Kalantzis and Cope on Audio Design Elements

REFERENCE

What do the meanings refer to?

  • What is the particular meaning of the rhythm, pitch, volume, tempo, texture, directionality of a sound? e.g. a bell ringing, a voice heard over background noise).
    • How is a person noticeable in the sounds they make? (e.g. the sound of walking, breathing)
    • How is time referred to? (e.g. tempo, rhythm).
    • How is place referred to? (such as sound distance and directionality e.g. the sound in relationship to the conditions of its transmission and hearing).
    • How is an object represented by its distinctive sound? (e.g. a shower compared to an keyboard)
  • What general concept does a sound represent? (a doorbell, a car horn).
  • How is are the characteristics of the meaning represented in sound? (e.g. volume, pitch, texture).
  • How are relations represented in sound? (e.g. foreground/background sounds).

 

INTERACTION

How do the meanings connect the people in the action and the people who are communicating?

  • How do sounds position the sound maker? (e.g. a door opening, a steak frying).
  • How might another person interpret the sound? (e.g. information, a warning).

 

COMPOSITION

How does the overall meaning hold together?

  • How is the audio meaning structured? What constitutes completeness/incompleteness? (such as a piece of music or entering-starting and leaving ending a soundscape e.g. a song, a movement, a symphony; the sounds of the street/the sounds of the store).
  • What are its internal components and how do they combine to make meaning? (such as sound sequence e.g. notes to bars to whole pieces of music).
  • How is does an integrated set of sounds cohere? (e.g. musical scales, keys).
  • What are the perceptible ways of referring (such as literal sound likeness/abstract-symbolic reference e.g. a door bell compared to car horn).
  • What media are used to make the sound? (e.g. voice, musical instrument, sounds incidental to the use of an object).

 

CONTEXT

How are the meanings shaped by where they are situated?

  • How is sound framed by its context of situation? (e.g. incidental sound/focused sounds, prominent sounds/ambient sounds, such as sound effects in a movie, elevator music, iPod music, live music performed in an auditorium).
  • How does an audio meaning connect into a universe of sounds? (such as soundscapes, musical keys, musical genres e.g. major/minor musical keys, baroque/reggae genres).

 

PURPOSE

Whose interests do these meanings serve?

  • How do sounds or constellations of sounds establish certain priorities? (e.g. warnings, mood in musical keys).
  • Whose interests does the audio meaning serve? (e.g. ambient store music).
  • What affinities does it express or suggest? (e.g. serious/easy listening music).

 

Table 11.1: Audio Design Elements


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