Posts tagged “Introduction

Introducing: Daniel Vasquez

DanielV - CLAP - Foto_24Cuadros-14

Next up in our ‘Introducing…’ series is Daniel, who kindly agreed to tell us a bit about himself and the post sound scene in Columbia:

I am Daniel Vasquez, a sound designer and re­-recording mixer from Medellin, Colombia.  My experience and academic background has been based primarily in the United Kingdom and Colombia. I currently work as the Head of Post­ Production in Clap Studios, a sound post ­production facility located in Medellin.

In terms of academic background, I hold a BA Degree in Recording Arts and an MA in Audio Post­ Production from Middlesex University in London; and I’m certified by Avid as a Pro Tools Expert for Post; and I’m also a full member of the Audio Engineering Society.

Beginning as an engineer for music and live applications during my stay in the United Kingdom – doing live shows, recording bands and mixing independent artists – I later moved into sound for picture, starting with sound editing for short films, video games and documentaries, and I started to move also towards mixing and began to work for larger productions, working as a freelancer, lecturer, and co-­founding SoundNode, a sound production and post ­production company based in London.

Keeping a close eye on my home land, I decided in 2011 to move back to start working in the Latin American film industry, seeing it as an opportunity to apply the knowledge and experience acquired abroad.  This is when I co-­founded Clap Studios with film producer Gabriel J. Perez, who was returning from Barcelona, later joined by Daniel Jaramillo, a Colombian sound mixer residing in London.

Let’s talk about Clap Studios; it is a sound post­ production facility located in the Medellin Audiovisual Center.  Since Gabriel and I founded the company, we have created the ideal conditions for the sound development of audiovisual productions, offering creative talent, and the best facilities and equipment to deliver to the highest standards, such as the first Dolby® approved commercial studio for 7.1 film mixing in the country.

Clap Studio Sala Dolby Jul2015_11

Regarding the film industry in Colombia, it is small but growing, and our team have worked not only for Colombian productions but also for foreign films from Los Angeles, Cuba and United Kingdom, with great success. Renowned film directors and producers have trusted the sound post­ production of their projects to us (including our team of sound editors, Foley artists, and mixers) with excellent results. Some of them are: Pavel Giroud, Goya nominee and award winner at the International Festival of New Latin American Cinema and the Cartagena International Film Festival; Simón Mesa, winner of the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival; Carlos Cesar Arbeláez, award winner at San Sebastián Film Festival; Carlos Tribiño, award winner at the Cartagena International Film Festival; Simón Brand, awarded at the Huelva Latin American Film Festival; and Kirk Sullivan, experienced filmmaker from California.

Clap Studios E3A

Clap Studios E Foley

Getting more location-­specific, Medellin offers a great set of conditions for creative and technical work, with nice mild weather, charming people, accessible prices and great talent and professionalism. Bogota currently holds the majority of the audiovisual work in Colombia, but with the growth of the industry, more options are starting to emerge in other cities as well, opening the possibilities of taking advantage of local incentives from each region. For example, Medellin is offering an additional 15% cash rebate in film services, making it attractive not only for foreign productions, but also for projects coming from other Colombian cities, which benefits us as service providers to bring more foreign productions and expand our territory of action. The goal is to keep expanding the range of countries we work with, always committed to quality and a great experience.

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Introducing: Vijay Rathinam

This year, as always, we’ve had some really interesting new people join the Club:  Sound professionals working in all kinds of different aspects of audio, from film to music to video games to sound art.  I’ve been thinking recently that it’d be good to introduce some of the Club’s members on the website (especially those from places further afield than the U.S and Europe) rather than just see each others’ names tagged on the end of sound files in the collection!
So when Vijay joined recently, I asked him if he’d be up for writing a bit about himself and what he does because, although the Club has members from many corners of the world, we haven’t had that many from Asia so far and I thought it’d be interesting for Western members to read a bit about how things are done in India.  Vijay has very kindly obliged with the detailed description and photos below:
This was Taken at Galaxy Studio when I went there for a film mix
I am a sound designer/sound editor/sound recordist based out of AM Studios, Chennai and I have worked in more than a hundred  projects performing various roles in the film audio industry. My experience ranges from Bollywood to BBC. I have also worked with various other European films as sound FX editor/ foley supervisor.
I studied the Master of Science degree in advanced music production from the University of Glamorgan in South Wales.  I was always passionate about sound in films. I started to take it further at a very young age. I apprenticed at a famous Chennai based studio, Vijaya Vauhini, when I was 18, then I ended up as an FX editor in the same studio after I finished my Bachelor’s degree (B.Sc Physics at Loyola College – Chennai).  In 2005 I wanted to take this further which is when I pursued my higher education at Glamorgan University.  After that, I was employed by an animation company called Inspire GLG in Worcestershire as a sound designer. I worked in the Midlands area for a few companies until 2010.  In 2010 I decided to move back to India (which is where my roots are) and I started my own company, The-AudioVille, and now I work with a very good group of very talented people.  I have a great foley team, and FX editing team who are equally passionate at what they do and they all contribute immensely to the films I work on (one of  The AudioVille’s editing rooms pictured below).
This is  one of my humble editing room
I have done a lot of Indian feature films of varying genres.  Indian films are not just limited to Bollywood.  There are nearly 25 different film industries here.  Each state has it’s own film industry.  For example, the previous film I worked on was released in 2000 screens just in the state of Tamil Nadu which is where I live.  Recently – in the past 2 years – I have started doing a lot of European feature films.  From my imdb page you can see what I have done….I normally get the footage (i.e. get access to turnovers) online and my current preferred way of collaboration is with Gobbler mainly because it is very fast for uploads and downloads.  The collaborators deliver me a Pro-Res or a DNX HD picture and the AAF.  I have a very fast 100Mbps upload and download leased line dedicated to collaborative work, so sending and receiving files is never a problem for me.  I also normally get notes from the supervising sound editors or directors with timecoded notes on what exactly is required (normally as region groups in a Pro Tools session or sometimes as text files).  Then I edit FX following these notes whilst at the same time using my creativity as well, plus recording anything if required.  I also have a crew here to work with.  They help me out with cutting backgrounds or FX depending on the film’s requirement.  I also simultaneously record foley in our foley room (see below). We have a very clean signal chain there so the recording is as transparent as possible; no noise or anything like that.  I also have an extensive library; both commercial (with multi user licences) and my own recordings.  We also have a few recorders like Deva, Roland, Edirol, Zoom H6, Nomad etc….and we use them from time to time when required, and some good microphones as well!!!
Foley room 4
If required I also hire AM Studios (see picture below) which is a step away from my place.  AM Studios is one of the premier Indian post production houses (It’s like the Delane Lea of Chennai!).  It is owned by the academy award winning composer, Mr. A.R. Rahman (the Slum Dog Millionaire-famed music composer).  The people at AM Studios are a fantastic talent and a fun bunch of people to work with.  They have great gear which I can use whenever required.  They have a great sounding film mix room with crazy Auro 3D Meyer sound speaker system, with an Icon and a System 5 Euphonix.  They have just ordered a large scale Neve DFC with immersive sound panner to replace the system 5 console….which I believe will get installed next month!!!  They also have multiple Kyma systems, Great outboard gear like Aphex, Manley, Chandler…etc..etc…..All this can be used as and when required.  I am closely associated with AM Studios.  All my Indian projects get mixed there and also they give me some good films from time to time.
Also Taken at AM Studio they have a very good Auro 3D mix room with Meyer Sound and ikon and a system 5 console which is going to be replaced with a very good AMS Neve DFC with immersive sound panning option
So coming back to the point……when we are done with a reel, I upload a 5.1 bounce or send the actual session for review depending on the requirement.   Normally it’s all panned, volume automated, reverbs done and “Mix Ready” all in the box.  Working in the box makes collaboration much easier;  if I use any outboard stuff I print them onto a separate track.  The client then sends back some notes or corrections if required and we do those and send the master session.  When I deliver, normally the entire film with all FX, Ambience and Foley are in one large session so it becomes very easy for the client.  We are very much prepared to do lots of back and forth kind of collaboration….it seems to be the way to go these days as expectation from the directors are pretty high.
We have 3 sound editing rooms, and 1 foley room here. We also do dialogue editing as well. So the collaboration varies depending on the requirement.  Also I have recently started sending some of my work to other collaborators overseas as well. The average Tamil industry films don’t spend much on sound and the budgets are shrinking but some of the bigger films have decent budgets.   I am always open to collaborating with other sound designers and FX editors around the world.  I strongly believe that collaborative workflow is the future as it opens a whole lot of creative possibilities and the internet has made that possible now.  I see a lot of talented people in Korea, Japan, UK, US…everywhere…through Facebook, Linkedin and other networking sites.  I think India is a market to be explored – especially the big films.  With immersive sound becoming very popular here, the demand for quality talent on an economical budget (doesn’t mean cheap) becomes in demand.  Gone are those days where a client will walk in to a studio based on the look and feel of the studio and the kind of coffee and canteen you have.  These days the film makers are like, “Do you have the talent?  Can you do the job in an economical way?  Will you spend the budget efficiently?  Will you deliver good sounding tracks?  You are on!!”.
At least, these are the types of film makers that I am targeting.  They also end up respecting us for what we do for their films.  I think it is the same even in the UK and everywhere. Sometimes the budgets may not be right for one person but perhaps it might be good for the other.  So it really comes down to passion and commitment.
Vijay’s personal website at www.vijayrathinam.com
This was taken during my trip to sri lanka when I was recording trains - P.S. this was a pose not actually during work

‘The Knowledge’ Directory is now active!

Welcome to ‘The Knowledge’ – The Sound Collectors’ Club directory where members can add any tips and general info they care to share relating to field recording and sound fx acquisition. 

The idea of the directory is not to just create a wiki for all things sound-related.  It’s intended purpose is to aid us all in tracking down specific sound fx and atmos recordings.

We can achieve this by using Evernote to accumulate our collective knowledge of, e.g., locations, organizations, speciality forums and contacts and leads as well as info regarding particular recordings of our own that we’ve made that we’d be happy to trade or sell.

For example, I might add the details of a proving ground in the UK, that is a great location for recording vehicles, as one note.  Another note I could add would be a note relating to recent Scottish loch recordings I made.  I also might add a note about a new sound library or samplepack giveaway I hear about, a contact I know who owns old military vehicles….you get the idea.

If we all add bits of info such as this and tag the notes efficiently then bit by bit I feel we will end up with a really useful resource for sound collecting.

Also, one of the big pluses of using Evernote is it’s geo-locating functions.  Consequently, if you’re out and about and make a find – say, a cathedral with amazing acoustics, for example – then you can simply take a snapshot on your Evernote phone app, title and tag it and save it to The Knowledge notebook with location info automatically loaded.

I’ll be posting a fuller explanation here on the website (hopefully a vid) very soon but I thought I’d let you know that this facility is now active for all current members.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions / if anything is unclear.

 


Join the Club!

Recent improvements in Soundcloud’s private sharing features have enabled me to put into action an idea that I’ve been wanting to set up for quite a while now but which I haven’t felt able to in quite the simple and fuss-free way I envisaged.

The Sound Collectors’ Club is basically a private account I’ve set up on Soundcloud.  The idea is that people can upload their recordings on a given monthly theme to this account via the dropbox above.  Once the recording or recordings have been transferred into that month’s private ‘set’ (by me) I will then e-mail you a private link which will give you direct access to all the tracks which that set contains and which you are free to download and use within commercial projects without any restriction (other than you obviously mustn’t go and sell them on as sound effects – individually or as libraries).  Hence, from contributing just one recording you could end up with a small arsenal of sounds to add to your library.  However, a contribution is necessary in order to even be able to audition any recordings within the private set.

Part of the big appeal for me of using Soundcloud for this venture is that some of it’s ‘Stat’ features come in really handy.  Once you’ve gained access to a set you can comment on each other’s recordings and ‘favourite’ a sound – all of which I’m hoping will soon be able to be automatically documented on Twitter for people to follow (and, hence, within the ‘Activity’ feed above).  The creator of the track that gets the most downloads (decided by the number of ‘favourites’ that a recording gets if download numbers are tied) gets to choose the theme or topic for the following month.  In this way, participants get a chance to supplement their libraries in the way that best suits them rather than me dictating the subject matter every month.

As is probably evident from this idea, I’ve been very inspired by the flurry of activity that has occurred over the past year or so within this global sound community that is currently thriving online.  The Sound Collectors’ Club borrows ideas from several of the products of this community that have come before it but tailors them into a package which best suits me and my interests.

In a nutshell, the club is basically inspired by 4 things:

  1. I love the (potentially) phenomenal productivity of crowdsourcing (nod to Tim)
  2. I love the idea of field recording workshops but I’m always a bit frustrated that the pooled results are just for listening purposes and cannot be used on commercial projects.
  3. I like the concept of Shaun Farley’s Sound Design Challenge but I want to participate in a field recording version of this.
  4. Soundsnap.  I’ve begun to dip into this from time to time over the past year or so and have grown to quite like using it for grabbing a couple of fresh sounds here and there.  In this way, I don’t envisage the club providing definitive collections such as Tim’s Hiss and a Roar ventures; rather an occasional supplementary boost to the palette of fresh sounds at your disposal.

My current priority is just to get this idea out there and see if anyone’s interested in joining in.  However, if people are interested, I do have a lot of ideas that I would like to try out in this format.  One such idea is to do a larger worldwide version of Noise Jockey and fieldsepulchra‘s Project MoMa collaboration that they did back in May and then pool the results. Also, I’d like to try and make this not just a virtual club but also organize field recording meet-ups with other local sound enthusiasts and then once again use the club account to bring all our efforts together.

The whole basis and appeal for me of this idea is it’s simplicity but please do bear with me if there are any rough edges that crop up over the coming weeks that I may have overlooked.  I’m no web wizard:  I have no idea how to set up a website (hence I’ve stuck with wordpress.com) and have no real intention of learning as I prefer to focus all my attention on my primary ambition which is to keep getting better and better at sound editing.  This is still a work in progress:  I’ve made a point of avoiding the inaction that overdeliberation can produce but as a result I will need to continue fine tuning things over the coming weeks.  Having said all that, in theory the club should need very little supervision other than accepting submissions so I’m hoping this is a very straightforward yet fruitful venture!

Feel free to offer up any comments or suggestions within this blog or through Twitter.  With a bit of luck, there’s a few of you folks out there that are keen on this idea too and we can start getting a few sounds together!

Look forward to hearing from you –

Best,

Michael Maroussas