Sweet Sounds (Are Made Of This)

This week was all about audio as we explored how sound effects, music, and words can drive a story. We created a radio bumper, reflected on audio, and tweeted along to a dramatic story. This was a challenging week, as I think most us were new to creating and editing sound. But it got me thinking about how sound helps tell a story.

Audio Storytelling

What makes a good audio story? How can sound be used to create mood? This week, we reflected on audio by watching The Truth Podcast’s, ‘Moon Graffiti,’ and listened for all the ways in which audio drove the story. It was interesting how the narrators were able to tell an alternate moon landing tale by using static, crash sounds, mission control sounds, beeps, and dramatic pauses to set the mood. They created a whole tense moon atmosphere through use of sound and dialogue, which helped the listeners to mentally visualize what is going on. Just as Radiolab’s Jad Abumrad says in ‘How Radio Creates Empathy,’ sound helps the listener paint a picture. But the listener is the one holding the brush. Without good use of sound, there is no brush to hold on to.

And because ‘Moon Graffiti’ helped us paint a picture, we could then collectively experience the story’s dreamscape. In Jad Abumrad’s, ‘Digital Shamanism and Old-Fashioned, Newfangled Storytelling Magic,’ this idea of a shared experience via sound is mentioned, and I think that ‘Moon Graffiti’ is an excellent example of how sound can bring us all into the same world, even if that world is a slightly different version from person to person.


Radio Bumper

Bump up the Jam! I created my first Radio Bumper for our hit music and storytelling station, Ds106. (From assignment, ‘Create A Ds106 Radio Bumper‘). I had never created a radio bumper before, but I had made one for TV and so had a general idea of what it should be like. We hear bumpers all the time, but we don’t even think about it because they’re so commonplace. Bumpers are really just a way to transition from one segment to another while plugging the radio station, the station segment, or a business that has paid for air time. Even though bumpers are short in duration, they can be challenging to do because you have to be especially particular about syncing up your voice with the music. I had to really play around with my track to get the music to end on a natural beat.


Featured Sound:

Tweet Along

Tweet, tweet, twidly-deet! We did a live tweet along this week and heard some eerie bird sounds during Ds106 Radio’s drama hour! I didn’t know what to expect by tuning in and tweeting along, but it turned out to be a flocking good time! I’m still not sure what Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’ is all about, but I got to hear the difference between electronically produced bird noises, and actual bird noises from a massively large flock of birds. I learned that the actual flock-of-bird sound is very similar to a crashing ocean wave noise. And I learned what a “warm wind” sounds like (as opposed to a cold wind). The sound effects really helped to set the mood, even if I was missing a lot of the visual context.


Audio Assignments

I did 3 Audio Assignments this week: Two 4 ½ stars, and one 4 star assignment to equal 13 stars total. The Audio assignments I chose to do for this week were, ‘Sound Effects Story,’ ‘Dramatic Reading Remix,’ and ‘Soundboard Conversation.’ I think all of the audio assignments were challenging because working with audio is time consuming, difficult, and after hours of work, you may not even get the result that you wanted. There’s definitely a steep learning curve with learning how to edit sound. Even though I learned a few tricks in working with Audacity, I still don’t understand what most of the effects and tools do in the program.

If I had to pick a favorite assignment, it would probably be ‘Talking Back in Time,’ from the assignment, ‘Soundboard Conversation.’ This assignment was fun to do, and I love the examples that other bloggers have posted. Robert Grotans’ post, ‘ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER DOES IT SUPPORT,’ had me cracking up. I love audio that can make me laugh. I wasn’t really diggin’ sound week until I found this assignment.

Audio Assignment #3


Stars: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

From Assignment: Soundboard Conversation

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Audio Assignment #2


Stars: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

From Assignment: Dramatic Reading Remix

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Audio Assignment #1


Stars: ★ ★ ★ ★

From Assignment: Sound Effects Story

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Community Building

Everyone produced some thought-provoking sounds this week! From sound effect stories to TED Talks, mashups to music coming from far away, and everything in-between. These posts really highlighted the power of sound, and the mood that sound creates. Here’s my community building breakdown:

Commented on:

LIFE THROUGH THE 80’S TODAY: 90 seconds max, How long?
Michael’s Blog: Hate this sound
Lauren Perez: Talkin like TED
DIGITAL STUDIES 106 (Yara): The music is too loud
MEGGS AND BACON: Everybody REALLY Wants to Rule the World
MEGGS AND BACON: “Sanctuary” from Kingdom Hearts 2 but it’s coming from another room

Radio Show Ideas

This week, we started thinking about our radio show. This was one of the more challenging tasks, as I had a hard time thinking up what a radio show should even sound like. But I managed to come up with a rough list of ideas and posted them in ‘Radio Show Ideas.’


Daily Creates

In the name of the Moon, let’s draw! I liked the daily creates this week because it gave me an excuse to take out my sketchbook and draw. I’m in a major where I have to stare at a computer screen all day, and that gets hard on my eyes. Sometimes, all I want to do is look at a plain ol’ piece of paper. That’s mainly why I think e-books will never fully replace real, turn-the-page books.

I also liked seeing what everyone came up with for the fictional friend task. I was happy to see so many anime fans in our class, and I liked how there were multiple strong heroine type characters in the thread. It just goes to show how important it is for movies and shows to represent strong females in their work, because we do look up to them. Here are all of my daily creates for the week:

Post: DAILY CREATE: Week 5

Featured Image:

See ya next time, Moonies!

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