Perhaps you have a very distinctive or unique voice. Maybe you’re a singer or improv comedian looking to earn extra income. Or, maybe your 9-5 isn’t fulfilling.
Regardless of background, most career voice actors start as part-time pros. This is a great way to build a portfolio and gain experience.
Voice actors work in a creative environment that lets them do fun characters, play with scripts, and work on their own schedule. It’s the kind of job that many dream about, especially since it can be done from home.
The career requires good acting abilities and a basic understanding of dramatic techniques to convey emotion through the voice alone. Flexibility and versatility are also important skills to have. The ability to mimic and create a wide range of voices and character types allows for a more diverse and expansive pool of work. Think of Family Guy’s Seth MacFarlane — his wide variety of characters is the reason why he still has a career as a professional voice actor.
Basic audio technology skills are required for working voice actors, as well as familiarity with online marketplaces for finding work. This includes understanding how to use a digital recording device and editing software. In addition to regular practice auditioning for jobs, working voice actors should regularly record themselves at home and listen back to improve their performance.
Many people pursue a career in voice acting because they love performing. They might have spent their childhoods mimicking teachers, or they may have been involved in on-camera acting before pursuing voice work. In either case, there are a few things that all aspiring voice actors should be aware of.
First, training is a must. The right training course can teach aspiring voice actors how to read from a script, develop their vocal range, and create the necessary tone for a project. Additionally, these courses can help them understand the industry and how to work with clients.
Aside from training, it is also important to network in the industry. As a voice actor, you will likely be on call at all times for new projects, so having an active professional network can help connect you to opportunities. This is especially important since there are many jobs available online that can be done from home. This can be a huge advantage for those who are trying to cut down on expenses like renting a recording studio or commuting.
While drama school training and a strong voice can help, there are rarely strict education requirements for people seeking work as a voice actor. Many clients simply rely on candidates’ talent as assessed by auditions and demo recordings.
As a freelancer, most voice actors start out working part-time to provide a steady income while they pursue their career. This can be a stressful transition as it is not uncommon for aspiring voice actors to go weeks or even months without finding work. For this reason, it is a good idea to have a backup job in case you cannot make ends meet.
To land gigs, aspiring voice actors must develop their network by attending auditions for roles that fit their skill sets and vocal tone. Online casting platforms like Backstage can be useful for finding opportunities and securing early credits. It’s also essential for aspiring voice actors to master their recording equipment and learn how to edit audio files. The ability to do so can help them save time and money while providing a higher-quality product for their clients.
Voice Over Demos
Having the ability to perform and interpret a script is the foundation for a career in voice acting. Whether you’re working in commercials, narration or narrative podcasts, your ability to read scripts will be key. Enunciation is also a must – the last thing you want to hear on a professional recording is words being mumbled or distorted.
One of the best things you can do to build your skills is to work with experienced coaches and producers who can help guide you in the process. They’ll help you put together a demo reel that showcases your talent. A good demo will show clients that you can perform in a variety of different situations and styles.
It’s also important to find a network of voice actors and share your work. Not only can this provide moral support, but it can also create opportunities to audition for projects. Often, a fellow voice actor will be able to recommend you for a project that they’re not suited for, and vice versa. It’s important to have a wide range of experience and talent, so that you can always be ready to take on new challenges.
Getting a job in voice acting requires more than talent. Since voice actors are typically self-employed, they must be able to market themselves and find work on their own. They also need to understand business fundamentals.
For example, they need to understand that the quality of their recording equipment is crucial. A poor-quality voice recording can make you look unprofessional and may be a turn-off to the client. Moreover, most clients prefer to use a digital audio workstation (DAW) for editing purposes, so it’s important that you learn how to operate one.
Another key skill is confidence. This can help you to enunciate and convey your lines clearly during the auditions. Finally, time-management skills are essential as voice actors often have to meet deadlines. For instance, some productions require 24-48 hour turnaround times. In addition, many voice actors work on a project-by-project basis and must therefore be available for immediate calls or auditions. This means that being a voice actor can be a highly flexible career, depending on your particular niche. However, it’s important to note that you must be prepared for a lot of rejection as well.