Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sound Mapping the Morton Arboretum

Sound Map of the Morton Arboretum
Another day, another chance to work on my iSites - I still have a few more to do before my next Biomimicry trip in 3 weeks, so I am using every opportunity to finish them that I can find.

Today is Easter.  We are not religious, but my two little kids like the idea of the Easter Bunny, so after hunting eggs in the back yard we went to the Morton Arboretum to welcome spring the way we feel most comfortable - by being outside.  For this iSite, I did a sound map.  By closing my eyes, I made a map of every sound I heard.  I was also supposed to see if any of the sounds were related or responsive to one another.

The Morton Arboretum is a beautiful place, but it is a constructed landscape.  Artificial and beautiful.  I tried to find as natural of a place as I could, so I walked down a field and found a natural creek to sit by.  The main thing I heard while I was sitting there listening was the sound of water falling over a rock in the creek and the sounds of people.  Apparently, a lot of people think to welcome spring at the Arb too.  There was a lot of human based activity - cars, bikes, too many airplanes overhead.  The human voices were responsive to one another, but not so much the cars.  I could hear a lot of birds.  Cardinals and a bird I'm pretty sure was a finch.  I also heard rustling of small animals in the leaves.

When I opened my eyes, I saw a pair of ducks swimming in the creek and building their nest, pair bonded for the mating season.  Frogs in the distance calling out for mates.  Birds likely doing the same thing.  Mating season at the Arb.

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