Lines for Clarinet

Lines for Clarinet
John Osborne
Don Ross
4'47'' · cgi · b&w
2011 | Edmonton·AB, Canada
Punto y Raya Festival 2011
Second Prize


“Lines for Clarinet” is an animated video created to a musical composition written and performed for this work by Don Ross.

Using only a single white dot as the basic graphic element, a fluid sequence of interacting dots and lines were synchronized to the music. My aim was to create a music video that captures the essence and simplicity of the dot and line criteria, while also rising above its minimal graphic form to evoke the emotional feel of the music.

Using the particle system software of Adobe After Effects, a single white dot is the only input along with the sound track. Movements and interactions are programmatically synchronized to the music with the addition of a few other graphic layers and other effects. As such, I did not want the imagery to look like computer generated moving patterns, which are directly linked to certain frequencies of the music. Rather, I wanted to program the sequences so that the dots interact in an evocative way, which with the help of the music will create an emotional connection.

I met Don Ross about a year ago and he sent me some sound tracks for a possible collaboration. I was struck by the beautiful ethereal sound of his clarinet compositions and he agreed to compose and record a work for my new project for the Punto y Raya Festival. We exchanged musical and graphical ideas over a period of 4 months after which he created his composition. His clarinet track is accompanied by additional drones and percussive elements which he recorded at his home studio.

John Osborne
John Osborne

1944 | London, UK

> website

John began experimenting with abstract images and film in the late sixties and later worked for two years as the principle operator at a computer animation studio in London, England. The studio’s novel hybrid analogue computer was used to make some of the first computer animated television commercials in the UK.

In 1975, John returned to Canada and began a 30-year career with a large multinational company working on Ontario, Alberta and Michigan in areas of information technology and environmental research, but continued his interest in the visual arts.

In early 2000, he returned to the computer as a creative tool and began experimenting with mathematical algorithms to generate patterns and abstract images.
He began to animate these images to music, which he often composed himself.
To compliment this activity and to explore more traditional animation themes, John began working with "After Effects", a commercial 2-D software package used for animation and special effects.

In general, John is interested in the relationship between sounds and images and exploring those through computer and video techniques.

Over the last few years he has had films shown at festivals in North America and Europe.

Lives in Edmonton·AB, Canada.   +info

Don Ross
Don Ross
> Soundtrack Composer


Clarinetist Don Ross is the leader of Saint Crispin’s Chamber Ensemble.

Since 1994 the group has been broadcast frequently on CBC radio and has recordings on the Clef Records, Arktos and Eclectra labels. Don also appears regularly as a soloist and orchestra player, most recently with the Edmonton and Prince George Symphonies and the Edmonton Opera.

He is at the forefront of the Edmonton new music scene and is a frequent collaborator with Mile Zero Dance, the Edmonton Composers’ Concert Society and the Boreal Electroacoustic Music Society.

He is an Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre. Don teaches at Alberta College Conservatory and The King’s University College. He holds music degrees from the Universities of Alberta and Toronto, as well as a Master’s from Northwestern University in Chicago.

Lives in Edmonton·AB, Canada.   +info