Digital Audio Amplified The Role of Creativity in Audio Production By Jennifer Martin | October 26, 2021 It’s hard to imagine a career in which creativity isn’t an asset. Thinking creatively is a mental tool that allows you to find better ways of working and producing new ideas. Regardless of the job you have, creativity is a mental skill that can help you excel in your career, making life easier and often paying off in a big way. In some fields, though, creativity is more than just a quality that’s nice to have, it’s essential for success. If you’re entering the world of audio production, having a strong sense of creativity is an absolute must. Luckily, this is a skill that can be cultivated and honed. What Does an Audio Producer Do? The role of audio producer comes with many individual responsibilities. It takes both experience and creative talent to maintain the balance between everything that an audio producer is expected to do. Recording Techniques One of the foremost duties of the audio producer is recording the audio for a project such as an album or film. This requires advanced knowledge of proper recording techniques, an understanding of acoustics, and detailed knowledge about which microphones, and other tools are best suited for the situation. Editing and Mixing Once all the parts are recorded, the audio producer then edits and mixes everything together. In the audio world, editing is the process of removing the parts that you don’t want in a recording and cleaning up sections that are muddy or unclear. Mixing is done by panning parts between the left and right channels, as well as placing each voice or instrument within the mix in such a way that it doesn’t sound crowded or drowned out. Motivating Artists A large part of an audio producer’s job is drawing great performances out of artists. From prima-donna pop stars to studio musicians, performers many need to be coaxed into delivering what’s needed for a song. Audio producers see the big picture and orchestrate everything together in the best possible way, dealing with plenty of human elements along the way. This might mean creating the right conditions for an artist to perform at their best, working with many different personalities, and setting their own ego aside for the sake of the art, to instill a creative spirit. What is Creativity? Imagination and creativity are closely linked: One might say that creativity is the imagination in action, being applied to a specific purpose. Creativity can be associated with producing works of art, whether it’s a piece of music, a novel, or a painting, but this mental process may come into play in almost any aspect of your life. If you’re doing something that involves making decisions and coming up with ideas, the creative parts of your brain are hard at work. Original Thought Creativity is an innate human ability to make new discoveries through original thoughts. This includes generating new ideas, making connections, and finding innovative solutions to solve problems or overcome obstacles. Creativity may be used as a means of resilience against difficult situations, such as discovering innovative ways of having fun and finding joy despite tough times. Being creative also enables you to fully actualize your talent and potential. Divine Inspiration Sometimes, creativity feels like divine inspiration, as if you’re being harnessed by the universe or higher powers to create something that transcends our earthly existence. More often, though, the creative process is much less dramatic and more mundane. Even so, small acts of creativity are essential to daily life because they help us find the best possible solutions to both artistic and everyday situations. Degrees of Creativity It may seem like there are people who are creative and those who aren’t. But since some measure of imagination is necessary just to get through day-to-day decision-making, it’s apparent that everyone is creative to some degree. The difference is often about how each individual uses their creativity, and whether they keep the skill honed by activating it on a regular basis. Like most things within the human mind, creativity is a vastly complicated subject with many pieces that play into it. A person’s capacity and tendency to think creatively comes down to countless factors, including their upbringing, biology, life experience, and personality. Beyond these preconditions, the way an individual approaches and engages with their creativity has a huge bearing on the way it manifests. For example, if a person is actively thinking through problems and working them out creatively, their imaginative skills will advance more quickly than if they’re only idly imagining things. Play factors into creativity and imagination in a highly important way. Even throughout adulthood, people “play” in various ways as a form of expressing themselves and exploring possibilities in a safe, risk-free environment. The act of playing gives the mind a sort of sandbox to experiment with ideas and test out certain creative scenarios without being limited to the bounds of real life. Why is Creativity Important in Audio Production? It’s impossible to fake creativity in audio production. If you’re unable to maintain a steady flow of new creative ideas, it may be impossible to keep up with the demands of the job. People who have activated their creativity are constantly brainstorming and looking for new ways to approach their projects. Just to keep pace with your colleagues, it’s essential to stay in a creative state of mind. As an audio producer, creativity becomes more than just part of the job, it’s a lifestyle. Standing Out Being creative is also essential for new and upcoming producers to stand out from the crowd. Regardless of the genre you’re working with, there’s bound to be other audio producers with similar musical ambitions as you. To show that you’re not just an average audio producer, getting creative with your projects is a must. With an active sense of imagination, you might come up with a new way to approach a beat or melody that catches listeners’ ears. Creativity may also help you experiment with different recording and production techniques. The best way to create something fresh and different that’s like nothing anyone’s ever heard before is through creativity. Staying Creative The problem that many audio producers encounter once they’ve spent some time working in the field is burnout. Even if you start strong in your career, it’s still possible to lose the passion for the art if it starts to feel like just another job. This underlines the importance of creativity in audio production. You must constantly look for innovative ways to bring original ideas into your projects. This will give your music a soul and help drive you to stand out from the crowd. How Can an Audio Producer Improve Their Creativity Skills? The best advice for anyone who wants to be more creative, regardless of how they hope to apply it in their life, is to practice. Creativity is like a muscle, skill, or habit. The more you do it, the more you engage with the process, the more natural of a process it becomes for you. Practice Makes Perfect You can practice creativity in many different ways. For those hoping to work their way into a career in audio production, the pathway to greater creative skills is working on audio projects and applying your creativity in every way you can. Even when your early projects don’t turn out exactly the way you envisioned, each experience will bring you new creative ideas, and each mix will bring you a step closer to fully realizing your artistic potential. Listen to the Greats It’s possible to make a study of creativity by learning from the work of the masters. You can start by making a list of your favorite audio producers and listening to some of their greatest projects. By exploring the music and other audio work of various producers, you’ll develop a fine-tuned musical ear and a sharp sense of creative possibilities. Bring it Back to Basics To come up with new, innovative musical ideas, it’s often necessary to take things back to basics. This means learning about music theory and production techniques. There are many people who have devoted their lives to understanding music and creating audio productions, and the information that they pioneered is now readily available at your fingertips, if you know where to look. Once you’ve armed your creative brain with knowledge and have a firm understanding of the foundations of music and audio production, you’ll find creative new ideas flow naturally through you. While the Internet has made it much easier for anyone to find more than enough information on music and audio production, it’s often difficult to determine which sources are the most factually accurate. As with any artistic field, there isn’t always one right answer to a question or a singular correct way of doing something. Finding what works best comes down to taste and professional expertise, and that is best developed through academic guidance. Getting a Formal Education That is why attending an audio production course at a creative arts college is the most reliable way to enhance your creativity and set yourself on a path towards a promising audio production career. An audio production program will put you in a setting with creative minds all around you, constantly pushing you to challenge your own ideas. And with highly experienced and fully trained educators at the helm, you will get the best mentoring and guidance for creativity in everything you do. Learning audio production and honing your creativity in an academic setting often makes it easier to stay focused and motivated, instead of learning it all on your own. The immersive nature of these programs gives you every opportunity to experience creativity in your craft. Once you’re in the mindset of creativity, you’ll be able to find the fun in all the work you do. Do you have the creativity to become an audio producer? University of Silicon Valley empowers aspiring audiophiles to master their craft. Our Audio and Music Technology students are exposed to new ideas and industry-grade equipment and are presented with challenges designed to unlock their creativity. University of Silicon Valley is uniquely poised to offer a meaningful and valuable education for 21st century students. We believe in an education that directly correlates with the work you’ll be doing after you graduate. Interested in learning more? Contact Us today.