It’s a great time to do voice-over work – with the way the online media landscape is changing, there are more job opportunities than ever. Companies need talented voice actors in a wide number of fields including podcasts, e-learning, and telephone work such as professional voicemail greetings. The most popular of all is video voice-overs, especially with the rise of YouTube. Indeed, in 2020 the voice actor-network Voices saw a 199% rise in internet video jobs, so it’s the perfect time to get started. To make things even better, it’s now easier and more affordable to do professional voice recording from home. But first, you need to tackle the challenges of remote working, like how to stay focused and manage your time efficiently.
Set up Your Home Recording Studio
To start your voice-over recording career from the comfort of your home, you’re going to need a dedicated space to record. A small room is perfect for this, as it will reduce the echoes picked up by your microphone. You have to keep surfaces in mind too, so recording in the kitchen or, obviously, the bathroom is a bad idea. To help improve the sound you can invest in some acoustic panels around your room – just don’t go overboard as then your recordings will sound dull and lifeless. There are alternatives to forking out for acoustic panels, though. If you eat a lot of eggs, the classic method is to attach egg cartons to the wall, but rugs will also help reduce the reverb and give you a great sound.
Use Quality Equipment
Next, you’ll need a good microphone to give you the highest quality audio. If you’re just starting out, there’s no need to invest thousands of dollars in a professional recording studio. The Blue Yeti and Blue Snowball Ice microphones are great options and they’re not too expensive either. When it comes to recording and editing software, Adobe Audition is used by many professionals, although it comes at a cost. Meanwhile, Audacity is a fantastic free option – even if it isn’t the prettiest tool. Don’t forget to get good headphones for when you listen back to your recordings too, because with low-quality ones you might not notice issues that others can hear.
Get Ready To Record
Now, before you hit record and the red light comes on, there are a few more things to do. Of course, you need to warm up your voice – you probably have your own routines like lip trills or breathing exercises. Make sure you’re the right distance from your microphone too: six inches is the perfect amount and you can work it out by doing the ‘hang loose’ gesture between you and the microphone.
Also, always make sure you stay hydrated and keep a water bottle handy that you can fill up as much as you need. Without staying consistently hydrated through the entire recording you may find that your voice will sound very different throughout the recording.
One thing that people forget is that it’s surprisingly difficult to read and speak out loud while recording, especially because you need to keep many things in mind such as your volume level and making sure to enunciate. You may find you accidentally read the wrong word, miss one out, or adlib by saying a different one instead – that’s perfectly natural, it’s how our brains work. A great way to make sure you’re following along is to try increasing the font size or even follow the words along with your finger – just like you learned in kindergarten! You can also add your own markers to show you when to breathe. Keeping all of this in mind, you’ll soon be ready to create brilliant home-recorded voiceovers.
Become a Great Remote Worker
After you’ve got your equipment, you need to make sure your office is perfect for remote working and that you’re ready to work from home. Maintaining an ergonomic environment is a helpful way to stay focused as well as comfortable for long recording sessions. First, make sure all your equipment is set up in a logical way and that everything is within easy reach. If you prefer to sit down while recording be sure that you have good posture to avoid back problems. It also helps to take regular breaks, including going for a walk.
Since getting to grips with working from home takes time, you’re going to need to stay motivated. This takes willpower and it’s best to remove as many distractions as possible. You also have to manage your time effectively. You can do this by setting yourself a schedule or time limits for each task you need to accomplish.
But it’s not just about having the ideal, ergonomic working space with top-of-the-line recording equipment; there are external factors to consider too. If you live with others, then you’ll have to let them know that you’re about to record. You don’t want to hear commotion in the background of your perfect take. If you live with a dog, it may be a bit more difficult to explain the situation to them – you’ll just have to hope that the mailman doesn’t ring your doorbell.
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