"Living with a voice actor is a privilege few people can profess to have experienced. It is a life like no other – a constantly changing whirlwind of auditory dreams and fantasies, occasionally peppered with startling aural hallucinations...A voice actor is a montage of characters, some known, some not yet known. A voice actor’s home is a non-stop, live-action theatre, and one never knows what or who lurks behind the studio door. I live with a voice actor, and though my life has been far richer for it, it is not a life for the average soul. The man behind the VOICE...."We hope you will read this article in full right here, and Voice123 thanks Adam for the sneak peek into his life, written by Di Russell. We felt this is a great voice talent to read about because of his expansive and successful arsenal of voices.
Friday, April 30, 2010
This article was shared with me last week by an amazing voice talent on Voice123, Adam Behr, a world-recognized voice talent, both online and offline.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Each day, voice over talent from around the world wake up and go to the Internet to find job opportunities. If you think back, just 10 to 15 years ago, the most common way to get voice over work was to commute to a job, or audition.
In 2010, more and more voice talent have the opportunity to work from home either full-time, or part-time. On the surface, this sounds absolutely wonderful, but still there are some things to consider once you have made that commitment to a voice over career. This week, we wish to offer Voice Over Survival Tips for the Remote Voice Talent.
Survival Tip #1: Create a routine that 'feels' like a 'commute to work'.
- This may sound silly, but when the commute to work becomes 'going from the shower to the studio', what gets lost is that built up 'sense of urgency'. What 'pavement pounding' to auditions did for many voice talent I know was it gave them a physical boost, and time to mentally prepare for the audition. It was a 'trip to think about it, and maybe walk it off, or celebrate.' You can imagine that waking up, going to the kitchen, and then the studio in your house, the physical effort may be missing, and the walk sure is not happening.
- Before working from home each day, create a fake commute such as, taking a walk to the store before you allow yourself to start auditioning. The physical effort wakes the mind up, gets the blood flowing, and gets the body prepared.
- Again, this is psychological, but very important. If you are reading copy in full view of that laundry you did not do, or those bills you did not pay, the mind cannot always focus 100% on the task of 'getting work'. Auditioning involves interpreting copy, requiring that you sound 'in the moment'. If you are distracted by your surroundings, whether you know it or not, others may simply feel you are not connected to the script, and that alone, is enough to sink an audition.
- Do your best to create a separate space for yourself, where you know you can focus on work, and not what you did not do around the house.
- Voice talent are very dedicated and competitive, but there comes a point where dedication becomes unhealthy; usually happens when one starts to believe they do not need to eat, drink, get sunlight, or fresh air. Working online can create the illusion that you must sit in front of a computer all day to survive because you have to submit faster than everyone for when that one big job comes along. However, to perform at your highest level, the body must always regenerate.
- Things like Wi-Fi, blackberries, iPhones etc. allow for people to work on the go. It is a good idea to get out once in a while, and network face-to-face. When you travel, find hotels that offer Wi-Fi, or Internet service, to put your mind at ease. Traveling is good life experience, and great in a global market. Since 'acting' is always 'the performance of life', spend time getting to know life beyond the home studio.
- It is statistically proven that people who shower, shave, and dress nicely, as if going to work in an office, have more productive days than on days when they rolled out of bed, straight in front of the laptop.
- 'Working from home' is the decision to relocate a way you used to get work, to another place. When you commit to this 'relocation', you cannot expect the rules of 'how you once worked' to stay the same. Treating auditions online like they are offline auditions, or practice, is a mistake; one I made myself. You cannot cross up different methods of getting work between markets. Online is its own market, and so is offline.
- For example, you cannot sell a newspaper on the street by advertising on the Internet. Why? The Internet cuts out usage of paper, so heavy Internet users wont buy newspapers. Now, the way news is presented and spread on the Internet has changed as well.
- Working from home, you cut out middlemen that were once hired to find talent. You are now a 'DIY' voice talent (do-it-yourself voice talent) finding work on your own, and others are looking for you will be using new methods, too. Keep that in mind. Being your own business means you follow your own rules. Whether or not people are buying them will tell you if these rules are working, or if something else must be tried.
Friday, April 16, 2010
Voice123 offers customer service for voice seekers (voice over job poster) at the creation of a project, but did you know we also do our best to assist during the life of your project?
Voice123 staff is notified via email, if for some reason you are not receiving responses to your job posting. The Voice123 staff will look over your project, and reach out to you to help. Voice123 is a web community, so we are aware of the reasons why voice talent submit for work, and why they do not.
The most common reasons voice talent respond to projects are usually:
- Professional grammar and usage of industry terms and lingo.
- Detailed project descriptions that strongly communicate what you desire.
- Ranking system usage.
- Listening to all who submitted.
- and of course... Attractive budgets.
Posting a job on Voice123 gives you access to professional voice over talent that are looking to build business relationships with you.
If you ever feel you are not receiving responses, and you would simply like to ask why, please join our Live Chat or write us at firstname.lastname@example.org for some tips on posting a voice over jobs, or please look for our emails offering such advice on how to use the Voice123 system!
Thursday, April 15, 2010
This past week, due to an upcoming change in our phone system, I had the opportunity to post a voice over job on Voice123, which you can see here. The project closed on Wednesday, and I thought it would be helpful to share feedback about what went through the mind of this voice seeker (me) and my perspective. I believe this will assist all those who use Voice123. Knowing 'what takes place' is extremely important with any business to show you are aware of the needs of a market.
The first thing I need to do is to thank all of those who submitted. The submissions were all great! Maybe I felt there was 1 out of the 30 that I wanted to reach out to, and recommend that I heard an accent, or slight audio hiss, but this left me wondering:
Is it my place to offer advice because I posted the project?
Why? A democratic creative process is always difficult because everyone will like someone different, if they feel they like a voice for a specific reason. This reason cannot always be explained because a creative process involves 'emotion'. Explaining emotions such as, 'Sorry, you sounded too much like my mom', really do not help, nor do non-creative types always know how to explain what they feel. In this project, the internal debate seemed to always start off with, 'I REALLY think this is the right person because...' and it went on and on, each person trying to push for their choice. We all heard that each of these voice talent are professional enough to be the voice of this company's customer service line, which made a decision tougher.
I understand how many would love feedback, and I thought I could give it back to talent. How exactly can I explain to someone we want to use, that we could not, and then explain all the random thoughts that went on in the debating? With so many colorful thoughts, all you end up with is a gray area. I did directly invite two people; one did not answer. That really is ok. It made things easier. I do think for the purposes of networking online, I would have replied with a, 'No thanks! I am busy working on another project currently', if not interested. However, it is always wasted energy to take anything personal when working online. Being exposed to thousands of opinions each day in a global environment of varying cultures will wear you out, if you allow it.
So... how was a decision reached?
With almost every voice audition being perfect, 'hiring' becomes 'solving a puzzle'. I have been in situations offline, where I asked a manager for feedback on an audition I did not book. The casting director said I was perfect at the audition, but it turned out... 'my voice was perfect, but someone else was a better fit'. Go figure. Getting feedback in voice coaching and classes, always worked better because I had that safety net that allowed me to fail miserably, with only a supportive class that would see it.
We sincerely appreciate the professionalism of the auditions received this week, and that sign of respect, to take our job posting seriously, has us very proud of the professionalism of all Voice123 voice over talent.
Monday, April 12, 2010
Every Thursday, Voice123 offers a product demo/training on how to use Voice123! During this 60-90 minutes session, Voice123 staff explains the following:
- The exact details of how SmartCast and Voice123 works.
- Tips on filling out profiles and marketing tools Voice123 offers.
- Tips on what it takes to do voice over auditioning online.
- A view into the voice seeker interface, and what they think when they listen.
- Insight into 'online street-smarts', and the mindset of those working online.
- Q & A for as long as needed!
This session is offered by myself, and it is one of my favorite times of the week because I get to directly give back great advice to Voice123 voice talent. It does go longer than 60-minutes sometimes, but it is worth it.
It is something many on Voice123 who have attended currently benefit from, and we hope you can find time to attend in the future! More info here!
Monday, April 05, 2010
Voice123 has reached a new record in voice over job postings, for the second month in a row!
If you take a look at our Project Directory, you will notice back in March 2004, a very new Voice123 offered only 81 voice projects.
In March 2010, Voice123 posted 1356 voice over jobs. In just six years, the amount of jobs offered on Voice123 has increased by 1674%!
In addition, every month between 55% to 80% of Voice123 voice talent surveyed, stated they were hired for a voice over job in the past three months through Voice123!
Voice123 is very proud to share this with you, as we are equally proud of the Voice123 community of voice seekers and voice talent, who make all of this possible!
We want to thank you for being part of the largest voice over community of professionals, that continues to grow and succeed, year after year!