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OSA 050-W21 | SALT: Learning The Basics: Audio Recording For Beginners

OSA 050-W21 | SALT: Learning The Basics: Audio Recording For Beginners

2/5-2/10 ONLINE

Maximum Enrollment: 10 LBS

Course Description


With the explosion of podcasts, what separates the professional from the amateur is high quality sound and content. Understanding the basics of audio recording provides the tools to achieve good sound.
With over thirty years of recording experience, sound artist Dianne Ballon will introduce the basics of audio recording and the techniques she has employed to achieve high quality productions. Students will hear sound-rich audio excerpts from stories about a cowboy’s bedroll to the sound of Arctic Terns nesting in Iceland. With humor and hindsight, students will explore examples of what works and what does not work.

Students will learn the characteristics and pick-up patterns of microphones and learn the differences between mono and stereo microphones and recordings. Topics include recording basics, interviewing techniques, microphone placement, microphone and recorder handling, and ambient/background sound. Assignments will put into practice what is learned.

Whether students are new to audio recording, in the early stages of creating a podcast, or never heard of a microphone pick-up pattern, this class will provide the foundation for audio recording and production. Bring your questions and your listening ear.



6:00-8:00 PM EST on Friday, Monday, Wednesday


Tuition: Early bird special! $395 until Jan 20, then $525

CEUs: 3.5



Dianne Ballon is a sound artist. Her sound works have aired on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. For 2021, she was awarded a Maine Artist Fellowship from the Maine Arts Commission. At Shenandoah National Park she was awarded an Artist-in Residency, where she created a sound portrait of the park. At the Goethe Institute, she presented her sound installation Musical Instrument Dreams. For an international radio art competition, she was awarded for her field recording of boats creaking at a dock in Iceland. For over 10 years, she was a member of the teaching and production staff at the National Audio Theatre Festivals. She produced audio for the national exhibition The Marines and Tet: The Battle That Changed the Vietnam War. She produces audio for 3-D PhotoWorks, a company that creates fine art accessible to the blind through touch and sound. At the University of Maine at Augusta, she taught audio production and radio theatre. She teaches annually at the Harvard Sound Education Conference and through the Podcast Garage in Boston. And, she works individually with producers on the many aspects of audio production.


• Access to an audio recording device: A professional audio recorder, OR a computer with audio recording capabilities, OR a cell phone with audio recording capabilities.
• Headphones (not earbuds).
• Optional: A hand-held microphone and a (DAW) digital audio workstation.

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