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Covid and Lockdown- 2 Years Later: The Business

It's hard to believe it was two years ago that everything in NYC shut down. It meant an immediate shift for how we work with our advertising and production partners- and made having the ability to record voice actors from their homes a necessity. Having worked out all the kinks in my home studio just prior to hearing about Covid, I hit the ground running and helped as bests I could to get everyone up to speed. Many of you will remember the countless Home Studio Primer webinars and classes- including client demonstrations to show the path forward. Since then, I've remained busy both at my job sound designing and mixing for Digital Arts, as well as evening classes on consults. I've gotten to know so many voice actors so much better than I had before, and have met so many more from coast to coast. Friendships have formed with people I would likely never have known if there hadn't been Covid- which is a really weird thought! It felt great to be able to tell my clients with confidence "We got this!"

I'm really proud of the work I've done at home for my ad agency and animation clients, and have assembled a new reel that is a chronological telling of the pandemic itself.

I had previously written about the opening spot, where actor Andre Braugher recorded in his car at home while I turned my car into a mobile control room. This spot for BayCare health was the first TV spot I worked on in lockdown. It not only turned out great, but was the first of many spots for agency DeVito Verdi, a long time Digital Arts client. You can read move about it in Mix Magazine.

The next spot was one of the first to get away from strictly 'stay home and stay' messaging, and got back to the business of selling... safely. The spot for Shift speaks for itself, courtesy of the no-nonsense, straight to the point work of Brainchild Creative.

For the holidays, things got back to normal a little with work from Terri and Sandy and Sam Mazur. We knocked out a entire holiday and Valentine's Day campaign in surround, with talent and clients all safely at home. This spot was featured in AdWeek as one of the best of the season- and extra feather in the cap for all involved.

Next up I have an IKEA TV spot for my long time friends at Ogilvy in NY. Voice actor Tiffany May knocked out the TV reads and several radio spots in record time from her booth at home, while the clients followed along over Zoom. This was the beginning of my using Waves NX to send clients a surround emulation in their own headphones at home courtesy of Source Connect Now from Source Elements.

Piro, NY is up next with a very quirky and fun campaign for Nestle Crunch. This was fun series of spots to sound design and mix.

Next up is a relatively simple spot for Laurel Road banking, In keeping with the Covid theme, it was focused on benefits for doctors. A reminder that we were still in the thick of it!

The next spot, again from my friends at Terri and Sandy, is for Fresh Direct- an unsung pandemic hero for people who couldn't bring themselves to grocery shop (or just couldn't). The tone, however, is business as usual as we start to come back to a new normal.

Terri and Sandy finished off this Covid lockdown reel with a spot that says to me "What pandemic?". It's a fun animated spot for Mother's Cookies. Plain and simple. Colorful, light and happy. It seems a fitting way to end the reel as we come back to business as usual.

I'm so grateful for the many new clients I've had the pleasure of working with during lockdown, and look forward to what's next as we find our footing. We know we can work together with confidence and continue to create professionally crafted content.

I have more thoughts on the pandemic coming soon from a different angle, but wanted to share this work that makes me so proud for everyone involved: the agencies, the talent that did the work and set up their home booth, and the team at Digital Arts that keeps it all rolling along.


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