Micaela Marini Higgs
Micaela Marini Higgs
@micaela_mh
Film & video

Curious Minds Podcast: How Sound Artists Make Movie Magic

  • by Micaela Marini Higgs @micaela_mh

Discover how Foley artists bring TV and movies to life with Curious Minds, an original podcast by Domestika

Curious Minds is an original podcast by Domestika that explores the curiosities and untold histories of the creative world.

Each week we’ll bring you a new episode, interviewing experts and creatives as we dive into the unusual origins of the images, patterns, and designs we take for granted.

Subscribe for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to never miss an episode.

When we watch movies and TV, we've come to accept, and expect, green screens and special effects.

But there's more than meets the eye. Because while you’re watching a fight scene, listening to the characters land blows and break bones, what you’re probably hearing is a Foley artist manipulating dried lasagna noodles or celery.

It turns out that Foley, what we call those custom sound effects, made with often unconventional props, plays a larger role than you might realize in bringing movie magic to life.

But where did this industry come from, and if it’s truly so important to storytelling, why is it often taken for granted?

In our third episode of Curious Minds we explore the cinematic history of sound with Vanessa Theme Ament, author of “The Foley Grail”, and speak with Emmy-award winning Foley artists Joanna Fang, Ronni Brown, and Alyson Dee Moore about how they trick your ear and if sound libraries can ever truly compete with sound artists.

You can download the transcript of this episode at the end of this article.

“It's like playing Dance Dance Revolution. But everything is a dance path,” says Joanna Fang of Alchemy Post Sound, describing how Foley artists work.

Because not only do they need to figure out what props can be manipulated to make a desired sound effect, they also need to watch and act out that sound in perfect sync with the scene.

To see an example, you can watch Foley artist Dennie Thorpe perform a scene from Jurassic Park using an ice cream cone, cantaloupe, and gooey pineapple to create the sound of a baby raptor slowly hatching from its shell.

To discover how Foley began, and what sound libraries and new technology mean for the industry, you can find the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Click on the link below to download a transcript of this episode. You’ll be able to view it once it’s available in your Downloads folder as a PDF.

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How Sound Artists Make Movie Magic - Transcript.pdf

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If you'd like to read more stories behind the images, patterns, and designs we take for granted, check out our other blog posts for Curious Minds, an original podcast by Domestika.

You May Also Like:

- Curious Minds Podcast: Why Do People Hate Comic Sans?
- Top 10: Films for Sound Design

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