Thursday, June 4, 2015

MATTHEW

Saying little, but constantly listening to Toronto's audio soundtrack, Matthew Piers Robertson quietly navigates the city on a different level.

Born just down the road at Women's College Hospital in 1974, Matthew lives and works in the city's core. Coincidentally, he lives almost across the street from the same hospital today!

After growing up in North York, Matthew finished school and worked in retail distribution before developing his interest in photography and audio. The two disciplines meld perfectly to create visual soundscapes of Toronto. He blends his photography with deeply mixed audio to give listeners an immersive experience of the mundane and overlooked sounds around us.

One of his first experiences listening to environmental sounds came when working for the Swatch Group in their distribution centre. He recalls the sounds of those tiny plastic ticking timepieces, " I'd be walking down the isles of the warehouse, surrounded by these plastic watches, each one of them ticking. When there are 60 in a box, and hundreds of boxes, you can hear them. They sound like little insects nibbling away, talking to each other. Individually you can't hear them, but as a group they are overwhelming." He recalls this as a spooky and haunting experience. It was this that lead him to his love of field audio.

Today Matthew is a member of the Aden Camera team, using his love of photography to guide new and returning customers to choose the right camera for their needs. Gentle, unassuming and knowledgable, he does not hard sell, but truly cares about matching the right camera to the purchaser's style.

MATTHEW FUN FACT: On the changing soundtrack of the Toronto, Matthew says, "As the city is changing the streetcars from the old ones to the new Bombardier Flexity cars, the sound of the city is going to change." He is documenting the changing sounds of Toronto, creating an audio roadmap of a city in transition.

You can check out a few of Matthew's soundscapes on his blog: http://www.matthewpiers.com/B


PHOTO: SPENCER WYNN

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