Pandemic Production- The Home Game!
In the before-times, I had just completed the renovation of the space my home studio sits in. For my entire career, people would say “You must have a cool home studio setup!”, to which I would always say “Nope! I’m in a studio all day every day mixing spots. Why on earth would I want to do more at home??”. But as I started doing podcast production in the evenings (I spent five years working for Gilbert Gottfried’s Amazing Colossal Podcast), I realized that the only way to keep up was to have a home rig. And as I started production on my OWN new show, I made lots of improvements that would prove to be life saving in this crazy time.
I could not have imagined that all of the subtle details and problem solving I worked out well before the pandemic, would allow me and my clients to continue to work together as seamlessly as we now do! The most random of things: taking advantage of a Fios speed upgrade for less money than I was paying. Getting an ethernet cable into my studio computer from a router on a different floor. Finding a solution to allow me to share audio from any app to any other app. And most importantly- opening up Source Connect and Zoom accounts!
While the commercial production industry is working it’s way back to some sort of normal, the team at Digital Arts went immediately into 100% remote-mode. Editing, color grading, recording, sound designing and mixing. Sure, lots of engineers have home setups with varying degrees of sophistication- but when in the early days of self-isolating, I was able to have the agency and their clients on camera while sharing my Pro Tools screen- while an actor from LA was connected via Source Connect- I knew this was going to work out just fine.
In some ways, there are some benefits to working this new way. As an audio mixer, I typically have my back to the room. That means that I have to keep one ear on the actor reading the script and one ear on the client's comments (I always jot down who thought what about which takes). But now, working together virtually, I get to see everyone’s faces- and their head-nodding reactions when they’re all in alignment on a read that was just delivered.
While I miss interacting in person with coworkers and clients, this process has proved to be incredibly smooth. I can receive talent from anywhere in the world while clients join the session virtually. They can watch me edit, sound design and listen to me mix as if they were in the same room- just with more sweatpants than usual. Radio production, TV mixing, casting, surround mixing, sound design, music searches- all from the comfort of my own home, streaming into yours.
We’ve worked out all of the details of getting the job done remotely, including harnessing the infrastructure of Digital Arts from our homes, but we have yet to figure out how to send sushi lunches down the line digitally. Or the afternoon gourmet coffee runs! Perhaps we’ll solve that problem next!
We look forward to seeing you in person again as soon as we're able to! In the meantime, if you're interested in discussing workflow and seeing a demo of how it all comes together, please send a message via the chat icon below- or email me here.
Keep healthy. Stay safe! More soon- FV
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