We probably all know & use the word Foley but everyone seems to have a slightly different understanding of what it means.
From talking to other sound people & watching documentaries I've heard a few different definitions;
- Just footsteps & clothing movement sounds
- All character related sounds apart from dialogue
- Low priority sound effects that aren't spot FX or ambience
My understanding is that Foley is the technique of watching a video whilst performing actions to create sounds in sync with the picture. So in my opinion it is a recording technique rather a type of sound, & the subject of a sound doesn't determine whether or not it is Foley.
From my experience footsteps & movement sounds in video games are usually recorded/edited wild and synced later but still referred to as Foley.
Definitions from a couple of books;
- 'Foley is the art & craft of designing and recording performed sound effects in sync to film'
Vanessa Theme Ament (The Foley Grail)
- 'Today the term describes general sound effects performed by humans, but not necessarily to picture. This includes sounds that are pulled from a sound effects library'
Ric Viers (The Sound Effects Bible)
What is your understanding of Foley? It would be interesting to see what definition is the most common.