Game of Thrones Sound Replacement: Recording Sound Effects at Home

Photo on 16-07-2015 at 12.41 pm

Photo on 16-07-2015 at 12.45 pm

After capturing so little at the medieval festival on the weekend, Bran and I set about recording some sound effects in the Audient studio at uni. We used random items from the Foley box to create some sword hits and slides as well as a few random sounds like thumps and body hits. After listening back to what we’d recorded we decided to attempt some recording at home over the next couple of days. We each hired out a Zoom mic. Bran used the H6N while I stuck with the trusty old H4N. Using this in accompaniment with an NTG2 shotgun mic I set about recording some sounds on my day off at home. Before setting off on our individual recording missions we discussed what types of sounds we needed. The main sounds I was tasked to capture were as follows:

– body drops – possibly created using a big bag full of clothes along with slightly heavier items.

– dragon wings flapping – possibly created by flapping a leather jacket/item around.

– an array of footsteps and scuffs – on wooden and concrete surfaces wearing socks/sandals/sand shoes and no shoes.

Photo on 16-07-2015 at 2.17 pm

I started with the task of recreating the sound of a body dropping to the ground. I was unable to locate a larger bag so just experimented with a couple of bags I had around the bedroom. One of which was my swimming bag, containing swimming paraphernalia such as flippers, goggles, towel etc. This created quite an appropriate soft thud when dropped on the sisal carpet in my bedroom. I also experimented with a shoebox containing boots in a large cardboard bag. I also found that dropping my flippers together created a potentially useful effect. I recorded the same thing but using some cheap rubber soled sand shoes.  Photo on 16-07-2015 at 2.16 pm

I then moved onto the dragon wings sound. I could only find a faux leather jacket but I came to the conclusion that the microphone probably won’t know the difference between the sound of real and fake leather so I attempted to record the sound anyway. The difficulty of waving a faux leather jacket in front of a microphone to recreate the sound of wings flapping is slightly greater than I anticipated. This is due to the sound of zips and the arms of the jacket making an extra ‘pat’ against the body of the jacket after I’d completed the larger ‘flap’ sound. So I attempted holding different parts of the jacket while flapping it around and managed to capture a few good ‘flaps’. The sound of the zip wasn’t too noticeable which was lucky as it was hard to hold the zip still whilst holding the jacket in a way that the arms wouldn’t interfere with the sound I was trying to recreate.

The faux leather jacket!
The faux leather jacket!

Next was the footsteps. Unfortunately, the concrete and wooden surfaces I wanted to record footsteps on were outside of my house and I found that there was too much going on for me to get a half decent recording. House renovations nearby as well as traffic sound made it impossible. I decided it would be fine to leave that aspect for now as we could easily do that at another stage and location.

There are MANY more sound effects to record as well as actual Foley to perform. I look forward to reporting back on the process in the near future!

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