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iPad Great Tool For Voice Actors ... 
Read Copy From Screen, Many Apps
By Linda Ristig
Voice Actor 
Back in late May of 2010, I purchased an iPad. Truth be told, I was delighted to be one of the first in our area to get the 3G/WIFI version.
I wasn't sure what that was, but I was really tickled to have it on my iPad.
Knowing little to nothing about the capabilities of the iPad, I originally set out to use my iPad for blogging within the week.
All I really knew was that the keypad was much larger than on the iPhone, but that feature above all others really appealed to me!
On my first traveling adventure with the iPad, I realized the hotel I stayed at did not have a reliable internal Internet service (WIFI). Also, my AT&T service (3G) must have been in a dead zone.
Ah well, so much for the "best laid plans."
I was able to take some notes from various conference speakers without needing the Internet, so all was not lost.
I even was able to input many new contacts into my little app right there on my iPad screen.
Needless to say, I was frustrated with my iPad and considered returning it. Was it really a worthwhile investment if it was going to be too complicated to use?
When I returned home, I knew I needed to take the time to learn about the capabilities of the iPad.
I immediately took advantage of my one-to-one Apple membership, and visited our local Apple store to get answers to my questions.
They patiently guided me through several lessons to get me up-to-speed on the iPad. They even learned a few new things as well.
In the world of technology, as all of us know, change is the only constant.

How do I use the iPad now, after months of experimenting with it?

First thing in the morning - over my one token cup of coffee of the day - I read my emails.
The iPad has a great, easy feature for me to group-edit those emails that need no response.
I truly like keeping up with some subscribed blogs to which I belong. Since my iMac is synched to my iPad, if I delete an email on my iPad, it deletes the emails I no longer need.
It works the same way if I delete emails from my iMac or iPhone, thus avoiding overstuffed mailboxes with redundant information.
By grouping the emails that need a response, I can respond more in depth later. It helps me focus my day.

The iPad is silent, making it a great choice to have in a recording studio from which to read scripts.
A cool feature is the ability to scroll silently along with the touch of a fingertip, while paperlessly reading copy when performing a voice over.
I especially love the way I can enlarge the text by pinching two fingers over the touch screen.
If you wear reading glasses, you'll really like that feature!

I have uploaded several Keynote presentations and audio/video commercials that I've voiced onto Mobile Me, the "cloud" of storage information for the iPad.
I've shown several examples to potential clients. For marketing in the real world, it's an awesome tool to have.

Creating and giving Keynote presentations (Apple's version of PowerPoint) is a snap, because an iPad can be hooked into an ordinary projector.
There is a limit as to how big the files can be, though. You have to actually be in the Keynote software before the screen will appear on the projector, since the projector won't mirror the home screen on the iPad.
In my opinion, this is one of the most powerful features of the iPad.

Quickly following the updates in social media sites can be quickly accessed through either apps or the WIFI abilities of this device.
It's a great way to keep up with personal and VO friends.
The keyboard is larger than on an iPhone, for responding with a comment.
I tend to use the iPad in the landscape position, because I can touch-type on the glass now.
I admit that I did need a lot of practice, because I had the tendency to rest my fingers on the keyboard. I was typing a lot of gobbledy-gook at first. Now, I'm slightly better at it!

It's lightweight to carry around, too. I tuck it in my large purse and tote it with me.
I've played around with several apps.
Did you know that Twisted Wave has an app you can use to record right into the iPad without an external microphone for quick auditions?
I can read the Washington Post, download iBooks, play around on the piano with the Virtuoso app, keep up with the weather around the world, Google to my heart's content, and watch You Tube and Netflix videos.
Keeping up with appointments for my business and family has become much easier by using the iCal app.
I’m able to sync all calendar updates, whether they are made from my iPad, iPhone, MacBook Pro, or iMac on one master calendar. No more trying to remember which device I originally made the appointment.
Evidently, the info gets “pushed” into the “cloud” and remembers for me … I think it’s magic!
I've even used the iPad as a GPS by typing in an address in the Maps app. Yep, all that from my little iPad.

Definitely a great investment, after all! And yes, I've now learned how to blog with it! I'd love to hear how other folks are using their iPads!
Linda Ristig is a freelance voice talent for The Fairfax (VA) Public Access television and radio station,, and a contributor to The Metropolitan Washington Ear. She is also a full-time voice talent with a studio in the Washington, D.C. area, providing voice overs for corporate phone voice messaging, interactive voice response, PowerPoint, Internet media and website business presentations from the local Chamber of Commerce to international corporations.
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Comments (11)
Nick Terry
7/23/2011 at 3:02 PM
I use my iPad to read copy before recording, and often times I'll use it to practice reading the copy using GarageBand and plugging my Blue Yeti Pro mic into the camera connector tool ($29) and using a Belkin USB hub to power it; I've actually turned in an audition using this and got the job.

I place the iPad on a music stand and it's so much nicer then not worrying about picking up the sound of paper, so long as the volume is set to mute :)
Bob Churchfield
5/27/2011 at 11:51 AM
Thanks for the info. What about the ability to actually record voice overs using the i-pad vs. other methods? Better? As Good? Not quite there yet?
Linda Ristig
1/17/2011 at 7:23 AM
This was a fun article to write and I'm so glad many of you took a moment to respond. I'm certain more and more clever ways to use the iPad are forthcoming. Thank you for sharing! In fact, Mike, I downloaded the teleprompter app yesterday and it worked perfectly!
Stan Pickett
1/16/2011 at 10:42 PM
Nice review, Linda - thanks! And, John, thanks for publishing it! Further to Mike Laponis's comment, ProPrompter works well set up inside Harlan Hogan's PortaBooth Pro. (For size, at least on an iPhone - I haven't sprung for an iPad. Yet.)

Again, thanks; good concise, concrete points.
Paul J. Warwick
1/16/2011 at 12:42 PM
Thanks for the article ro convince the "business manager" to let me get one!
Lisa Rice
1/16/2011 at 9:10 AM
Thanks for sharing your iPad experience with us, Linda. Your ideas for voice over use have been helpful and I'm glad Twisted Wave now has an app.
David Sigmon
1/16/2011 at 4:15 AM
Linda, What percentage commission is Apple paying you? Where do I buy a purse to carry my iPad in? Great review lady. Thanks.
Mike Laponis
1/15/2011 at 11:39 PM
I appreciate what you have to offer here regarding the various ways you are utilizing your iPad. Isn't it just great?! I have only had mine for about 2 months and finding more uses and apps every day! Thanks for the info on Twisted Wave.

A couple more apps you may be interested in: iAudition is pretty good, too. One for copy that I have found useful is ProPrompter - more for on-camera work as a teleprompter, but I have found it useful for VO work, too.

Something to keep your eye on is an interface from Alesis - it is a pro audio dock for the iPad called StudioDock ( - seems like it could have some good uses for an external mic for VO.

Thanks again for the useful info!
Fran McElvey
1/15/2011 at 11:26 PM
Your blog is great! We just purchased a new Mac and I'm taking lots of lessons at the Apple store. Who knows? An iPad may be next.
Tanya Schoenwolf
1/15/2011 at 3:37 PM
Linda, I love the Twisted Waves app - thanks so much for this information.
Mike Murphy
1/15/2011 at 1:56 PM
Very Nice and informative blog article!
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