Have you ever watched unfinished footage of a TV show? Or a classic film? The scene is set, the actors are in their places and everything is as it should be. Somehow, something still feels off. It could be that the scene is too quiet. Without the skill provided by Foley Artists, the production can feel like its missing a crucial component; natural background sounds and music.
What does a Foley Artist do? According to Marblehead.net a Foley Artist “…recreates sound effects for film, television, and radio productions on a Foley stage is a post-production studio.” (Marblehead.net)
What does this kind of work look like? Basically a Foley Artist will use different kinds of props- car fenders, plates, glasses, tables, chairs and other household items to create sound effects for film and television. This helps eliminate that awkward silence in productions. For instance, a painted plywood floor can disguise itself as a regal marble floor with some work from a Foley Artist.
Foley Artist are not interchangeable with Sound FX editors. While Foley focuses on sounds such as footsteps, doors slamming, and clothes rustling, Sound FX editors cover more complex sounds like explosions, laser blasts, and big storms. Sound FX editors use technology to layer sounds on top of each other, while Foley Artists use everyday objects to meet their goal.
Overall, the trick to good Foley effects is to make sure they aren’t noticed by the audience. Foley should be natural, and smooth.
Does Foley interest you? Check out http://www.marblehead.net/foley/whatisitman.html for more information on this exciting industry!