Odds and Ends – Soundscape Hamilton

Soundscape Hamilton Project @erskinec
Soundscape Hamilton Project @erskinec

What can I expect from my equipment? What can be achieved in post-production? These are the two questions that I have been struggling with over the past week.

The Soundscape Hamilton Project grew out of my need to address the audio aspect of film-making. The equipment purchased was designed give me better sound quality in films.

So, I use a Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone with Rycote Lyre Mount for scratch recordings (cost $200).

For voice-overs narrations, I use an Audio-Technica AT 2050 multi-pattern condenser Microphone (cost $300).

For other kind of performances, I purchase a Rode M5 matched pair of compact ½ inch condensers ($300).

Everything is recorded to the Zoom H4n field recording that allows the use of XLR inputs and phantom power.

However, will these kind of microphones cut it when trying to do field recordings? I emailed Rick Blything, who has done some really great field recordings at Wimbledon.

 

 

 

 

He kindly told me the equipment he uses that includes the following:

2 Sennhieser 8040s which are shotgun microphones

Shield from wind using a Rycote

Recorded to a Sound Device 703 field recorder

This is really great but expensive equipment. So, what can I reasonably expect from my equipment and will that get the job done?

The second challenge is post production. Not being a musician, I am completely new to audio post production. My goal is to address on location rather than in the studio.

That being said, maybe I can increase the quality by processing the sound tracks and bring out the desired characteristics.

So, these are the questions that I have been struggling with over the past week.

Hermitage Sound Landscape Recordings

Less than 12 hours after the snow storm on Thursday, December 11, 2014; I travelled to the Hermitage Ruins in Ancaster, Ontario to record the sounds of the landscape.  I was amazed to discover the amount of people who had already visited the mansion.  Quite surprising given that I was at the Hermitage by 10 am on Friday (a work day for most people).

My goal for this visit and future visits to other architecture significant buildings is to document their sounds.  Do particularly buildings have unique sound characteristics?

I was very surprised by the amount of human noise at the Hermitage.  The following sound clip is a mixture of sounds captured at the Hermitage.

 

 

When the humans disappear the landscapes come alive with animal sounds.  In this recording, squires and woodpeckers being the chief noise makers.  Crows, however, always liked to get their two cents into any landscape conversation (smile).

 

 

This was my first real attempt at capturing landscape sounds with my Zoom H4n field recorder and pair of Rode M5 mini shotgun mics.  The goal is to capture the unique sound qualities of each rural and urban landscape in the Hamilton area.  As I gain more experience, I hope to create richer and fuller sound narratives of each building and its landscape.

Thanks for listening.

 

Chris Erskine

chriserskineartist@gmail.com

@erskinec