Aris Hatzidakis interview

Aris-HatzidakisOfficial website

Tell us a little about yourself and what you do for a living?
I started to interact with music and sound in general, since I was a little kid. From various music organs, to cheap recorders, trying to capture sounds in nature. For me, combining these two, was and still is the ultimate nirvana. I’ve been drumming throughout the years with rock/heavy metal bands in the underground Greek scene, but my main music route takes place in the electronic music, which started in 2006. In 2010 I made my first steps in the field of sound design by co-creating the music for the online MMO RPG Darkfall with Asimakis Reppas. At the same time I started working and creating music libraries for games with Panagiotis Kouvelis. Since then we just keep going, doing wonderful things and taking promising steps for the future.

What is your niche or speciality, that makes you stand out from rest of the audio professionals?
Definitely ambient composition, it’s the style of music that I really know well and I loved it since I heard it for the first time. I’ve been “studying” it for many years now, so I have many different ways around it. But except from that part, I’ll never say that I stand out from the rest of the audio professionals. I already feel lucky enough because I’m into this industry with no specific education what so ever, just my personal experience over the years, the love that I feel for it and my good willing spirit.
I’ll never see what I do as “business”, it will take away all the purity that gave birth to everything that accompanies me since day one.

Can you give us a brief summary of the equipment you use regularly?
FL Studio, Reaper, Native Instruments, Alchemy, Camel Audio and my personal sound libraries are always up and running. Everything new that comes in my way and interests me, is always welcome for exploration.

What are your go-to plug-ins and software? (virtual instruments, audio processing etc.)
Hehe pretty much all of the above!

When do you find you are most creative?
Just being alone, no human contact what so ever. I love spending time with myself and go through various mind trips, processing everything and nothing.

What is your usual process for creating audio content for games, films etc.?
I try to live what I’m about to create, I dive into it and I start my journey. That means that I hear very explicit styles of music, I watch specific films and I play specific video games. Every project has a different approach ( at least most of the times). A good actor/actress is changing his/her methods of living in order to achieve a particular role, no matter the cost. A sound designer must do the same as well.

Are there any particular secrets to your creativity?
Never let go of that primal feeling that you first felt. Creativity is not a job, you’re not an accountant for a business firm. You put bits and pieces of yourself in every creation, love/passion/excitement are the things that you have to bring to the table. I won’t mention experience of course, it’s something that comes over time with hard work and endless hours of practice.

Do you have any audio creation techniques that resulted in something interesting?
If we put the “standards” aside, every sound designer has his/her own techniques that are developed through time. I try not to put barriers, that’s why I love sound manipulation. I hear a single knock on the door, that’s a kick right there waiting for me to grasp and process. Hit a glass with a spoon and there you go, your own ride bell is ready. Or even something pure digital can involve through process into the most organic texture. Always start your day with imagination and appetite for destruction.

Any specific “lessons learned” on a project that you could share?
Every project I think is a personal upgrade and a lesson as well. Through good or bad experiences we learn more about the dynamic of ourselves, in any possible way or form.

Any tips, hints or motivational speeches for the readers?
Always be positive and open minded, the possibilities are endless, generate sound no matter what.