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Audio For Film: production audio, microphones selection and more

These guys have created a series of fun but informative videos on filmmaking. Here’s a pretty cool one on Production Audio. I always said, audio is more than half the picture. Of course music is part of audio, but in this case we’re talking about the recorded audio of the actors, dialog, the natural sounds of the environment, etc.

So here’s recommended microphones and some basic audio tips like “room tone” for indie filmmakers. Yeah!

How Hollywood Selects Music For Film

This is a portion of a panel from the Music In Film Summit 2010. Obviously this case study example, Despicable Me, is out of the budget range of almost all independent filmmakers, but it does give an idea of all the behind the scenes things that are necessary to select and create music for a film.

Unfortunately, we don’t see the shot with and without the music, but listening to the discussion gives a broad overview of how composers and music supervisors approach storytelling aspect. I always think of scoring film as sort of like taking a big gigantic AUDIO HIGHLIGHTER through the script which I use in multiple colors to draw attention and manipulate the emotions of the audience.

This is mostly about the relationship aspect of making a film work with building a good creative team which includes Director, Producer, Composer and Music Supervisor.

How To Manipulate Your Audience With Music – Score a Movie or Film!

This is one of the best examples of how music can be used to change the complete intention of the storyline in your film or video.
Pretty hysterical how over the top their musical choices are.
They also have a pretty clever sponsorship product placement.

How To Be Creative from John Cleese

John Cleese has long been one of my favorite people in the world.  Many people don’t know that he has long had a business of producing training and presentation videos for businesses.

Here’s a great video of a lecture on creativity.  I only wish the lemmings of Hollywood and the advertising community would take in some of this. I think this was filmed in Belgium and funny how some of the jokes don’t go over.

Cool Commercial Shows How Composer Lalo Schifrin created Mission Impossible…Fantastically

As a composer, I really got a kick out of this commercial spot for Lipton Yellow Label Tea which shows how a composer, a very famous one, creates the music for a major pop culture event: Mission Impossible.   The music has lasted for decades since the television series and then with the movie remakes with a bonafide star Tom Cruise.

Check it out.  I wish I had a room where these players would drop from suspension wires whenever I needed them!

Interesting how infectious that theme is and how it has lasted the test of time – mainly because of that cool rhythm.  Could it be Lalo Schifrin‘s Argentinian upbringing?  Tango anyone?

And yes, the tea does things for me, though I prefer the pearl jasmine tea I get down in Chinatown at $100 per pound.  Man!  Just talking about makes me want to go brew a pot!



A great free audio converter for Mac & PC

I’ve recently started using a free audio converter program called Audio Switch and it’s really great.  I’ve used it in a pinch to quickly convert sound files from MP3 to AIFF, from WAV to MP3 and even extracted audio out of MP4 movies.  This has been useful not only for just getting scratch audio out of a movie file, but also I’ve used it for putting video presentation audio onto my ipod.  And it’s fast and free!


And a nice little icon too!

It works on the most common file formats and more including wav, mp3, wma, mp2, m4a, ogg, avi, mid, flac, mov, amr, aac, mpga, dct, au, aif/aiff, raw, dvf, vox, cda, gsm, dss, sri, shn, dss, msv, wmv.

I’m using the Mac Intel version and even though we have our own proprietary conversion software custom made for us, sometimes you just need a quick little something done and that’s where Switch works brilliant.

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