Visual Scores

March 31, 2009 at 2:31 pm (Visualisations)

I undertook this MA because I wanted to expand my understanding of possible relationships between sound and image. In relation to my project this moved forward to exploring the possible relationship between the soundscape and our perception of urban environments. 

Originally I envisaged my final work as a full-on audio-visual experience, but after deciding that sound should be the main communication device within the work, the visual aspect has found a new home within my process and methodologies.

I will primarily be using drawing to react to the sounds I’m working with, developing visual scores which stem from the sound recordings I’ve made and my experience of the urban spaces encountered during my journeys. I’ve chosen drawing because I enjoy the immediacy of it and the ease with which one can create gestural responses to sound. However, I won’t limit myself to drawing just yet. As I work on my compositions over the next 3 months, I may feel the need to experiment with digital manipulation of the photographs I’ve taken during my journey. Guess I’ll play it by ear!




This is one process I’ve been thinking about implementing:

1. Make sound sketches (e.g. sketch X, Y, Z) of different types of sonic activity based on my audio recordings of particular spaces. (e.g. space A)


2. Re-visit these spaces / re-walk the journey and listen to the sound sketches.

E.g.    A with X

            A with Y

            A with Z


3.  Whilst listening to X, then Y, then Z, interpret space A visually by drawing it.


How does X, Y and Z change how we perceive A ?

What new ideas can be generated from the experience as a whole ?


4. Treat the drawing as a visual score; interpret the image as a scene to compose sound to.


5. Think about how the final composed soundscape-spaces could then be interpreted as colour?



This possibly means leap frogging during each weeks composition….


Compose = C first 2 days , last 4 days in a week

Revisit Locations = RL 1 day in a week

C – C – RL – C – C – C -C


By revisiting spaces / embarking on journeys once again, I think I’ll be able to evaluate how the soundscape and its possible transformations effect my perception of the urban environmental to greater extent. Instead of solely revisiting spaces via memory and imagination, I can experience how my variations on sound material ‘truly’ alter my perception of the spaces they were derived from within the present moment! In a way I would be bringing time back in to the equation…


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