Who is Jack Foley?

Our latest blog will happily go some way to explaining the story behind the man. Basically, he worked in the movie industry and started the idea of adding sounds to film after they were made. Jack Foley was attributed with adding a sound track to the silent movie 'Showboat' creating all the audio live as the film played in the background. It was a huge success and spawned an industry that today is known as sound design.


Although a lot of modern technology is used in todays sound recordings some of the early techniques of stomping on the ground, shaking stuff about and just about anything you can think of is still the backbone of good sound design.

Zoom Recorder and hand turning metal bar
Turning a metal bar in an old range to record a squeak

Usually all of this is added to a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) and edited with various effects to enhance or alter the sound to make it fit the visuals exactly, but it all stems from creating the original sound. Naturally, it may not be possible to record everything yourself, such as a gun or a submarine, but there are plenty of sound libraries available where a host of sounds can be downloaded. Some of these are even free, but may not be top quality.


Other methods are also used such as creating the sounds using synthesisers, which can lead to exciting and experimental audio. Whichever way the sound is put together it is usually an exact science with a lot of feeling thrown in to get it just right. If you'd like to know more check out some of the work on our Sound Design page and don't be afraid to contact us if you have any further questions. We'll be glad to help answer them.

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