Sunday, August 5, 2007

Sound Edit

Audio is difficult. Even if you're not a perfectionist, as we are, sound is difficult. Color correction can be fun, even satisfying and filled with instant gratification. You correct a clip, it looks good, you say "ah, yes!," and then you apply the changes to other clips. Time passes and you steadily make the whole movie look better in a linear, measurable, tangible way.

Sound editing, on the other hand, is a tedious, thankless slog through the trenches of unfriendly waveforms, odd filters, subjective calls and unidentifiable background noise. It's a relentless riding of the meters, endless small tweaks to levels - I'm talking ENDLESS small tweaks to the levels; it's what you must do in order to have a professional-sounding film - reviewing music, creating music; it's hours spent working in the timeline, only to discover that you got ten minutes of the film done.

It's a bitch. You lose objectivity and need to stop a while. You need sugar. If we go too long without sugar, our brains cease to function, we lose energy and, even worse, we end up arguing about things. When we did "Video Out," we both felt that the first employee 13Bit would hire one day, when we finally have money to hire someone, would be a sound editor. At the same, time, it's hard to trust anybody to do it right, but I suppose that will be a leap of faith we'll have to make when 13Bit is a massive player one day in the cinema industry. If we don't learn to delegate these things, we'll never be the nimble monolith that we would like to be. At the moment, though, we are working on sound and need to stay focused.

We cut the entire section we had made on "Greenewalt versus Wilfred." We kept the part on Mary Hallock Greenewalt because she's an interesting color artist and contributes to the understanding of the art form, but the section that we made about their feud finally got cut, at the eleventh hour. We had trimmed it back in previous cuts, but we decided to eliminate it. Color and audio correction have a way of narrowing your focus, sharpening your critical senses, bringing out the ruthless axe-wielding inner editor.

We decided to skip a trip to the Little Pie Company or Tasti-D-Lite and used the time, instead, to repair some kind of demonic negative pop/click in a piece of music that the men and women of The Analog Orchestra had kindly composed and recorded for us. All we can assume is that their engineer screwed up or intentionally left it in there. We fixed it, though.

Anyway, Meredith has started t to surf the web, so I must stop blogging and crack the whip again.


No comments: