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Posted by on Aug 29, 2012 | 4 comments

Ideas in Sound Design: Semiotics and Language – Part 2

Cross-posting from my personal blog.

In my last article, I talked about Semiotics and encouraged sound designers and editors to think of sound for picture as a language; or, at least, as a component of the language used by any given film. I’d rather not rehash the specific elements of Semiotics that were discussed. There are several ideas that I’m going to assume you’ve read and are familiar with as I proceed through this article. If you haven’t read that original article, I suggest you go do so now. The examples I’m about to discuss will have more meaning for you if you do.

I mentioned two possible approaches to applying signification in the development of a “sound language” for a project. The first is to work with existing signification, and the second is to develop your own; however, these do not have to be mutually exclusive. Both can contribute to your particular piece’s dialect. Remember that I am describing language as merely a “code” to convey meaning. So, meaning needs not be limited to ideas or thoughts. As such, let’s take a look at three examples of sonic code work, language, as used in moving picture.

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Posted by on Jul 4, 2012 | 3 comments

The Sound and Music of La Source

The SoundWorks Collection is pleased to feature an exclusive behind-the-scenes feature about the sound and music of La Source. Narrated by Oscar nominated actor Don Cheadle, Directed and Produced by Patrick Shen, Co-Producer and Co-Cinematographer Brandon Vedder, Composer Matteo Messina (Juno, Thank you for Smoking, Up in the Air), and Re-recording Mixer and Sound Design by Steve Bessinger.

In La Source (pronounced lah-soos), Haiti water does not come easily. Each day, villagers of this small, rural community must choose between enduring a long, treacherous walk to retrieve clean water or drink contaminated water from a nearby river. For over 30 years, the villagers have attempted to address this problem by constructing a means of channeling the water from a natural spring in the mountains, but with limited funding and an unsupportive government their attempts to provide clean water were to no avail.

Since he was a teenager, Josue Lajeunesse, along with his brother Chrismedonne have dreamt of remedying this problem for their people. In 1989, Josue moved from La Source to New Jersey where he found employment as a custodian at Princeton University. His custodial work and second job as a taxi driver, which total close to 20 hours a day, allows him to send money home to La Source so that he and Chrismedonne, a bricklayer in La Source, could properly channel the water from the mountain into their village.

Our journey to La Source takes us on an adventure as the Lajeunesse Brothers work together to rally the support of a group of Princeton students, a Los Angeles-based charity called Generosity Water, and the people of La Source to fulfill their dream of improving the conditions of their impoverished village. La Source is not simply a movie about clean water and community transformation. It is a story of one man, empowered by a vision, who was able to ignite the passion of people thousands of miles away to change lives in La Source forever. Where water runs, life flows.

lasourcemovie.comSoundWorksCollection

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Posted by on Jun 27, 2012 | 1 comment

The Sound of “Brave”

In this exclusive SoundWorks Collection sound profile we talk with Director Mark Andrews, Re-recording Mixer and Sound Designer Gary Rydstrom, Supervising Sound Editor Gwen Yates Whittle, and Sound Designer E.J. Holowicki.

Since ancient times, stories of epic battles and mystical legends have been passed through the generations across the rugged and mysterious Highlands of Scotland. In “Brave,” a new tale joins the lore when the courageous Merida (voice of Kelly Macdonald) confronts tradition, destiny and the fiercest of beasts.

Directed by Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman, and produced by Katherine Sarafian, “Brave” is a grand adventure full of heart, memorable characters and the signature Pixar humor enjoyed by audiences of all ages. The film’s voice cast features Kelly Macdonald, Julie Walters, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane and John Ratzenberger.

To make the most complex visuals possible, Pixar completely rewrote their animation system for the first time in 25 years. Brave is also the first movie ever to use the Dolby Atmos sound format.

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Posted by on Jun 12, 2012 | 4 comments

Film Sound Discussion Group: Mixing for Web

We’ve got a new Film Sound Discussion Group lined up for you. I thought it was time we started having some in-depth discussions centered around the growing omnipresence of internet streaming as a distribution medium and how it impacts our jobs as audio professionals. This one is going to be set up as a virtual panel, and there are some great participants lined up. We’ve got:

  • Michael Coleman of Soundworks Collection
  • Paul Fonarev of Miso Sound
  • Lew Goldstein of Parabolic
  • Cheryl Ottenritter of Ott House Audio
  • Ian Palmer (Freelancer)

The free panel will take place on Saturday, June 23rd, at 1PM (U.S. Eastern Time). The discussion is scheduled to last one hour, including some time for Q&A. You can register for the panel here.

Yes, the discussion will be recorded. A link will be posted here on Designing Sound once it is available.

Update – here’s the link

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