Audio: The 'I Am One' anti-bullying campaign
Issue: August 1, 2015

Audio: The 'I Am One' anti-bullying campaign

COLUMBIA, MO — Mike Swittel recently provided sound design and mixing services for I Am One (, a new short film that is part of an anti-bullying campaign that encourages high-school students to stand up against bullying. The “I am one” concept is designed to empower young adults by letting them know that their courage to stand up against bullying very well could begin a domino effect among their peers.

The project, which includes a companion Website, social media effort ( and resource material for schools, was directed by Steph Borklund, who was concerned with the rise in suicides as a result of bullying. According to Swittel, a majority of the short’s scenes required environments and ambiences to be built from scratch. Additionally, because of the nature of the film and its intended purpose, a balance had to be struck between documentary and entertainment in the style of its sound design. 

To achieve this Swittel made significant use of MOTU Digital Performer 8’s clip gain feature, instead of taking the traditional automated approach. Due to the amount of sound effect layers necessary, using breakpoint automation would have been inefficient, he notes. However, “printing” the processing per sound effect ine ssence printed the mix within the session, which saved a significant amount of time overall. 

Digital Performer 8 runs on Swittel’s 3.2GHz, Quad-Core Intel Mac, which is equipped with 32GBs of RAM. Processing was handled primarily using UAD, Isotope and Waves plug-ins.