A documentary is a non-fiction video or film that informs viewers about a real-life topic, person, event, or issue. They are typically educational in nature, extremely detailed, and often have a persuasive tone about them. Documentaries bring viewers into new worlds and experiences through the presentation of factual information about real people, places, and events. While there’s a lot of variation within, these are the six main categories of the genre into which all documentary films can be placed.
- Poetic documentary: Instead of using traditional linear continuity to create story structure, the poetic documentary uses footage to evoke an audience association through emphasised visuals and a narrative. It focuses on visuals and artistic style to reveal the story.
- Expository documentary: Expository documentaries set up a specific point of view or argument about a subject and often feature “voice of God” style realistic Documentary voice over.
- Participatory documentary: Often called interactive documentary, it features the interaction between the filmmakers and their subjects, focusing on a direct engagement with subjects and capturing real emotional responses and interactions.
- Observational documentary: It attempts to discover the ultimate truth of the subject by observing the subject’s real-life without interruptions, to capture them in a raw, unguarded state.
- Reflexive documentary: Reflexive documentary is not about the relationship with the filmmaker and the subject, but rather the filmmaker and the audience. Here the subject matter is often the process of documentary filmmaking itself.
- Performative documentary: It focuses on the filmmakers’ involvement with their subject, using their personal experience for exploring larger, subjective truths about politics, history, or groups of people.
With the advancement of technology and accessibility of streaming services, documentary film has entered into the mainstream consciousness as one of the dominant art forms of cinematic storytelling and personal expression. Making documentaries is one of the most rewarding and challenging endeavors you can be involved in and professional voice over recording services can resonate the message of your documentary into the minds of the audience. Let’s take a look at how you might go about creating an engaging documentary:
- Do a thorough research: Effective research is the foundation of any documentary — short or long-form. Research allows you to discover plot points, build your narrative, craft your story arch, and shape your film. Remember that a better research about the story and the analysis of the audience will eventually make for a better film. Having an in-depth research will help you ensure the following elements:
- Selecting a topic that shows a different viewpoint.
- Verifying that your idea is marketable
- Proving an insight on picking up appropriate literature, and checking other similar documentaries.
- Deciding which points will enlighten your audience and resonate the most with them.
- Making the angle of your topic interesting, emotional, and inspiring.
- Outline your story: While narrative films have a script, documentaries live and die by an outline. Unlike a feature film production, the script for a documentary is not written out word-for-word. Rather, a general outline is created, a preferred direction is determined, and a shot list framework is laid out for the production crew.
Documentary storylines can often be very fluid and an effective outline will provide you with a concrete summary during your production. These guiding principles, detailed through your outline, help ensure your film always stays on course, even when things begin to change up. Crafting an outline for your documentary helps to provide anticipated story-beats that your film may follow and will eventually help to enhance your brand image through powerful audios and visuals.
- Shoot Your Documentary: Now that everything is planned out, it is time to start filming your documentary. There are plenty of things you can film that can potentially play an important role in the overall message of your documentary. Some of these include:
- Conducting interviews with relevant figures that support your message. This can include interviews you direct with your questions, old footage of interviews, seminars, or public rallies, and even footage of people in their daily lives as it applies to your documentary.
- Gathering real-life events as they unfold to make your documentary strong. Getting as much real-world footage as possible will give your documentary authority on the subject.
- Filming establishing shots to put your scenes into context, introduce new ideas, and make the overall film flow naturally. These shots often include historical landmarks, time of day progressions, close-up shots of an important location related to your topic, and even serve the purpose of defining the theme of your scene.
- Invest in Professional Voice Overs: Voice overs are important in any film as they can immerse your viewers in your story. When creating your film, a good voice over can help you tell a better story. An interactive documentary, portrays the journey through engaging voiceovers and other multimedia tools. A ‘right voice’ can help you to reach your content to a wider user base and vetran voice artists will have their professional home studio setup, the required technical expertise and the right equipment to produce top-notch recordings. An excellent voice recording will serve the following purpose:
- Convey the tone of a brand: Voiceovers are all about invoking the emotions in people through the right tone. Human minds powerfully harness the emotive power of voice, thus voice overs can help you achieve the intended result easily.
- Communicate emotions effectively: Not enough can be said about the effect that a human voice has over the audience. Build the right trust with your audience by giving your Documentary a sense of credibility through voice overs.
- Powerful retention of the message: Voice overs help in better retention of any message and incorporating professional voices can help you to accomplish this aim of your Documentary video.
Narrating documentaries is a marathon that requires the ultimate balancing act of artistic and technical endurance coupled with the ability to continuously engage the audience. Documentary voice overs require well trained professionals who can create the feel of storytelling and give the viewer a whole different aspect to the video. If you are pondering over the qualities on which you should select the professional voice artist, you can stick to the following points to get favorable outcomes:
- The voice artist must possess excellent pronunciation and voice clarity and should be able to read a script with the correct enunciation, emotion while maintaining the same speed and tone throughout. This way he/she can provide professional voice over recordings.
- There's a lot to voice overs than just 'voice'. The artist must be able to understand the tone of the script, the flow and modulations and voice inflection to deliver a quality voice over.
- One more important voice consideration is consistency throughout the piece. Also, the voice over talent needs to be natural and the voice over shouldn’t sound forced or rehearsed, just authentic, and organic.
- A seasoned voice actor will have a visual brain which doesn't just mean the ability to see the word on paper, but the ability to envision images in your head which go inside the story.
- Timing is everything in narration. A professional talent will know how to adjust pace to still sound natural, while breaking the monotony of the narration.
- The narrator must be creative and should feel free to try different readings and must be able to add life to your Documentary through interactive voice overs.
- Edit Wisely: Once the shooting period is over, it is time to transcribe all the interviews and write down the time code. While editing can seem like a lot of work, the best edit will help you to make your documentary crisper, with a tighter and more structured story arch.
Ensure to establish the tone of the film - it's photography, sound, and approach - in the opening moments of the documentary. If you have a section with rapid cuts and lots of action, follow it with a slower, more contemplative section that allows your audience to take a break and process what they just saw. Details make the difference. Cut on a specific frame, add subtle soundscapes, use nearly imperceptible changes in color to differentiate scenes. Keep trimming your documentary down to the most essential parts to tell your story most effectively.
People like narrators in a Documentary because they can spur on new thoughts, segue eloquently when required and persuasively convey emotion using the most powerful and innately wonderful tool in humanity’s communicative arsenal — the human voice. When it comes to creating a documentary video that captivates your audience, you can trust Voyzapp, one of the largest online voice over marketplace to help you find professional and seasoned voice artists. You can even sort the artists on the basis of cost that will help you to fit the entire project under your budget. With a right platform like Voyzapp, you can easily hire voice actors for your project - at a button’s click!
In the end, there is a lot that goes into creating a powerful documentary and a professional voice over can help you reach a large audience and have a positive impact over them.
Now that you know how to create a great documentary video, begin your project today by finding the perfect voice over for your video.
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