Kissing A Fool

Mistakes happen in voice-over like they happen anywhere else. Sometimes the lips don’t follow through with their task, and you need to redo a line. Or two. Or seven. That’s why most voice-overs are pre-recorded and not done live. 

Everyone handles “pick-ups” differently. Most of us don’t stop in the middle of a long script, back up and do the line over. You carry on and do the line again, but you mark it somehow so you can go back and find it easily when you’re editing the recording. Derek makes a quick sound like a cork popping. Some people snap their fingers. Me? I make a kissing sound.

photo of a sound recording where the kiss sound is easily spotted as a thin, vertical line

I used to say BEEP but that’s not as easy to find. I tried snapping my fingers but I didn’t like adjusting my physical position while I worked. Recently, I changed to the kiss. After all, my lips are right there anyway. You can see it above in the sound wave. The thin, vertical line doesn’t look like the rest of the recording. It’s easy to find and remove the mistake just prior to it.

It doesn’t feel weird to sit in a room by myself and do a cartoon kiss every once in a while. But I recently did a directed recording session, my first one since changing to the kiss marker. A project manager was on the phone listening to me as I read his script, and the first time I did the kiss, it turned a little awkward.

I made the smooching sound after realizing I’d made a mistake and there was silence on the phone. I could feel myself blushing and then I said, “Um, it’s not that I’m sending you kisses, this is how I mark my pickup points!”  You could almost hear his brain confusion morph into understanding. He laughed and said, “I wondered what you were doing!” Just kissing the air my friend, kissing the air.



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