Week 4: Soundscapes

Katie Paterson's Vatnajökull (the sound of) (2007-8). Listen: http://www.katiepaterson.org/vatnajokull/#

Katie Paterson’s Vatnajökull (the sound of) (2007-8). Listen: http://www.katiepaterson.org/vatnajokull/#



In week 4, we shift our focus from the creation of moving images to the role of sound in creative works. In this first lecture exploring the audio medium, we begin by asking the question: what is special about the auditory sense and by extension the audio medium. We focus on soundscape as a platform that captures experiences, specifically as conceptualised by Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer. We examine the significance of sound works by Annea Lockwood, Katie Paterson and Nigel Helyer.

Lecture links: http://www.aaronlburton.com/uowmeda101w4.html


This workshop:

  • introduces Assessment 2
  • introduces the basics of working with audio through a number of listening and sound recording exercises
  • explores how the audio medium is used as a creative platform

Assessment 2
Discuss project outline
Work through project requirement
What criteria is the work being assessed?

Exercise: Tuning your ears
In your class room, sit and listen (don’t talk) for 1 minute
Write down the different sounds you hear in order of what you notice first
As a group discuss what you heard: read out the sequence of sounds you noted down
Discuss the idea of focus-listening

Exercise: Listening tips
Listen to the part of Chris Watson Interview
Note down any pointers he gives about working with sound.
Make a list of the environments that you think might have the potential to express your poem aurally.

Exercise: Recording exercise
Introduction to equipment: Zoom H4, and Zoom mic for mobile devices
Recording techniques and tips

Exercise: Sound walk and recording
In a group of 2, leave the DMC and walk around iC and explore the surrounding area (but do NOT venture into restricted zone)
Sit and listen at each place first
Take turns to make a 30 sec ‘atmos’ recording of each place
Also write down the sounds you hear
In class compare recordings with your notes

Project development
Read out your poem/ record it
Listen back: What are the objects, places, or people in it?
How may you represent these objects, places and people using sound?
Listen back: is there a rhythm in the piece?
How may this rhythm be expressed?

Writing project statement
Structure your 100-word project statement with the help of the assessment criteria:

Depth and breadth of research into video poems
What kind of the research and investigation have you undertaken for this project?
What kind of works/ other have you looked at? How have these influenced your approach?

Conceptual exploration of the topic and theme
What is your approach to responding to Lyon’s poem?
How have you respond to the ideas and concepts in the poem?

Effective use of the video medium in conveying meaning
How did you explore these ideas through the different parameters of the moving image (particularly the Remoscope format)?
What methods, techniques, or materials did you experiment with?
How have you made use of these results?

Execution and presentation of ideas through the video form
What decisions did you make in terms of how you present these images in composition, sequencing, and editing?
What works well and what would you change?

You may use this same structure for your 1 – 2 minute oral presentation in week 5’s class.

Assessment submission
Embed your video file (hosted on services such as Vimeo or Youtube) to a post on your learning blog.
Go to your class’s submission post on Medadada.net (check that it is the correct class).
Post a comment with your full name and a working link to your entry.
If possible check that all links are functional.

Experiment editing your project to the rhythm of the words in your poem (but do not add the audio track to your submission).
Complete you edit and export your video file for submission.
Ensure that your assignment is submitted by providing a link in the comment section of the tutorial’s submission post. Comments will be closed of by the end of the submission date. Late submission will need to be emailed to your tutor and lateness will be penalised.

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