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1015 JA, Amsterdam

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Embracing creative constraints

The question is: Are things getting better or worse?

During The Magnetic Era of recording The first two Beatles albums, “Please Please Me” and “With The Beatles,” were recorded on the BTR (British Tape Recorder) two-track machines. Recording on the twin-track BTR machines meant essentially recording a live music performance because there was minimal opportunity for overdubbing.

The introduction of the four-track machines changed how recordings were made. This development made it possible to record different instruments and vocals separately. The technical improvement allowed engineers to adjust the levels and tone of each individual track. Recording these days still required an excellent performance, but at least it was possible to redo certain tracks or parts of a track to correct mistakes and errors if necessary.

Today we’re creating in The Digital Era of recording. Almost everything is possible.

  • Record and re-record as many tracks as you want.
  • Overdub as many mistakes as needed.
  • Measure and alter pitch in vocal and instrumental recordings with plugins such as Auto-tune or Melodyne.
  • Correct rhythms and, measure and alter timing.

And the list goes on…

The question is: Are things getting better or worse?

Too much possibility might kill creativity. We need to learn to think about your constraints as obstacles that can broaden our perception. Embracing creative constraints holds great opportunity for creating original work.

More to explorer

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Buy Me Breakfast

I know what I am going to do when I am allowed to go to cafes again. I am going to buy myself a delicious breakfast. And I’ll buy you one as well. I am going to look for 5 people. I’ll ask them to test my work. With simple questions I am going to learn about 85% of the usability problems. Not like this: Did this notification sound give you the information you needed in your experience?

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150 It Is. For now…

“More isn’t always better, Linus. Sometimes it’s just more”. – The Movie Sabrina (1995). Do large communities add more value than smaller ones According to British anthropologist Robin Dunbar, the “magic number” is 150. His theory concludes that we can only really maintain about 150 connections at a time.

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Sometimes More Is Just More

We can hardly remember a time when all of this wasn’t possible. Online communication tools and social platforms enabled us to develop bigger communities more easily. But do we achieve so much more by making everything bigger? Sometimes people tend to focus so hard on making everything bigger that they lose sight of what’s really important.

contact info

My office is located in the center of Amsterdam. 1015 JA, Kattenburgersrtaat 5. mail@maikelvanderwouden.com

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