WHAT? I have to be an audio editor, too?
I recently listened to an online webinar where a well-accomplished audio editor gave a class on Twisted Wave, an audio recording app. It runs in the cloud as well as on Mac computers, iPhones, and iPads. It’s my go-to editing and processing app.
So, I wanted to listen in to see how the big-city pros use Twisted Wave. (Lifetime learning; always a good thing.) And I did learn some things about this app I’ve used for 6+ years. The app itself is simple, inexpensive, and easy to learn—and all the time, I discover features I didn’t know it had.
But I also heard something in the webinar that’s worth sharing here: being highly skilled in a craft means you know A LOT about the craft. It also means you could easily overwhelm a rookie audience.
It’s like signing up for a painting class. Rembrandt shows up to teach and starts showing you little brush-stroke tricks he does to make water look 3D on the canvas. Meanwhile, you’re just trying to figure out which brush to start with and how to get paint on the brush and not in your hair!
With VO, you spend months learning your performance skills, being creative, and following directions. Acting. Emoting. Now, all of a sudden, you and your computer have to get up-close and personal. You have to take some audio you just recorded, do “something or other” to it, and turn it into the “finished audio” that your client wants.
Suddenly, you’re back to Square One on the learning curve. EQ? Compression? Normalizing? Room tone? Special pasting? Effect stacks? Racks? “Sweeten the audio?” Huh?
There’s a whole world of audio editing knowledge and skills that take time and practice to learn—just like with VO performance! You can decide that you want to be a skilled practitioner in two fields: performance and audio editing.
Or, you can keep the focus on your performance skills but learn a simple, straightforward way to process audio that works for most situations and is good enough for the client*.
You can “call it good” forever or just for now, until your brain can handle taking on another learning curve.
Eventually, if your passion leads you to VO work that regularly requires full editing and production (like some e-learning jobs and audiobooks at ACX and a few other publishers), maybe by then you can hire out the editing and processing to competent engineers. Let them flick their “paint brushes” like Rembrandt to make your audio soar. And while they’re busy with your audio, you can be busy making more audio for another gig.
*Contact TVAS to set up a private lesson with me on using Twisted Wave to fully produce your next e-learning gig or ACX audiobook.