Voiceovers are generally a piece of narration in a film or other broadcast material in which an image of the speaker is not usually accompanied. Voiceovers are something I have been editing and recording for small time jingle and radio promotion for a long time now and in order to achieve the provided brief, creative editing is really important. Ways in which the voice can be manipulated to portray certain characters or settings has always interested me, and trying to edit things to sound ‘spooky’ for example, can be really interesting and fun.
The first step of creating voiceovers for radio is obviously the recording of them. This process is extremely important and honestly makes or breaks the end product. Getting a clean vocal with very little to no breath noise is hard yet essential as editing this out post-mortem can be hard. Therefore, it is also essential to be able to record in a space with very little background noise. I find that my bedroom really just doesn’t cut it and will usually record any vocals in my bedroom closet as the clothes and other junk lying around really help dampen any natural reverberation and outside noise. Fans being turned OFF as well as doors/windows being shut is also certainly important. Obviously, if you have access to an acoustically treated room then that would be perfect, however some of us just don’t always have that luxury!
Before I get into some manipulation of voice, I want to point out a man on YouTube who I have been following for a few years by the name of Mike Russell. His YouTube, MusicRadioCreative, is one of the most informative I have ever come across. His choice of DAW is usually Adobe Audition, however most of the skills he teaches are transferable across any DAW. Specifically, his playlist highlighting some extremely niche effects for Voiceovers is incredible, and offers ways to edit vocals to achieve unique effects. If you’re interested in looking into some really cool tutorials then definitely check him out!
Anyway now onto the editing bit, largely, when editing, you want to make the voiceover sound clean and professional. Sometimes, effects are needed too! Here are some iterations of the same voiceover that I’ve recorded and added various effects on. It is extremely simple and very quick work so don’t judge me too hard!
As long as it fits the briefing you should be good to go! I hope this gives a little bit of insight into some of the things you can do with voiceovers!
Header Image Retrieved From NYCastings.com
Russell, M. (2017). Mike Russell. YouTube. Retrieved 14 December 2017, from https://www.youtube.com/user/musicradiocreative
Russell, M. (2017). Voice Over Production – YouTube. YouTube. Retrieved 14 December 2017, from https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL6wGbZVVzENmoCusq0LqbgSXzOTOSr2bn