Kew and Docklands
Sennheiser MKH 60
I had some nice people from the Kew Bowmans club help me this morning by shooting lots of arrows into targets for me while I was recording. Sunday morning is the regular meeting time for the club, and the head of the club Rob McKenzie had been happy for me to come along and have a listen and then he helped me out by doing some shooting for me. There was a freeway very close by which I am worried might have contaminated some of the sounds, but I should have some good material when I sort through it all. I set up the shotgun mic on the tripod so I could position it at the target to record some impact sounds. Then I progressively moved it down the range to record the arrows in flight past the mic at different ranges. Its these more subtle sounds that I think might have issues with the freeway noise.
Again I learnt lots about archery in between recording shots. I captured most of the bow firing sounds with the handheld R09 as the Shotgun mic was down range. I plan to buy the new Zoom H4n when it is available in a few weeks and this will give me a third recording option. I a not sure what mic I want to use with the new unit, I will need to do some experimenting to find the best combination of devices. There isn’t really a lot of different sounds with archery. The firing of the arrow, the flight of the arrow and the impact of the arrow are basically it, but I did make sure I captured shots being fired into the tow different target types available as well as a range of three or four different bows and several different types of arrows, so there should be some good material in there when I get to catalogue it.
Later in the day I tried strapping the R09 under the bonnet of the car we had hired for the weekend. It was just a little Toyota, but I thought this would be a good test of the method. I want to see how well this works for future car recordings. Strapping the unit down was pretty straightforward, but obviously I cant monitor the levels, so I wont get to see if they were good until I download all the sounds and go through them all to catalogue. I have a Nissan Z and a BMW lined up to record soon so I want to get the process working well before I record them.
Finally I also got some female footstep sounds as well. My wife helped me out by wearing a few different pairs of shoes and I followed her round recording her walking on different surfaces. The good thing about the Docklands area near where we are living is that at night its like a ghost town so it’s a great quiet area to do sound recording with no contamination. It also has a good range of surfaces for walking on because they have metal escalators, wooden slate bridges as well as the usual concrete and tile flooring. I’ve been meaning to add women’s shoes to the library for ages so its good to finally get some in there.
Stephan Schütze has been recording sounds for over twenty years. This journal logs his thoughts and experiences