Pumpjack soundscape

2012

I created this sound design of a pumpjack in southeast New Mexico as a means to investigate the impact of resource extraction on the natural soundscape. It was created from multiple field recordings that were captured near dusk during the summer of 2012. I recorded these sounds by walking around a pumpjack (an oil well pump) and placing the recorder near mechanical objects. I captured the machine during peak operation and shutdown. I physically moved the recorder around the machine to provide an overall depth of the audio environment. In addition, I recorded the natural soundscape while the machine was idle. Finally, I mixed the various recordings to fade between one another in order to compress time and provide an overview of this audio environment. The video is paired with images I created during the same time period of various oil field related machinery.