My name is Gareth Inkster and I’ve been enjoying your podcast, website, and youtube content for a bit over a year now. Although I’ve hardly begun your own intro course, I’ve studied music in both College and University (bigger difference up here in Canada), and I am currently a high school music teacher – on top of this, I’ve done a Udemy course on composition as well, and recently enrolled in a film composition course to boot.
I would love to pick your brain about a few things, but let me start by saying thanks. Guys like me who have aspiration and hopes for their future – to the point of distress at times – are inspired by guys like you who acted on their conviction and dreams and went for it. You are an encouragement to me.
My main question is in regards to software. Although I have recording software enough for my solo project (you can find me under my name, Gareth Inkster, on Spotify, itunes, Apple Music, etc.), I don’t have a great notation software.
I am in the process of acquiring Sibelius, but I’m a bit apprehensive that even once I do so, I will be lacking the necessary bells and whistles to really capture the best samples/sounds for particular instruments, etc.
You have had your music featured in a film, I understand (congrats!), I have been looking into marketing to video game developers, app developers, etc., but it seems that these people are mainly interested in pre-made tracks. I’ve got no problem with that except that I don’t know how best to produce a high quality track with a real-enough sounding orchestra.
I apologize if this is way too general or betrays my lack of knowledge, but I would really appreciate any help you could spare!
May I suggest you experiment with Pro Tools? It is available on an affordable subscription plan and will bridge the gap between composition and the final product. It’s from Avid, the same company that makes Sibelius and the two programs are easily integrated. There will be a huge amount for you to learn but that’s half the fun anyway.
Enjoy and happy composing.
You have two specific things to address.
I would recommend Sibelius right now, as the price is to rent, and it is still the most robust, easiest to use software. Your notation software will not be used to create the final version of your music, as it just doesn’t have the capability to fine tune the performance like you can in a DAW. Sibelius comes with sibelius sounds, which are okay, but I would also recommend Note Performer.
If you want to score to picture or games, you will need a good DAW. The most common are Logic, Cubase, Pro Tools and Digital Performer. They are all very capable. You can also look at Reaper, which is free to use, and cheap to buy a license.
Don’t worry about buying effects, because they come built into most DAWs. Most DAWs also come with a handful or synths, and maybe some sampled instruments as well to get you started.
When you’re ready to buy libraries, you can check out Spitfire, East West Composer Cloud (monthly rental), Cinesamples, and Orchestral Tools. They are kind of the most common.
Check out https://vi-control.net/community/ for info on the tech side of scoring.