Vox Daily The Official Voices.com Blog

Back to School: Getting into the Routine

By Lin Parkin

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Back to School.jpgThe Labour Day long weekend marks the end of summer and return of the school season.

For my family, it closes one chapter and opens a new one. Next week I will see my 4 year old son off to school for the very first time.

He is officially growing up.Yet, his backpack looks so big on his tiny frame. Is he really ready for this? Am I? I have mixed feelings about this whole thing.

For many of you though this weekend marks the end of chaos and the start of having your house and recording studio back to normal. A quiet house is a beautiful thing to the home based voice-over artist.


Mike Rowe Demonstrates VO Trick in "Adventures in Voiceover"

By Lin Parkin

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Mic and Headphones.jpgDo you ever receive scripts that are marked up and difficult to read?

Or creative direction that makes little sense?

Receiving scripts in that kind of shape can really slow a production down and cause unnecessary back and forth between the talent and producer.

Join us in today's VOX Daily to discover a trick used by voice-over great, Mike Rowe, when he runs into this situation.


Jim Ross Meskimen on How to Do Impressions

By Lin Parkin

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Jim MeskimenHave you ever wondered how to do convincing impressions?

How do people learn to do impressions? Is it simply studying the sound of someone's voice and mimicking it?

Or is there more to it than that?

Have you ever watched an impressionist in action?

It is an incredible experience to hear and see a person transform before your eyes as they conjure up the voice and mannerisms of another person.

Impressionist, Jim Ross Meskimen, talked about how he performs his magic in a blog post and agreed to share his methodology with our community. Join us today for an in-depth look into how to you too can excel at performing impressions.


Animated Films Where Sound Design Reigns Supreme

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Sound designer/recording engineer listening back to wave forms displayed on a giant computer screen.Have you ever listened to a movie without seeing the visuals?

From time to time, I find myself in a different room and able to hear audio from animated films streaming through our speakers.

Perhaps you've also experienced this?

Some animated films paint a picture of what's going on so clearly through sound design that you nearly don't need to see what's happening on the screen.

Can you think of any animated features where the sound design was so amazing that you didn't even have to see the film to enjoy and experience it?

Join me today as we explore animated films with awesome soundscapes in today's VOX Daily.


Will Text-To-Speech Ever Replace Custom Voice-Over Recordings?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Male podcaster smiling at the microphone, headphones covering his ears

Everywhere you go, it seems like there is a voice talking to you. New technologies incorporate the human voice in many ways, many of these applications employing the means of text-to-speech (TTS).

Do you think that TTS poses a threat to custom voice recordings? Why or why not?

Be sure to state your case in today's VOX Daily!


How To Be A Great Radio Imaging Voice

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Man wearing a hat with a feather in it twisting the tuning knob / volume of an old radioHave you ever wondered what it takes to be a radio imaging voice talent?

When you've listened to enough radio, you come to appreciate good imaging when you hear it and find that the imaging does much to add to your listening experience.

What goes into creating awesome radio imaging?

Comment to let me know after reading today's VOX Daily!


Voice-Over Scripts: Screens VS Paper

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Screens versus paper debate for voice actors reading scriptsWhen you audition or record a voice-over project, do you print your scripts off or do you choose to read them off a screen such as your computer, smartphone or tablet?

There are many different ways that voice talent choose to read their scripts depending on the situation.

Find out more in today's VOX Daily!


How "Green" Is Your Home Recording Studio

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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The earth sitting on the grass, bright sky overhead.Are you concerned at all about the environment?

If you're trying to minimize your carbon footprint or save trees, there are many things you can do working from a home-based recording studio to make as little an impact on the earth as possible.

What can you do? Find out more in today's VOX Daily!


The Voice Contestant Jesse Campbell

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Jesse Campbell, former contestant on the NBC program, The Voice, 2012, Voices.com memberAre you a fan of The Voice?

When the show first came out, we did a little write up about it. Little did we know that one of our Voices.com members was a contestant on the show!

Hear about Jesse Campbell's story here and discover where his voice is taking him today on VOX Daily.


The Power Of Being A Mentor

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Frank Welker with Jonathan Murphy recording in studio; the mentor and his mentee.Have you ever been taken under the wing of someone who was more experienced and far more wise than you?

Jonathan Murphy's recent experience with a number of voice acting greats, including Frank Welker (pictured with Murphy at left), helped him grow and learn to appreciate the benefits of being mentored.

Hear his story and perhaps become inspired to mentor someone else in today's VOX Daily.


Je Ne Sais Quois: Getting Voice Work You Can't Explain

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Human hand holding a globe made of glass with frosting on where the continents are.Do you book work consistently in certain countries and don't know why?

When you do, have you noticed that the work is similar and are you able to spot a trend?

Voice over talent Christina Smith certainly has!

Hear her story in today's VOX Daily.


How To Choose Music For Voice-Over Recordings

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Mariachi man wearing a sombrero playing a guitar, woman watching with hands crossed over her chest, smiling. Mexican atmosphere, very colorful house in the background and colorful traditional dress.Is music the world's universal language?

When you select music to go along with a voice-over, whether it be a demo, an audition or something you're producing for a client, there's a lot more to consider than what meets the eye!

Discover how music choices can affect the way your work is received by its intended audience with insights from linguist-translator and ethnomusicologist, Rebekah Drew.


Digitizing Culture

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Portraits of John Harris and Amelia Ryerse Harris 19th CenturyDoes your voice capture moments in time?

Many people are trying to find ways to preserve history and make cultural institutions more accessible to the public.

Comment and let us know where your voice can be heard!


Dictionaries Deem "Voice-Over" As Proper Spelling

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Vintage microphone on the stage with pink, purple, bluish lightsDo you remember a debate we had some time ago over the proper spelling of the word voice over?

We've been informed by an established editor in the publishing business that the spelling "voice-over" is the way to go!

A number of dictionaries also agree.

Find out more in today's VOX Daily.


The Use Of Silence In Audio Recordings

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Gold colored Chihuahua puppy sitting on a woven chair.Is silence always golden?

What about an awkward silence, for instance?

Those of you on-air have certain opinions (and fears!) to be sure of what silence means and I'm curious to learn about how this translates to audio in general.

If you've found a way to use silence to your advantage, I'd love to hear from you!

Join the conversation in today's VOX Daily!


Getting Started in the Recording Booth Featuring Dan Friedman

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Sound Advice Voiceover book by Dan FriedmanAre you just starting out in voice over and looking for tips on building your home recording studio?

Need some ideas?

I hope that this posting gives you at least one aha moment or a takeaway you can put into practice today.

Author, audio recording engineer and voice over talent Dan Friedman joined Voices.com for a webinar recently and shared tips that are taught in audio recording schools from his book, "Sound Advice Voiceover From an Audio Engineer's Perspective."

Continue reading to access the webinar recording and be sure to comment on Vox Daily with your thoughts.


Homework Assignment Gets Spiffed in the Mix

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Darryl Lahteenmaa and Steve GiardinoNot long ago, an eighth grader in London, Ontario Canada lost her homework.

While this isn't uncommon per se, the project itself was unique, so much so that after her USB stick was discovered, something simply amazing took shape in a professional audio recording studio.

Want to know what happened? Find out in today's VOX Daily!


Just Voicing To Amuse Yourself?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Woman painting in an Impressionist styleFor some people, voice acting is merely a hobby. For others, its a passion that is being developed with each syllable spoken and exploration of their voice.

If you were to stop now, would you miss out on a career that's spoken of for centuries?

Find out more in today's Vox Daily.


Recording Artists Are Storytellers

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Man sitting in the grass reading a bookWhen does a story truly begin to be told?

Xavier Paul shares his perspective regarding how stories can be told and realities created using only the human voice when voice artists realize the author's intent using clues supplied in the script and through characterization.

Learn more in today's VOX Daily.


A Narrator's Secret Confession

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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young-woman-praying-bw.jpgIn the midst of telling other peoples' stories, narrators can lose themselves both in the script and in knowing who they are apart from the stories they tell.

Can you relate?

Guest blogger and audiobook narrator Tim Lundeen explores this topic through his secret confession in today's VOX Daily.


Using Images To Make Voiceovers More Believable

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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The church of Naranjo, Costa RicaHow much research do you do before you record a script?

There are many different kinds of research that one might engage in to better understand a voiceover project including text analysis, corporate culture and historical context to name a few.

In today's VOX Daily, we're going to focus on how a visual image can help to not only inform your read but make it more believable.


How Do You Amplify Your Voice?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Large fake ear resting on a man's real ear.  The man has his hand placed on the ear in a listening fashion.There are many ways to make your voice sound louder whether it be through vocal acrobatics and projection or use of technology.

What's your favorite way to get loud?

Be sure to comment with your signal chain and projection tips!


Talking Toys: Who Voices Those Anyway?

By Lin Parkin

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Boy on a picnic table talking to a stuffed monkey toyEver wondered who the voices of talking toys are or how to get that kind of work?

Voicing for these applications can be fun and there's a broad spectrum of vocal needs for toys ranging from animation related franchise toys to educational aids and more.

Are you the voice of a talking toy? Join the conversation in today's VOX Daily!


Getting Started With Garageband

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Apple Garageband guitar iconHave you been wondering about how you can record your voice with Apple's Garageband?

This tutorial by James T. Dawson shows you how to do everything from creating the initial project to ensuring that you have the right settings for your microphone in preparation to record!

James has contributed before (audio recording on a Mac) and I think you'll enjoy this installment.

Learn more about how to get started with Garageband in today's VOX Daily.


How To Stay Awake During Evening Voice Over Sessions

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Lamp post at night with the moonIf you are like most voice over talent, you'll have the odd (or regular!) evening recording session.

By the end of the day, you're tired, spent and may have little to give in terms of energy or enthusiasm... however, those late-night sessions still exist!

How do you keep your voice buoyant and faculties alert?

Hear from a number of professional voice talent about how they survive late evening and even nocturnal recording sessions.


When Do You Let a Read Go?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Boy making facesWhen you are in the director's chair, the decision rests with you as to how many takes you produce or how you approach a read.

How many takes are enough?

Do you beat yourself up to get what you perceive to be the "perfect" take?

Guest blogger Jill Tarnoff asks these questions and more as she journeys as a professional voice over artist.

Read what she has to say in today's VOX Daily and join the conversation with your thoughts!


3 Reasons Why Audio Recording Rocks

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Man behind a microphone and pop filterDo you love audio recording?

Working on-camera last week deepened my appreciation for what many of us take for granted in audio recording.

Why does audio recording rock? I'll tell you 3 reasons why in today's VOX Daily.


Tips For Doing a Voice Over Session via Skype

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Skype logoDid you know that you can be directed by a client over Skype if need be?

In today's VOX Daily, we'll be exploring how you can do this and also be providing real examples of projects that have been completed in this manner.

You don't need to have ISDN anymore simply to be directed remotely.

Want to learn more? Read on!


Do-It-Yourself Voice Processing

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Empty toilet paper rollEver wanted to change the way your voice sounds without the aid of recording software?

How about some do-it-yourself voice processing?

We've compiled a number of tried, tested and true techniques for doing just that! Ideas ranging from how to sound like you are underwater to sounding like you're on the telephone are covered in this article.

Be sure to read what we have here and also add your own ideas for others to experiment with in today's VOX Daily.


What Do You Want Audio Recording Engineers To Know?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Female voice over talent behind microphoneIf you had the chance to shape the future of how audio recording engineers worked with voice over professionals, would you take advantage of it?

What if you were to receive that opportunity today?

Make a difference in your future and in the futures of countless voice over professionals and audio recording engineers by commenting now!


3 Recording Engineers Spill The Beans on Top Pet Peeves

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Blond haired woman with microphoneNot being able to take direction. Touching the microphone! Not having "microphone awareness."

These are just some of the many things that can irk producers and recording engineers... and make them question your professionalism as a voice over artist.

But wait, there's hope!

You can put your best foot forward and make a good impression when visiting a recording studio, all you need to do is learn more about what is expected of you and heed these words on today's VOX Daily!


How Familiar Are You With The Audio Signal Chain?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Audio recording engineer in sessionWhen you first get into voice over, you'll quickly learn that something expected of you (to work independently) is an audio home recording studio.

Voices.com CEO David Ciccarelli is an honours graduate of the Ontario Institute of Audio Recording Technology (OIART). On his blog, The Biz, he took time to outline the basics of the audio signal chain, comprising of three elements that every voice over professional should be aware of and understand.

We'll briefly discuss these elements today on VOX Daily!


Should You Bring Cookies To Recording Sessions?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Chocolate Chip CookiesWhen you go to a recording studio for the first time to work with their crew, there are a number of ways you can make a good first impression so that you're asked back again like being prompt, sensitive to direction, gracious and friendly, but what about other gestures unrelated to your performance and punctuality?

Recently, it was referred to on an expert panel at Voice Coaches that cookies and cheesecake were brought to a recording session, appreciated by all at their office.

Sounds good, doesn't it?

While cheesecake may be be a bit much, what might you bring to make a good first impression to a studio session?


What's The 1 Thing You Never Do Before Hitting "Record"?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Man raising hand stopThis morning I recorded a voice over for a video we are producing with our friends at rtraction to promote the site and give customers an overview of what Voices.com is and how our service works.

Before hitting record, I made sure that I didn't do one thing in particular...

Want to know what it was?


Fabulous Recording Studios!

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Woman recording into a microphone

Do you have a favorite studio to record at?

Let me know!


Studio Etiquette? What's that?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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baby spaghettiWhen it comes to studio sessions and voice actors, recording engineers and studio owners have seen it all.

How should voice actors behave themselves in a studio session?

Find out what Marc Graue has to say about it in his Voice Over Experts episode "Studio Etiquette", sure to both entertain and help prevent messing up in the future. Listen to the MP3 episode here at VOX Daily.


Advanced Recording Techniques

By David Ciccarelli

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Advanced Recording TechniquesExplore the tools of the trade and how they interact with each other.

Discover new recording studio techniques, written by Voices.com CEO, David Ciccarelli, a trained and knowledgeable recording engineer and honors graduate from OIART (Ontario Institute of Audio Recording Technology).


Dry Mouth Problems when Recording?

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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An Apple a DayIn VOX Talk Episode 5, correspondent Julie Williams shared some tips on how to get rid of dry mouth when recording.

One of the tips was to have water close by and the other was to have an apple on hand for yourself each time you record a voiceover.

To test this theory myself when recording for a recent podcast, I kept a freshly sliced Granny Smith apple at my desk and ate a couple of slices before I started recording the intro and news.


Ode to the Foley Artist

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

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Behind the scenes in audio production.