Most exciting sound design recording experience?
I'm afraid my favorites are pretty tame and boring. Although last week we recorded some pretty big body punches by close micing my bare back w/ a TLM70 and a MKH60 and having my colleagues pound on me with their fist. We sacrifice for good sound.
Last year we rented out Fantasy Studio A in Berkley and hired two stunt men to get us some football impacts. We put down a ten by ten square of sod and miced up the place w/ eight different mics and recorded to a DA-88. We had two Sony ECM55s. A Senn. MKH60 and MKH40. A AKG D112 and 460. A Schoeps ??. And a Neumann 103. We got our best results by having the guys stay relatively stationary and pound on each other. We did the usual messy stuff also. I brought in the fruits and vegetable along w/ some chips and pasta. It was great 'cause we didn't have to buy lunch for anyone!!
To be honest, my colleague in Florida is actually editing the raw audio from the Fantasy shoot. I've heard some of it and it came out very well. However, letting the tape roll and recording eight wide really increases your post time. You tend to find out what works in different situations pretty quickly but at the beginning your listening to every hit on every track and doing it for a long, long time. It's great as long as you budget for the extra time
2nd one was last week when I got washed away by a big wave trying to record wave crashes in Dana Point.... Fun. Cold, freezing and covered with water... Luckily dat and Neumann 191 mic survived
About 5 years ago I was recording some churning water on the Northern Coast of CA, above Mendocino. I was standing on a rock ledge that dropped down into the water. As I walked up to the edge I thought, "Hmm. I wonder why the ground is so wet here?" It didn't seem like a problem since the water level was several feet lower then the rock, so I thought it was still just wet from when the tide went out. The slate is pretty funny, because I pop into record, and I say "OK, this is a more turbulent area......... BOOOOOSH!" I get pile driven with a huge wave that soaked me & the rig, which killed it until it dried out.
Luckily for me , it was an experienced bull , that knew as soon as you got to the rail , you could jump over before he got to you . That particular recording served as a 'model' for the bull rides we constructed from other , more cu specific pieces we recorded. Another quick one was , while in Seattle recording sounds for Disclosure , I found myself on Bainbridge Island , with a rental car .
Finding an unpaved area far from any traffic , I decided to roll the car downhill while holding the mike out the window , to record tire grit with no engine. (ok , so sometimes I'm not too bright). Put the car in neutral , started the dat and , yup , you guessed it ; with the engine off , there is no power steering or brakes !!! Managed to bring the car to a halt with no mishap , after 20 or 30 seconds of sheer panic but I did get a really good recording !! -HC
Mark G. Reis:
We went down later to get the internal sounds. I built an adapter on site (damn military plugs) but the bitching betty wasn't working on the ground. After wiring Linus up with a microphone on his helmet and another inside his ear piece, I quickly trained the pilot on how to adjust the levels on the DAT, and up he went.
While in flight he disconnected his communications system, plugged in he adapter I had made, ran through betty 3 times - two great takes - and then plugged his communications back in. I'd have been happy with this, but then he plugged the microphones I had wired him up with back into the DAT, and reset the recording levels. I don't know how much of that ever ended up in Falcon, but we certainly had plenty of authentic sounds and good recordings.
Excerpt from thread "Ignition!" Mar 16, 2000 at Sound Design discussion list
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