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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Storytelling with Sound

Storytelling with Sound:

The first and most important thing to remember about adding sound to your videos is Copyright law. Most sound clips labeled as "free" are for personal use only- this DOES NOT INCLUDE UPLOADING TO YOUTUBE AND SHARING YOUR VIDEOS ON THE WEB- You can get fined and even sued for using those audio files. Make sure you read the fine print when it comes to music that is labeled as "Free". You can pay for sound clips and sound effects. For our shot, Top Outdoor Producer we use First Com music; it is expensive but to get high quality stuff you have to pay for it. A more "Budget Friendly" option is Audio Micro where you can buy songs to use for about $30, unless you want to use them in TV commercials and that will bump up the price a little. That being said, Music and sound effects has a way to elevate your footage to a Professional level. Finding the right sound can be a long process, but it will be worth it.

Here are some examples of ways that you can tell your story using sound. I will use examples from hunting shows and other genres so you can understand how it is being used.

Ambient Sound: Ambient sounds will give your videos a tactical feel.

Realtree | The Making of a Tradition from MAMMOTH on Vimeo.

Under the clouds from Gioacchino Petronicce on Vimeo.

Voice Overs: You can detach audio from video clips and throw that audio over "B-Roll" footage to help narrate the story. This technique is a way to bring life and visually show what the person is talking about. This is a good tactic to use when you are interviewing them, that way the audience does not get bored just staring at the person the entire time.
Voice Overs can also be added in post production to redo audio clips that did not turn out right in the first take.

Last Minutes with ODEN from Eliot Rausch on Vimeo.

S1E1: "Persistence" from D.R.T. Hunting TV on Vimeo.

Soundtrack: Soundtracks is the music that you put behind your video. They can help set the scene by effecting the audience's mood. I suggest you watch Silent Movies. The only audio they had was music added to tell the story. Watch and understand the choice of music that they use to tell the story.

Listen to how this soundtrack provokes a sense of foreboding:

This soundtrack provokes a sense of excitement:

This soundtrack provokes a sense of sadness/heartache:

This soundtrack provokes the sense of comedy and laughter:
Watch how the sound matches up with Charlie's movements.

I'm going to challenge you: Next time you watch a movie, close your eyes for a while and experience how the music will change the way you feel and how it will tell the story without even watching the video! Now take what you have learned and apply it in your videos!

What do you think? We’d like to hear from you. What are your thoughts about sound? Leave your questions and comments in the box below.
Storytelling with Sound
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