Monday, February 1, 2016

Western Musical Wind Instruments: Visual Presentation

Music can be appreciated through auditory experience. As an alternative way of appreciating music, we may also look through the different instrumental craftsmanship focusing on design, form and visual appearance of different musical instruments. For this presentation, I was able to produce different digital images of Western wind instruments through the help of 3D modeling programs.

Musical Instruments Model from: 3D Warehouse
Render by: Benedict Martin Caliwara
Program Used: SketchUp8, Kerkythea, Photoshop, Picasa

Wind instruments generate tone through a vibrating column of air enclosed in a tube or a pipe. The two classes of wind instruments are (1) woodwind and (2) brass.

Wood winds

Wood winds, with the exception of the flute, produce vibration by means of a single reed or double reed.

Single- Reed Instruments

The principal single-reed instruments are clarinets and saxophones, both of which are made in various sizes and have correspondingly different registers.

Double-Reed Instruments

The principal double-reed instruments are the oboe, the English horn, the bassoon, and the contra bassoon.

Flute and Piccolo

The flute and piccolo (the latter is the highest-pitched instrument in the band or orchestra) produce tone by air blown across a mouth hole. In the older type of flute called a recorder, the air is blown from the end into a whistle like mouthpiece.

Brass Instruments

The tones of brass instruments are produced by vibration of the player’s lips pressed into a cup-shaped mouthpiece. Change of pitch is effected both by lip pressure and by the manipulation of valves. There are four principal brass instruments.


The horn, or French horn as it is often called, is derived from the seventeenth-century hunting horn. The horn has a wide compass and produces rich, full tones.


The trumpet has a brilliant tone. The cornet, which is similar to the trumpet, has a more mellow tone. Both are used in bands and orchestras, and there is an increasing solo literature for these instruments.


The trombone may be regarded as the bass of the trumpet, but it has a more mellow tone that the trumpet. It adds tremendous sonority and power to the brass choir.


The tuba is the lowest brass instrument of the band and orchestra. Tubas are made in various sizes and shapes.

Reference: Introduction to music: a guide to good listening by Hugh M. Miller