Creativity is not an external force or a rare skill; it’s a habit that anyone can learn. All you need are the tools to unlock it and you’ll be able to generate better ideas faster. Brainstorming is a fantastic tool to help unleash your creativity and uncover a wealth of unique and relevant ideas—but if approached incorrectly it can also be a wheel-spinning bust. Listen to these great tips from Stefan Mumaw so your next brainstorming session is a creative success!
Find no more than five to seven people to include, and make sure you’re choosing a diverse group of people. Find folks from outside of your department, even outside of your company. Outsiders bring fresh perspectives and while they may not be able to solve the problem as acutely as people who are more familiar with the problem, they may take you down roads you may not have considered.
The quadcopter crashes continue in this week’s episode of Deke’s Techniques. Join Deke as he shows you how to navigate the Timeline panel, and improve the contrast, vibrancy, and color balance of your footage with adjustment layers. (They’re not just for static imagery!) Then learn how to import an audio track, manipulate its position on the timeline, and adjust the volume of your clip. Along the way, Deke shares some invaluable time-saving shortcuts. Watch the video below to get started.
Having clear, crisp audio tracks is essential for effective corporate videos, commercials, documentaries—and particularly critical for interview footage. Audiences are often willing to forgive small technical mistakes with video, but far less so with problematic audio.
This week we’ll set up to shoot an interview, and look at ways to improve audio recording quality on location. It’s easy to focus solely on capturing great visuals while shooting an interview; but audio that’s hard to hear, distorted, or runs together between interviewer and subject can quickly ruin a production–and possibly even require a reshoot. To help you capture the best audio with interview footage, this week we’ll discuss:
Although I’m primarily known as an Adobe After Effects user and motion graphics artist, my background is in the music industry. Over the years I’ve found a sympathy for sound to be a big benefit to video professionals: timing animations to your project’s sound increases the impact of your visuals. Inversely, strictly focusing on the visual elements of your edits without serving the sound can distract the viewer, and dilute the overall impact.
I’ve recently distilled years of experience creating visuals to sound into a two-and-a-half-hour video course of exercises and real-world examples, Editing and Animating to Sound in Adobe After Effects. I start with the basics of learning how to “read” an audio waveform to spot the timing of beats in music, and then cut video, build animations, and even drive effects using the audio in your project. I also include a list of “magic tempos” you can hand to musicians so they can create a soundtrack at a speed that makes editing and animating easier.
This week in Monday Productivity Pointers, I’ll answer a question I get asked frequently: What’s an easy way to get an audio file (like a sound clip or MP3 file of a song) posted online so you can easily share it on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter?
In my first video, I’ll show you a neat trick to get your audio clips onto YouTube, which is a fantastic springboard from which to share your media files. What makes it particularly easy is you can share it out to many social networks directly from YouTube.
To do it, you’ll need a Mac with the built-in iPhoto app installed on it, an active YouTube account (which you already have, if you have a Google account), the iTunes application, your sound clip, and some photos. Finally, your sound clip has to be free of any DRM restrictions—that is, you can’t use a copyrighted song.
The audio channel at lynda.com is making a lot of noise at the NAMM show this year. NAMM (short for National Association of Music Merchants) is a massive conference and convention for all music-related products and services. In other words, it’s a giant toy store for musicians!
From January 19-22 lynda.com will be on-site at NAMM unveiling our expanded audio course offerings, meeting new audio folks, connecting with industry leaders, and checking out all the new gear.
If you’re at the show, please come by our booth (#4711) to say hi. If you can’t make it, check out this short demo of what the lynda.com audio team has been up to:
After the NAMM show, we’ll also be doing several twitterviews (interviews on twitter) with two of our audio authors, Brian Lee White and Bobby Owsinski. We’ll discuss key trends, the coolest news from NAMM 2012, and we’ll answer any questions you might have about NAMM, music technology, or the business in general.
Follow us on twitter @lyndadotcom, and join in on the conversation at these times:
January 24 from 12:30-1:30 PST: Brian Lee White @brianleewhite January 25 from 12:30-1:30 PST: Bobby Owsinski @bobbyowsinski
Simply tweet your questions or comments to @brianleewhite, @bobbyowsinski, or @lyndadotcom with the hash tag #NAMMchat on 1/24 and 1/25.
*Editor’s Note: On January 11th and January 20th the lynda.com blog mistakenly reported the #NAMMchat dates as January 23 and January 24. The dates of the #NAMMchat will be January 24 and January 25, both at 12:30pm PST as mentioned above. Associates will be standing by to assist any audio lovers who may tune in on January 23rd. Please pardon our error!
Anyone who has worked with audio in any capacity has likely seen a graphic depicting a waveform. These waveform graphics display the amplitude expressed across time, but do you really know how those waveforms are generated and why we express them the way we do?
It’s all about pressure and how sound moves through a medium, like air. Changes in air pressure are picked up by our ears, and our brains translate those pressure changes into sound information.
Brian Lee White explains how air is compressed and rarefied to create waveforms in his Foundations of Audio: EQ and Filters course. Check out his explanation in the video here, and then dive further into learning about using EQ and filters to improve the sound of your waveforms…I mean, music.
For more on how to properly apply equalization (EQ) to improve the overall sound of your mixes, watch the full Foundations of Audio: EQ and Filters course in the Online Training Library®.
Remixing a song is a skill that requires a lot of musical and technical know-how. Two of the most important elements to consider when beginning to create a remix are determining the original tempo of the song you’re remixing and lining up the vocal stem track to the beat.
Apple’s Logic software provides a handy plug-in called the BPM counter that helps to determine the tempo of a piece of music. Check out how to use it:
Often, remixers receive vocal stem tracks that don’t clearly align with the tempo grid when they’re imported into a project. That is, it’s unclear from the raw stem file where the downbeat is in comparison to the vocal performance. Check out how to align a vocal track with the tempo grid of a project:
In Remixing a Song in Logic, renowned remixer and author Josh Harris takes us through all of the remixing steps as he literally remixes a song in front of our eyes and ears. He covers all facets of the remixing process—aligning the vocals, working with loops, programming bass and synth parts, adjusting the remix arrangement—all the way to mixing and mastering the final version.
Check out Remixing a Song in Logicin the Online Training Library®, and look out for new training on the leading digital audio workstations coming soon.
Interested in more?
• All Logic courses in the Online Training Library®
• All audio courses in the Online Training Library®