SoSLUG Archive


Ambient Weather Sound Machine by Stuart Bowditch & Damien Robinson


A project involving Stuart Bowditch, Damien Robinson, MediaShed & SoSLUG

I have always had an interest in every day ambient sounds and the fact that they usually go unnoticed by everyone. Maybe its because we are bombarded with thousands of sound all at once that we tend to block them out, especially more mundane sounds like traffic noise. It seems that when we are in a quiet environment that we become more aware of the surrounding ambience, even though there maybe less noises. We have chosen a quiet, remote location and will take sounds from the place itself. To do this we have devised a system where Damien Robinson, a deaf media artist who works with sounds and vibration, can capture sounds that she can feel through vibration alone.

Then we'll edit the sounds and load them onto a computer. Damien will then select some more digital and analogue sounds from synths I play to her from my computer that she feels compliment the sounds we already have, purely by her heightened sense of vibrations. The computer has been recycled from disgarded parts and is running linux Gentoo as it's Operating System and Pure Data as its primary application. We will connect up a d.i.y weather station to it and use the data from these instruments to trigger the sounds through PD. At the moment we have wind speed and direction sensors, but we'll expand that to include temperature, barometric pressure, solar radiation, motion detection and also include data from waves, soil analysis and longitute/latitude readings. All this will run live to produce a soundscape, at the actual location from where the sounds were taken. We will invite you too. -Stuart Bowditch

AWSoM: v0-0-2, 3 & 4 are being featured in the Sound:Space – Screen showreel from 20th Sept-16th Nov and at the Sound:Space sound art symposium 1st Nov, alongside work from sound artists from around the world. So if you’re in the South Hill Park area, drop in, or visit the symposium website at The symposium features presentations from Max Eastley, Ray Lee and Norwegian sound artist, Jana Winderen as well as a curated curated reel of fourteen A/V works submitted for the international “Sound:Space – Screen” overview, a surround sound installation recording “Beyond Ol’ Tokai” by Chris Watson and a live performance by Max Eastley and Peter Cusack. Blimey, a busy day then!

AWSoM version 4 11-18th August, Interactive Screen 0.7 Images here

A whole new version of AWSoM was prepared and recorded specially for the Interactive Screen 0.7 conference at the BNMI in Banff, Alberta, Canada.

The sounds of flags (Canadian of course), prize giving at a Teachers fun run, a stairwell, a xylophone in a fashion shoot, German sight seers, Japanese tourists, French speaking hikers, freight train horns and squirrels all add up to make this brand new mix.

AWSoM Remixed 7th July, Shopland Festival Images here

We've a new sound mix for the Sutton with Shopland Festival, now in its fourth year; two days of music, film, art, and multi-media with fun stuff for the kids and everything in between.

The original Two Tree Island mix makes way for the sounds of Shopland. Samples of John Deere tractors, irrigation systems, people, cars and steam trains (yeah woo baby!) create ambient sound and music responding to changing environmental patterns. Come and find us in the Marmalade Arena on Saturday 7th – the weather is set to improve so no reason to stay at home.

Go to for information and directions to the festival, 6th and 7th July. Free bus service running every 30 mins from Rochford Station to the Festival site.


AWSoM returns Images here

Due to popular demand – the return of AWSoM, the Ambient Weather Sound Machine, as part of this year's Leigh Art Trail. in the Bang & Olufsen store on The Broadway, Leigh-on-Sea from Saturday 9th June until Saturday 16th June . Full exhibition, with MediaShed Video Sniffin' films and music from Hybernation open 9.30am to 5.30pm daily (except Sunday) with a special late night opening on Thursday 14th June until 9pm with Telephasic Workshop DJs for a bit of a party.

AWSoM showing at these times only:

Saturday June 9th 1pm-2pm and 4pm-5pm
Thursday June 14th 1pm-2pm and 4pm-5pm and 7pm-8pm
Saturday June 16th 1pm-2pm and 4pm-5pm

This version of AWSoM uses weather sensors sited outside Bang and Olufsen connected to recycled computers and linked to a Bang and Olufson sound system.

Bang & Olufsen, 91 Broadway West, Leigh on Sea SS9 2BU.
Nearest station, Leigh on Sea (C2C Southend-Fenchurch Street line for timetable information).

AWSoM @Two Tree Island Images here

AWSoM will be performed during Essex Wildlife Trust’s ‘Discovery’ open Day on Sunday, May 20 th, 10.30 – 4pm Come along, bring some food, and join our picnic! In addition to AWSoM, Essex Wildlife Trust will be hosting family events, wildlife group displays and guided walks round the island, plus a refreshment tent.

AWSoM is funded by Arts Council England East’s Grants for the Arts.

Directions to Two Tree Island (only 15 minutes walk from Leigh on Sea station) here.

By Train: Two Tree Island is a 15-minute walk from Leigh-on-Sea Station (C2C Southend-Fenchurch Street for timetable information). Turn right out of the entrance, cross the bridge behind you and follow the road past the civic amenity site and golf driving range and over the bridge on to the island. There is a car park immediately over the bridge and the main reserve entrance is about 200m further on the left.

By car / bicycle Leigh-On-Sea Station is on Belton Way, Leigh-On-Sea Essex SS9 2ET, a short distance from the A13 (London-Southend) Turn off Belton Way to Leigh Station, follow the road which crosses the bridge behind it. Follow the road past the civic amenity site and golf driving range and over the bridge on to the island. There is a car park immediately over the bridge. Leave your car / lock your bike here.

Now all together: From the car park, walk to the main reserve entrance is about 200m further on the left. Turn left into the reserve and follow the main path (up to the AWSoM site 500 yards on your right). We will signpost the route.

Author: Derek Shaw - Page reference: 2883
Last modified: Alan Campion - 2015-02-20

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