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How far would you push this…do I need to learn more?

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Daniel De Avila
How far would you push this…do I need to learn more?
on Sep 7, 2009 at 4:27:34 pm

Hello

Ok ...the situation (one that Im sure is more common that I care to admit)

Professional voice over completed from a final script. Back in the edit room (video edit) that final script wasn’t really final and now the client is asking for audio edits that uses words from different parts of the recorded dialog. For example:

“Once you have completed” “all 10 questions” “press “submit” “on the final screen”

The quotation marks designating audio pulled from other line reads and used to construct a new sentence. One of my current jobs has the same VO artist but cutting between recordings that might be months apart and using different mics. As such I’m finding it a bit difficult.

Now awhile ago I did read a very cool article regarding changing pitch etc etc in order to change the inflection of a line read and further assist with these types of cuts. But at the time I wasn’t really paying attention. Also because I try and fight it a bit, preferring not to take on the fix it in post mentality.

As a result I try and patch something together but usefully tell them that its back to the studio for retakes.

Of course, I don’t think their is a right answer for this but I suspect that I’m being a bit too inflexible and should try an improve my audio editing skills.

Any opinions and guidance on this will be greatly appreciated.

Sincerely
Daniel


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Ty Ford
Re: How far would you push this…do I need to learn more?
on Sep 7, 2009 at 7:20:44 pm

Hello Daniel,

My buddy Jay Rose is inclined to say things like that, but even he will admit that its usually takes from the same session unless the talent is immensely "the same" over different projects. Jay was usually saying that for spots, where VO is more structured (less variable).

Even if you have the ear, the tools and know how to use them, there's only so much you can do.

I think the goal here is to use this experience to firm up communications with your client so it either doesn't happen again, or they are just open to the fact that downstream changes do have a price.

I had Northrop Grumman for a client for many years and they would routinely send me a script. I'd do it and there were usually at least three changes. The video people there knew their own people would be evolving the projects and would require changes. It was SOP. Don't be afraid to get paid for that.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide






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Bill Davis
Re: How far would you push this…do I need to learn more?
on Sep 9, 2009 at 4:06:53 am

This is why it's so fundamentally stupid for EVERYONE involved to undercharge/underbudget for professional work.

I can't count the number of times, somebody in my early career "lowballed" me - and I took the gig - only to have them screw up and have to come back and pay a whole second studio AND VO fee netting me more than the original quote.

I've got clients I've had for 20 years - and they all know that while my original fee is NOT going to be the cheapest they can find, I'm also pretty flexible if someone up the chain of command decides to flex their superior education and demands that I recut the sentence from "Over 50% of users agree..." To "More than 50% of users agree..."

Heck, I even agree that the second instance is proper grammar while the first is arguably wrong. (Over being a direction as in "above" rather than a indicator of amount, after all.) The point, however is that while arguably gramatically incorrect, it not only sounds PERFECTLY correct - it still totally honors the original fundamental goal of communicating clearly to the audience.

So how much is it worth to go back and change it?

That's why I keep my original fee high-ish and don't mess around with charging for these little re-cuts unless there are substantial changes to the original work. At some point the "change seriousness" crosses over - and in my experience clients always understand that and never argue about a second session/VO fee.

So in summation, set your rates so that you can be a "nice guy" and throw in the incidentals.

If you don't, you'll wake up someday and discover it's costing you more to generate a damn BILL for the work, than the actual economic benefit of the profit you can fairly charge for doing it.

My 2 cents' anyway.




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Daniel De Avila
Re: How far would you push this…do I need to learn more?
on Sep 24, 2009 at 5:33:26 pm

Hello

Apologies for the delay in responding.


Many thanks for your ideas. It was very helpful.

Sincerely
Daniel


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