Full circle

full circle

When I was young and just beginning to think about who I wanted to be in the world I settled on the idea of becoming a sound engineer. I loved listening to music and to a lesser extent playing music. Even at a young age I knew I didn’t have the commitment or talent to become a professional musician, but I loved the whole idea of working in a creative field with people who loved music as much as I did.

Unfortunately I lived in a smallish city in Australia and the options for becoming a sound engineer were limited to say the least. There was only one recording studio and jobs in the music industry were few and far between. Somewhat naively, I sent off a few letters to all of the film companies and television and radio stations in Perth asking if they had a position for me. I was 15.

Funnily enough, I received two job offers. One was as a telecine operator at Channel 9, a job which I later found out was extremely boring. I didn’t even consider that taking job because it was located in a suburb way out in the sticks and I didn’t have a drivers licence.

The other position was for an editing assistant at a small production company in the city, and this was the job I took.

I soon found that the job entailed not only film and sound editing, but typing invoices, doing the banking, getting lunches and hauling around cameras and recording gear on location. It was an interesting way to start my career.

My interest in sound came to the fore again several years later when I took a position as a sound editing assistant at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Sydney, Australia. This job involved replacing dialogue, recording sound effects and laying music tracks for television dramas. It was fun and in those days it was all analogue which meant that every track was a physical entity and had to be created and carried from the editing room to the sound mixing studio. The tracks were then laced up on big machines (dubbers) and mixed down into a single sound track. This is all done digitally now.

Since then I’ve had a lot of other jobs, some creative and some less so, but my recent foray into podcasting represents a return to something I’ve always had a yen for.

 

Telling stories with sound

Storytelling

I’m excited to let you know that I’ve signed up to do a podcasting course with the nice people who run Creative Nonfiction Org. I was moseying around the internet looking for a writing course and I found this course  – Introduction to Audio Storytelling which combines nonfiction storytelling with audio editing. Both of these skills come together beautifully in a podcast.

I might not have talked much about my interest in podcasting on this blog, but I’ve mentioned it a few times over here on my other website. (Why do I have two blogs I hear you ask? Don’t know really, I just wanted to write about two slightly different but related topics I guess. I think of this blog as a place where I can write about creativity and insecurity and also about the pleasure that comes with trying new things. My other blog is about clarity, simplicity and design. As I said, different but connected).

What’s the course about?

Over the next 8 weeks I’ll be learning about sound editing and how to write and produce a five minute podcast. The course starts today and I’m pretty excited to be embarking on a new creative endeavor. I’ve done some sound editing in the past, but to be honest it was a long, long time ago, so I’m really looking forward to refreshing my skills, working collaboratively with the other students, and trying out some new ideas.

For the podcast we need write about something that is true, but also personal. Not in a creepy tell-all kind of way, but to write about something that is meaningful to us. That will be a challenge and already I’m doubting my ability to come up with something sufficiently interesting. I’m thinking about writing a short piece on finding your passion as I always find this topic of interest and I seem to be drawn to books and articles on the subject. I suspect that if I can talk about it for 5 minutes with enough enthusiasm, then there are bound to be other people who find the topic interesting as well. And really, the point of the exercise is to make something that makes me happy, not everyone else. Much like a painting a picture I suppose…

I’ll keep you posted on how it’s going. Have you thought about trying something new?