Seeking Sounds – Niall Benvie

The following is an extract from ‘Seeking Sounds’. Read the full article in Outdoor Photography Issue 247. 

I am more interested in recording and creating soundscapes (the equivalent of a habitat shot) than simply collecting clean recordings of individual species. Ideally, I want the track to comprise of what natural musician, Bernie Krause, dubbed the ‘geophony’ (natural sounds of the Earth such as a flowing stream, creaking tree or rolling thunder) and the ‘biophony’ (the sound of living, wild creatures), with as little ‘anthrophony’ (the noise of people, their livestock and machines) as possible.

My approach is unsophisticated. I get myself somewhere with lots of the sort of sounds I am interested in, ideally early in the morning when the acoustic in a landscape can be quite different, and then put the equivalent of a long telephoto on the tripod – a Telinga microphone in a parabolic reflector. With this I can record a narrow ‘corridor of sound’ in front of, as well as behind, the subject.

To hear one of Niall’s soundscape recordings click here.

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