It’s Mermaid Time: DIY Short Film Scoring, Part 4: Voicing

This is the fourth part in a series following my process of composing music for a short film. I’ll take you along on the creative journey with a specific real-world example, from conception through festival premiere. At the end of the series, see the finished product and listen to the full score!

This fourth installment will focus on finding the core instrumentation for the score, what I call “voicing.”

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Seven Best Music Software Apps for Composers

There are a ton of options when it comes to choosing the best music software available to composers today. It can be overwhelming to choose the “right” one. At the end of the day, the best choice is the software package that allows you to be the most creative. The less barriers between your imagination and the music, the better. And, the best software packages can even inspire you to try new things and compose music that is truly unique.

**UPDATED June 2019 to reflect new versions and features of the software**

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It’s Mermaid Time: DIY Short Film Scoring, Part 3: Attack Plan

This is the third part in a series following my process of composing music for a short film. I’ll take you along on the creative journey with a specific real-world example, from conception through festival premiere. At the end of the series, see the finished product and listen to the full score!

This third part will go through the initial script breakdown, and we’ll build an initial attack plan for the cues needed.

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It’s Mermaid Time: DIY Short Film Scoring, Part 2: Inspiration

This is the second part in a series following my process of composing music for a short film. I’ll take you along on the creative journey with a specific real-world example, from conception through festival premiere. At the end of the series, see the finished product and listen to the full score!

This second part will take you through my process for collecting and cultivating inspiration specific to this project.

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It’s Mermaid Time: DIY Short Film Scoring, Part 1: The Project

This is the first part in a series following my process of composing music for a short film. I’ll take you along on the creative journey with a specific real-world example, from conception through festival premiere. At the end of the series, see the finished product and listen to the full score!

This first part will introduce the project specifics and lay out the details I considered before deciding to tackling it.

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New Film Project in the Works

DIY Film Composer will go on a brief hiatus for the next few weeks as I work on a new film project.

I am composing the music for a short film that is slated to get a festival premiere in the spring. As I craft the score, I plan on documenting every step along the way. Then I will share the experience here in a series of in-depth DIY posts that walk through the entire process. Hopefully you’ll be able to learn from my workflow (and my missteps).

Stay tuned, great things are coming!

DIY Instruments: The Apprehension Engine Part 2: Application

Following up on part one, this article walks through how to build and play elements of “The Apprehension Engine.” The original, as made by Mark Korven and Tony Duggan-Smith, is a work of art. It’s a single instrument with various ways of creating fear-inducing sounds. I’m not trying to duplicate their design, but instead illustrate how my favorite elements work. Building your own DIY instruments will bring a unique flavor to your film music. Using this guide will hopefully spark your creativity when working on your next film score that requires bone-chilling atmosphere.

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DIY Instruments: The Apprehension Engine Part 1: Introduction

Embracing the do-it-yourself spirit, this is the first post in a series about DIY instruments. And we’re kicking things off with a really interesting, film composer-specific instrument dubbed “The Apprehension Engine.” It combines many unique elements to produce bone-chilling sounds that are perfect for a horror movie. Let’s look at what it does and how it works. Then in future posts, we’ll look at how we can replicate its elements to create unique sounds for our own horror movie scores.

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Mark Mothersbaugh: Film Composer Profile

Aside from a select few, most film composers are not household names. You probably know their music, but not their names or the other films they’ve worked on. In this post we’ll look at one composer in particular, Mark Mothersbaugh. He has had a long and varied career, and has written a lot of fun, beloved film scores.

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Easy Film Scoring Strategy: Imitate The Masters

If you’re still learning the ins and outs of film scoring – or just need some quick inspiration – try looking at the work of film composers who have come before you as a template.  Film scoring is never truly easy, but you can help yourself out by basing some of your composition on existing music. This post will outline some ideas for implementing this, depending on what you need.

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