Pulling Focus

In film, the object in focus catches the viewer’s eye first; thus, the cinematographer controls what the audience should perceive. As the object moves and reacts to its environment, the focus must shift accordingly, hence the term “pulling focus”. In the process, previously unseen background details become more vivid concurrently as detailed objects begin to blur.

I translate these visual concepts here into sound as dense textures develop and decay from within established objects in focus. In this instance, the violin acts as the main character; as the instrument moves through the composition, it also travels in and out of focus by pushing and pulling itself out of its accompanying textures.

The first instance of this technique gives a literal meaning to the title of the work. Since the violin begins the composition immediately out of the preparatory tuning, the audience abruptly pulls their focus towards the performers and away from personal matters. This situation acts as the first of many moments in the composition in which boundaries and borders are smeared by “pulling focus”.

Many thanks to the follow individuals for their time to record this work:

Courtney Burris, Michael O’Brien, Kim Foskett, Mark Lauer, Teri Quinn, Melissa Champ, Brandon Crawford, Erik Blume, James Westbrook, Russell Thorpe, Ted King-Smith, Lauren Hart, Ben Forshee, Shannon McCranor, Ashley Hirt, Jeffery Barbee, Andrew Foerschler, and Matthew Marx.