A voice over artist, or voice actor, reads a script and interprets the words to create a specific character or convey a message. Voice acting is an art form that can be both challenging and rewarding, with short as well as long term projects. A voice over for a twenty-second commercial may be a very quick piece of work, while the narration of an entire book or video game can take months to complete.
While a unique and recognizable voice is certainly helpful, the most successful voice over artists have a suite of soft skills that allow them to perform with great ease and versatility. This includes a strong work ethic and the ability to adapt to feedback from a director or audio engineer, even when performing outside their comfort zone. A good understanding of pacing and articulation is also important to a voice over artist, as is the ability to stay calm under pressure.
As a freelancer, the life of a voice over artist can be unpredictable and often involves spending a lot of time waiting for jobs to come in. This is why it is so important to build a portfolio that features different recordings of voice acting to show potential employers your skills and versatility. You can do this by recording snippets of a variety of scripts and editing them together to create a demo reel. This can be as simple or complex as you want and should include a variety of different voices and styles.
Many voice over artists start by getting representation from a casting agent, who will market their talents to recruiters and negotiate their salary on their behalf. This is not always necessary, however, as most people can find voice over work on their own if they are persistent enough. It can also be helpful to join a network of other voice over artists, who can offer support and advice as you begin your career.
A career as a voice over artist can be quite lucrative, particularly if you can secure repeat work with a major company or source of audio content. This can be achieved by developing a relationship with a production studio or game developer, who will hire you on a regular basis for their work. As technology advances, it is becoming increasingly possible to record and edit high-quality audio on a standard desktop computer, meaning that the days of needing to rent expensive studio space to complete your work are quickly coming to an end.
If you are thinking of pursuing a career as a voice over artist, the best place to start is by finding out who your local talent agents are and having them listen to your demo. If they think that you have the right skill set, they will be able to connect you with auditions. If you are lucky, you will find an agency who will represent you and provide you with the opportunity to make a name for yourself in the industry. voice over artists