AUDIOCRAFT, “Tools of Radio”

I must admit. When i joined radio in 1987, i only learned a few about broadcasting and about radio per se except for its technical side where i had been trained in school.

I honed my skills in radio broadcasting through self-study and work experience. I further dipped my fingers in radio when i took my master studies in UP-OU and more about digital radio production during my Digital Radio Journalism course at the Konrad Adenauer Asian Center For Journalism in AdMU.

Fortunately, for my students at the University of San Jose Recoletos in Cebu City they shared my vast knowledge i gained for years. Here is one lesson that i also liked–AUDIOCRAFT.


*Ironically, the audio clips here have no sounds because of the Slideshare’s inability to play sound.

SLIDE 1

I appropriately named this presentation as Audiocraft, “Tools of Radio” because the items inside are all collaborative in producing an excellent piece of audio production.

SLIDE 2

Watching your favorite news program without any sound coming out from the TV set could caused you to be upset. It would surely crave you for its sound.

SLIDE 3

That feeling proves that without sound, picture is incomplete. Sound is “half the picture”. Sound completes the ideas presented along with the picture.

SLIDE 4

No one wants talking in front of the rostrum but you can’t be heard by the audience.

SLIDE 5

(playback with sounds already)

SLIDE 6, 7, 8

Audiocraft is not only the combination of different sounds but it’s the management of different sound elements. It deals with inter-relatedness of voice, music and sound effects. A montage voiced report is an example of how sounds are managed to picture a story.

SLIDE 9

Voice, Music, and Sound Effects are elements of Audiocraft.

SLIDE 10

While Voice is created by the human’s vocal chord, not every person is created equal when it comes to voice. The human voice can be mimic but not completely copied. Our voice is unique to each and every person.

In broadcasting, there’s a newscaster’s voice: baritone for men while lyric tone for women. Most male newscasters are baritone. GMA’s Mike Enriquez, to name a few, is an exception. The late Angelo Castro of ABS-CBN was a good baritone-voiced anchor. The likes of Korina Sanchez, Mel Tiangco, Claire Celdran, and other female anchors have the sweet and melodic voice. The veteran news anchor Tina Palma, on the other hand, doesn’t fall in this category.

SLIDE 11, 12

Voice comes with proper pacing and delivery to achieve impact. Most of the time, it is done according to the type of script you are voicing or narrating. To deliver the lines correctly, you have to familiarize with the script. Read it aloud and mark the lines where you are supposed to pause to change idea or catch your breath.

SLIDE 13

Pronunciation and Enunciation provide the clarity of speech. Announcers who commonly mispronounce words are oftentimes perceived less credible. Be familiar with the words and do a pronunciation guide in the script. Enunciation refers to the ability of the newscaster to phonate or produce or not to produce the sound of the individual letter.

SLIDE 14, 15

Emoting simply means actually feeling what you are reading or talking about. In other words, let your voice create the “picture” in your listener’s mind.

Underline the word/s that needs to be stressed. Stress or degree of emphasis on a word can enhance the meaning of what you are talking about.

SLIDE 16

Modulation is what makes a stage performer and a radio announcer differ from one another. A stage performer is taught to project his voice all the way to the back of the hall while the announcer is trained to focus his voice only to the microphone.

A relatively low pitched voice sounds more credible than a high pitched one. So, a news anchor in radio or TV doesn’t need to shout. He is not inside a hall. He is facing a microphone that is used to enhance his voice and let everyone hear him like he’s talking to them in person.

SLIDE 17

Microphone technique is a way to effectively use the tool. I’ve discussed thoroughly about the Microphone– its type, characteristics, pick-up patterns, and technique in my previous post.

SLIDE 18-22

Music, as an element of Audiocraft influences the mood and experience of the audience. It can be used as background or as a music bed and as a jingle.

SLIDE 23-28

The use of sound effect completes audiocraft. It completes the picture that one creates in his mind while listening. It can move us as an action sound. Teleport us to a scene when it is used as a setting sound. And it makes us feel of certain conditions when it symbolizes a scene or condition.

SLIDE 29

The management of sounds (music and sound effects) follows basic directions. These directions are most often indicated in the script to guide voice talents, directors, audiomen, and effects men.

Establish or Hold— is executed when the level of the sound is at normal (at about Zero in the Volume meter). It stays at this level for certain period or for few seconds before fading out.

Fade-in, Fade-out, Fade under— is done by adjusting up and down the Volume level.

Segue— is done by an abrupt change of sound or music while both outgoing and incoming sound or music are at normal level.

Crossfade— as explained in the slide is fading out of the current music/sound and fading in of the incoming music/sound. Later, the incoming music/sound will stabilize at normal level.

SLIDE 30

Sneak In, Sneak Out– is the coming in and coming out of a sound/music as if a car is passing by an area.

Montage– is a combination of many sounds: voice, music, effects. It can depict a scene like in a war or emergency. Proper management of sound levels and mixing is needed for this.

Bridge–is done when a music or sound connotes connection between a scene to other scene like depicting a dream in a radio drama.

Stinger– is mostly used in public affairs or radio commentary programs to stress a statement. It can be voice, music or sound effects. Bombo Radyo has been using the bass drum (Bombo) inside their announcer’s booth to mark a point literally with a bang of the drum. A fart sound could be used to convey lying or telling lies. A smashing glass could be used to point an accident. The list is endless for stingers.

That’s all folks. Drop a comment or two below if you have questions or reactions to share. Thanks.

 

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Television Camera Shots and Direction Cues

The slide presentation below is one of my lessons in Television Production Management and Directions under the Introduction to Broadcast Media for the mass communication students at the University of San Jose Recoletos in Cebu City. In this presentation, i discussed about the different camera shots and direction cues for program directors and floor directors. The video on the slide can’t be played due to the limitation of my Slide Share account. Nevertheless, i put a short discussion on every slide after the presentation.

SLIDE 2
It shows the different shots according to the Proportion of the Object, meaning the size of the subject with respect to the frame. If the object is small and the background and foreground are big because the shot is wide, it means it’s a Long/Wide shot.

SLIDE 3
It lists the various Camera Shots Categories.

SLIDE 4
It shows the different shots of a person according to proportion.

SLIDE 5
It gives a concrete example or actual camera shots according to the proportion of the object.

SLIDE 6
It talks about the Number of People in the Frame, from Single Shot to Crowd shot.

SLIDE 7 (Movement of the Camera)
Zoom In/Out
—  (Video can’t be played)  It refers to the movement of the shots from long shot to close-up shot or vice-versa by adjusting the zoom lens of the camera. It is the camera’s component that moves while the subject is stationary.

SLIDE 8  (Movement of the Camera) 
Panoramic/Panning Shot — The shot moves sideways, from left to right or vice-versa while the subject is stationary with the camera is at a fixed point. This shot is use when correlating a subject to another subject within the vicinity. A panning shot should not be used to show how big an area. Use Long Shot or Group Shot instead.

SLIDE 9  (Movement of the Camera)
Swish Pan — This is done by panning the camera fast from one subject to another to show correlation. It’s usually applied in sports coverage and other action shots.

SLIDE 10  (Movement of the Camera)
Tilt Up/Down
 — You should not call it Pan Down/Up since the latter is the camera movement sideways of the subject. It refers to the movement of the camera from up to down or vice-versa of the subject. When you take a shot from head to toe–that’s Tilt Down.

SLIDE 11  (Movement of the Camera)
Dolly In/Out Shot — The camera moves forward towards the subject or moves away from the subject. This can be done when the camera is mounted on a tripod with a dolly (base support of the tripod).

SLIDE 12  (Movement of the Camera)
Running/Trucking — When the camera moves sideways while the subject is stationary by bringing the camera to either side, left or right of the subject.

SLIDE 13  (Movement of the Camera)
Following
 It is used when the camera follows the movement of the subject. It involves dollying and trucking.

SLIDE 14  (Movement of the Camera)
Walking
 — The cameraman is walking while taking the shots on a subject so that different scenes are captured from the beginning of the shot until it stops.

SLIDE 15  (Movement of the Camera)
Crane
 — It’s when a camera is mounted on a crane and operated by a cameraman down below using a remote controller. The shots vary from low angle to bird’s eye view.

SLIDE 16  (Movement of the Subject with Respect to the Frame)
Run-Through
— Here, the camera is on steady position while the subject moves in unto the frame running. The frame initially appears empty and suddenly the subject appears running unto the frame.

SLIDE 17 (Movement of the Subject with Respect to the Frame)
Walk-Through
 — The subject walks in unto the frame.

SLIDE 18 (Movement of the Subject with Respect to the Frame)
Fall-Through
 — The subject is falling from above unto the frame. One example as shown in the slide is the Fita commercial where a portion of a car fell into the ground.

SLIDE 19 (Position of the Camera with Respect to the Subject)
Low-Angle
 — This is when the camera is positioned on the ground or below the subject. It creates a “giant-effect” on the subject.

SLIDE 20 (Position of the Camera with Respect to the Subject)
High-Angle — It is the opposite of the Low-Angle and it creates a “dwarfism effect” since the subject appears small on its plane.

SLIDE 21 (Position of the Camera with Respect to the Subject)
Aerial
 — Most of the time, this can be achieved by taking a shot aboard a plane or chopper or air balloon where an aerial view of the subject is possible.

SLIDE 22 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Establishing
 — Any shots can be used to establish or identify a place of an event. In a concert, for example, a long shot or crowd shot can identify how big the concert is. You can make the facade of a building to establish where the event is taking place.

SLIDE 23 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Master— In an interview, the close-up shot of the interviewee makes the master shot. In a speech, the close-up shot of the speaker is the master shot. In a basketball event, the long shot from the upper box is the master shot. In short, Master Shot is always what the camera is recording.

SLIDE 24 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Reverse
— In an interview, the shot of the reporter while conducting the interview is the reverse shot. In basketball, reverse shot (from the other side of the court) is always labelled as such to avoid confusion among the viewers as to the point-of-view.

SLIDE 25 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Reaction
— As the name says, it is a reaction. It’s not a Reaction Shot when a cameraman shoots a pretty lady talking to someone beside her while someone is speaking in a conference.  Remember, a Reaction Shot has a relation with your Master Shot (the speaker). The Reaction Shot should have been someone listening intently to the speech.

SLIDE 26 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Insert — Those are close-up shots showing details of a document, photo, etc. This usually comes after a long shot showing the subject. For example, a person is holding a document in the previous frames. The insert shot that follows should show the details on the document.

SLIDE 27 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Point-of-View — as i mentioned in Slide 24, when covering a basketball game all the cameras should be placed in one side of the court (SLIDE 28). Otherwise, the viewers will be confused on the direction of each team if the video will display the shots from the opposite sides of the playing court. The same with biking as shown in the slide: Camera 1 shows the biker moving towards right direction while Camera 2(positioned at the opposite side of the road) shows the same biker moving towards left direction.

SLIDE 29 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Cut-Away 
— Any shots can be used as Cut-Away for the sole purpose of masking the jump cut in the sequence of video clips. This is usually done when joining two video clips of an interview that shows sudden jerking or omitted portion of the clips. Most cut-aways are Reverse Shot or Insert Shot or a video of what is being discussed.

SLIDE 30 (Function in the Cinematic Sequence)
Lead-In
— It shows the direction of the subject in the frame. This is done by applying the Rule-of-Thirds during a shot where one side of the subject is left with a space to show the direction. The image on the right of the slide shows no space in front of the car and it is confusing the direction of the car.

The rest of the slides in this presentation can already be comprehend by means of its labels. So, i would leave this post up to this point. Just leave your questions or comments in the box below if you have issues or something to clarify. 🙂

History of the Cebuano Journalism

Below is the description of the prezi slides above which i presented in a timeline format. This is part of my lessons in Cebuano Journalism at the University of San Jose Recoletos tracing the roots of the use of the Cebuano language in the news community of the province of Cebu.

1901

The late Senator Vicente Sotto is considered the “Father of Cebuano Journalism”  for publishing “Ang Suga“–the first community newspaper in Cebuano language which saw print for the first time on June 16, 1901 in Cebu.

However, Don Vicente Sotto admitted 30 years later that it was not easy to write in the mother tongue considering the influence of the spanish language among the locales, especially the writers.

Notably, the spelling that were found in the “Ang Suga” had a spanish influence like: guinicanan, camo, canako, quini (kini), cana, guiadto, guihimo or guijimo, and the use of the U or O depends only on who was writing. (Mga Batakan sa Panitik sa Binisaya-Sinugbuanon, Edgar Godin, 2007)

1902

Ang Suga” was succeeded by several publications also in Cebuano like the “Ang Kaluwasan” and “Ang Camatuoran” by Vicente’s brother–Filemon in 1902. Other reading materials in Cebuano that followed the “Ang Suga” were: Tingog sa Lungsod (1904), Ang Bandila (1906), Kauswagan (1907), Babaye, Alimyon, Bag-ong Kusog, Bag-ong Balod, and others.

During the occupancy of the Americans in the Philippines, the English language was introduced as the official medium of the government and in most businesses. Thus, the choice of English as the medium for most of the newspapers and broadcast news was more logical.

WWW II

When the Japanese occupied the Philippines during the World War II, most publications had ceased operation. However, the “Kadaugan” continue to exist and fought against the Japanese regime.

POST-WAR

When most of the publications resumed after the war, the English language still dominated in the news–in both print and broadcast. The non-existence of Cebuano news was aggravated by the adoption of the tagalog-based “Pilipino” as the national language of the Philippines in 1959.

However, before the World War II erupted a local station of the Manila Broadcasting Company now named DyRC was already established in Cebu which had been broadcasting in the Cebuano language including its newscast.

TV NEWS

In my younger years, i had witnessed that the news programs on television were mostly in English including the local “News at 7” over GMA-7 Cebu in the 80s. Archt. Melva Java was the main news anchor of GMA-7 and had been co-anchored by the late Bobby Amor.

News at 7” faced its biggest threat and rival that caused its signing off in the later part of the 80s when ABS-CBN Ch. 3’s TV Patrol Cebu came on-the-air on August 28, 1988.

TV Patrol Cebu changed the landscape of the local news on television. Aside from using the Cebuano language as its medium, it covered happenings at night time with its “Pulis Report” segment. The use of the Cebuano language proved very effective among the masses as the newscast overtook the viewership ratings of GMA-7’s News at 7 in just three months. In about a year, GMA-7 Cebu was forced to sign off its newscast and replaced it with “Balitang Bisdak” anchored by Bobby Nalzaro, formerly with Bombo Radyo Cebu. Balitang Bisdak followed TV Patrol Cebu in using the Cebuano language as its medium.

It was not TV Patrol Cebu that started the newscast on television in Cebuano. A year before it, the first TV newscast in Cebuano went on air. It was the Newswatch Cebuano Edition of RPN Ch. 9 that first introduced Cebuano in the news on TV. It was anchored by the veteran radio announcer–Gammy Malazarte. I was part of the reportorial staff of the program being a radio reporter of DyKC–the AM radio station of RPN in Cebu. Other reporters include Rey Martinez, Bob Malazarte and Fides Palicte who is now the station manager of RPN Cebu.

RPN Cebu’s News Director Job Tabada (deceased) thought of the idea of having a news program on television using the Cebuano language to let the masses understand more of the content of the news. Hence, i considered the late Job Tabada as the “Father of Cebuano TV Newscast“.

However, Newswatch Cebuano Edition did not stay long because of the lack of support from the management of RPN-9. When TV Patrol Cebu went on-air a year later, i was hired by ABS-CBN Cebu together with former colleague in RPN–Bob Malazarte to compose the 4-man editorial team of the news department. The other reporter was Titus Borromeo and now Atty. Bingo Gonzales was our News Manager. ABS-CBN did not hire the services of known media personalities but chose to have virtually unknown newscasters in the person of Robinson Yap, Atty. Vicky Hermosisima, and Nanette Tapayan as TV Patrol Cebu’s news anchors.

The next years saw the rest of the TV News programs in Cebu already in Cebuano including the latest to be established–“Aksyon Bisaya” of TV-5. 🙂

UPDATE!

On January 28, 2013- the first and only national newscast in Cebuano was launched in Manila. It’s the SOLAR NEWS CEBUANO of the Solar News Channel operated by the Solar Television Network, Inc.

The former Miss Cebu–Menchu Antigua-Macapagal anchors the program televised daily at 12:30nn – 1pm. The production staff is headed by this blogger as its Producer with a couple of Visayan staff.  Catch the daily newscast of the Solar News Cebuano here.

JOURNALISM ETHICS 101: On-Air Telephone Interviews

What’s in the book and what’s otherwise practiced!

(KBP Broadcast Code 2007, Art. 7 Sec. 7)
"Telephone calls or interviews must not be aired without informing the other party beforehand."

However, in real practice many broadcasters are instantly putting on-the-air people they called by phone without informing the person at the other end of the line that he/she is already heard over the radio.

The practice is unfair to the person who might speak foul or inappropriate language without knowing he/she can be heard by radio listeners.

On the part of the broadcaster, it could be a violation of the Anti-Wire Tapping Law considering that every public affairs program of any radio station has a tape recording.

(RA 4200--Anti Wire Tapping Law, Sec. 1)
"It shall be unlawful for any person, not being authorized by all the parties to any private communication or spoken word, to tap any wire or cable, or by using any other device or arrangement, to secretly overhear, intercept, or record such communication or spoken word..."

Recording a Radio Show on a Mobile Phone

myphone T23 Duo has a good sound recorder.

Finally, i have tried in full myphone T23 Duo’s sound recorder during my coverage with the business plan making seminar of the “Search for W.I.N.N.E.R.s” yesterday at the USC-SVD Study Mission Center.

All the voice recordings were used in yesterday’s episode of my radio show–“USC-Kapamilya Negosyo Na” over DyAB1512.

The result was amazing considering most cellphones have omni-directional microphone. Omni-directional microphones pick up sounds from all directions as its pick-up pattern.

Omni-Directional microphone picks up sounds from all directions.

Cardioid pick-up pattern is a heart-shape. The microphone picks up sound more at the front than its sides.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia: A cardioid generated by a rolling circle

The manual of the T23Duo doesn’t speak about its pick-up pattern characteristic whether it is omni-directional or cardioid which is widely-used in broadcasting. My suspicion, based on the way it picks up sounds during my recording, T23Duo has a cardioid microphone.

I have to convert first the AMR files into another format suitable for editing in my audio editing software.

Since the recording audio format was in compress and lossy format AMR, the recorded voices are a little dull. The Adaptive Multi-Rate (AMR) is common in GSM and UMTS mobile phones because of its speech format. But its sampling frequency is 8khz at 13-bit which is equivalent to the sound of a land line telephone–considered the lowest audio sampling quality.

Hence, i made a little audio enhancement on the recording using Adobe Audition to improve the quality. The tone is adjusted by lowering the low-band frequencies while increasing the mid-range and high frequencies using the graphic equalizer on my audio editing software.

The final result was amazing. It’s of broadcast quality. As if, i am using a professional voice recorder for my entire coverage of the event.