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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
The creative process is interesting...


Nov 12 2012, 4:29pm

Views: 118
The creative process is interesting... [In reply to] Can't Post

and surely different for everyone. I have done a lot of reading (and listening) to what Shore has said about his creative process for LOTR. And I've dabbled in it myself (Wink both personally and professionally)

Here's what I think, mostly informed by my own experiences but also a bit by what I've read about Shore's experience.

For large projects, one must find some sense of consistency over the whole thing. And within that consistency there needs to be room for different sorts of applications and needs.

It's almost impossible to achieve that if one just picks a place and starts. You really need to think about all the sorts of situations and applications that will arise. And you need to understand the project as a whole - the tone, the setting, the audience, the resources you have available, the time line, etc.

Some of this stuff might happen before you ever put pen to paper (or what ever initial 'start' action is involved in any creative endeavor). You think about it. You study. You talk to people... consult.

And then you might create concepts. A concept of what a book page might look like before you ever get any text (that's what lorem ipsum is for).

I think Howard does a lot of this pre-work. And I think some of it happens very early in the process. So, that is done. That work (which can be lengthy... especially if one is trying to judge it by how much actual product is achieved) doesn't have to be redone - or redone much - to fit three films rather than two.

(side note, sometimes I'll work on a new graphic concept for hours and then lose it because something happened with my computer and I had stupidly not saved my work. thankfully I've found that I can often get to the spot I was in before I lost the work in considerably less time... perhaps less than 15 minutes because most of what I spent those 2 and half hours on was developing a concept or playing with ideas and now that I know what I want, it's not that hard to get to it)

Howard speaks often about dream work. Here's one excerpt from an interview I referenced a few days ago:

...a lot of the composition itís done away from the film. A lot of... particularly with Davidís movies, I would watch the film as a spectator. I wanted to have that feeling that it was fresh and new and Iíd watch it for the first time and then Iíd put the film away and say, ďOkay, now... what do you feel about that? Express what you feel about that film.Ē And, as a writer, you could do that.

And Iím sure everybody whoís watched a film or has ideas about it and they can write them down or express them to a friend or do it verbally. You know, thereís some expression about what they felt when they watched the film.

Iím essentially doing the same thing except Iím expressing it in music. And I like to go through... that a very, very, important process. Thatís a very quiet process. Thatís putting it all away and in the case of a book, you want to absorb the book as much as you can. I mean, in Tolkien, I spent four or five months just reading and studying the books, studying ring mythology, studying influence of Tolkien.. you know, what may have influenced Tolkien. Professor Tolkien spent 14 years writing the Lord of the Rings, you know. What influences the book had after it was published in 1953.

I needed to know that stuff intellectually. And then I need to put it all away. And just think emotionally. Because music is an emotional language. Youíre saying to yourself, ďWell, what do you feel about that? What do you feel about Burroughsís book or Ballardís book or Tolkienís book? Whatís your expression of that in music?Ē

And then you go on this discovery. And that process a very quiet process, very introspective. Itís very dreamy. Because essentially youíre dealing with ideas. Itís a very internal process. And itís a creative process because anythingís possible. And youíre allowing your mind to kind of free associate. And frankly, thereís a lot of napping involved. (interviewer laughs) There is, because I like to use the nap as a source of intuitiveness. Because the nap places you into somewhat of a dream state. Right? Youíre kind of.. you know, a napping in the afternoon is somewhat a half awake kind of thing. Youíre not really soundly asleep, although I do get a good night sleep. But this allows you to go into a somewhat state of semi-consciousness and dream. And what Iím trying to do is put myself into that dream state so that I can get in touch with some feelings and ideas about what I feel about this piece.

I am positive (and I won't say certain because I'd need to hunt down a bunch of quote to assure myself and you that I had it right) that he wrote little suites of music to represent cultures or maybe concepts or situations before seeing any of the film. He drew from these to create the music and themes he would use later when the visuals and scenes came.

From the FOTR audio commentary:

The Shire theme was written quite early, I mean even after the visit to New Zealand the first time. And I think it was based more on the beauty of New Zealand. Cause Hobbiton is just so inherently... I just had a feel of New Zealand, of that rural beauty to it. And I wrote the Shire theme pretty early on and then related the Shire theme to Frodo.

Those quotes are from transcriptions on my website.

to read more:

So, that sort of work is likely done. At least in regards to what he knew would be in the project when it was two films.

That said, I'm sure it does make a difference that there are three films instead of two. How much and in what way, remains to be seen. Well hear about it (perhaps) in interviews he gives, in audio commentaries or features on the DVDs, in articles written on the web or in print (there was a whole issue of one magazine devoted to the score for LOTR), and in Doug's book The Music of The Hobbit Films.

LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide

Subject User Time
Music still being recorded! tolktolk Send a private message to tolktolk Nov 11 2012, 1:24am
    some direct links Magpie Send a private message to Magpie Nov 11 2012, 1:30am
        Duh! tolktolk Send a private message to tolktolk Nov 11 2012, 1:40am
            Are you using advanced editor or basic Magpie Send a private message to Magpie Nov 11 2012, 1:45am
    This is awesome Tim Send a private message to Tim Nov 11 2012, 1:34am
        Well, I can quote from this Shore interview again Magpie Send a private message to Magpie Nov 11 2012, 1:43am
            Well worth quoting Tim Send a private message to Tim Nov 11 2012, 1:49am
                I love the inflection in his voice so much in this section of the interview... Magpie Send a private message to Magpie Nov 11 2012, 1:53am
                    Yes those were good points to catch that inflection Tim Send a private message to Tim Nov 11 2012, 4:20am
    There's something comforting in knowing Ring-Bearer Send a private message to Ring-Bearer Nov 11 2012, 1:41am
    w o w, sooo late to be doing that!!! ... ... definitely not for the next film lol? Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Nov 11 2012, 2:50am
    Not surprised DanielLB Send a private message to DanielLB Nov 11 2012, 8:58am
    Unsurprising given the trilogy change... Crunchable Birdses Send a private message to Crunchable Birdses Nov 11 2012, 9:27am
        Oh yeah! Good point!! :s :s.... .... luckily the decision was made just before they had started recording right? ? .. Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Nov 12 2012, 1:03am
            How much pre-preparation is involved? DanielLB Send a private message to DanielLB Nov 12 2012, 8:42am
                I don't know too much on this myself, but I'm pretty sure he can and did do quite a bit of prep... Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Nov 12 2012, 2:28pm
                The creative process is interesting... Magpie Send a private message to Magpie Nov 12 2012, 4:29pm
    I would guess this is for the film's climax sycorax82 Send a private message to sycorax82 Nov 11 2012, 2:07pm
    I really hope that there isn't a significant amount of material missing from the score Captain Salt Send a private message to Captain Salt Nov 11 2012, 5:43pm


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