Collaborative by Nature: Voiceovers are by nature collaborative. The audio/voice is but one piece of the mosaic of a creative project. The client, agent, producer, writer, director, audio engineer, content developer, project manager, editor, marketing agency, ad agency, and even accounting department are some of the folks who may work on any give project with the voice talent.
…But Still Working Alone…: Pandemic or not, working as a voice talent is quite solitary. Sure we work with all of the aforementioned people, but more often than not it is virtually, with the audio being recorded and edited by ourselves in our home recording studios. Auditions, project scripts, and specific directions generally come through via email (at least in my experience). Although there are times when a good ol’ fashioned phone call (I’m not talking Zoom either, but a call on an actual phone – albeit a cell phone) works a lot better to explain the project, directions, scope of the project, and at times word pronunciations.
When it comes to recording the audio, being alone works the best simply because it needs to be quiet. When the recording, editing, needed re-takes, and saving are complete, the tech highway that we know as the Internet comes into play. Audio is sent virtually via email, Dropbox, WeTransfer, Google Drive, and various other platforms. There are a handful of times I can count when the audio/voiceover project has been put on a CD or flash drive (and even one time a cassette tape!) and I actually get to physically hand the client their custom audio project in person. The vast majority of the time, however, I send the audio/voiceover over the computer, in my office/studio…alone.
All of the above steps are a part of the “whole” that includes many people and many moving parts. Yet it is rare that I ever see those I work with, let alone meet them in person.
…And Yet Together: Enter Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and a myriad of other platforms that have become ubiquitous as of late. I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve gotten “zoomed out” at times. However, I’m grateful for it as it has allowed me to communicate, work, chat with (and “see”) people, attend classes and webinars, teach a voiceover class, conduct Rotary meetings for a local Rotary club I’m a member of, and…collaborate on voiceover projects.
This much-enjoyed collaboration, with the added benefit of motivating energy, has come to the forefront of my voiceover business over the past few months. Whether via Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or over Source Connect or ipDTL, working together, asking questions, figuring out solutions, coming up with new options and ideas, learning, and listening are all such a blessing. Helping and working together on projects with others is a wonderful thing indeed. Celebrating collaboration!