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TOPIC: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe

An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154454

  • adamduvall20
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Hello Lightworks fans,

I recently finished a video that I have been working on for over a year. I had more setbacks, redos, and demoralizing failed exports that I care to recall, but I finally figured it all out. This was my first video that I filmed and edited, but it has received pretty favorable feedback so far. Please let me know how you liked it or what you think I could do different, because I plan to make additional films in the future.

Thank you

Last Edit: 6 months, 1 week ago by adamduvall20.

Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154456

  • donkpow
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Nice snapshots.

You are pegging my audio meters. The music is obliterating location sound. Due to the levels, it feels more like a combat video game. I'd look more at dynamic range than peak meter readings. Let the music support your video, not the other way around.

Thanks. It was a nice trip.
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Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154459

  • adamduvall20
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donkpow wrote:
Nice snapshots.

You are pegging my audio meters. The music is obliterating location sound. Due to the levels, it feels more like a combat video game. I'd look more at dynamic range than peak meter readings. Let the music support your video, not the other way around.

Thanks. It was a nice trip.


Thanks for the feedback. Audio was one area that I really didn't know what I was doing.

My method for adjusting location sound levels vs. music levels was if I felt that it was important to include the location sound to relay the mood of the shot, such as the sound of church bells, crashing waves, or sometimes traffic/crowd noise then I left it in, and adjusted to avoid sudden changes in location sound from shot to shot. But if the successive cuts were very short the location sound just felt really jumpy, being loud in some shots while quiet in others. Some sequences I left almost entirely just music and no location sound because I felt the location sound just didn't add anything worth hearing.

You're saying I should look into a different way to balance audio, or that you think it sounds better if location sound is consistently present?

Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154460

  • jwrl
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adamduvall20 wrote:
You're saying I should look into a different way to balance audio, or that you think it sounds better if location sound is consistently present?

I would have made a similar response to donkpow, and my reply to that is "both of the above". Experienced sound editors will start out with all of the location sound (usually referred to as atmos and pronounced "at moss") that they can get, but then trim to give a more balanced result.

If you have a series of shots at one location and one or two of them are very short, extend the atmos from the adjacent shots to cover the short shots. Balance the levels without any music, dialogue or voice over first, then lay up your additional components and mix those in the order music, dialogue and voice over.

Fairly obviously you will likely have more than just your atmos laid up before you get to the mixing stage. Mute the tracks that you don't want to adjust and work in the order that I suggested. Once you get comfortable with the way that things sound you'll find that you don't need to follow that order of events at all, but it will be helpful when you're just starting out.

And above all else, as donkpow said:

donkpow wrote:
Let the music support your video, not the other way around.
Last Edit: 6 months, 1 week ago by jwrl.

Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154461

  • briandrys
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When shooting with single system sound it would common to record interesting audio and atmos without there being a framed picture(eg the camera might be pointing at the ground or there may even be colour bars). An announcement would be make by the sound recordist like "atmos" or "bells at XXXXX". This is to allow the editor to build up the soundtrack.

When shooting with this set up the camera person will often let the camera run longer, so that there is audio for overlaps etc during the edit.
Last Edit: 6 months, 1 week ago by briandrys.

Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154462

  • jwrl
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And of course briandry's comment leads to one further thought. With this sort of a production the sound used doesn't necessarily need to come from the shot that you're using. A shot that may be completely unusable visually may have just the atmos that you need for the hero shot that you've hung your whole production on.

Example: You have church bells ringing on the soundtrack of a shot of a market square, which in every other respect is pretty naff. You've also got a great shot of the 16th century church in which those bells are installed, but all that's on the soundtrack is a very intrusive motorbike passing by. Lay the market square sound over the church shot and suddenly you're telling a story.

To get the most out of what you want do you have to learn how to think of your sound and your pix as two entirely different but related components of your production.
Last Edit: 6 months, 1 week ago by jwrl.

Re: An 8 week backpacking adventure through Europe 6 months, 1 week ago #154470

  • donkpow
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Just as a matter of truth, I am not an industry professional. The other contributors to this thread are and I find their comments instructive.

I have two types of projects I do regularly that have only music in the audio tracks. One is a slide show presentation I do for someone else and the other is bicycle video where the in-camera sound is a wreck. Here's something I did recently. Two pieces of music for the slideshow. You can see I have created air during the transition. From the Audacity noise generator.


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The world is never truly "silent". Even in a soundproof room, you'll always hear your biological functions at work. Why would one allow silence to be present in a video?
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