Name: Paul O’Rourke
Hometown: Woodside, Ca
Specialty/Style: Electronic Hip-Hop
Tools of Choice: Ableton Live, Pro Tools
Years producing music/sound design pre-Pyramind Training: 4 years
1. Congratulations on your position as Associate Sound Designer at Double Fine Studios! What projects are you currently involved with?
Thank you! I worked on contract for 2 games, Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster, and the recently announced title, Double Fine Happy Action Theater.
2. How did you apply for this position and why were you chosen above the rest?
I was introduced to sound designer Camden Stoddard of Double Fine through Steve Heithecker of Pyramind. Steve wanted to show Camden a 5.1 surround sound mix I had done for a class final, and we hit it off. After about a year of grabbing lunch and talking about gaming, they decided to give me a shot doing some dialogue editing on-site.
That blossomed into a few other contracts, and my responsibilities began to grow and grow with the company. I was fortunate enough to have a very talented and strong student-base at Pyramind, so it wasn’t an issue of qualification, but I’d like to think my passion as a competitive gamer helped me stand out to Camden and the team.
3. How do you feel Pyramind Training best prepared you for a career in the music and sound industry?
I’ll always remember my first interview with Bryan Dale at Pyramind. He was very straight forward, and did his best to make sure my expectations of the industry were real, and not based on the glitz and glamor the media can make it out to be.
This might have discouraged some people, but as I pushed on through the program, I was taught many ways to find and create a viable income in the industry. Some key points I learned are professionalism, networking, work ethic, and a to have a genuine passion for what you are learning.
4. Is there a unique story or memory you wouldn’t mind sharing about your time at Pyramind Training?
This is kind of embarrassing but I’ll press on. I had been producing and recording music for about 4 years before I entered the program. I’d say 2 of those years were spent in Pro Tools. I had probably recorded 40-50 songs with friends and felt pretty comfortable with the program. Moving on, when I started my Pro Tools class at Pyramind, I thought I was pretty hot stuff and was going to breeze through the 101 classes.
Lo’ and behold, my mind was blown day 1 when Bryan showed us you could put ‘Inserts/Plug-ings’ on your tracks. Previously, I had been using Audiosuite for everything. The significance of this story is that in that moment, I realized I was still a novice, and let go of any ego that may have lingered upon joining the DSP program.
5. Any advice you would like to share with future students?
Please attend your classes, and be attentive. The sheer volume of information you will be learning is staggering, and you can’t afford to miss any of it. Take a ton of notes, and keep them organized.
Use the facilities to the fullest, including the body of talented students and teachers you will be in contact with everyday. Go to any events you can, especially the ones hosted by Pyramind. If your schedule allows it, try to apply for an Internship with Pyramind, or another company that you are interested. Having experience on your resume before you graduate is invaluable. Aside from that, just stay positive and try not to fall behind!