The City Rings

Tag: sonicsnaps
2012
03/02
Friday

One, Two,Three : Recording !

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Today pupils were too curious to know what happened to their mySounds and how they were used in the Spanish compositions. So we started listening to the different compositions and discussing/comparing them, and tried to describe the compositions with keywords : heroic, nervous, energetic were the words that were used most here. Pupils seemed to like the use of contrast and the progression of the Spanish compositions: silent <> loud / dark,raw <> soft, light … You did a great job there in Barcelona !
Then time for some action : today we got ourselves familiar with the process of recording : we learned about the portable recorders and about the whole ritual that comes with recording sounds.
Our first recordings weren’t really that good : sometimes sounds were recorded too loud, sometimes too silent.
We also learned that it’s really necessary to check for unwanted/disturbing sounds : sometimes we’re so focussed on the sound we’d like to record , that we don’t hear any other disturbing sounds around such as radios playing , people talking, cars passing by…
Hmm, recording seems to be a process that needs some concentration, but after a while recordings got better and better. You can listen to some of our Sonic Snaps here, next week we’ll have more and start composing !
Good luck !




2011
28/10
Friday

Sonic Snaps from Ghent

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Third session at Mobi and Wispelberg school in Ghent.
Today we focussed on listening and recording.
In pairs we went for a “soundwalk “ in and round the school.
First we started with listening only : the fact that you can hear your environment amplified and in so much detail is really intense and overwhelming . Never noticed before that our school & the city made so much sound !
The recorder seems to be both a microscope and a telescope :
we could hear very close sounds in detail, but we could also hear many distant, unrecognizable sounds.
We did a small repetition of the technical part of the recording process ( monitoring, checking input volumes,
checking for unwanted disturbing sounds etc,….. )
We found out that a microphone is an instrument in a way : by choosing position, by moving the mic, by hiding in f.e a tube, we can change and colour the sound .
After some recording exercices we went back to the class and listened closely to (y)our sounds. We listened to & discussed the UK/Spain sounds, and afterwards everyone came up with a list of sounds they definitely wanted to find and record properly for our Sonic Postcards .
See some pictures and listen to some of our SonicSnaps here :















2011
20/10
Thursday

Sonic Snaps from Barcelona

So we’ve done our third session here at Ramon Berenguer IV school :) namely the Sonic Snaps session.


We started by listening to Soundscapes from Belgium, the ones we had at that moment, paying attention to its structure and dynamics, intensities, changes, repetitions, etc. Then we listened to our own, paying attention to this characteristics, and we particularly liked this one:





…listening closely we also arrived to the conclusion that most -but not all- of our compositions were quite chaotic and with a monotonous structure that could be improved paying attention to the volumes of sounds, the silences between sections, repetitions, etc. So we learned something here! ;) and we expect to be applying this to our Sonic Postcard exercise.


Then we listened to some of mySounds that were discarded, and why: low recording volume, recording stopped while the sound was still on, background noise etc. And tried to see how to improve the recording process and not commit the same mistakes. Furthermore, we explained again how to use the recorders which the class found redundant; but the teacher, this is me, thought was important ;) And we were ready to go around the school and record some sounds… I mean… Sonic Snaps! for the Sonic Postcard exercise next session.


We did not upload our Sonic Snaps, yet, for we didn’t have time to sort them and choose the ones we will use. Please be patient. But we did took some new photos, as we thought all your class photos were much better than ours and we were jealous, hehe (or “jeje” as we write in Spain). Here they go, enjoy and see you soon.


2011
19/10
Wednesday

Sonic Snaps from Penzance

For our third session at Humphry Davy School here in Cornwwall we had a really productive morning!

We looked at the website for the first time and finally said a proper hello to you over in Barcelona and in Gent. We really enjoyed looking at your photographs and listening to some of your mySounds and Soundscapes and discussing them. Take a look at the Soundscapes page for some of our thoughts and comments!

After we had a look at the web site, Cat played a few recordings that she had made in and around Penzance and other parts of Cornwall. We had to guess which sounds we thought were recorded in Penzance. It turns out 5 out of 6 were recorded in Penzance, and 4 of them on our school grounds – we’d never have guessed that some were recorded here! This really showed how a real variety of sound can be found even in a small area.

We also talked about sounds that we associate with Penzance – not all of them were obvious! They included:

  • The sea
  • Seagulls
  • Old grannies
  • Horses hooves
  • Traffic
  • The crunching sound of eating Cornish pasties!
  • We weren’t able to go out of the school grounds to record our Sonic Snaps, so Cat will use these ideas to make some recordings around Penzance for our Sonic Postcards next week.

    Having done this, we were excited about getting outside with the recorders and recording our Sonic Snaps around the school. You can listen to some of the results here. Can you guess how they were made, or which part of the school they were recorded in?

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