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What should your daily music quota be?

Isaac Nurse

I Seriously Can't Write Music
A while ago, I watched Orchestral Tools 'The Topic' video on workflow with Kristopher Carter. In the video, he mentioned that he tries to complete at least two minutes of music per day. (At least, I think so...) Since watching that video, I've set that as a personal goal for myself, trying not to sacrifice quality for speed and I'm now able to write around a minute and change of fully orchestrated music—music that I can be proud of.

For my own purposes, I'm just wondering what others believe to be suitable and sustainable in a professional environment and also what parts of the process does this entail: i.e. raw track, mixed/mastered, notated, etc.
 

matthieuL

New Member
I heard that John Williams did 2 minutes per day too.

But as you certainly know, some days we have no inspiration and we produce 0 second (but this is not necessarly a lost time), and some other days we could produce 5 minutes. I'm sure even big names have blank days !

I think means don't mean anything :)
 

Ned Bouhalassa

Senior Member
I think it greatly depends on the complexity of your arrangement: a long-ish synth pad, piano, strings piece should take much less time than a short 100+ track orchestral cue.
 

angeruroth

Member
It is useful when you are close to a deadline, but as @Wolfie2112 said, it isn't necessary.

You can try a little experiment. Start watching any TV show episode without volume and underscore it on the fly. Then orchestrate/arrange/improve the result, solve any thematic issues raised, and see how good is the final piece.
The next day, start scorting the same episode with your usual workflow and compare both results and the time invested in both parts of the experiment.
It doesn't matter if you pick only 5 minutes of the video or the whole thing.
That would give you a good sense of your two performance/quality.

BTW, I think CH commented once that, time ago, he was composing +30 minutes/day... Pretty hardcore if you ask me.
 

Wolfie2112

Senior Member
TW, I think CH commented once that, time ago, he was composing +30 minutes/day... Pretty hardcore if you ask me.
The weird thing is, I always have a "plan" to go home after work and write some music, but it rarely happens. Seems like an easy goal, but harder than you think. I usually get sidetracked by getting immersed into sifting through the endless patches of a new VI, checking out this forum :), or simply flopping out on the couch and relaxing. Before you know it, the day is shot, followed by the guilt of not accomplishing what you intended! I personally prefer to have some sort of a deadline looming, that's when I compose my best work.
 

Daryl

Senior Member
I don't have a quota. I just write what needs to be written. It would also depend on how complex the orchestration was, and the speed of the track.
 

merlinhimself

Active Member
My process is planning my minutes so I have at least 2 days off a week. If I have a week to do 12 minutes, I try to write 2:30 a day. Sometimes I write 2:00, sometimes 3:00 or more. If it's a tough episode or I'm just having an off week, I have the 2 days extra to do what I need to. I usually am ambitious with my planning and end up only taking a day off haha, sometimes not even!

Edit:
Talking about finished minutes* some days on a big action cue I'll go through the whole thing, sketch it out and produce it to 60-70%, and finish it the next day
 

LudovicVDP

New Member
Sometimes, I shut down my computer after 30 min and swear I'll never do music again. I'm too bad at it. Sometimes, it's like: "Wow! 3AM already?? This is gonna be a long and difficult day at the office trying to stay awake." No rules there.​

The weird thing is, I always have a "plan" to go home after work and write some music, but it rarely happens. Seems like an easy goal, but harder than you think. I usually get sidetracked by getting immersed into sifting through the endless patches of a new VI, checking out this forum :), or simply flopping out on the couch and relaxing. Before you know it, the day is shot, followed by the guilt of not accomplishing what you intended! I personally prefer to have some sort of a deadline looming, that's when I compose my best work.


I'm totally with you on this. I spend the day wishing to be home to compose. But when I finally am, I can sometimes get lost into checking forums, watching tutorials, noodling with patches,... and finally composing nothing. Procrastination my old friend...
 

Peter Williams

New Member
Sometimes, I shut down my computer after 30 min and swear I'll never do music again. I'm too bad at it. Sometimes, it's like: "Wow! 3AM already?? This is gonna be a long and difficult day at the office trying to stay awake." No rules there.​





I'm totally with you on this. I spend the day wishing to be home to compose. But when I finally am, I can sometimes get lost into checking forums, watching tutorials, noodling with patches,... and finally composing nothing. Procrastination my old friend...
We call noodling with patches "practicing."
 

LudovicVDP

New Member
And watching tutorial = learning.

So yeah... I'm not wasting my time :grin:

… but still composing 0 min of music that evening.:)
 
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