What do Tom Hanks, Morgan Freeman and Tina Fey have in common? They’re all voice over artists. In fact, there are many different types of voice over work that you can do and each one requires a specific set of skills.
Unlike other performers who use facial expressions and movement to convey emotion, a voice over artist is unnoticed by the audience. They can be providing narration for a film, voice overs for a video game or the voices of characters in animation. Voice overs can also be heard in radio commercials or promotional videos, on TV shows or even public announcements.
The main requirement for any voice actor is a clear, crisp and natural sounding voice. Whether you’re reading an audiobook or voicing a character in a video game, the words should come across as effortless and natural as possible. Many voice actors spend a lot of time honing their craft and working with a coach or listening to established voice over professionals for inspiration.
In addition to being able to pronounce words clearly, a good voice actor has excellent diction. They also know how to pace their voice and pauses in a way that sounds natural and believable. The most important thing for anyone interested in becoming a voice actor is to practise. Practicing in front of a mirror, reading aloud to friends or family members and recording themselves are all great ways to get started and start improving your skills.
Because there are so many different kinds of voice overs, it’s not unusual for voice actors to specialize in a few different areas. Some will be known for the voices they’ve created in various movies and TV shows while others may focus on a particular type of work such as commercials or e-learning.
Some of the most popular forms of voice acting include:
Film and animated films require a more cinematic sound, which typically requires professional acting experience. Animated videos often require fun, expressive voices, while documentary films call for a more authoritative and informative voice. During voice over recording, you’ll often be asked to watch the film or animated video so that you can align your voice with the visual elements.
There are a lot of different kinds of commercials, but they all need a voice that is engaging and relatable to the target audience. This is often a challenge for new talent because it takes time to build up the right kind of personality and character, but it can be rewarding once you find your niche.
A common form of voice over is narrating a video on a topic such as health or safety. This is a great way for companies to reach an audience with a specific message while also being environmentally responsible.
The vast majority of voice over jobs are for English speaking productions, and most clients prefer American accents. This is due to the popularity of American culture and the way that it is viewed throughout the world. As a result, most professional voice actors have the ability to produce an authentic American accent that is clear and easy to understand.