Since the work on the sound design can take a lot of time, you should invest in the sound recording stage properly. Don’t waste the time of your sound designer on eliminating noises from the scene instead of working on more creative stuff for the scene.
The first step in film sound recording is reading the script. While you read the script, write down all the sounds that you hear in your head. If you are starting to have any ideas for ambience sounds, write them down too.
Look at your list and decide what the sounds you’ll need to record on location and what are the sounds you can record later on by yourself. Make a “sound Table”. Tis is a table containing the following information: scene, shot, Take, Timecode and description. In the description box, write down your comments on the sound.
All production begins with locations scout. This scout is done usually with the cinematographer, director, producer, and soundmen. Sometimes the screenwriter and lighting technician comes along. As a soundman, you must insist on being on this scout. If it does not fit your schedule, you may want to reach locations a day before the shooting. On the location pay attention to background noises. Will you be able to overcome them? Is it at certain times? Clapp and shout. Do you notice some echo? It’s essential that if you hear something that might be a problem, you’ll insist on fixing it. Don’t let anyone tell you stuff like “Don’t worry; we will fix it in the post”- That’s never happening.
Do not leave the location without recording 30-120 seconds of room atmosphere sound. The purpose of the ambient sound recording is to help the video editor to cover sound errors in the editing room. That means that the whole team is entirely silent, and only the natural noise of the place is recorded. It is important to mention that ambient sound can be room tone but also crowed mumbling, traffic or any sound that I son the background of a scene.
The sounds in your film, that weren’t recorded in the set will be recorded by the sound designer and they are called Foley (after James foley who invented the technique). They are added later on to the film. These sounds need to sound realistic and interesting. Today the foley artist has a big part in making the cinematic experience a big one. The sound designer will show the film to the Foley guy (or girl) and explain it’s concept to him. The Foley guy should take his notes and translate them into sound recordings.
This sound design for film course is trying not to be too technical, but this is something you need to know. When shooting on film, the sound can be recorded separately (double system)to a machine. It used to be only when filming with film, but nowadays we use it even for digital shooting. The major advance of the double system recording is that many good cameras don’t have the XLR connection you need to connect the mike. The single recording means recording directly into the camera.
You’ll need to decide which one will suit you best.