Sunday, March 30, 2008

Voice Over News - Back in the Country

Well, I'm back in the US and hit the ground running last Monday. Sorry the blog has been neglected the past few weeks, but I enjoyed my tour of England and Scotland tremendously!

I didn't think much about the voice over business on the trip except to enjoy all the different accents and colloquialisms and to vow NEVER to attempt any type of British accent for any British clients! There are so many different variations even within the city of London itself, it's hard to imagine where one would begin unless directed to a specific part of London, or other specific dialect. Really fun to hear and learn about, though! That being said, there are some very good English actors who are doing very convincing American dialects on some of my favorite television shows right now.

I'll be getting back to my "How To" blogs for voice over beginners soon. Just trying to catch up with my clients and business this past week. It's often so hard for us to take the time away when we're self employed as voice over talent, but getting totally away is so very, very enjoyable and beneficial to our lives in so many other ways!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Voice Talent Advice #3 - Voice Over Warm Up

Hi there. I thought it was time to add another installment to my series on Voice Over Advice. Last time, I talked about breathing - something seemingly so simple but so important to our voice over work! I hope you've been practicing the techniques of deep breathing from the diaphragm to support your voice and all you do with it.

Today, let's talk about articulation. Even in this time of "real" people and "conversational" delivery in voice over, you have to be able to articulate to be understood. It seems that especially in these kinds of delivery you have to have the articulators warmed up and ready to work in order to give that relaxed delivery and yet, be clear. So, take that deep breath and begin some articulation exercises before you begin reading that copy. Really, you can do any tongue twisters or vocal exercises that use all the muscles of your face, tongue, lips, etc. Rodney Saulsberry has a whole list of clever tongue twisters that he has created. You can also use the old standbys: She Sells Sea Shells..., Rubber Baby Buggy Bumpers..., Peter Piper Picked a Peck... etc. Humming to get the sound up in your "mask" and buzzing your lips to get things moving help as well.

I picked up a series of sounds for warm up in college that I don't know who to give credit to. They sound funny, but they do help to get the articulators ready to work. You can find them in the How To section of my website under Preparing for Voice Over.

So, don't skip the warm up. Do it at home before you record an audition or a job. You can do them in the car on the way to a voice over session at another audio studio. But just do them. You'll be glad you did!