DIY Soundscape Box

Please replace placeholder with a high quality finished outcome pic


first delivered in Aug 2020

We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their continuing connection to land and as custodians of stories for millennia. We respectfully acknowledge the land on which we all meet today, and pay our respects to elders past, present and emerging.

Most of the time we don’t stop to hear the textures of the sounds around us. It can be difficult to slow down and let the colour of the sounds around wash over us. Its also an interesting artistic exercise to explore the expressiveness of found sounds like a sculpter might utilise a found object.

In this series of two online workshops participants will come together on zoom to build and customise their own unique percussive musical instrument, and then experiment with it sonically in a collaborative online space. Participants will making a basic recording of a soundscape performance or an abstract sound design for a short film. These workshops are for anyone who enjoys handmaking unusual stuff, people who might be interested in training the sensitivity of their ear and anybody who has been missing coming together with other people and being creative. No specific making or musical experience required.

Less than a Skills development workshop these sessions are designed in the format of a masterclass. To allow participants to:

  • Develop and refine sonic sensitivity.
  • Construct, customise and sonicaly explore a DIY percussive instrument.
  • Explore the commercial online meeting platform Zoom as a space for creative collaboration and social learning.
  • Individuals and or the group making a short, simple audio recording of improvised performance on

Materials and equipment

Participants will require a computer

  • with a reliable connection to broadband
  • and have the capability of installing the Zoom application and Audacity.

It is also preferable for all participants to have a stand-alone-Webcam.

Could also be useful to have a smart phone with a audio recording app

The workshop participants will also be sent out a kit with everything else the need to construct their Soundbox instrument

  • Laser cut box parts
  • metal springs
  • saw blades
  • rare earth magnets,
  • balloons, rubber bands
  • fencing wire
  • metal tines
  • construction adhesive and applicator
  • nuts, bolts and washers
  • laser cut wrench and 3d printed screwdriver
  • a contact microphone and
  • mic/stereo splitter/adaptor
Material Quantity Cost Supplier
Material 1 1 $0.00 Supplier 1
Material 2 1 $0.00 Supplier 2
Material 3 1 $0.00 Supplier 2
Material 4 0.1 $0.00 Supplier 3
Total $0.00

Tools and Preparation

Again, if your workshop does not require physical tools, delete or change this to something like Software required.

  • Tool 1
  • Tool 2
  • Tool 3
  • Tool 4

Before the workshop you will need to …

Workshop 1

  • Intro to hands-on workshops in Zoom (10 min)
  • Media Consent (5 min)

Step 1

  • Assemble Box (10 min)
  • Install Thumb Piano and balloon drum head (10 min)
  • Assemble beater (10 min)


Step 2

  • Install Counterweight blade, Free spring and Cam Tensioned spring (10 mins),
  • Install Counterweight, Rubberband bass and steel string (10 mins),
  • Explore and document Sonic Vocabulary (Make and document 10 sounds)(10 min)
  • Share in pairs and explore together. (10 min)
  • Share favourites with the group (10 min)
  • Film Stimulis Preview
  • Homework - customisation and vocab development
  • TryIt Reflection

Workshop 2

  • Welcome back
  • Share customisations (10 min)
  • Share Vocab (20 min)


Add any slide presentations, instructions, software etc. here

Discussion regarding

Sonic sensitivity

Zoom as a space for creative collaboration and social learning online -

    to mute or not to mute

intellectual property and fair use of copywrited materials in learning setting

Microphone Input - TRRS/ 4 pole Jacks and sockets on Laptops and Smartphones

  • workshops/prototypes/diy_soundscape_box.txt
  • Last modified: 2020/07/01 13:01
  • by Michael Byrne