This week we’re kicking off a brand new series of monthly blog posts called Focus on the Creative.  These posts will be formatted like a short and casual interview focusing on the topic of creativity and design in our daily work.  To kick off the series I sat down with award winning sound effects editor Jessey Drake to talk about her design for a gigantic other-worldly laser weapon.

Jessey, please tell us about this rampaging super-weapon you've created

Jessey: So the deal is, we have this really big, other-worldly weapon and I approached it in four parts.  There’s a little twirl effect, then the power-up, third is the actual blast of the laser, and lastly is like a steady that trails off when the weapon continues to fire.

Can you tell us a little about how you created each individual piece?

The twirl element, I made really squishy.  I love a lot of goo and texture elements when I design things and this kind of lends itself to that.  

The power-up up is just stuff that I made with different synthesizers (FM-8 and Molekular).  The philosophy with a power-up is that number 1, it needs to sound very cool.  Second, you need a starting point and an end point.  Looking at both points, A to B, B is going to be the most intense point and A the least, you can increase your pitch, use timing elements, etc to show that transition.  This power-up has a warble (like a tremolo) element, so as we get towards the tail end it turns into a faster warble.

The blast is a bunch of different sci-fi type future type blasts, which I’ve sweetened with a couple of lower end, beefier booms.  

It sounds like the impact has a little lead in before the impact, like a whoosh?

Yeah, I like to add a little whoosh before the hit, that’s good.

And how about the steady you designed for the sustained firing?

So for the steady, I added some buzzing elements in there, as well as some electricity.  It’s also a laser so there’s more of a sci-fi steady in there, and that’s it! I just used vari-fi slowdown the build to power it down at the end.

Thanks to Jessey for giving us this window into her work!  Do you have a favorite designed sound effects you've created or heard?  Let us know in the comments!