John L. Butler Jr., C.A.S. Peterson Sound Studio Manager, Instructor of Sound Recording
John Butler has been teaching field sound recording and mixing techniques at OU Film for over 20 years. His diverse portfolio includes sound for many films and his work as a sound engineer for national television programs is well recognized. American Cinematographer magazine published an article by John and he is an active member of The Cinema Audio Society and The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He creates sound designs for art installations, lectures at numerous universities and seminars, and is one of the leaders in audio restoration techniques. He continues to stay on the cutting edge of audio technologies.
The door to John L. Butler office is rarely closed and, more often than not, full of graduate students seeking advice, a soda, or the chance to see John's personal collection of audio equipment he has gathered throughout the years. John is much more than just an instructor to the School of Film; he is an ever-present linchpin to a community of filmmakers from around the world. He actively reaches out to OU Film Alumni and enjoys seeing past students visit his office in Athens.
These are a few of John's past work experiences in the field and are much better expressed by John while eating a piece of candy in his office.
- Sound Director - Film Department at Mod Art Pictures ('61 - '68)
- Audio Design Engineer - Designed audio system for Newark La Guardia and Kennedy International arrivals and wrote specification for the new fiber optic closed circuit television system for the Holland and Lincoln Tunnels.
- Consultant for the Nigerian Television Network and The Liberian Television Network in each one's respective country. ('82 - '83)
- Director, Film Sound Department - From 1968 to 1977 at WQED Television, Pittsburgh, PA where he designed new communication and audio visual systems using digital and fiber optics for audio for all media arts.
- Field Audio Recorder National Geographic Film Specials
- Audio Engineer and Technical Consultant - Mr. Roger's Neighborhood; he also appears as himself as a special guest in an episode.
The Black Bear Award
In honor of John Butler's dynamic presence at Ohio University as a Professor and Mentor, the Athens Film & Video Festival initiated the Black Bear Award in 2008. This $500 prize is given to the film/video that demonstrates the best use of sound.