New Talent: Jack Doyle
Since joining Jungle Studios back in 2013, assistant engineer Jack Doyle has wasted no time in exercising his audio skills. Collaborating with his colleague Louis Morgan, he provided sound design and mixing for crime thriller short Double Cross (which is currently airing on Amazon Prime), a Foley-heavy online spot for the designer footwear brand Rogue Matilda, as well as working on comedy short The Driving Seat.
LBB’s Liam Smith caught up with Jack to find out more about this budding sound designer.
LBB> So what inspired you to pursue sound design as a career?
Jack Doyle> Music has always been a big part of my life, with my parents’ love for music being a huge influence on me growing up. In school I took up the trumpet and drums and was lucky enough to play gigs around the UK and Europe. I was able to get some hands-on experience recording live musicians while at college, and from there I decided to study sound design at the University of Hertfordshire. This is where I developed more of an interest in sound design when working on projects with animators and creating soundscapes for picture.
LBB> You joined Jungle back in 2013 after graduating from university. How was your experience and what was your progression to assistant engineer like?
JD> After graduating I had a few different jobs, but was always looking for a way into the audio industry. Initially it was a case of being patient trying to get my foot in the door as a runner, and since joining Jungle I’ve never looked back. I’ve built very close relationships with all the people that I work with. The journey from runner, through to transfer, and to eventually having the opportunity to work in the studio has been seamless, as I’ve always had the support and help from the people I work with everyday. My time in transfer enabled me to gain a good understanding of the different types of projects being worked on.
LBB> Foley sound is something I’ve always been interested in. What Foley projects have you worked on and can you tell us a little bit about them?
JD> I enjoy working on projects that require a lot of Foley as these can be a lot of fun to record. Projects where I’ve built the soundscape from the ground up are really rewarding. I worked on an online promo for the designer shoe brand ‘Rogue Matilda’ which required me to re-create dance moves by recording each footstep in time with the original. I’m always intrigued reading interviews with engineers and sound designers that I particularly like. I recently watched an interview with Theo Green who sound designed the new Blade Runner movie. It was a real eye opener into how the soundscape was achieved, often created from unusual natural sound sources.
LBB> And you also worked on the comedy short ‘The Driving Seat’. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
JD> The whole of The Driving Seat is set inside a car, meaning there is nowhere for your sound to hide, so to speak. It was a challenge to ensure the dialogue and sound design was as clean as possible. Izotope RX came in very handy for this project, especially to de-noise and clean-up audio, particularly when editing dialogue. Spectral Repair is very useful for removing unwanted ambient sound from location recordings and also the EQ match helps a great deal with matching ADR to location dialogue. It’s been fantastic to see The Driving Seat doing so well, having received multiple award nominations and winning Best Comedy Short at the Isle of Man Film Festival. Watching the audience’s reaction is enjoyable knowing you’ve played a part in the production process – it’s great getting good feedback and having happy producers and directors is always rewarding.
LBB> What projects have you been involved in recently that you particularly enjoyed?
JD> I am currently the sound engineer for the latest Nickelodeon series of Shimmer and Shine. We re-voice the US characters ready for broadcast in the UK. I’m really enjoying the process and get to work with talented artists on a daily basis. I’m particularly enjoying the mix process, trying to create the right balance between the different elements in the mix. It’s also great to experience how a long form project works in contrast to commercials.
LBB> What kind of role does sound and music play in your personal life?
JD> I’ve met some of my closest friends through sharing the same common interest in sound and music. Until recently, I was running parties and DJing regularly in London. I was fortunate enough to play in Fabric and many other great music venues around town. I still play regularly with friends but I have taken a step back to focus fully on my career as an engineer. That said, I love to make music as a hobby.
LBB> What do you get up to outside of work to relax and unwind?
JD> I love to compose music in my free time. I work with a small set-up at home, consisting of my Mac Pro, Ableton Live and a couple of external synths. I’m a great lover of the old Roland Synths, such as the Juno 60 and SH-101. These synths really cut through in a mix and shaped the sound of early electronic music. I also collect vinyl, which unfortunately can become quite addictive and an expensive hobby!
LBB> Any tips for budding sound designers out there?
JD> We live in a world that is rife with amazing sounds that occur all the time, every minute, all over the place. It’s good to think outside of the box. Some incredible, unique sounds can be achieved from a hand-held recorder or even just your mobile phone. My advice to anyone looking to get their foot in the door is to be patient and persistent. It was a challenge for me but I feel like I’m starting to reap the rewards now.