Every year I summarize the most popular posts from the year before. I also include a few favourites I’ve enjoyed writing.
Let’s take a look.
For the first time in five years I missed about three months of posts here. Travelling made regular writing difficult but I managed to get it under wraps by the second half of the year.
In fact, the end of 2016 was perhaps my most productive time ever. The site now has 300 articles and over 400,000 words.
I began with a few interviews. Then, the second half of the year focused on two extensive series: “Metadata Month” and “A Month of Field Recordists.”
- A Mission to Capture Vanishing Sound FX. Prompted by a reader’s suggestion, I began researching pioneering field recordist Peter Handford. What I discovered was a fascinating history of Handford’s race to capture the vanishing sound of steam train sound fx. From a writing perspective, this is probably my favourite article on the site. The article pretty much wrote itself and I feel it flows nicely.
- Preserving Nature Sounds: Interview with Cheryl Tipp of the British Library. In early 2016, I began looking around for new field recordists for a second “A Month of Field Recordists” series. I asked Ms. Tipp if she was interested. She told me she hadn’t been field recording lately, but would be happy to talk about her work curating the British Library’s wildlife and environmental sounds archive.
- The State of Indie Sound Effects: New Podcast Episode Available. An interview I did with the folks at A Sound Effect about the explosion of independent sound fx libraries.
- I rewrote the Field Recording Gear Buyer’s Guide with new sections and selections current for the end of 2016.
- How to Kill Field Recording Frustration. Tips for evading the challenges we face as audio professionals.
- Metadata Month – Back to Basics. I revived the “Metadata Month” series I began back in 2014. This time the series focused on metadata basics, including:
- The Quick-Start Guide to Adding Sound FX Library Metadata. A simple, step-by-step method for adding basic metadata to your first sound fx library.
- The 7 Commandments of Sound FX Metadata. Seven tips for writing powerful, effective metadata.
- I also wrote introductory posts for three metadata apps: Soundly, Basehead, and Soundminer.
- I couldn’t resist temptation, and ended up sneaking a few advanced posts into the list: Sound FX Metadata Tech Specs: Demystifed and How to Batch Rename Sound Files – From Scratch.
- A Month of Field Recordists: 2016. I revisited the series interviewing pro field recordists with 23 new articles.
- Like the 2015 series, it also included an analysis post of the pros’ gear selections.
- I wanted to hear from the community, too. So, I ran a survey of your thoughts on gear. That spawned an article about community audio recorder choices, microphone choices and favourite kits, and community field recording tips.
- The Inspiration for Field Recording: The Science and The Art. While the posts began by examining equipment, the series were punctuated by thoughtful reflections about why people record sound effects outside. These two articles examined the motivations for field recording.
Thank you to everyone for reading the posts and sharing them with others.
Read previous “best of” articles from 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.
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