Editing the audio

This has definitely been a very difficult task, not just because of the length of the interview but especially because of its very interesting contents. Paul had so many amazing things to say about his experience of being blind, the way in which he perceives things, the devices he uses etc. etc. and Hazel went through the kitchen with all its adaptions in such a thorough way that it was also tricky to cut it down.

After many many edits I had the audio down to 14 min. and I aimed to have a 6 min. video, but I realised that this was impossible due to the structure and the interesting content (so it ended up being 10 min. long).

As I did with my last project, colouring and titling the clips helped me to keep track of it all and string it together. I have kept my initial ‘themes’ of the audio as I have put in a previous post (although slightly longer versions) but changed the order around slightly and interlinked some of it.

Bildschirmfoto 2015-05-12 um 13.37.41

Now the structure is as follows:

– Pauls personal accounts, anecdotes as well as perceptions

– Hazel’s kitchen tour

– Paul describing more devices they use and talking about Braille

– Paul finishing with an important quote

Although I interviewed Hazel too I found that there was not anything really interesting that I wanted to use and my main focus lied on Paul’s experiences, it becomes clear though that Hazel did a great job in describing the things in the kitchen and I think that bit together with all the mechanical sounds and noises works really well. With the devices I usually tried to include their sounds and voices at the beginning before they are being described to capture the viewers attention. I think it becomes very clear how much they rely on technology and sound through all the different devices that ‘speak’ in the video, something I really wanted to portray. This is why I also didn’t use an additional mechanic voice, as I have tried out earlier with my phone to describe things. After I put all the narrative together it became clear that there was enough of that already in there and breaking up Paul’s speaking with a mechanical voice would have interrupted the flow, which is why I used the textual descriptions in the end.

Starting with Paul’s story about the couple gives the video a smooth start and also a first hint as to why he perceived the couple differently, it is not until later though that he fully reveals that he is blind. I like that the first few minutes the viewer still has to figure out what is ‘different’ with Paul and this is also why I felt it was important to include the fact that ‘full’ blindness is really rare. I tired to link the different ‘themes’ in a matching way, the ‘beautiful’ couple with the concept of beauty, the look of the HiFi system with the look of their house and that they do care about how things look like, the fact that most blind people have a concept of colour and the deeper meaning of colour, the additional senses and how his dreams are made of these.

Then comes the section of the devices, first Hazel in the kitchen then Paul. I wanted to include a bit of his background with Braille to show what meaning it had to him and I thought the best place to do so is to ‘wrap’ the typing on the Braille machine into this discourse. He then shows how his phone works and all the additional helpful apps and how now with the phone a lot of the use of Braille has been replaced (speech to text, scanning text etc.) and makes clear that it can’t replace it fully and Braille gives the person another dimension of freedom. Which then leads to his final quote of how he accepts his blindness as part of his normality.


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