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ENSEMBLE by MATT CARTWRIGHT
Objectives:
The idea for the piece was to create an audiovisual work that employed a strong relationship between both sonic and visual medias while representing the relationship in a logical and coherent sequence. The initial idea for the work was to film an ensemble of instruments as they were painted onto a canvas with the music acting as a sonic representation for each visual statement.
The Process:
With the Concept in place, the first step was to decide on what instruments to write and paint for. As the piece required a short length, I decided on a trio consisting of piano, Dj and cello. Over the course of one day, the ensemble was painted and filmed in approximately 6hours. The first problem that was encountered was daylight or lack there of. As the piece took longer than expected, lighting became an issue and spot lights had to be used on the canvas. Introducing un-natural light posed a small problem but it could not be avoided. With that said, filming in a controlled environment in regards to light and sound plays a crucial role in the overall quality and will definitely be taken into account in the future. Secondly, with hours of DV footage, the next step was to begin a rough edit, cutting any unwanted footage and cleaning up certain clips. With the clean footage now at 15minutes, I began to compose the music in the hope of ending up at around 7minutes, as I did not want to cut too much out of the video and in turn, lose its continuity. Using Reason, the first piano track was recorded employing an NN-XT. Writing it in free time to begin with made sense for the introduction, giving a strong entrance for the Dj, later to be added. Now with a chordal progression in place, a number of electronic tracks were introduced, utilising digital samplers in reason, to coincide with the painting of the Dj. Additionally, the cello was introduced performing melodic gestures accompanied by both the piano and electronic statements. Interestingly, the final part to be added was the introduction, which were radio samples, recorded into Pro-tools, edited, mixed down and imported into Reason using a sampler.
With the song in its completion, it was then rendered and imported into iMovie. Having 285 video clips was perhaps a little ambitious, and the final editing took quite some time. Little effects were employed to the footage of the natural sound sources (piano and cello) in order to create a sense of naturalistic representation of these instruments, the only effect being time stretching. In contrast, digital effects were employed for the radio introduction and the Dj to suggest a sense of deconstruction to the natural sound environment while at the same time, providing a relationship between the two.
Programs and devices used:
  • Pro-tools
  • IMovie
  • Reason:
    • 4 NN-XT Digital Samplers
    • 2 Malstrom Graintable Synthesizer
    • 8 Dr:rex Loop Player
    • 1 PEQ-2 Two Band Parametric EQ
    • 1 Comp-01 Auto Make Up Gain Compresso
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Ensemble by Matt Cartwright
Peace Song Tapestries Home page About the Peace Song Tapestries Current theme of peace Peace Song Tapestries Soundbank Recording Studio Peace Puzzle Resources & Links Help page Radio Program About the Peace Song Tapestries Peace Song Tapestries Credits
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