Sound as Color 2017
Sound As Color converts audible frequencies to the visible spectrum, using color, brightness, and size to represent frequency and amplitude. The result allows listeners to enhance their sensory experience of music by "seeing" a visually appealing range of sound. This piece was shortlisted for the Kantar Information is Beautiful Awards 2017.

Technical Process

  • Frequencies are extracted from the input audio and then mapped to the full visible spectrum, where the lowest audible frequency is equal to 390THz and the highest audible frequency is equal to 750THz.
  • Samples are taken from the input audio signal at a rate of ~2.61 samples per 1 second.
  • Each sample contains 16,384 indices, each representing a 1.35Hz increase over the last, where the value of the index is equal to the amplitude of the sampled location.
  • Colors are generated in HSB, where hue and saturation are extracted from the loudest audible frequency in each sample, and brightness is measured by the amplitude of that particular frequency.
  • HSB is converted to RGB.
  • Samples are represented by circles and are mapped L-T-R across the output image
  • The size of each circle is determined by the average amplitude of all frequencies from the sample.