Audio for Video and Electronic Gaming Careers
Sound for picture careers can at times be very entertaining, though they can also bring long hours of tedious work when a project has a looming stringent deadline. Job openings are common as film projects are always popping up. Salaries in the audio field can range anywhere from? 30k? to the millions, depending on the skill, experience, and passion of a particular audio professional. Most people are unaware of the large variety of audio careers available in the sound for picture and electronic gaming markets; these positions can be quite lucrative and enjoyable for those truly passionate about sound.
Some sound for picture positions described here include location sound recordist, supervising sound editor, composer, mixer, foley artist, automated dialogue replacement (ADR) recordist, and editor. Some of the electronic gaming positions covered are director of audio, audio lead, junior-level specialist, maintenance engineer, and audio tool developer.
The location sound recordist captures audio data in real time working alongside a film crew. A lot of experience with audio gear is required due to very little room for error when it comes to capturing real time sound. An experienced location sound recordist can save a crew many hours of reenacting scripts.?
The supervising sound editor is basically the boss of every other audio professional working on project. He or she is responsible for ensuring that deadlines are met. The quality of the finished project is mainly the responsibility of the supervising sound editor, though this manager certainly could not throw the whole thing together in the required amount of time completely alone.
Composers are the dreamers that create music from an intangible place within the mind. These creative individuals practice the art of bringing beautiful scores from the intangible to a speaker to the ears of anywhere from hundreds to hundreds of millions of people. A strong understanding of music theory is a must.
Mixers are responsible for combining many tracks of sound effects, music, dialogue, etc.; as such, mixers must be very well organized in order to effectively complete the project in a timely manner. Sometimes, in the case of many or large projects, mixers are classified into different specialized positions such as dialogue mixer, music mixer, and sound effect mixer. ?
Foley? artists capture the individual sounds for video. A? foley? artist must be aware of the sound quality of a recording in order to match it appropriately with the environment in which the video takes place. Additionally,? foley? artists often watch the video while recording in order to seamlessly match sound with the actions in a video.?
ADR recordists coordinate with actors in order to capture dialogue after the film has been made. ADR recordists work closely with actors. Good people skills, patience, and a keen eye for the distances and environments on screen are all required traits of a professional? ADR? recordist.
The editor has the somewhat tedious job of properly filing and cutting tracks. A good editor makes it easier for other audio professionals to retrieve and use clean tracks. When cutting tracks, the editor may choose to remove unwanted sounds such as buzzing or a sneeze from a member of the film crew.
As for the electronic gaming market, the audio director supervises all aspects of the project, much like the supervising editor in the sound for picture market. The audio director is also responsible for outsourcing work, perhaps to a recording studio, though budget will determine whether or not this is a feasible possibility.
???Audio leads are expected to deliver rough audio segments, or ???comps,??™ to the project lead or producer to help him get funding for the title??”they also help the director of audio formulate the creative vision for the sounds that will accompany the visuals.??? (Touzeau, 2008) Audio leads are often broken down in more specialized roles: sound effects specialist, music specialist, speech specialist.
Junior-level specialists function much like the editor in that they edit and maintain large groups of tracks. They??™re primary responsibilities include labeling, editing, and organizing audio files. This is an entry level position with a fairly meager salary.
Maintenance engineers manage sound equipment. Equipment must be in working order and primed for use by specialized audio professionals. Deadlines loom, and workers cannot afford to be slowed down by equipment failure when it comes crunch time before a release date. Ad campaigns and such cannot just reschedule a title??™s release date.
Audio tool developers are the golden child of the gaming industry. Audio tool developers are skilled in both audio and programming; therefore, they are highly coveted by game developers due to their specialized advanced skillset. Audio tool developers are able to code things such as volume control and equalizer into the game. The salary is high and the job openings are plenty!
Though good finances are a necessary part of living well, audio professionals are encouraged to follow their hearts. One must be passionate about his or her work in order to realized any real level of success and happiness. Up and comers interested in the audio production field should follow their dreams and always stay open-minded to new opportunities in different positions within the industry.
Touzeau, Jeff.? Careers in Audio.? Boston: Course Technology, 2008. Print.