optical sound


check (2013)

Inspired by experiments in abstract film-phonography, check explores the sonic potential of running sequences of patterns through a 16mm film projector. Collages composed of three different patterns and solid areas of black and white were composed and photocopied onto strips of clear film leader. The sequences provide not only the images that are projected onto the screen, but also the soundtrack to the film.

Digitally Extending the Optical Soundtrack

Proceedings of the International Computer Music Conference
The optical soundtrack has a long history in experimental film as a means of image sonification. The technique translates image luminance into amplitude along the vertical axis, enabling the sonification of a wide variety of filmed patterns. While the technical challenges of working with film preclude casual exploration of the technique, digital implementation of optical image sonification allows interested users with skill sets outside of film to access this process as a means of sonifying video input.