Month: March 2018

Week 5- Project Proposal

So the past few weeks has been all about establishing a platform that I personally would immerse myself in, and the platform I established is audio as the primary field, and video as a secondary field. I focused a lot more on the audio aspect throughout each blog post but still mentioned video here and there.

So my project proposal would be an audio visual piece which would explore the themes explored in these two dialogues in True Detective by Matthew McConaughey and in Apocalypse Now by Marlon Brando.

The central theme I want to explore is the perspectives of human nature both these characters present is Human Nature

“in that last nanosecond, they saw… what they were. You, yourself, this whole big drama, it was never more than a jerry-rig of presumption and dumb will, and you could just let go. To finally know that you didn’t have to hold on so tight. To realize that all your life – you know, all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain – it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream, a dream that you had inside a locked room, a dream about being a person. And like a lot of dreams, there’s a monster at the end of it.”

The monologue in True Detective delves into everything that makes us human, makes us a person, gives us a purpose, is just an idea or a “the same dream” that just lives inside our minds, and in the end it all becomes nothing. And in the last moment and “last nanosecond” of life we welcome the end, as we realise how easy it is to just let go. It is human nature to believe everything you are and you have will mean something in the end.

 

“I’ve seen horrors, horrors that you’ve seen. But you have no right to call me a murderer. You have a right to kill me. You have a right to do that, but you have no right to judge me. It’s impossible for words to describe what is necessary to those who do not know what horror means. 
….Horror. Horror has a face…And you must make a friend of horror. Horror and moral terror are your friends. If they are not then they are enemies to be feared. They are truly enemies.”

“You have to have men who are moral…and at the same time who are able to utilize their primordal instincts to kill without feeling…without passion…without judgement…without judgement. Because it’s judgement that defeats us.”

In this monologue delivered by Marlon Brando, he goes on how you have to make a friend of horror in order to win the war, and it’s how our morality and humanity is what defeats us in the end. How the ideal soldiers are men with morals but with ability to kill without feeling. It is human nature to look the other way from horror, to avoid it, but those who are able to overcome this, and to embrace horror, they are the perfect war machines.

The Audio Visual Piece

The audio piece would be a composition of sounds used to create an atmospheric backdrop to segments of each monologue being sampled. The composition would be both instrumental, with parts being musical and parts being just sound and noise.

The concept is the beginning composition the sound tone is light, with nicely harmonising notes and gradually notes start to be off tone, and bring in introduction of harsher noises, and it climax’s with just a clear sounding note, like a flatline when a person’s heart stops beating. This mirrors both how when you embrace the horror and make it a friend, you are able to be level headed, and in a clear state of mind according to Brando. Also it mirror’s the monologue by McConaughey as the build up of noises would represent all our experiences, and in the end when it becomes nothing, the flatline noise literally represents it.

Influences for this work would be:

This one hour track which too utilises the True Detective analogue captures atmosphere and the sound of horror through mixing music with monologues. Certainly a big influence.

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Week 4-Research working processes and forms that interest you

The standard method of music production utilised in the modern day is multi-track digital recording. The idea is to have a layer per instrument. The standard is to start with the base instrument of percussion being recorded first to establish the backbone and structure of pieces, then layers are added such as main ideas and then finishing off with added sound effects such as clapping.

Here is a video of artist Wacka Flocka Flame recording the famous backup vocals which he utilises in multiple tracks and is seen as a staple in his music.

In audio music production the form which interests me is the standard method as changing that process would highly complicate it. The levels of creativeness is infinite with the standard multitrack as you can add layers upon layers of sound, which culminate to create a work defined by the artist and how they and their producers create their tracks.

A process of audio production which I have no experience in, but I carry high interest in is the creation of soundtrack for film. Film is my other medium which I have high interest in doing, but an idea I’ve always had an interest in is the relationship of film, and the soundtrack and Sound Effects.

One of the most popular soundtrack producers is Hans Zimmer who has created the soundtrack for many popular modern films, particularly Christopher Nolan. Here is his process for creating the soundtrack for Interstellar

There are two ways soundtracks are created for film by the artist:

  1. Draw inspiration from the script and write pre-production so the director more so makes scenes based on the construction of the soundtrack
  2. Create post production-the typical John Williams method

Hans Zimmer usually utilises the first method where he gets his inspiration from the script and creates a work based on that.

AI and Police (Project Proposal-Ryan Catbagan)

After looking at the possible topics in the subject blog which I can research, I knew immediately that I wanted to research a topic to do with artificial intelligence or robots as I’ve always had an interest in the idea of artificial intelligence. I thought of different topics within Artificial Intelligence to research such as how they could function to help or destroy society, or if the treatment of Artificial Intelligence should or should not be the same as with human rights and laws, or if Artificial intelligence could overpower human capabilities to the point where they are able to take over. Whilst these topics all interest me, I feel a very specific area of the presence of Artificial Intelligence I would find interesting in exploring is how they could be used for the police. Could integrating Artificial Intelligence and advanced technology to the highest extent with the police make the police force an invincible force? And would it be a step forward or step backward for society and the justice system?

 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2017/09/19/how-robots-iot-and-artificial-intelligence-are-transforming-the-police/#50783e445d61

 

We’ve seen in many crime films and television shows like CSI how investigators utilise “State of the art” technology to catch each episode’s murderer, sometimes through ways which just seem a bit too convenient, but then again it’s just a TV show. Audiences believing the existence of these types of technology is the result of the ‘CSI Effect’. Such examples of these myths are how a fingerprint scan will lead to the computer to just bring up the suspect’s drivers license, how DNA scans takes a few hours, and the idea that EVERYONE is in the DNA database. But despite the idea of these technological advancements being made, I want to look at more highly advanced technology which walks the line of “Beyond imagination” but realistic enough to be actual technology in a dystopic future, which would make the police an unstoppable force.

 

Some of the main ideas include:

  • Artificial intelligence integrated into current technology- AI systems built in police cars rather than computers, use of AI in interrogations where it is programmed to ‘break the suspect into confession’ or can analyse where they are telling the truth or not, AI which can locate whereabouts and more.
  • Technologies which can scan every inch of a entire crime scene and creates conclusions and assist to the solving of crimes
  • Advanced technology which can extract information from minds when interrogations come to a stand still. (Like in the episode White Christmas in Black Mirror)
  • Body cameras which have technology such as facial recognition, or can act in itself such as to pepper
  • Creation of police robots with the perfect skill set in every situation which works above and beyond human instinct.

 

A large aspect I want to research in this project is of artificial intelligence. I’m talking about the artificial intelligence you see in the movies, the ones where it is almost or more than human, and how this could put any police work and crime solving in a situation where it can never be wrong. I would look into the most popular films which include AI such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Blade Runner, Her and more. I would analyse the pros and cons, and what tends to occur in these movies, and imagine situations wherein AI would act in police duty.

 

  • Could AI built into police cars drive the cars themselves without permission?
  • Could AI create its own agendas which goes against its programming to assist in crime.
  • Could AI gain sympathy or empathy in the field of work
  • Could the lack of sympathy or empathy of AI affect outcomes

 

On top of the integration of AI, I would also look into futuristic technology which can perfectly solve any crime. I would research many films which utilises any technology that seem too far to reach in today’s age, and analyse how they can be used to create “Perfect Police Work” along with AI.

 

A fun idea which I want to explore is if there was development of robots designed to be perfect police officers. There are many films and texts throughout the 20th and 21st Century which have robots, mostly all portrayed by human actors, and each having their own unique features and attributes. But a common motive you could observe these robots holding is either to protect or to kill. You would find this specifically in The Terminator 2. It goes without saying that, if there was robots created to fight crime, there would certainly be robots created to commit them. Same as if there was technology created to solve crimes, there would be technologies created to get away with crime. In Terminator 2, Arnold Schwarzanegger’s mission is to protect John Connor from a Terminator who has a mission to kill him. Therefore there is complications with this idea. The film RoboCop introduces the idea of robots serving to protect civilians and eliminate enemies.

 

The idea of police being robots would create controversial societal conflicts with these being the basic  questions to be posed

  • Could these perfect police robots always work as efficiently as a trained and experience human officer with human instinct?
  • Would society benefit from being protected robots?
  • Could the perfect cop stop the perfect criminal?

Those are only the most basic questions to consider.

Ultimately the proposal for this project is to analyse a future wherein Artificial Intelligence and Highly advanced technology would be integrated into police work to create a police force which is able to work perfectly. A 100% success rate on all police work. And with this, to see if society would benefit or not from this.

Week 3: Research opportunities

In the field of audio production there are many different options which are available, but nowadays actual opportunities do seem scarce, especially in music production. However more opportunities open up if one would open up to more mediums which feature sound design.

Having worked with two music audio producers, it is clear that to pursue a career in music production, you have to have connections and reputation. Obviously there are so many things an audio producer needs such as thousands of dollars of equipment, recording software, a high understanding of sound and production, but reputation and connections seem to be the only bridge to even considering a career.

The producers I’ve worked with for my music, they both carry all the above aspects listed, and to an extent many connections, but as a result of the overpopulation of independent producers who produces at home as well, gaining a widespread reputation is incredibly difficult. The first producer I worked with played in a well known band local band at the time which right off the bat made his name recognisable, and was a producer that many local bands, my old one included, got to record music for us. He too had many connections knowing other producers who are high up in popularity as well as many local bands. He recorded from home, and produced very high quality music for very affordable prices. For my old band’s 5 track EP we only payed $500 which is incredibly cheap. This producer however only recorded as a side thing as his main medium was photography and film which has gotten him many opportunities.

An aspect of audio production which I feel would provide great opportunities is sound design, soundscape making, sound effects etc. Especially for film like audio dubbing and foley work. When incorporating sound into other mediums, I definitely feel there is more opportunities out there. Here are some interesting sound occupations which are incorporated into other mediums

 

 

As you can see, audio production doesn’t just apply to the art of creating music. To widen up opportunities to do with sound production, other mediums MUST be incorporated, otherwise the opportunities are limited and often or not, only good luck and timing would allow for many opportunities.

Week 2-Research a Practitioner in Your Field and a Brief overview of History

Before I get into the history of audio producing, I’ll just delve into a brief overview of one of my favourite producers in music is Adam Dutkiewicz. Adam D is the lead guitarist of metal band Killswitch Engage, and apart from being a member of one of the most influential heavy bands in recent years, he has produced albums for some of the most influential heavy bands. His production quality has always been great and heavily complements the sound each band is going for.

Such include: Parkway Drive, The Acacia Strain, Underoath, As I Lay Dying and of course his own band Killswitch Engage.

Audio Timeline:

http://www.aes.org/aeshc/docs/audio.history.timeline.html

This is a very brief overview of the history of audio production, a practice/field which I feel is my niche in this subject.

 

The Acoustic Era of audio recording lies between 1877 to 1925. In 1878 the first recording was made of a recording of Yankee doodle.

1877

    Thomas Alva Edison, working in his lab, succeeds in recovering Mary’s Little Lamb from a strip of tinfoil wrapped around a spinning cylinder.
    • He demonstrates his invention in the offices of

Scientific American,

     and the phonograph is born.

1878

    The first music is put on record: cornetist Jules Levy plays “Yankee Doodle.”

The Electrical Era of audio production is between 1925-1945 wherein the invention of electrical microphones was able to allow sound to be captured, amplified, filtered and balanced electronically.

1925

      • Bell Labs develops a moving armature lateral cutting system for electrical recording on disk. Concurrently they Introduce the Victor Orthophonic Victrola, “Credenza” model. This all-acoustic player — with no electronics — is considered a leap forward in phonograph design.
      • The first electrically recorded 78 rpm disks appear.
      • RCA works on the development of ribbon microphones.

 

The Magnetic Era (1945-1975) is the third wave of recording which is through recording utilising magnetic tape. In this era was the development of multi track recording and demise of the disk as a primary mastering medium.

1945

    Two Magnetophon tape decks are sent back to the U.S. In pieces in multiple mailbags by Army Signal Corps Major John T. (Jack) Mullin.

The Digital Era (1975-Present). Unlike previous analogue technologies, digital recording captured and recorded sounds through sampling .

1975

    Digital tape recording begins to take hold in professional audio studios.
    Michael Gerzon conceives of and Calrec (England) builds the “Soundfield Microphone,” a coincident 4-capsule cluster with matrixed “B-format” outputs and decoded steerable 2- and 4-channel discrete outputs.
    EMT produces the first digital reverberation unit as its Model 250.
    Ampex introduces 456 high-output mastering tape.