While there are many tips and hints that will be offered to you as you begin your career as a voiceover artist, most are matters of opinion. In some cases, those opinions are shared by the majority, but that still doesn’t make them a rule. There are, though, a few matters that are not debated and that really are essential for building a profession of voiceover work.
Speak Clearly If you are regularly tripping over your words, have a tendency to fade off at the end of sentences, or speak at such a rapid rate that a person can’t decipher where one word ends and another begins… you are going to have trouble in this industry. Speaking clearly is one of the Voiceover commandments that simply cannot be ignored. The exceptions to this are when a VERY conversational read such as characters in a video game, audio book, etc. are needed. Then you can ease up a bit on proper annunciation of every word. Real Voice Acting!
Find Your Inner Confidence I find this particular rule of voiceover to be so important that I previously wrote an entire blog post about it. You have to believe in what you are doing and believe that you are capable of doing it wonderfully if you plan to sell yourself. It is a competitive market that you will be operating within as a voiceover artist, so confidence is an absolute must. If you don’t believe in you, the casting directors and potential clients never will.
Know the Material There are exceptions to this rule. You may be asked to do a cold read as part of an auditioning session, in which case you can’t possibly study the material ahead of time. However, whenever possible, you should pre-read scripts and really ensure that you understand the meaning of the message before you record it. This will lend a level of authenticity to your work, and also help to ensure that you don’t encounter uncomfortable, reputation-ruining moments in the recording studio.
Practice If you want to do anything well, you have to practice it. I’ve said it over and over again on this blog, and I will continue to do so. Practice is essential in this profession, as it is in so many others. If you don’t take the time to hone your skills, you will undoubtedly miss out on career-making opportunities.