Friday, July 1, 2011

Homemade FIreworks! SOUND DESGIN!

Here's our latest youtube video :) It's my first time using visual effects in one actually :) Thanks to my friend Aaron Sorensen who was the one who added them/made it happen.



The point of this blog entry is to go over SOUND DESGIN!

Out of all the youtube videos that I have done this far in my "youtube career", this one has been the most intensive when it comes to sound design. I had to recreate every single sound that is heard in the video. There were NO SOUNDS used from in camera. A lot of times in the video I used sounds that you would think normally wouldn't work, such as a horse trotting, etc. Just to give you an idea of how complicated the sound design was on this video, here is a screen grab from my timeline of the firework video, the focus is on the sound effects that were all added.


There was actually 24 layers of sound effects just in one video clip alone. I had to recreate "pops, snaps, and explosions" throughout the video, and then also recreate sound effects of balls being hit from golf balls, soccer balls, and frisbee throws. Some of these sounds I took out of a sound library, and others I had to recreate on my own.

As far as when I do my own sound effects, to record them I use a Zoom H4N sound recorder, and a Sennheiser MKH-416 shot gun mic. Both of which you can find on B@H website. The setup works great, and they actually use the same mic I use on a lot of independent films as well.

It took me a huge amount of time to decide on buying this mic/sound set up, but after a month of research I found it to be the best for the money. So I would highly recommend it :)

While I am doing the sound design on a video like this, I have already emailed it to my friend Stephen Anderson who composes most of my youtube videos. He is at the same time writing the score for it. Usually when I send these videos off, he only has a day to a week to pull off the music, in this videos case, he had only one day, ha, which I'm always amazed at what he pulls off in such a short time.

He then sends me the track, and then I do the final tweaks to the sound effects based on what he gave me, because all the sounds have already been added, it's mostly just a matter of tweaking levels a little bit.

But as far as hours go into the sound design on a video like this... I would say easily 12-15 hours were spent on recreating the sound effects and tweaking them. Which it's always sad to think so much time went into that for the fact that no one ever knows how much time really goes into it... however if the sounds were not there, people would then notice... so it actually is the biggest payoff when people don't notice the sound design, because then that means it blended in just fine to the movie, and added to it, rather then take away :)

So, there you have it, my two cents on sound design, and why it' important to take the time to get it right, or at least try to get it right :)

I also just discovered a really in depth video on sound design that just came out recently, it was all in regards to the film Transformers 3, and there sound design... which if you haven't seen/heard the movie yet, the sound design is amazing, check out the video right below.

30 comments:

  1. These effects were seriously legit. You had me fooled!

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  2. Awesome.. It is incredible how much work goes in to creating a good film. Respect.

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  3. Thanks for the write up! What part did you use a horse trotting?

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  4. @LaFamiliaHiggy,
    Thanks so much, and I used part of the horse trotting for the opening shot of when the golf club comes in close to the golf ball. I had to slow down the sound, and then add some other effects to it to make it sound natural :)

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  5. amazing blog to go along with your amazing films. Thanks for sharing your talent with all of us.

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  6. Hey man, what do you use to color your footage?

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  7. @Caleb, I actually just use Final Cut, the color wheel, but honestly I hardly ever use that. Almost everything I do with youtube, since I don't have much time, is straight from the camera. I just try to shoot it with good light. I'll be going over all my camera settings in a blog coming out soon. Hope that helps.

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  8. Devin Graham, you are absolutely amazing. I hope to one day be at least half as talented as you! Thank you for posting advice and your opinions!

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  9. Thank you for the post, Devin! I loved the video about the sound design on TF3. Fascinating! The dry ice on metal was especially intriguing.

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  10. Good stuff! Enjoy your work..I've posted two of your videos. So hopefully you'll get some new Norwegian viewers;)

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  11. Devin, how were the fireworks added? Where did you get it?

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  12. Hey Devin, great idea on the firework video. One of your most original yet! I'm lovin' your stuff man.

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  13. @BW, check the video description on the video itself, it goes over how they were made :)

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  14. Sorry to dig this up, but just found your blog and had to comment on this. The reason Transformers 2 and 3 sound so darn good is that they went to a Meyer Sound setup for mixing. They're mixing on Meyer HD-1's - you can see them in the back of a lot of the footage here. They are incredibly flat and phase accurate speakers, and reveal sounds that they never knew they were putting in the mix, enabling them to make it that much better. If you have a chance to hear a Meyer system, DO IT! I had the opportunity to work with them on an A/V visualization suite that I worked on, and the sound blew me away.

    Long way of saying it, but it's not only how you record the sounds, but how you listen to them to mix them all that makes a huge difference!

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