Learn about what to expect and what is expected in voice recording sessions.
- There are certain standards that everyone expects in a voice recording session. Knowing these industry expectations will make your job easier and you'll come across as a much more seasoned professional. As a producer you want to make sure that you overlap the schedule that you set up. Some voices tend to go longer, some tend to go shorter during a session, so make sure that you can keep things moving smoothly with people standing by. You can also ask your voice actor to do more than one voice in a session.
Generally you can get someone to do two voices at the same rate, but once you asked for a third voice, you have to bump them up. Also, be prepared with organization and all of your notes. Know what you want going in, don't just sit there and try to figure it out in the session. We always understand that you might come up with new ideas once you're in the heat of the battle, but try to be as organized beforehand as possible. As an actor, you want to be prepared to wait. Sometimes a person in the session before you is taking longer than they expected.
Make sure, though, that you're always there on time. In fact, if you could show up a little early, that's always great, but never ever be late. Another thing you never want to do is change the script. Now you can always suggest words that could make it smoother in a session, especially if you're having a hard time saying something in character, but never make the assumption that you can change the lines to a script. You should also really know your lines. Now, that's not to say they have to be memorized, they don't, but go through it enough where it's going to be smooth, and you'll just be that much better and quicker, and you'll understand what's expected of you in the session.
When you get into a session, both as an actor and as a director or anyone else that's in the session, turn off your phone. (spring reverberating) We don't want to hear the sound, we don't want the distraction, and we sure don't want any extra sounds to kill a take. Now when you're in a session, as an actor, just wait for instruction. Sometimes they're discussing something behind the scenes or they're saving files or there's something happening with the engineers. It's not always about you, just sit there and wait. You also don't want to argue.
There's a reason they're asking you to do whatever it is and it's your job to provide whatever you can to the best of your ability. And, just be professional when you're in there. Part of that's being really patient if you have to do the same line over and over. We might be looking for some sort of very special inflection that we're not getting which could mean we could ask you to do some really bizarre things. We could ask you to jump up and down, spin around, act something out. Generally, we're just trying to get a different read.
Some actors have an issue with, or on certain lines, where no matter how many times you do it, it sounds exactly the same. We might be trying to get something different from you. Just understand that whatever we're doing is always for the best of the project and it'll only make you look better anyway. The other thing you want to make sure you don't do. (paper crinkling) Don't make noise with your sheets. Try to have 'em laid out so you don't have to move them during a take. You also want to make sure you enunciate. I mean not so much that it really sounds halting.
You don't want to read like this. But Ts, more than any other letter, are often dropped in a reading, so just make sure that we hear them. If you're talking about a beat, you don't want to hear about a bee. A beat, it's a slight little thing, but you want to make it sound casual, but we definitely want to hear it. Also, don't go around touching the microphone, alright. Especially if you're in a good audio booth.
The engineers are really particular about their equipment as they should be. They know where the mic should be set to pick up your voice the best. If there is an issue, ask them about it, don't touch it. Now if you're doing a session that's more casual in someone's home office, like what you see around here, absolutely. That's generally not going to be a problem. Hust never when you're in a professional booth. Also, make sure you don't wear noisy clothing. Things like bracelets that could dangle. Or long earrings, never wear long earrings.
That's very close to the mic and we're going to hear that little clicking. Okay, so be careful about that. You also might want to try eating an apple as a voice actor. One of the reason that does that is that it lubricates your teeth so they don't stick to your lips. 'Cause you don't want to be going into a session with your lips stuck like this. You also don't want to stop and apologize every time you either flub a line or you have to redo something. The last thing we want to do is hear apologies. It just wastes time and it's a little bit frustrating for everybody.
It's just a part of a recording session. We know it, just keep moving on, it's no big deal. If you find that you're a bit frustrated with a take, just take a breath, (inhales and exhales deeply) back up, and continue. And also, and this is for everybody in a session, never underestimate the power of politeness. Look, we're all working really hard, and civility goes a really long way during these stressful hours. Understanding what's expected of you in the session really will just make you look better and makes the entire job run that much more smoothly.
- Finding and hiring voice-over talent
- Recording voice-over
- Becoming a professional voice artist
- Recording better line readings
- Creating a demo reel
- Recording your own voice-over projects
- Delivering and backing up audio files