Sorry for the hiatus in this series on what to do with all these gorgeous blank books you've been buying from all these great Etsy bookbinders. Life got a little busy, doesn't it have a habit of doing that? In an effort to get back into the groove for the fall, here's another installment in my series, this one is on sounds.
What we hear is an important part of any experience, yet one that's often overlooked. When you travel to a new place, whether you're paying attention or not, you're hearing sounds that are new and unusual to that particular place. A good exercise is to sit and listen for maybe 5 minutes, and pay attention to what those sounds are and simply write them down, just make a list. For me, some of those things were the clatter of cups and saucers in a Montreal cafe, or the crashing of waves, mixed with roosters on Kauai. In Istanbul it was the call to prayer 5 times a day. Each place has sounds unusal to your daily life, and reading your description later will bring you right back to that place in a way that a photograph never could. Travel is more than just seeing sights, it's the whole experience.
A few years ago I took a journal keeping class at RISD. One of the most interesting exercises we did in that class was to draw what we hear. We sat for 5 minutes and just listened, and then took out our supplies and tried to capture the sounds.
I also saw in one of my favorite journal keeping books by Hannah Hinchman, A Trail Through Leaves, something she does called sound tapestries. She does little sketches for sounds, and then sometimes puts them together.Next time you're some place new, take out your journal and try to capture the things you're hearing. I'm sure you'll find yourself listening in a whole new way.