Over the past few weeks I have been writing a series of blogs with tips and advice for staying creative in lockdown. For the final blog, I’d like to have a quick roundup of everything I’ve covered. Hopefully this will be useful as a point of reference for anyone who missed some of these blogs!
Although we are setting aside our ‘Staying Home, Staying Creative’ campaign in order to focus our energies elsewhere, NUGEN’s support for audio professionals (and hobbyists!) during the pandemic is still ongoing. We are still offering additional temporary plug-in licenses for those who are unable to access their usual workspace, and our support inbox is open as always.
Recording and mixing at home
The first two blogs focused on some techniques for recording and mixing at home - making the best of what might be a less-than-ideal acoustic space.
In ‘3 ways to improve your lo-fi drum recording’ I drew from my own experiences recording demos at home. It isn’t ideal, but with a bit of careful mixing there are plenty of ways to improve the sound of a heavily dampened kit. Specifically, in this blog I recommended NUGEN Audio’s Stereoizer, Stereoplacer and ISL as the perfect tools!
Of course, there’s almost no point in trying to improve your recordings if you don’t have a good space for mixing. In ‘3 techniques for working in an untreated room’ I tackled that problem, this time branching out beyond solely NUGEN plug-ins. You could use a visual audio analysis suite to compensate for the frequencies you can’t hear, or you could use a “smart” monitoring plug-in to mix on headphones more effectively.
Taking care of your mental well-being
It’s no surprise that in the midst of a global catastrophe, many of us aren’t feeling particularly creative. And of course, you shouldn’t feel obligated to pull yourself out of that creative slump! There are things more important than productivity.
In ‘3 tips for pulling yourself out of a creative rut’, I offered Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies as a practical solution. But alongside that, I also suggested some more general methods for looking after your own headspace. Meditation and mindfulness can be indispensable tools at times like this!
Brushing up on technical knowledge
The current global situation seems like as good a time as any to brush up on some technical knowledge! With that in mind, I wrote some beginner’s guides for a couple of the processes NUGEN is best known for - loudness management and surround upmixing.
‘Loudness vs True Peak: a beginner's guide’ covers some basic loudness concepts. If you’re relatively new to using VisLM, LM-Correct, ISL or MasterCheck, then this could be a great starting point for developing an understanding of the technical terminology used in those plug-ins.
In ‘The biggest misconceptions about upmixing’ I took the opportunity to debunk some myths. Namely, is upmixing “lazy”? And does it create artefacts and phase issues?