“A good voice will make you a voice actor as much as a good pen will make you a writer”, -J.B. Blanc.
Some things are just meant to be, while others are not. It’s important to recognize this when starting on your voice-over journey. Just because it sounds like a good fit for you, does not mean it actually will be (and it may take you trying it out to realize this.)
As a beginner, it can be quite easy to get caught up in worrying about if your voice has the right kind of “sound” to be a successful voice-over artist. However, it’s not so much about the sound of your voice, but more so what you can do with it.
Can you turn words on a page into a story that truly resonates with the client’s target audience? Are you ready for the emotional exploration you will need to do to convey those emotions using only your voice? That is ultimately what doing voice-over work is all about. To reach the pinnacle of success you need a team. It’s important to cultivate a community of people you can rely on, starting with a voice-over coach. Coaches teach a myriad of things — from trends in the voiceover industry, to script interpretation, to vocal techniques. They also have the daunting task of being truthful with you. They will tell you if they think your skills can make the money you desire. Everyone needs a voiceover coach at some point in their career.
Start with a class. Make your life easy. Take a local Voiceover Class. I know it sounds cliché, and maybe it is, but there are a few real reasons to start here:
- A local class will connect you to other voice actors in your community.
- You will learn about the local talent agents and the local studios.
- You will hear others read and start to figure out what you think you like and what you don’t.
- You get to read in front of other people. Some people HATE reading in front of people, and in voiceover you have to get over that fear quickly. You may even find yourself in a room full of people staring at you as you struggle to get out a word. Hey! Don’t fret! It’s just part of the job.
- You will learn to interpret feedback. This is crucial because this is hard to do. Try saying Pizza seven different ways. (Yes, I actually had that request in a voiceover job not too long ago… sigh.) I love this stuff!
If you feel exhilarated and you can’t wait to jump-in then this just might be for you. I think I have just as much fun doing auditions as I do when I complete an actual job. Optimally, isn’t that what life is all about? It’s about doing what you love every single day!