I first “met” Richard on Twitter. He also came highly recommended by a much esteemed former colleague, so I knew he would be a bit of allright. Richard set up Phonographic in 2011 and Substance has been using him ever since. (He also started surfing, which ups the ante on anyone in my books.) I thought it would be nice to get to know Richard a little better, seeing as though he works in the mysterious dark art called “sound” but is still a really nice guy. How is this possible?
1. If you were one of The Beatles, which one would you be?
Thats a tough one. 2 are dead and the other 2 are really old. Which one should I choose Paul, Ringo, Paul, Ringo… ok I’ll go with John because he still looks the youngest and he had a big white piano.
2. How was Phonographic born?
Well, I was working for a company doing what I do now. One night I had a dream where the roof collapsed on my colleagues and I. We all got out safely and I scored a camera. This, in hindsight, foretold my coming retrenchment about a week later. It had a profound affect on me. I saw the camera that I had scored in the dream as a collection of new skills that I could take with me to the next thing. I decided at that point that I would start my own studio. It took about 2 years and a move to CT before I was strictly running my own business. The name Phonographic was a friend of mines idea that came to light around a camp fire in the Magaliesberg mountains. I liked it but I found out that you get the same thing with Phonographic and pornographic as you do with someone called Kenneth and the question “What’s the frequency?” Still it makes for a good icebreaker.
3. What do you actually do, sitting there at your computer all day?
Well, the one side of my business is audio post production. So I will get the raw audio and the final video edit and then I start to clean that audio up so that it all sounds balanced. Then I will add sound effects if needed and then mix it all together with music to get a final mix for TV, cinema or the internet. In short, I push buttons and turn knobs until everything sounds awesome.
The other side of my business, and my biggest passion, is music. Music composition and production to be precice.
Here i’ll get a brief from agency for a piece of music and I will compose something that I think is appropriate. Often its the first idea that is the best. Sometimes I have no idea. none at all. Then I just push buttons and turn knobs until the next day when 4 hours before the deadline I whack out a track that blows the mind..
Its all about putting yourself in the right space to catch the proverbial inspired ball of juju.
4. Who is the coolest person you have ever met?
This is a tough one. The coolest?
It could be Tim Robbins. It could be my wife. It could be my english teacher… the Jury is out!
(YL: note how he does not say me! #fail Richard!)
5. What is the last thing you think about before you go to sleep?
I’ll often have a deep sense a gratitude. Often I collapse in a heap and pull the cover over me and at just that point I realize how fortunate I am. I have work, I have a home, I have a beautiful wife, I have food, I have a bed, I have peace. This makes me grateful beyond measure.
And now you can see why I like him. What a rad dude, no? Beyond all this radness, Richard is also offering a once-off offer of a 10% discount to first time clients at Phonographic, who heard about him through this blog. You heard right. That is 10% of your first audio final mix, VO recording or sound design with Richard. Pretty neat, hey?
And if you still don’t understand what he does, have a look at his site here.
This was the penultimate “A Few of My Favourite Things” blog. Final one coming soon, with Cal Bruns from Matchboxology.
Its been such fun sharing a few of the people I work with. Together we add up to a slick, professional, but never humourless video production experience. Get in touch if that’s what you’re after!