I have just had another fabulous afternoon playing with sound for another Ds106 assignment

Such a surprise that I would even enjoy it. This time I chose to practice 3 things I have learnt about story listening to Ira Glass and also Piers Ibbotsson  who I work with:

  • your story should pose a question
  • use the anecdote – this happened, then that happened
  • don’t try to be clever, serve the story

What has fascinated me this afternoon has been the process of selecting sounds. I love the sound of footsteps running through the forest. This was my starting point. I created my Freesound.org account and went searching. I then got the ‘story’ as an image ( I am much more of a visual thinker than an auditory one – want to know what you are? here is a fun quiz ). I have to concentrate hard to listen to the image! 

He runs desperately through the forest, his shoes getting caught in the undergrowth. He keeps running, he cannot go any faster. It is pitch dark. A dog howls in the distance. He tells himself he will not make it. He will be too late. A loud scream can be heard in the distance. He speeds up. Stops. The gate opens. She is safe. 

What was hilarious for me was getting to the sounds that would represent the elements of the story. What sound means ‘happy ever after’? No, I am not kidding. I wanted the story to end well – So a kiss? A sigh? How long should the kiss be? Kiss and sigh? Just the kiss? What am I hearing as I see my story in my mind’s eye? Is the pitch of  this sound right? 

What are the criteria I am assessing against as I choose – length, pitch, fading in and out, and why oh why did I swap the sigh for the gate opening?

And all this gets made concrete by having to make choices in Garageband as to what to do with the different sounds you are bringing into the project. Of course, I wanted more than 5 once I got the hang of it. May be some background music? Don’t try to be clever, just tell the story and get out of the way. Did  it work?