May 15 – May 20, 2022
If you enjoy listening to bird sounds, you’ll delight in recording their songs and calls. Whether you are a beginner or advanced sound recordist, whether you are using a smart phone or specialized digital recording equipment, you can learn to realize the most out of every recording situation, and help us continue to build the collection of bird sounds of Acadia National Park. The workshop, a collaboration of Schoodic Notes: Bird Sounds of Acadia and the Bird Ecology Program at Schoodic Institute, includes hands-on field recording experience, classroom lectures and demonstrations, and “critical listening” sessions in which you will receive constructive feedback to improve your recordings.
Each morning will be spent in the field, recording birds as they greet the day on the Schoodic Peninsula at Acadia National Park. Late mornings and afternoons at Schoodic Institute will provide opportunities to deepen your knowledge and practice on all aspects of sound recording. You will gain an understanding of the science of sound as it relates to the capabilities of microphones and recorders. You will develop excellent field techniques for use with any equipment. You will learn to use bird behavior to your advantage, and understand the scientific value of documenting the behaviors you observe in the amazing and inevitable close encounters that recordists experience. You will master basic editing skills to prepare your recordings for uploading to Cornell’s Macaulay Library via eBird, and be introduced to computer software to visualize and analyze sound.
Your instructors for the workshop are Greg Budney, former Audio Curator of the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology; Martha Fischer, seasoned recordist and former Audio Archivist at the Macaulay Library; and Laura Sebastianelli, ecological educator and project founder of Schoodic Notes: Bird Sounds of Acadia. With a maximum of 18 registrants, you will benefit from a high instructor to participant ratio (1:6).
Day 1: Begins on the Schoodic Institute campus at 11:00 AM as the group convenes for this 5-day workshop. Check-in is at Rockefeller Hall. We’ll begin to orient you to the campus as we walk to our classroom in Wright Hall. We’ll provide an overview to the workshop and introduce you to some of the most common bird sounds on the Schoodic Peninsula, before walking over to Schooner Commons for lunch. When we return to the classroom, we’ll compare the qualities of a few sound recordings. You’ll set up your recording equipment before we head outside for a field recording demonstration. After a short break, you’ll be introduced to the physics of sound, and how it relates to digital recorders and microphones. We break for the day at 5:00 PM, after instructions are provided for Monday morning’s field recording session. Commuters will head home, and residential participants will gather for dinner.
Day 2: We’ll meet at our pre-determined recording site at 5:45 AM for our first morning of field recording, spreading out in three general areas with your instructors. We’ll all gather in the field for a break at 8:30 AM and continue field recording from 9:00-10:30 AM. Returning to campus, we’ll demonstrate how to make basic edits to sound files, and you’ll have an opportunity to practice on your own recordings. Following lunch we’ll discuss the importance of metering, and introduce you to visualizing sound. After an afternoon break, we’ll have our first critical listening session in which participants share a recording from their morning’s field session. We break for the day at 5:00 PM, again, after instructions are provided for Tuesday morning’s field recording session. Commuters will head home, and residential participants will gather for dinner.
Days 3, 4, & 5: We’ll meet at our pre-determined recording site on Schoodic Peninsula at 5:45 AM for our morning of field recording with your instructors. We’ll all gather again in the field for a break at 8:30 AM and continue field recording from 9:00-10:30 AM. Back in the classroom, you will edit your sound files, see presentations on documenting field recordings, and an introduction to sound analysis software: Raven Lite, as well as a demonstration on uploading recordings to Macaulay Library via eBird. The afternoon break is followed by a critical listening session, breaking for the day at 5:00 PM, after instructions are provided for the next morning’s field recording session. Commuters will head home, and residential participants will gather for dinner.
Day 6: We’ll meet at our pre-determined recording site on Schoodic Peninsula at 5:45 AM for your last morning of field recording with your instructors. We’ll gather in the field for a break at 8:30 AM and continue field recording from 9:00-10:30 AM. At 10:30 AM, we’ll gather one last time for a closing circle, departing on our separate ways from the field by 11:30 AM.
There are Commuter and Residential options available for this workshop. The Commuter option for $595 includes the workshop, and Sunday’s lunch (with an option to add lunches and/or dinners). The Residential option for $1,175 includes the workshop, 5 nights lodging, and all meals: brown-bag breakfasts in the field (MON-FRI), lunches and dinners (SUN-THU). Lodging assignments based on guests sleeping in a private bedroom in a shared apartment. (To inquire about lodging upgrades, please call Megan at 207-288-1337 or Michelle 207-288-1356.)
Equipment List: Participants should plan to bring a recording system; at minimum a smart phone, or a complete recording system (a digital audio recorder, microphone with windscreen, and headphones, as well as a power supply, and recording media cards), binoculars, and a laptop computer. A limited amount of field recording equipment is available for loan on a first-come, first-served basis.
Questions are encouraged; feel free to contact Laura Sebastianelli at email@example.com. To register click HERE, or on the button at the top of the page to be taken to Schoodic Institute’s website.