Richard Povall project. Blog entry one, 16th October. Initial session.


I am going to be helping Richard Povall to compose music again with the aid of his computer. He has seen the work that I have done with Ray DeGrussa and believes that I should be able to do something similar with him. He currently uses The Grid 2 software to control his PC. This software allows a user to input keyboard and mouse commands via different interfaces. Richard currently uses the “Eye Blink 2”This is a small camera on an eyeglasses frame which detects a blink and sends this to the computer as a switch press. Richard has some experience of using The Grid 2 and his wife Vashti has made a grid which he can use to type and access his email program.

Richard used to play the guitar but cannot read conventional notation. He started writing his songs with lyrics, chords and then melodies. This is not a default way of working with Sibelius, but we decided to use this software after I had demonstrated some alternatives.

Communication with Richard is very slow as he has to communicate with his eyes, either by operating his pc or if you hold up a sheet with the alphabet on it. When i first arrived, he demonstrated his ability to operate the keyboard via his eye blink tool by typing obscenities on his computer! I suggested that we could be in for some punk compositions.

I wanted to leave the first session with him being able to compose simple melodies, to familiarise himself with the way that the grid interfaces with Sibelius.

Being a guitarist and songwriter myself I can understand how he formulates his ideas and he will need to be able to quickly realise and then edit the harmony to his compostitions. Unfortunately this is something that I couldn’t do in the first session as I will have to research this at home.

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