Sound Practice (grad seminar)  


March 28 - June 10, 2016
Office Hours – Wednesday 1:00 - 1:50pm; Thursday 3:30 - 4:20pm at VAF 511

Sound production, sound design, and audio technologies are increasingly critical components of contemporary aesthetic practice in the artist’s studio, lab, and research. This seminar will focus on direct hands-on instruction and implementation of sound techniques in art-making, filmmaking, and other interdisciplinary production models. Exercises, readings, and discussions will survey a wide-range of outcomes for sound-art and sound-design practice.

60% will be based on all assigned exercises and production work.
40% will be based on class participation in discussions and critiques

LATE-WORK POLICY: I will only accept assignments late if you have an excused absence from class or in an emergency situation about which you have spoken with me directly. Late assignments will be accepted at Instructor’s discretion. WILL NOT ACCEPT LATE FINAL PROJECTS.

ATTENDANCE POLICY: Two absences = Lower final grade by one letter Each additional absence = Lower final grade by an additional letter Arriving to class late twice will be noted as an “absence.” Thus, arriving to class late four times will lower the final grade by one letter


Weeks 1 - 4 - Presentation of fundamental sound-art conventions, production-techniques, and sound technologies. Week 3 will center on critiques of individual responses to a single sound-practice prompt.

Week 1 - Introduction to Sound and Recording Environments early conceptual artists, composers, and multimedia artists working with sound. Learning to record and edit basic recordings. Overview of sound-recording techniques and fundamentals of audio-editing. Signal Flow, and fundamentals of audio-
technology Overview of ProTools interface.

Week 2 - Language & Sonic Semiotics Presentation of works & artists and featuring sound production as a
primary storytelling strategy with emphasis on speech and language.

Week 3 - Critiques of first sound-sketches (with emphasis on the sound of the voice).
[additional time will be spent discussing overview of sonic semiotics and how to exploit the cultural and psychological meanings we hear.]

Week 4 - Fundamentals of Sound Design & Synthesis. Sonic semiotics and the subtext of sound-design. Synthesis in Design and Production.

Weeks 5 - 10 - Presentation of a range of sound-practice concepts & techniques. These will be scheduled and tailored to the needs & interests of the group enrolled.
Weeks 8 and 10 will center on critiques of respective projects by each student wherein sound is a feature of the work.
WEEK 5 Seminar will need to be re-scheduled for Friday April 29 - time TBD.

TOPICS for Weeks 5, 6, 7, 9
Sound & Vision: Sound design and recording techniques in video & film including Dialogue, Diegetic and Non-diegetic sound

Scores, Diagrams, and Circuits - understanding, developing, and realizing scores & diagrams for sound-works, multimedia productions, and data-visualizations.

Handmade Electronic & Noise: simple circuit designs for sound-art and sound-design, including simple analog interactivity for installation / objects / instrument-building.

Sound in Public, Performance, & Cinema Spaces: Surround sound, spatialization, placing sound in space.

Alternate / Unusual / Innovative software environments & production technologies.

Advanced mixing in Pro Tools - Mixing in “three dimensions” for single-channel sound production.

Week 8 - Works-in-Progress critiques | Week 10 - Project Critiques.




updated March 26, 2016