This is the final project for Synth and Sound Design II. The assignment was to replace all audio in the film with original content. The goal was to derive a concept and use synthesis techniques to create sound and enhance the story.
Concept: My concept was to use audio to make the video appear dreamlike. I wanted to use organic sounds rather than digital sounds. Even the synthetic sounds tend to have a fluid and organic feel to them. Some sounds may seem unusually placed but that is due to the dreamlike quality of the video.
Process: I started by making a cue sheet to organize my thoughts. I marked types of sounds and where they would be placed in the film. My next step was to experiment with various synths and find some sounds I liked. I worked with reason’s Subtractor and Malstrom. Using these synths I created some nice ambient pads. I wanted the ambience to be ethereal and floaty. The ambience remains floaty even during dark parts of the film. This keeps the viewer in that dreamlike space. It also sets the mood and maintains it throughout the video. After the ambience was completed I began to create some sounds on the synths that could be used for foley and effects. I experimented with white noise and filters. Using LFO’s and filters I came up with a cool white noise sound that I used for the web spinning at the end. The filters were automated to give the sense of motion and sweeping. White noise played a large role in this project. Many of the synthetic sounds have white noise elements in them. I felt that white noise added a certain texture that fit well into the softer ambient sounds.
The organic sounds were made up of elemental sounds. I used water, fire, and earth. The fire sounds are made up of a campfire and water being trickled on the coals to get a hissing sound. This was used throughout the film to show the deterioration. Various different rock sizes were recorded to get accurate crumbling sounds. An Audix i5 microphone was wrapped in a bag and dunked in water to get some low rumbling and swishing. I took a spray bottle and sprayed the microphone in the bag to get the sound of the moth.
The mixing of this project was kept very fluid with more sharp and dynamic sounds coming in to add contrast. I used long fades so everything faded in and out of each other. I wanted to keep the transitions smooth to keep the dream feel. The sound follows the story of the film. It starts soft and builds into chaos before resolving at the end.