237.231 Independent Study Week #9

Perception Session #3


Some items to work through:

Evaluating – where is your project now?

  1. I started by…….:
  2. This is why…………
  3. And this is what I discovered/learned/imagined……….
  4. AND then I did this……
  5. Because …….
  6. And this is what I discovered/learned/imagined…….

I started by considering how I might use my sense of hearing or sound processing in a piece.

This is why I reexamined the Processing Language, started to look at what options I have for music syntheses, how to record audio.

So, then I thought it might be interesting to explore spectrograms of selected audio extracts to see if I could see any commonality. On consideration, I felt that this is reverting to an “engineering” approach to this module, rather than really investigating the role of the senses. This is not a celebration of the senses; it instead becomes an analysis of how senses work and how they influence, which feels like the wrong approach.

So, then I thought more about sound, particularly music, and how it affects me at a deeper level. I have pretty broad tastes – I graze through many genres – so it’s of interest to me to understand why music affects me in the way that it does. I am not a musician; I am passionate about experiencing music.

  • Do I need to take more risks in my experimentations or investigations?
  • How could my project be visualised

So, what do I want to do instead?

Rather than analyse music; experience music. Use poetry, sketches, other visual media, etc. to somehow respond to and articulate what I experience when I listen to a piece of music.

Not an interpretation of the music. A representation of the experience.

Perhaps the product of this could be a Twitter feed of work based on pieces of music? Or just simply blog posts on this blog, so I don’t need to work inside the 280 character limit?


I will try poetry. So, an experiment with poetry as a response to music. Going back to Deadmau5’s Sofi Needs A Ladder, a poem:

Sofi Needs A Ladder

Meeting mid-brain,
Left and right repetition,
Plucking expectations.

Tempo rising unphased,
Sympathetic resonances move ever closer,
Tightening a ratchet strap in my headphones.

The terminus becomes visible.
Two halves unify and ascend.
One minute.

Visual Media

Visual media is another option. Many visual artists have been inspired by music, including a recent project for the Interscope music label.

To celebrate Interscope Records’ 30th anniversary, dozens of renowned visual artists have created original works inspired by songs and albums released by the label’s musical artists through the years.

‘These Artists Are Reinterpreting Music by Billie Eilish, Blackpink, Olivia Rodrigo, and More as Original Works’. ELLE, 13 Jan. 2022, https://www.elle.com/culture/music/a38752208/interscope-30th-anniversary-artists-inspired-by-music/.
Seeking Hearts – Jennifer Guidi
‘Seeking Hearts (Black MT, Pink Sand, Pink CS, Pink Ground), 2021’. LACMA, http://www.lacma.org/node/41003. Accessed 28 Sept. 2022.
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