Over the past month, we’ve seen a diverse mix of pro audio recording equipment. The list of microphones and recorders has sprawled to include almost 75 different models. Each sound pro featured in the “A Month of Field Recordists” uses their gear selections to hunt varied sound effects, from finicky optical equipment to stormy hurricanes to the tranquil calm of winter ambiences. Each pro has devised their own specialized tricks and techniques to capture their clips.
While the gear, target, techniques, and sound pros themselves are widely diverse, they are linked by one thing: the craft of field recording.
Field recording is distinct from other pro audio disciplines. How? Well, for one, mixing, editing, and Foley recording all take place within edit suites and mixing theatres. Field recordists are different. They are united by a defining characteristic: they strike out pursue sound clips beyond the cozy, acoustically treated walls of a sound studio.
Such field recording missions may begin by capturing the city sounds, cats, and cars around us. Recording challenges grow the farther a recordist travels from a sound studio, requiring more specialized gear and innovative techniques.
Today’s intrepid sound pro has travelled about as far as one can from an edit suite. For the past year, sound designer and field recordist Daan Hendriks has been recording sound fx in Africa.
I had been following Daan’s fascinating experiences on his blog. I reached out to Daan to see if he was interested in sharing what equipment he uses to help him practice his craft in such a rare location. He kindly agreed.
So, today, Daan Hendriks shares a kit designed to navigate the challenges of African field recording. He describes the diverse gear he needs to capture three types of tricky sound fx: focused birdsong, wildlife, and atmospheres. Daan also shares with us a special treat: an inventive trick for microphone positioning that helped him record remarkable wildlife sound fx on location in Africa.