Voice over is when you use your voice to act as a character in a film, TV show, video game, commercial, radio spot or other media. It can be used to create emotion, add a sense of urgency or excitement, or simply deliver a message that needs to be heard.
If you’re in the beginning stages of a career as a voice over artist, the road can be tough. Most newbies don’t book more than a small percentage of the work they audition for. But, with the right guidance and training, you can set yourself up for success.
A great place to start is by learning about the various types of voice overs. It’s also helpful to figure out which genres are best suited for your unique voice and tone. Then you can focus on securing gigs within that area. Recurring gigs, like voicing a movie trailer or animation voiceover, can help you get established faster.
It’s important to have the right equipment when you’re recording your voice overs. A good quality microphone, computer and sound editing software are the key to creating high-quality recordings. It’s also essential to have a quiet environment, free from distractions so you can concentrate on delivering the best possible performance.
Pacing and inflection are the two other important elements of a successful voice over. You want to be able to speak at a natural pace and keep the listener engaged. But, you also don’t want to be too slow or boring. It’s important to find the right balance and pacing for each specific project you audition for.
You’ll also need to be sure that you’re pronouncing each word correctly. Make sure your voice over script includes a list of words that may be difficult or have multiple acceptable pronunciations, and provide the actor with that information before the recording session. This will avoid any misunderstandings or frustration with the final product.
While a degree in voice over acting can be helpful, it’s often on the job training that really teaches someone how to do their job well. In fact, most professional voice actors still hire a coach to help them improve their performance and stay current on the latest trends in the industry. This mentorship/apprentice model harkens back to the days before schools and books were commonplace, when on the job learning was the only way to truly master a skill.
As you begin to work on your voice overs, it’s also crucial to build a strong network of fellow voice over artists. They can be a source of inspiration and support, as well as a resource for potential clients. You can even consider joining a professional association for voice over artists or attending a conference to meet fellow voice over professionals. Creating a network can help you establish your name in the industry faster.