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Posted by on Oct 2, 2013 | 7 comments

October…Get Out and Record!


Thanks you for indulging us as we tried a different approach last month. We feel it’s important to break out of tunnel vision every once in a while, and it was a nice (but relevant) departure for us. So let’s get into October!

This month, we’re going to focus on the art of field recording, and it’s a great month to do so. We’re in that seasonal transition time where it’s a blast to be outside almost everywhere around the globe. What are some of your favorite things to record? What tricks and techniques do you use to capture that perfect recording? What personal field excursion stands out in your memory, and why? We’ve got some cool things lined up, but we want the community to expand on that and share some of your personal stories and thoughts. Some come enlighten us with your tales of wonder, or seek the commiseration of a group who understands all too well the pain of the sound that got away.

Let’s have some fun!

As always, guest contributions are welcome and encouraged here on Designing Sound. If you have something you’d like to share with the community, even if it’s off-topic, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Contact shaun (at) designingsound [dot] org. If you’re the type that wants a little more time to plan ahead, we’ll be looking at Templates, Session Setups and Work-flows next month.

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Posted by on Jun 3, 2013 | 1 comment

Dynamics…What’s Your Range?

This awesome photo by Jeff Meyer is used under a Creative Commons license. Find more of his photos on flickr...username: soundman1024

This awesome photo, by Jeff Meyer, is used under a Creative Commons license. Find more of his photos on flickr…username: soundman1024

For June, we’ve chosen to focus on the theme of “Dynamics.” As the title of this post implies, we don’t think of this topic as narrow or specific. There are two obvious directions this theme can go.

We could start a discussion about the use of dynamics processing: compressors, limiters, expanders, or transient enhancers. How do we use these in the design phase to mold a sound? How can we use them in the mix to glue together disparate elements?

We can explore the idea of contrast. There is no light without dark. Similarly, there is no loud without soft. What are the implications of this concept in terms of narrative, manipulating the audience, or the simple difference between holding attention or becoming a distraction?

We have some fertile ground to till this month.

Time for our regular addendum. We are always open to guest contributions. If this topic sparks your scrivener impulses…or implores you to stand up on a soap box…you have a willing audience on this site. Contact shaun[at] designingsound [.] org if you’d like to share your thoughts/experience with the community. We’re also planning to cover acoustics next month; a topic for which we will definitely be seeking assistance.

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Posted by on May 1, 2013 | 2 comments

In Consideration of Time…

Image from Wikimedia Commons Archive, used under CC license as specified by owner "Cannedcat"

April has ended and May has begun. No matter what we do, or how we may try to control it,
time continues to march forward at its own pace…regardless of our needs or wants. Last month, we had a very specific theme. While there was ample opportunity to explore different approaches and uses, everything focused on a particular type of toolset. We thought it would be interesting to follow it up with a featured topic that is open to a much wider range of interpretations. So, we’ve selected “Time” as our theme for this month.

Sample rate and playback speed, time management skills, pacing and flow, tools and plug-ins that operate in the time domain…these aren’t subjects you would normally associate with one another, but they are all unified when placed under the umbrella of “time.” When you think of the word “time” in relation to our work, what do you immediately think of? And a better question…will you step forward to share that thought here with the rest of the community? ;)

If you’d like to contribute to this (or next month’s) theme, contact shaun [at] designingsound [dot] org. Our theme next month will be “dynamics.”

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Posted by on Apr 29, 2013 | 0 comments

Designing Sound Discussion Group Archive

While we haven’t done an inordinate number of them so far, we’ve created a page to give you quick access to all of the recordings of previous Designing Sound Discussion Group presentations. This should save you the time you’d otherwise have to spend searching the site to find the one specific recording you want to watch.

The direct link now appears in the top menu under the “Archives” tab. Just click on “Webinar/Discussion Group Recordings” to access the aggregation page.

If you haven’t checked out some of the previous presentations, they’re all available to you at the simple click of a mouse. ;)

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Posted by on Apr 1, 2013 | 7 comments

DSP Anyone?

Photo by flickr user jm3

Photo by flickr user jm3

April is here, and with it comes our next featured topic. This month, we’re going to be delving into the world of DSP environments…Max/MSP, Pure Data, Supercollider, Csound, etc. These tool-sets all have a bit of a learning curve, but they present an opportunity to do something truly different from the typical processors we use every day. What’s spectacular about these is that they let you build your own tools.

There’s no doubt that getting into them requires a different mind-set than the standard tools of our trade, but the flexibility and creative opportunities they allow…and often foster…can go way beyond the everyday. If you were dedicated to the idea, you could probably even build your own DAW inside one of them. So, this month, we’re going to show you just a little bit of what these tools can do. Hopefully, we’ll inspire some of you to take the leap. The water’s pretty deep, but there are some amazing sights beneath the surface.

Next month, we’ll be going a bit looser with the theme, “time.” As always, guest contributions are heartily welcomed. If you’d like to contribute to this or next month’s theme, then contact shaun at designingsound dot org.

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