Foley Artist at work

When a film is made, often the microphones concentrate on recording the words that the actors are saying.  This means they don't pick up all the other sounds that make a scene real.  Sometimes there is too much background noise, so the scene needs a new soundtrack to be recorded.

This is where a Foley Artist comes in.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia contributor Quenhitran.

A Foley Artist is an expert at making sound effects from all sorts of things.  He or she watches the movie, and records the sounds so that the soundtrack matches the action.

Watch this short video to see a Foley Artist in action.

Be a Foley Artist

You can have a try at being a Foley Artist yourself.

All you need to do is to find a video.  Cartoons work really well because they are not real life and all the sounds have to be made up.  If you can't find a video, try the funny Bernard video below.

Turn the sound off and let it play. 

Watch, and see what kind of sounds you can make to fit the action as the video plays. 

Think about what you could use to make the right sounds.

Afterwards, watch the video with the sound turned up. 

Were your sounds similar to those on the video?  What do you think the Foley Artist on the video used to make the sounds?

Foley Artists are very creative, and they have to be very observant about everyday sounds.  Pretending to be a Foley Artist is not only fantastic fun.  It also lets you use your imagination, and improves your observation and listening skills.