There are many reasons why I am on the path of becoming a full time voice actor. The main and most important reason I chose this path is because when I am in the booth using my voice to bring an idea to life, I am happy. It makes my soul smile. I can trace this feeling all the way back to my grade school music class with Mrs Pittman. One day, we were doing some sort of improv skit acting type of thing. I do not recall exactly what grade I was in, but I want to say 2nd or 3rd grade which means I was around 7 or 8 years old. The teacher, Mrs Pittman asked the class if someone could do some sort of excited giggly animated laugh – my hand immediately shot up and sure enough she called on me. I remember feeling nervous and excited which is the same alive feeling I get today when I perform music or do voice over work. It is a good nervous feeling; one that makes me feel good and helps me get in the zone. I stood up and let out a goofy bellow, the class laughed, and I felt a sort of accomplishment in finding that laugh inside of me. If I remember correctly I was thinking of one of the characters in a land before time. Do you remember that show?
Fast forward about 16 years and I am working in a call center for a music company in Austin, TX called Mood Medida. Little did I know that the connections in this place would help shape my future voice over career. Mood had an internal “voice department.” The main function of this team was working with voice talent and creative directors for certain brands to design on hold and in store messaging solutions. The folks on that team described voice actors as people who worked from their home studios in the mountains where they would record messages and get paid to live like kings Like any sane person, I wanted to know more. I was able to do what I consider the first audition of my career for a Ford commercial with a guy named Byrne Rock. The mixing engineer and director, Byrne, gave me the script, told me the time limit of the spot, and said “alright, you’re recording.” After doing a few takes with some direction from him he told me that I was pretty good and with some practice I could pursue this. I thought to myself “ok, cool”, but never really acted on this advice until about 6 years later while living in Bucharest Romania.
While working at Mood I met a fella named Nathan Ross. Nathan worked in mood’s voice department who had has his hand in a few different audio projects of his own, and still does. I asked him how he first got into voice acting, and he advised me to join a group on facebook called Voiceover Camp. I joined the group and was connected with Demo producer and coach Terry Daniel. Terry and I worked together on and off for a few months going over script delivery, audio engineering, marketing and other aspects of the voiceover business. Terry was quick to tell me that I had a knack for script delivery which boosted my confidence. Working with Terry as a coach opened up two career paths for me. Voice acting and copywriting.
After a few months of getting schooled in the VO business with Terry I was ready to record my demos. Photographers have portfolios, scientists have degrees, and voice actors have demos. Demos are what voice actors use to showcase their talents. If you are an established voice actor, you will use existing TV and radio spots for your demo, but if you are new to the game and do not have any work under your belt, you should work with a good demo producer and copywriter to make sure your voice is best showcased.
I mentioned earlier that Terry introduced me to two career paths; voice acting and copywriting. I was ready to record my demos but was awaiting the copy from Terry, so I decided to write my own copy and see what he thought. After sending him some samples, he loved the spots I wrote and decided I should write all of my demo copy. I chose brands I loved, and