Sound Design Book List

Here are the best books that I own & reccomend on the subject of film sound design!

The Practical Art of Motion Picture Sound by David Lewis Yewdall – if you only buy one book, I would buy this one. It is very practical & talks through every department & element of the soundtrack. The only caveat would be that it suffers slightly from the ‘bigger is better’ syndrome, but that comes down to aesthetics & taste which I wont debate here…

Audio-Vision by Michel Chion – this is the best book on film sound theory I have read – it is very thought provoking with a great foreword by Walter Murch.

Soundscape by Larry Sider – this is actually a copy of various lectures given at the School of Sound, a week long course held every two years in London. This book features lectures by Walter Murch, David Lynch, Randy Thom, Michel Chion, Carter Burwell and Mani Kaul amongst others….

Sound-On-Film: Interviews with Creators of Film Sound by Vincent LoBrutto – this book contains some very interesting interviews including Walter Murch, Ben Burtt, Skip Lievesay, Gary Rydstrom, Mark Mangini and many others..

Film Sound – E. Weiss & J. Belton
– fascinating book with indepth discussion and analysis of film sound design.

The Foley Grail by Vanessa Theme Ament – great insight into the world of the foley artist!

Dialogue editing for Motion Pictures by John Purcell – a very thorough, if a little dry, explanation of dialogue & ADR editing

The Sound Effects Bible by Ric Viers – a handy guide to recording sound effects

The Reel World: Scoring for Pictures by Jeff Rona – I don’t write music/score for film, but on every project I get to collaborate with film composers so I figure the more I know about film scoring the better!

Finally, its not a book but its the best online resource for sound design:

16 thoughts on “Sound Design Book List

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  6. A&R Unlimited

    I had been seeking out blogs based on music and I stumbled on your blog. I will add it to my top picks and sign up to your Feed.

  7. Mercy

    what about “The Complete Guide to Game Audio” by Aaron Marks? I hear nothing but good things about it. Plus, it focuses on mostly the practical side.

    1. tim Post author

      As I don’t do game audio (or play games) my book list is really a Film Sound Design Booklist

  8. Stephen Saldanha

    Isn’t David Sonnenschine’s “Sound Design: Expressive Power of Music and Sound” good? well I heard its good I’m waiting for the 2nd edition

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