The other day, I was doing a sound design exercise. Its a simple one really. First, I load up a synth twice. In one session I load a factory preset in. In the other session, I create an empty patch. Then, I recreate the preset from scratch. The idea is to discover tricks when it comes to sound design. This time, what I learned was not a trick bur more of a philosophy.
Make a lot of a little. Its a bit of an odd idea, but is a simple one. When making music, rather than trying to make a big change all at once, try making multiple minor changes. I have heard this from different mixing engineers over the years. They would tell me to make small adjustments in my EQ or to add subtle effects and over time, the mix will improve overall. (I am not exactly the best at explaining, it.)
So how did it apply to sound design? In the past, if I was working with FM synthesis, I would add a lot of big effects to my sound in hopes that I can find what I am looking for. But I would be overdoing it, and would ruin an already good sound. It may be a fare better approach to add multiple, yet more subtle effects to get the change that I want, rather than attempting it all in one move.
If this is something that does not make sense to you, I can understand, especially if you are new to music production and sound design. But in my experience, I have learned that big moves can easily ruin what you already have.
See you soon,