Trying to "Break In" to Voice Overs? You Can not! Understanding the Profession is the Key to Success

Voiceover Directory

Trying to "Break In" to Voice Overs? You Can not! Understanding the Profession is the Key to Success


Voice Over is a business in which professionals count on other professionals to provide a service that requires knowledge, skill and professionalism. This idea probably looks pretty basic and obvious to those of us who already work in the voice over field. In many cases, however, individuals considering beginning in our field often find themselves done up in what I refer to as the "Break In" mentality. These folks often have every bit as much desire for success as any professional in our field does, but unfortunately, they see professional voice over work as something you need special luck or a magic trick to build success in. As a producer and Voice Over educator, I hear this all the time: "Can you teach me how to break in to voice overs?"

Questions like these always offer me the opportunity to make a very clear point: Voice Acting is not something that you break in to. Voice Over is a business, and those people who are voice actors are, in essence, small business owners. You do not "break in" to being a doctor, a lawyer, a mechanic, a cook, or a professional athlete, and similarly, you do not "break in" to be a voice over artist. Building success in Voice Acting is exactly the same as building that success in any other field: it's not primarily about luck or a magic formula, it's about understanding the requirements of the profession, determining where you best fit in, developing necessary skill, and remaining persistent. Additionally, enjoying the process and the prospect of success can be a tremendous advantage. Many of the world's top businesses were not built solely with the desire for income, but with passion for the process.

As in any worthy endeavor, there will be challenges to overcome and work to be done to achieving success in voice overs. But your individual success will become much more meaningful through a clear understanding of the professional requirements of the field. Reserve any "Break in" mentality to use as a possible solution to your keys being locked in your car!

When you are ready to develop professional skill, remain focused on education. The educational process should focus on job knowledge and skill development. Your education could include books or web resources, group or private training, or communication with other industry professionals. Just remember that your goal during any educational process is to learn.

It should go without saying, but I will say it any way: if something sounds "too good to be true," it just might be. Be cautious of mixing education with an agency or casting services. The allure of training with an organization that hires voice actors is natural, just remember that no ethical company can guarantee your success in this field and no ethical company can guarantee that they will get you regular voice over work simply because you paid them for education.

In my 20+ years of experience, education is education, and casting is casting. The two should not mix.

Colleges and Trade Schools can legitimately offer placement assistance because the individuals they train are joining a profession. It is easy to certify a welder, and then help that person find a job as a welder. Voice Over artists are also joining a profession, but the difference is, and this is a big difference, that Voice Over artists are going into business for themselves. Voice over work is entrepreneurial. The most wonderful success stories in our field are often built by those who recognize that voice over is a business, develop job knowledge and skill, keep the educational process solidly focused on learning, and enjoy the process!


Source by David Bourgeois

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