Mixing Music with Visuals

How Does Music Work in Conjunction with Visual Works?

One of the outputs of the music COMMUNITY project is the creation of a web application that explores the interconnections between music and video, and specifically how music may alter our perception of a video, playing a crucial role in how we respond emotionally to what we see. You can use this application to select and combine different video and music examples, initiating discussion about the different results that come up from the different music choices.

So, let’s begin!

What qualities are inherent in a melody and how do we perceive these qualities and what we feel about them?

What musicians are most interested in is what music makes us feel. Ultimately, the goal of any kind of art is to produce a feeling, a sensation in the spectator, so it’s an interesting study to look at pieces of music that accompany visual works and think about how they make us feel. This refers to whether the image would produce the same feeling without the music or if the music would produce the same feeling without the image.

This brings us to an idea that we like to think about, in terms of whether the music compliments or complicates the images we’re seeing. Here, we don’t use the verb ‘complicate’ negatively. Most great art complicates things in very special ways. It makes us examine our realities or the way we preconceive ideas.

Another important question we can ask is how these music pieces set the tone for what we’ll see on the screen. In film music, it’s fundamental to have music that generates an environment, that invites us to watch whatever we’re going to see. Think about what sensations this music piece produces in you when you watch it. What instruments and colors did the composer use to create these sensations? What expectations does the music generate about the movie? What do we think is going to happen? What kind of film do we think it’ll be based on the music that’s playing? Will our expectations be fulfilled or be subverted? 

Does the music compliment or complicate what’s happening on the screen? Does the music accompany what we’re seeing, or does it do something different? Are we pulled in a different direction?

Let’s check it out!


Please select one of the following videos:

Please select one of the following audios: