The Virus, don’t cough on me please.

We meet again! Bit of a gap between my last blog I know, slack right? Well anyway here we are to discuss my latest experience with foley work, this time for a video game! As with the caveman audio, this project has been sourced by our fearless leader Ricardo, praise be unto him. The brief called for some unique (well for foley work maybe) sounds that we would have to think outside the box to achieve. There was also a compositional component to the brief but that was left in the very capable hands of our music genius, Sarah. The deadline for this project was Thursday the 2nd of July. Here is an image of the brief brief, (because it’s short. Get it? Ha ha ha… I’ll see myself out.)

Having received the brief a session plan was drawn up for the day of recording. This can be found here.

Session Plan

Having used the post production studio last week, we were much more comfortable heading in this time around. Our set up time was reduced and there were no big issues that were encountered. Perhaps the biggest and most time consuming issue we had was trying to work out how to create the shotgun sound. We spent a good chunk of time just experimenting with the items in the foley box, until we found our holy grail. An old video cassette tape. By clicking the reels in the same fashion as a shotgun we got a very workable sound. The process of layering sounds then began. The clicking was there but we needed some metallic weight to the sound, this is where the madness truly began. Watch the videos below to see some of the “instruments” used.





Once we were satisfied with the clicking of the slide we moved onto the blast/explosion part of the shotgun. Our initial idea was to pop a plastic bag full of air. This turned out to be rather pathetic compared to the huge boom of a shotgun. We attempted to remedy this by pitch shifting the pop but sadly this led to a flabby thud sound I described as dropping a sodden corpse. Sarah came up with the idea of using a snare drum. Now we were cooking with gas, this was the exact sound we were looking for. The snare we had available may not have been suitable for anything musical but it sure as hell worked for a big ol’ shotgun. This was recorded with a C414 on the top as well as the bottom, to capture the buzz of the snares. With a few additions from Aaron we had our completed shotgun boom sound. Videos below!





With a little bit of Pro Tools magic, also known as reverb and automation we had a completed shotgun sound. Give it a listen below.

Shotgun

The next sound on the list was to create a road flare lighting up and burning. We attempted to use items like plastic bags or clothing to get the rustling sound of something burning. It sounded terrible. So we went straight to the source. We totally did(n’t) light a match in the post production studio. One take was all we needed. With a little editing we had a very desirable flare sound. Give it a gander below.

Flare

As for the dog sounds, that was completed prior to this session with Aaron recording his housemates dog and Ricardo pitching it down.

Dog

The session went well. As far as improvements that could be made for future sessions; a

suggestion would be to enter the studio with a clear idea of what elements can add up to the sounds that need to be created. This would be easier with a list of the items in the foley box, that way a plan can be made for what items can be used for what sounds. Other than that our workflow was fairly solid and I was pleased with how the session went.

LO Coverage

  • LO1: Record and Edit Audio for Narrative
  • LO2: Demonstrate intermediate studio production techniques.
  • LO8: Apply critical theories to interpret and solve creative problems relevant to the area of specialisation.
  • LO16: Plan audio for multimedia projects.
  • LO17: Define and implement the requirements of a session plan.
  • LO22: Deliver audio for multimedia products to industry standards.
  • LO23: Produce work on time and within scope by engaging appropriate project management methodologies.
  • LO26: Interpret a brief and deliver a product to a client’s specification.

Cheers,

Have a good one,

Alex

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