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7 Reasons To Go Paperless In Your
Home Studio ... And None Are 'Green'

By Dave Couvoisier
Voice Talent & TV News Anchor

Not that I don’t believe in saving trees. But I’ve found other compelling arguments for eschewing stacks of paper in my voice over home studio. Maybe you'll agree.

1. Flatscreen monitors are felony cheap.

I bought a 23″ LG HDMI monitor for $189. The deals get better every day. If you’re a Windows guy (not sure about Mac), set up your studio with two monitors in Control Panel settings. Put your DAW interface on one screen, and read your copy off your other screen.

2. No rattling of pages, or page turning sounds.

Don’t pooh-pooh this one. If you’re an audiobook or long-format narrator, this can save a lot of time in the long run - in editing and physically having to handle the pages (and edit out the sounds of pages and paper).

3. Tablet computers are the bomb.

Forget #1, get a tablet computer (iPad, Motorola XOOM, Samsung Galaxy, etc). Buy an inexpensive mount and position it anywhere in your studio. Heck, hold it like a piece of paper!  Use your finger to turn pages. Silent!

4. "The Cloud” solves all. 

The same company that makes Dragon Naturally Speaking (Nuance), also makes PaperPort. With a small investment and access to a scanner (use your iPhone!), you can make your whole world paperless. 

Store your PDFs, docs, receipts, letters, invoices - ANYTHING on paper can be transferred to the cloud, and called up from the cloud onto your smartphone, tablet computer, computer monitor, even your TV screen.

5. "The Cloud” Part II. 

DropBox may be the most ingeniously easy invention of the past five years. Many of my clients use it to send copy and receive audiofiles. Audiobook publishers use it for workflow.  It’s drop-dead easy and brainless. Same with, SugarSync, Evernote, and SpringPad.

6. Save space.

This is so obvious, I almost didn’t mention it. No more file cabinets, drawers, folders, notebooks, shelves, dust, paperclips, staples - it all goes away with digital storage of documents.

7. Searching is a cinch. 

Unless you’re incredibly organized and disciplined, searching digital documents beats the heck out of sifting through endless files and drawers. Just tell your computer to do the search for you. Saves on paper cuts, too.

Honorable mention:
Going paperless - especially with the aid of a tablet computer - empowers you to have more control of your business…with the flexibility to work when, where, and how you want.
Dave Courvoisier is an Emmy Award-winning broadcaster, writer, producer, voice actor, and the main weeknight news anchor on KLAS-TV, Channel 8, the Las Vegas CBS affiliate. He also writes Voice-Acting in Vegas, a daily blog of adventures and observations in a style that’s true to his friendly Midwestern farm roots.

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Comments (5)
Roxanne Coyne
10/17/2012 at 2:46 PM
I love my iPad. It's just the coolest thing in the world. I still print out some scripts, but not all. And for audiobook recording there's nothing better. In conjunction with iAnnotate it's a powerful combo.

Thanks for the article, Dave. Missed you at Faffcon!
Joel Richards
10/17/2012 at 9:42 AM
RE: Christopher. Are you talking about phone patches or working on site? I think Dave is referring mostly to work in your personal studio. I agree that working in another studio I prefer paper for the reasons you listed. But when working out of my personal studio (most the time), paperless is faster and better for tracking changes.

Dave: On a Mac it's even easier. It just works. If you need to rearrange your displays in virtual space, go to System Preferences and Displays. I personally like to mirror my displays so that I see the same thing in my booth and editing desk.
Paul J. Warwick
10/17/2012 at 9:39 AM
Great article!

One point you may have missed. Text size!! I suffer from nystagmus (involuntary eye movement) and copy on a tablet is invaluable, I can have the text any size I like!

Christopher: I've found a scratch protector and a grease pencil. Office supply stores call them china pencils, and they work great to mark scripts!
10/17/2012 at 6:43 AM
You know Dave, this is what I enjoy about you SO much... you put the practical into an even more practical perspective! Your headline says it all...

As a person who went paperless and also likes that it's a 'green' thing to do, I have to say that all the things you mention are the benefits of what I live every recording session. I did it to SIMPLIFY my set up, which for me meant literally having one screen do it all. I even make script adjustments and marks during live sessions. Honestly, it feels "quaint" to me to use paper, which I had to last year when recording in a San Francisco studio.

Thanks for doing what you always do - putting it like it is!
Christopher Caldwell
10/17/2012 at 1:09 AM
Great idea, but not practical for some voiceover artists. In my experience, clients, writers, etc., constantly make changes in copy on the fly while they are directing me. They'll change an entire sentence, then bring it back later. It's cumbersome to try to make copy changes on a tablet device. Clients expect you to pencil it in quickly, and get to it. Trying to type on a little iPad screen or highlight or change emphasis, correct grammar is a bit tricky. Nothing is faster than the old stand by....a pencil.
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