Mini-Assignment from Lecture

Magda gave a lecture today on field recording and sound, and gave us a little exercise to do just to get our minds focused on how sounds and ambiences work. For this exercise, we were to note all the sounds in the lecture room for 2-3 minutes. Here is my ambience description below:

The air-conditioner machines fill the room with a light blowing sound. People around me are also doing this mini-assignment and I can hear them speedily typing up their observations. Some are pulling out papers and pens behind me. The room ambience is overall quite peaceful at the moment – if you exclude that sniffle I just heard. The sound of feet brushing against the floor can be heard as people readjust themselves on their seats. I can hear someone placing their water bottle onto their table, accidentally also swiping it against a plastic bag. The echoes of coughs and faint voices are travelling across the lecture hall – this kind of silence makes me feel as if I were in the library right now, quietly studying and focusing on my own work. The noise level in this room is so low, I can actually hear the sound of my fingers brushing against each other – the sound of my hands closing into a fist. It seems something just broke the silence. It sounds as if someone just opened a ziploc bag and tried pulling something out, but it seems to have gotten stuck. They are still trying to pull it out. Meanwhile, I am also hearing jackets rustling and chairs being pushed in or pulled out, screeching against the concrete floor.

This mini-assignment actually makes us realize that even in the quietest of places, there will still be sound. In fact, I feel that the quieter a location is, the more little bits of sound there are to make the soundscape more complex, much more than if I were to sit in a crowded and noisy area as all the sounds would blend in together and things would be harder to distinguish. I believe that quieter more relaxed ambiences are more interesting to listen to because you truly get to focus on every bit of sound information within the soundscape. Even without voice overs, you get a sense of what kind of location the field recording took place at.


~ by omejelee on March 21, 2011.

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