a lot of changes with this project since I never worked with audio like that before. For the voices of the characters, I used my friend’s Constança’s voice because she has a diverse amount of accents and voices. After recorded (on my computer) I almost didn’t change their pitch. I put the voices on opposite sides so it looked like they were far from each other, talking.
For the ocean sound, I used a lot of combined samples like ocean waves, seagulls, water fountains. It was a bit tricky but I played with the volumes of each sample and I think it worked!
Throughout the whole project, I was watching some tutorials on how to edit audio. I am aware that Garageband is not at all the best program to work with sound but I hope to learn better ones in the future.
Here are some screenshots of my editing:
This project really got me interested in editing sound. First time I actually played with stereo and I found that sound is an amazing tool with infinite outcomes!
I guess I should have gotten it a while ago since I long to be an animator but they’re quite expensive so it’s not that simple…
The tablet itself came with 2 software. One to animate in 2D and another one to paint frame by frame animations or to make illustrations. I’m still learning how to work with them but one step at a time.
Drawing looking only at the screen is challenging at first but I got it quickly. At first, I tried all the different brushes available and tried the difference of pressure on the pen.
My next step will be making small animations. 2D, frame by frame so I could learn the basics. I still didn’t find a program where I could do that easily but I won’t quit!
I’m really really excited about my new “toy” and the possibilities are infinite!
These are my first drawings using the tablet:
I feel like I’m back to pre school but I really liked the outcome of the second drawing, the hat character!