Remote working as a producer, director or creative when dealing with sound studios is becoming far more popular today than ever. The quality on offer from the likes of Source Connect Now and Google Hang Outs and Skype has improved to such a point that clients can tap into a recording session viewing a screen share from the studio of their video and can direct the voice talent miles from the studio.
But as obvious as it sounds there are a number of simple practices a remote director can do to vastly improve the session experience. Firstly check you have a good broadband and WiFi signal. This ensures you don’t miss a vital line in a take and the voice talent can hear your instructions clearly.
Make sure your in a quiet area. This sounds obvious but it’s surprising the Skype sessions I have had in a recording session where a director has been sitting within ear shot of a coffee machine in a coffee shop or next to the cutlery tray. Computer microphones are very sensitive and when received in the studio it is doubly as loud. Also try and avoid standing in a stair well. This has also happened and the directors sounded like they were at the back of Wembley Arena.
Wearing headphone or your ear buds plugged into your laptop, tablet or phone will give you a far better listening experience. The recorded voice is sent directly to Skype or other apps via the desk output or similar from the studio. Your tiny speakers on the phone or other device will not sound as good. Remember to mute your voice once the artist begins to record. Hearing a coffee slurp, cornflakes munching or that coffee machine hissing away via your open microphone is not good. Come to think of it. Leave all food and drink consumption until after the session (or before) but not during a session.
Lastly. Directing remotely can be great fun and a fast way to get the job done. Too much direction at the start of the session can lose you valuable time. Give your talent a quick brief and let them have a go at a first pass and take it from there.
Sound is Emotion.