Auditions from agents, networking, production companies and direct invitations from pay-to-play websites should get top priority.Read more...
If a client wants to hire you, you will receive an email that reads the clients name “via Voice 123” in the “from” line.Read more...
Sometimes I have students with crazy tech smarts – the editing doesn’t scare them at all but they need to work on their performance technique. The rest of the time I have students who are trained entertainers – the performance is a piece of cake but they are TERRIFIED of the idea of trying to figure out editing software. If you are more like that let me say this:
Recording and Editing is a simple set of steps you learn and memorize. If you know how to drive a car then you can definitely record and edit voice over. It may seem intimidating, but once you memorize those steps, it becomes as automatic as driving a car too.
I’m going to show my example using Acid Pro--have no fear if you are using Studio One or Garage Band or ProTools. The main shortcuts you need to know for fast editing of voice files, no matter what software you use are:
How to stop the playback where the scrubber is atHow to stop playback and have the scrubber return to its starting positionHow to quickly zoom in and outHow to slice or split a trackHow to trim a trackHow to render a file
Whatever software you use there are pretty much ALWAYS tutorials online. To learn one of these editing shortcuts in your software do a search for “how to + the command you need to know + in + the software you use”
For example, “How to trim a track in protools” OR “How to quickly zoom in and out in Audacity”
You now know all the basic steps to becoming a working voice over actor! Now it’s time to go make some money. And what really builds momentum there is treating your voice over work as a small business. When a restaurant is slow, the staff isn’t supposed to just sit there. They reorganize a fridge or polish the silverware or tend to whatever part of the business needs work. The same concept applies here. Just because you don’t have a gig doesn’t mean there isn’t stuff to do! Here are some tips to keeping your business running smoothly:
· Work on demos – maybe you just booked a cool E Learning gig in the medical industry that teaches doctors how use a new machine that checks for tumors. Take that finished file, cut it down to :30 and get that demo up on your profile so you can book more of those!
· Work on your profile – update and tweak your profile as often as possible.
· When you book a job, try auditioning for 3 more before you start unless it's a rush job. That way, when the job you just got is done, you have a better chance of the next one coming down the pike without delay.
· Enter the gig into something like a spreadsheet, a calendar or some invoicing software so that you don’t have to keep track of it up in your head. If you have a few jobs going at once, it’s easy to forget if a client hasn’t paid you.
· Set up Filters - Whatever you use for email - doesn’t matter if you use gmail, Thunderbird or yahoo – set up filters so you don’t miss messages!! (insert footage that shows how I get a text when someone emails me from voice123 to hire me)
· Work on email submissions to be considered for the roster of production studios, sound engineers or, if you’re ready, agencies. I didn’t mention this before because my course focuses on the work you get *before* you get an agent….the work you get that will make you start to look desirable to an agent. But, once you think you’re ready (at which point you should at least have a commercial demo and a few gigs under your belt) you can have as many agents as you want as long as they are physically at least 150 miles apart from one another. Once you have one, go for as many as you can get!! The most up to date place for agencies that I know of is voicebank.net. Click on the “voice over talent agency” tab. This is an amazing resource. You can click to view union or non-union agents and sort by city.
· Organize your files on your computer! When you're doing several auditions a day you desktop can get really messy really fast if you don't have a system in place. I recommend having a folder called VoiceOver. Inside that you can create a folder for auditions, clients, letters/submissions and demos. Everything I do usually goes into one of those folders and then everything is easy to find when I need it.
Warm-ups and exercises
o Mouth warm-up
o Voice warm-up
o Some stretches
o Vocal exercise of speaking in a tone and going down a half a step
o Exercise to help you not run out of breath before the end of a long line.
o Aging exercise
o Exercises to come up with new characters
In 2008, she made the leap of faith to quit all her starving actor jobs and do mainly voice over work. It wasn't long before her other actor friends wanted to "pick her brain" to find out how she worked so regularly and so she decided to teach a class about it. She taught an all-day intense voice over workshop about the business side of voice over. Starting at 10am, they broke down step-by-step how to set up your own studio, where to find the work, how to get the job, how to execute the job and how to collect the money at the end. She taught this seminar in Guitar Centers and other places up and down the west coast and, though she enjoyed it, she quickly learned that she would rather be a performer than a teacher.
Naomi took her entire workshop and created this online class. On this website is all the information and tools Naomi uses everyday as a working voice over actor. She is currently doing voice over for Bratz Dolls and La La Loopsy campaigns, she voiced all the training videos for Navman Wireless and she is the voice of BPM, channel 51 on Sirius SM. Other current credits and projects, as well as demos are listed on her website, www.naomimercer.com.
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