Independent Project - Sound/Movement

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My Independent project focused on how sound is necessitated by movement, a phenomena that is perceived visually, mostly. I wanted to find the limits of perceptibility between the visual motion and audible sound from an object in motion. Though the final project plan has not yet come to fruition, I've produced several investigative projects in the process that may help to at least spark conceptual curiosity.

1. Mic in pillow: Of course, there are infinitesimal worlds of movement that cannot be seen or heard without some amplification. There is perhaps this one instance where we've all considered that - as we lay with our ear to a pillow, we can hear the miniscule fibers rub and bend and stress and settle at a volume of eerie definition. With a piezo microphone, I amplified this world of tiny timbers gnashing against each other to get a closer listen at the sort of commotion that occurs on levels we may not consider.

2. Mic in ice: A similar sonic phenomena occurs when a microphone is encased in ice and allowed to melt. When amplified, we get to hear the ice stress and crack and drag across the surface of the piezo. There is an apt visual component to this if we can see the ice chunk melting and sliding across the floor at a barely perceptible speed. This is, on a small scale, what I wanted to produce for my final project (though I wanted to go further than simply lodging a piezo in a block of ice). Admittedly, it's not the traveling movement of the ice block that we hear, it's the block fracturing apart, but the visual and audio components would have referenced the goal of my concept.

3. Low Hz speaker: As a sort of inverse investigation, I explored the boundary when movement no longer becomes sonically perceptible and is instead only visually evident. I produced a sine sweep of frequencies from about 50 Hz down to ~3 or 4 Hz. As the 20 second sweep starts, we can both see and hear the speaker producing an extremely low tone, but as the vibrations of the speaker get less frequent, the tone drops low enough to become "invisible" to the human ear. Instead, we can only see the speaker breathing, pumping in and out silently but at an aggressive amplitude.

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